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Social Media/Sales 2.0 — Are The Right People Listening?

by David Brock on March 26th, 2009
I’ve been involved in a few debates over the past few months that seem to be “Old School Sales” versus “New School Sales.” They are odd debates.

The debates are carried out in the “blogosphere,” which, I think, is one of the newer school vehicles. They seem to be carried out by individuals that are actively engaged in using or experimenting with the new tools. Everyone trying to learn about how to leverage these tools to displace old tools or complement them (I won’t get into that debate right now).

The odd thing is these discussions/arguments are among people who have already “drunk the Kool Aid,” and are asking for second helpings.

The more odd thing is the people that should be really hearing/listening to these debates will never hear them, because they aren’t here.

Many of my customers are still learning how to spell www (OK, I’m exaggerating a little). When I talk to them, very few are reading blogs. Very few are leveraging tools like LinkedIn–except when they lose their jobs then try to expand their networks, not really leveraging LinkedIn for what it can do. They are not driving business strategies that embrace and exploit the power of these tools.

Those are the people we need to be talking to, and we need to reach them where they are at — and it’s not here.

We can’t afford to ignore them, they represent the bulk of the business community.

So these debates in the “blogosphere” about who gets it and who doesn’t always strike me as odd. Clearly, we all get it, but may have differing positions. Wouldn’t we all be better served by spending our time trying to figure out how to reach out to the people who aren’t here and get them here and engaged?

Thoughts, ideas?

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  1. davesteinsblog permalink

    I’m with you on this point, Dave.

    Debates (it’s actually bickering) among the connected is a complete waste of time.

    With respect to this subject our mission must be to figure out how to bring the unconnected into the fold.

  2. Dave Brock's Blog permalink

    Thanks Dave. Regardless of the positions or zealotry, we don’t accomplish much by bickering amongst ourselves.

    Having thoughtful discussions with the unconnected and getting them engaged is what will actually drive Social Media and Sales 2.0.

    Thanks for the comment, as always.

  3. Dave,

    Couldn’t agree with you more. I am doing a keynote at an industry sales function tonight. This very topic will be part of the discussion. While many decision makers are not accessable through social media some of their “influences” are there. The value is gaining the trust of the influencers so you can get real world access to the decision makers.

    • John, thanks for your continued contributions to this blog! There is no doubt, social media is becoming increasingly important in sales and marketing. That being said, intersecting our customers where they are at, in the way that engages them the most is critical. Leveraging influencers through social and other media, accessing decisionmakers through traditional and non-traditional means expands how we reach our customers.

      Have a great talk tonight, wish I were there to hear it!

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