It used to be funny when one of our fellow salespeople said, “I don’t know how to ‘Twit’ or ‘Tweet’ or ‘Twitter,’ or whatever these kids are doing these days.” Or something like, “What is the point of this LinkedIn thing anyway? What is that MyPage for business people?” And “I don’t have time for stuff like that; that’s just for the kids. That’s a fad anyway, it will be just a memory next year, so I’m not going to waste my time with that."
And then, we would all laugh, agree with the speaker, and order another beer. Remember those days? Well guess what? That kind of prideful ignorance is no longer cool, and if you want to succeed as a salesperson today, and in the future, you’d better catch on to these newfangled notions. You’d better figure out exactly what Linkedin is and learn how to effectively use it.
More people than ever, millions and millions of people, are using Linkedin for all facets of their business, from developing leads, to finding key people, to connecting with the right people—those they need to be doing business with. Linkedin has become the single most powerful sales tool available on the market today.
And with Twitter, you Tweet, and it is almost as powerful. Ask your IT guy or someone younger than you, which is probably anyone else in the company, to send out a Tweet stating that your company is the best. You’ll see what can happen with the right Tweet to the right audience.
Which leads me to another subject: content development and distribution. The best companies are doing it; all the smart companies are doing it. And now it’s up to you to get on the content bandwagon. You must start writing articles, columns, blogs, technical bulletins, even books and micro-books about your company, especially its expertise. You should be doing everything you can to get your name out into the market, and the best way to do that is to write some informative, valuable content highlighting what your company does best and knows about.
By the way, you do not have the luxury of saying you and the rest of your management team are not writers; nope, that will not fly. You must find a way to get your company on a regular content-producing course and get that content out to your marketplace. Find a way to do this. Hire a writer to help you with content-carrying media. Develop a regular content-producing schedule for your company. It’s not that difficult. The neat thing about content is that you can re-purpose it for all your needs.
Let’s say your company has been fabricating large memory cards for many years; chances are you and your company are experts on memory card technology. Now, develop a monthly column where each month you will write a new column about a different facet of the memory card business. Here are some examples of column subjects: What to Look for in a Memory Card Fabricator. Ten Fundamentals Every Memory Card Designer Needs to Know. The Future of Memory Card Technology. Then, publish these columns every single month in a trade magazine or newsletter such as this one, and you will soon be considered an expert in this field.
Now, here’s the good part: you take each one of these columns and post it on LinkedIn, thus widening the circulation. To make sure that as many people as possible see it, write three related Tweets each time a new column comes out, driving more people to read the column. Condense the column into shorter blogs and distribute those with your WordPress blog. And if you get even more ambitious, put out a newsletter every month featuring your column and other information about your company, always positioning your company as the expert in large memory cards. Before you know it, that single monthly column has become a message carrier, conveying your company’s message to hundreds, if not thousands, of interested potential customers.
And that’s not all. Your SEO people will then take all this content and blast it all over the Internet, making sure you get the coveted high Google ranking, showing up on the first page on any Google search looking for large memory boards.
I know what some of you are thinking. “What the heck is an SEO?” Well, I think we’ve had enough for one day. We’ll talk about that next week. Stay tuned.
It’s only common sense.