This article is part 5 of a 6 part series
- PART 1: Social selling defined and the 5 pillars success formula
- PART 2: Pillar 1 - Social Listening
- PART 3: Pillar 2 - Social publishing
- PART 4: Pillar 3 - Social Research
- PART 5: Pillar 4 - Social Engagement
- PART 6: Pillar 5 - Social Collaboration
PART 4: B2B Social Selling - "Social Research"
In this fifth interview in this series Tony Hughes emphasises that 'social engagement' is actually the most important part of all 5 pillars.
The ultimate objective is to get in front of people to sell - so that we can assist them with their business. Tony makes the point that to achieve this we need to engage. It's not enough just to tweet people or post things. We want people commenting, and then we want to see what's really important to people, so we can have conversations within context.
Tony says "If it's done well, it creates dialogue with people. And it builds trust, so that when you finally get a face to face meeting or a conversation, your credentials are already established".
See the full interview below.
Tony is a leading author and keynote speaker in the word of B2B sales and sales leadership. He is well known for his strategic selling book "The Joshua Principle" and for the RSVPselling methodology.
See more of the 'TALKING SALES' series here
John: Welcome back, Tony!
Tony: Thanks, John!
John: Hey, we've discussed the first three pillars of your five pillars of social selling in a B2B environment, and the fourth is 'engagement'. I thought we'd spend a bit of time talking about that. Tell me what you really think of when you think of the word "engagement" in a social selling environment.
Tony: Yes. 'Social engagement' is actually the most important part of all of this. If we actually publish, if we do research, if we're doing all of those things well, we should get meaningful engagement with people. It's not enough just to tweet people or post things, we want people commenting, and then we want to see what's really important to people, so we can have conversations within context.
John: So, engagement is dialogue.
Tony: It is, it is. And you can have dialogue in social media. People think that social media's actually stopping dialogue. If it's done well, it creates dialogue with people. And it builds trust, so that when you finally get a face to face meeting or a conversation, your credentials are already established.
John: So, engagement could be people responding to content we put out, but it could also mean us starting to engage and having discussions with people in a group or the forum or whatever.
Tony: Yes, yes. Well, you do that incredibly well with what you do with your group in LinkedIn - the Strategic Selling Group - because it drives a lot of great conversations with people. If you can be in those groups where your buyers are, without being a stalker and without inappropriately pushing and selling in any of those forums, that's...
John: No spam, yes.
Tony: That's absolutely bad behaviour. But if you're in there with those groups, starting to understand people and what's important to them, it enables you to engage really well.
John: Yes, and you build relationships?
Tony: Yes - it's all about relationships.
John: Exactly. So, bottom line is engagement's the most important pillar, you said?
Tony: Correct. And if you're going to adopt a publishing strategy in social, make sure it's a strategy in publishing that results in people becoming engaged with you.
John: You want people to respond to what you've written.
Tony: Exactly - start conversations, ask great questions.
John: Great advice, Tony - I look forward to the next time we talk!
Tony: Thanks, John!
More interviews with Tony Hughes:
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