Do you have a LinkedIn
Sales Manager will often times encourage their team to network and even social sell using LinkedIn.
I am writing a series articles about Business Network, Social Selling and success stories using LinkedIn as a Selling Tool and would love to include your experience.
Below is a list of ways one could use LinkedIn as a tool for selling. Please submit your experience using the form above.
"Your Social Selling Index (SSI) measures how effective you are at establishing your professional brand, finding the right people, engaging with insights, and building relationships. It is updated daily."
Deadline: I am submitting a series of articles for publication starting in January 2018
Scope of the work: I am writing a series of articles to be published about LinkedIn Sales Success Stories and about Business Networking and what role it played in a company’s strategy in : Marketing | Business Development | Sales | Introductions | Closing the Deal
Media: Based in Houston and writing about Houston Business, articles are submitted to HBJ for approval and acceptance but are not exclusive to the HBJ, this could include the Houston Chronical, Trade Industry Magazines and or the stories shared with News & Radio outlets.
Credit: Unless specifically requested for confidentiality reasons or NDA, all parties will be named and recognized with the appropriate credit in the article.
Publish Date: As I am writing a series, I will be submitting weekly articles and it is my understanding that we are looking at a January publication date for the first series. When I have confirmation date on your specific article, I will immediately let you know. This will also apply when submitted to any Trade Magazine or any other media.
Length: 500 word +/-
Format: The format will start off with a conversation from my point of view as a LinkedIn Influencer and Business Networking organizer on the value of Social Selling on LinkedIn and Business Networking. Then it will go into a case study format.
The idea of this series is that somewhere in your problem, LinkedIn or Business Networking helped you in Researching the company or decision makers| Contacting the decision maker | Setting up a meeting | Closing the deal.
I have chosen the case study format as it allows the reader to directly identify with the successes of your previously satisfied customers, offering them the kind of concrete proof that no amount of carefully worded promises or inspiring mission statements can compete with.
My Spin is:
In your case study you will incorporate how LinkedIn or Business Networking was used as a Solution and / or Strategy to solving the problem in your journey for the desired results.
Three elements in a successful case study:
· A problem
· A solution
· A result
In writing your case study on how you used LinkedIn or Business Networking, be sure to keep in mind the use of The Headline & Direct Quotes
Your headline is the first thing people will read when deciding if your case study is worth their time. It should underline the main topic of the report and the results that were achieved and demonstrate to the reader that it was written with them and their situation in mind.
Make sure your case study is easy to scan by including images, subheadings that highlight the main points of the problem-solution-results journey, bullet points where appropriate and, most importantly, use quotes.
Direct quotes from satisfied clients can be included in any of the three sections in your case study; either describing the challenges the customer was facing, why they chose your company for help or highlighting the benefits they enjoyed after working with you.
And don’t forget to include a clear Call To Action at the end where interested readers can go to learn more about the project and your services.
By following the Problem-Solution-Results format, you can guide readers or potential customers through their decision making process, demonstrating how you achieved the results they want for someone else and making that previous success story work for them.
Planning & Organizing
Establishing courses of action for self and others to ensure that work is completed efficiently and business goals are achieved.
Uses social media tools to expand seller’s knowledge and interact / influence customers and prospects.
Coaching & Developing
Helps sellers identify and address performance gaps.
Networking / Relationship Building
Establishes new contacts through events, external organizations, professional activities, and social media platforms. Identifies important contacts within key accounts with whom to develop relationships. Proactively identifies ways to increase the value of relationships for both parties. Ensures existing relationships are maintained and nurtured. Leverages professional brand or reputation to influence
trends, discussions, or opinions related to area of thought leadership.
Ensures that sales pipelines are full and that opportunities within each pipeline close in a timely fashion.
Evaluates competitive opportunities and executes appropriate strategies and tactics to win.
Accurately predicts future sales results and / or commitments by time period based on a variety of inputs.
Analyzes their area of responsibility (customer, partner or territory) to identify potential for growing the business, strengthening relationships, and improving sales and satisfaction.
Opportunity Pre-Call Planning
Prepares for customer meetings through research and development of a plan for the meeting.
Effectively navigates his/her team through change and leads by example.
Provides context that connects the work of individuals and teams with the broader strategic intent of the organization
Provides the motivation for others to summon the will to achieve goals and / or overcome challenges
Demonstrating a commitment to ethical values and ensures that actions are fair, open and honest.
Providing inspiration, clarity and direction through a compelling vision of the future. Ensure that those who are led work together and are provided with the required resources and motivational support.
