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by Tim Hughes | @Timothy_Hughes

Often, my business partner, Adam Gray or our Director of Social Selling, Alex Low and I visit a company and the conversation goes like this:

  • Customer:  We purchased the XYZ tool for social selling.
  • Us:  Great, how’s it going?
  • Customer: It’s not.
  • Us: Oh dear, what’s the matter?
  • Customer: The sales people won’t use it.  The salesman said it would shorten sales cycles and increase deals sizes.
  • Us:  OK, what’s your strategy?

Or this

  • Customer:  We purchased the ABC tool.
  • Us:  And?
  • Customer:  Nothing, we have no idea what to do with it?
  • Us:  OK, what’s the strategy?

Or this

  • Customer:  We’ve just spent gazillions on the DEF Tool and now we’ve realised how much content we need to write to make it work, we just send out the old monthly newsletter with it.
  • Us:  OK what’s the strategy?

It goes on ….

There are a lot of very convincing salespeople out there selling tactical solutions and fair play to them, they are usually pretty good solutions, when people put behind them the right resources.  And they are implemented as part of a strategy.

A strategy, which takes into account, the people, the process and the technology.  The technology change, always is the smallest part of the budget.

In Social Why Do People Start with Tactics?

To be honest, I don’t know, it could be that often the C-Suite don’t get social, people lower down the organisation do.  So people throw money at the problem and with a fair wind and a convincing salesperson, hope that it will make the company social.  It never does.

As Grady Booch, developer of the Unified Modeling Language said “A Fool with a Tool is Still a Fool”

Social Requires a Strategy

I’m going to say something now that many of you will dismiss, some of you will say “it’s too hard” and some of you will say “never in a million years”.  But it’s the truth.

Your company will never succeed at social until you have the backing of the Board / C-Suite.

The good news is, we can help you create a strategy directly with the board.

The other piece of good news, for those who see this as an insurmountable issue often we can work bottom up.  That is proved out social works within a sales team, and then take the success with the C-Suite.  You will have to promise me you will.  If you don’t, nobody will realise more budget and the project will wither and die.  It will become just another random act of social.

People who read this article also read these:

How Companies Using Cold Calling Will Gradually Go Bust or Be Purchased

The Boilerplate approach to Social

Social strategy…and how it works


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