by Tim Hughes | @Timothy_Hughes
Since I started my first sales job some 25 years ago, you need to be able to create credibility and internet in a nanosecond, it is nothing new.
My first roll was selling payroll and personal software into Enterprises. My first day I was handed a print and told to “call that”. There I set about making call after call and creating what I’ve always thought was a nice telephone approach. Cheeky, but professional has always worked for me.
But things have changed. The internet arrived.
Why is this different? Now if you cold email me, I will check you out on LinkedIn and based on your LinkedIn profile will make a judgement on your and your company.
If you cold call me, I will do the same
But things haven’t changed have they?
Well they have? If you cold email me, I never read the email, I just cut and paste your name and immediately plug it into LinkedIn. It is from your Linkedin profile that I decide if I will delete, block or reply. It’s a simple as that.
If you cold call me, while you fire off your pleasantries and opening benefit statement, I’m not listening as I’m looking you up on LinkedIn. Again, will make a judgement, shall I listen to the end of the call, jump in and break it off. Plus, do I “block the caller” which is very helpful iPhone functionality.
When I and other people, (prospective buyers for example) check you out on social, you need to have done a number of things:-
- Have a professional photo. No photo means you are a spammer, a photo with you with a pint in your hand means you are a piss head. Nowadays, anything less than a professional photo says to me you couldn’t be bothered.
- Summary title. Let’s not forget if I Google you, this summary title is the first thing is I see. If it’s the same as everybody else, I assume you are the same as everybody else. If you say you are in sales, I expect a sales pitch.
- Your summary, isn’t about your company or your product, your LinkedIn profile belongs to you. This is where I make a judgement about what you are like. Funny, interesting, can you help me? Can you inspire me? If it’s full of jargon, I assume you are a know-it-all and if it’s written in the third person who must be pompous.
- Next fill in as much of the profile as you can. What we are good at in sales is creating a connection. Leave it blank or don’t write anything and you miss that opportunity. What of we went to the same school, worked at the same company in past lives. Think about how that could up your chances in selling something. You do want to sell something, don’t you?
- It may surprise you but myself and your buyer will be looking to see how much you know about the subject, how passionate you are. If I’m going to buy something I’m looking for someday that knows their stuff and isn’t about to leave the company and take another job. Where’s the passion about your role? Of course, you may just turn up each day and that’s fine, but I’m less likely to want to buy from you.
Yes I know all that sounds like a pain, but book out half a day and invest in yourself and get your LinkedIn profile upgraded to 2018!
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