Sales 2.0 Conf: How to Benefit from the Social Selling Revolution

How to Benefit from the Social Selling Revolution
Mike Derezin, Global head of Sales, Sales Solutions, LinkedIn

This was a panel session that kicked off with a LinkedIn announcement related to their new Sales Navigator tool.  This link is not the presentation provided by Mike, but has some similar content –

What is your company doing to find and engage with customer contacts?  210M people are listed on the Do Not Call list.  Only 4.5% of calls are answered by the target contact.

The social selling evolution involves engaging in conversation and leveraging your 2nd degree LinkedIn connections, and  80% of users keep their social and professional networks separate.  LinkedIn has evolved as a important collaboration hub for business users.

Status updates provide insights to what people are doing and into their professional interests.  LinkedIn Today was designed to surface relevant news to your profession that you might not see on other sources.

There are more than 1 million groups on LinkedIn today.  This is where 57% of the social selling takes place.  BUT, relatively few sales reps leverage status updates and conversations in groups.

Sales Navigator is built around 3 components, Lead Builder, InMails, and Team Link.  Lead Builder helps users identify leads based on screening criteria, and when leads of interest change jobs.  InMails have been around for awhile.  In an earlier sessions we learned email gets a 0.5% response rate, but InMail gets a greater than 30% response rate.  [Every company should allow sales reps to expense professional subscriptions.]  Team Link exposes when other team members have connections that can impact a deal close.

WOW!  Team Link should be highly valuable.  Companies have tried to track and cross reference employee skills, past employment links, association memberships, etc, but it has been a manual task, often managed by a spreadsheet.  Most rely on tribal knowledge, and that practice is worth the paper on which it’s recorded.

New is the Social Selling Index.  It’s a set of measures to identify your sales team’s leaders, and who are the laggards.  Easy to understand.  Social Selling Leaders have complete profiles, contribute insights in groups, respond to customer status updates, but most important, they connect to their clients.  Survey your team, and ask who regularly sends LinkedIn invitations to their customers.  Make it a job requirement.

Social Laggards          TipToers               Social Leaders
0                                      50                                       100 Social Selling Index

Teams that leverage social selling have greater sales volumes.  HP’s ArcSight, IBM, Oracle, McKinsey are all icons in their markets.  Remarkable to me, because some represent companies perceived as slow to change, resistant to change, yet here they are, Thought Leaders in a Sales 2.0 world.