Did Social Selling Kill Prospecting?
The proponents of social selling are wrong. Dead wrong. They claim the key to modern selling is to attract and engage rather than interrupt and push.
But here's the problem with that statement. Attracting and engaging has always worked among good sellers. Pushing has never worked. That leaves interruption.
Lately, the social selling “experts” love to vilify interruption. This is pure poison.
Calling and emailing (active prospecting) is tough. But it remains effective. Intercepting the prospect online using content is fine.
It's just not enough.
Can You Sell Without Interrupting?
Here's a comment from one of the biggest names in social selling.
Sales Rep: email, call, email, call, email, call
Buyer: delete, ignore, delete, ignore, delete, ignore
Social Selling: reach and teach/educate and engage.
I challenge any sales person to reach, teach, educate and engage a prospect without, first, interrupting them. Whether you do it with a phone call, email or a piece of content one cannot earn a conversation by waiting for one to happen.
That's called being a wallflower.
At some point we're forced to reach out. Contact the prospect. Interrupt.
Sellers that are effective at interrupting win. Those who don't lose.
We live in a world filled with hype and buzz about inbound marketing. But the truth is sales prospecting is vital to the success of any B-to-B organization.
Is Traditional Prospecting Dead?
“Prospecting is broken,” says Kraig Kleeman, an accomplished prospector, trainer and speaker.
Because, he says on his blog:
- There is a strong cultural antagonism against receiving anything that at all resembles an unsolicited sales pitch;
- Sellers, almost universally are ill-equipped at avoiding this horrendous obstacle;
- There is a strong cultural aversion among sales professionals to making sales calls;
- Lack of well-developed process creates fear and uncertainty in the hearts of sellers which leads to paralysis.
I would add cold email prospecting to Mr. Kleeman's comments.