When thinking about the internet and sales, its important to remember that, although it changes how people retrieve information, it also makes it easier to do so.
As an example of how the Internet and sales work together I will discuss a time when I was asked to find a lead provider that could give my team more opportunities to generate business. Naturally, I began my search on old faithful (Google). Predictably, I was greeted with pages upon pages of possible business partners all promising to make our team wildly successful by using their service.
Internet and Sales: Information Search
Later that evening as I was relaxing at home, I took out my iPhone and started looking into each company I was considering. More important than cool looking websites and hip slogans was what other people were saying about them. I searched Google+, Facebook, and other social media sites to get a better picture of what other people thought about them.
As I was researching, it reinforced to me how the landscape of selling has changed. The blind phone call to find out more information has been replaced by the chatter found all over the internet.
Here are some of the things I was looking for:
- Were they being reviewed online? If so, what were other businesses saying?
- What information were they sharing with the public? Were they subject matter experts?
- Was the company growing and staying cutting edge?
Although Business has evolved, Sales still remains an emotionally driven industry that relies on connection. However, instead of face-to-face meet and greets, we can find the answer to most of our questions without ever leaving the office. By the time a prospect does reach out to you, they have done their homework. This leads to more educated buyers and stronger emphasis on sales professionals being able to be a partner through the sales process.
Check out this video from the ODM group. It shows just how much people are using social media in their day-to-day.
Although social media is huge, most of it is being done on smartphones and tablets rather than laptops and PCs. What are you doing to adapt? In future blogs I will talk about some of my experiences trying to connect to a mobile market.