Allocates resources to organizational initiatives in a way that maximizes the likelihood of goal attainment.
Embracing and championing change by helping others understand the value of the change and its impact on them. Helps identify the elements of managing change and executes change initiatives.
Problem Solving & Decision-Making
Identifies and solves problems by understanding the situation, seeking additional information, developing and weighing alternatives, and choosing the most appropriate course of action given the circumstances
Identifies and pursues accounts within a territory based on business potential.
Strategic Account Planning
Analyzes the account to identify potential for growing the business, strengthening relationships, and improving customer satisfaction.
Partner Account Planning
Analyzes the partner account to identify potential for growing the business, strengthening relationships, and improving partner sales and satisfaction.
Problem / Need Identification
Identifies business drivers for change within a targeted market, prospect or opportunity.
Creates and uses business development messaging for generating demand, providing thought leadership, and stimulating interest.
Consultative Sales Conversation
A dialogue between salesperson and customer where the salesperson asks questions to learn about customer needs before discussing product. Jointly, the salesperson and customer agree on a solution which is positioned based on the customer’s needs and language.
Ability to quantify the impact of solving a customer’s business issue through capabilities provided by the seller.
Sales Messaging & Positioning
Develops and delivers sales messages / presentations that engage the audience and clearly position a solution to a customer business issue.
Applies guiding standards in making opportunity engagement and prioritization decisions.
Uses solution value and vision established with others in the organization to gain access to decision makers.
Leverages sales techniques to successfully address a buyer's concern that a proposed solution will be effective, provide ROI and deliver business success.
Speaks and writes in a clear, logical, and grammatical manner in formal and informal situations.
Leverages value to negotiate and reach a final agreement that provides mutual value for seller’s and customer’s organizations.
Addresses customer objections by following a consultative conversation process: listening to objections, asking clarification questions, confirming understanding of the issue, addressing the issue, and checking for customer agreement to resolution.
Sales Process Adherence
Uses sales process to qualify, communicate the status of, and manage opportunities.
Understands the customer’s industry, job roles, areas of responsibility, and common business issues.
Understands how capabilities provided by the seller’s organization help solve customer business issues.
Understands the customer’s industry, changes and trends.
The ability to apply complex concepts, develop creative solutions, or adapt previous solutions in new ways for breakthrough thinking in the field.
The desire and willingness to discover, address and meet the needs of both internal and external customers in order to build strong working relationships and provide consistently high levels of service.
Easily adapts and deals with change; meets customer needs by providing innovative or unique solutions
Does more than is required or expected in the job; being action-oriented in order to grasp opportunities and address issues. This involves having the ability to look ahead, anticipate events and take action now to shape the future.
Explores new ways of doing things and learns from mistakes. Is open to change and resilient when obstacles are encountered. Remains effective when experiencing major changes in work tasks or the work environment.
Teamwork / Collaboration
Works with others to share information and achieve goals. Coordinates efforts with applicable stakeholders to ensure awareness, share information, and provide updates until completion. Works towards goals that benefit the sales team / partner / customer relationship, which includes contributing ideas and participating appropriately. Resolves conflicts, confrontations and disagreements positively and constructively. Fosters an environment that emphasizes knowledge sharing and group participation. Mentors others on collaboration best practices.
Clearly conveys information and ideas verbally to teammates, managers, and customers. Clearly conveys information and ideas in writing to teammates, managers, and customers. Communicates effectively with all levels within the seller and customer organizations. Tailors communications to the needs and characteristics of the audience. Provides guidance to others for leveraging communication best
Shows respect and appreciation for customers. Makes decisions and acts with customer in mind. Provides timely and accurate service to customers. Listens to and addresses needs and concerns of customers. Fosters an environment focused on customer service and quality.
Takes action that is consistent with the available facts, constraints, and probable consequences. Uses resources responsibly and effectively when making decisions. Demonstrates persistence in solving problems.
Can be depended on to do a good job and consistently comes through when needed. Follows through on commitments and consistently meets deadlines. Prioritizes and effectively performs multiple tasks simultaneously.
Uses financial documents to build situational knowledge of the customer's business. Uses financial documents to identify customer's business or strategic initiatives. Communicates the value of solving a business issue in financial terms most important to the customer. Translates business strategy into operational reality. Provides guidance to others for interpreting and leveraging financial documents.
Proactively identifies opportunities for individual growth and departmental improvement. Seeks opportunities for continual learning and professional personal growth. Is receptive to feedback and constructive criticism.
Takes personal accountability for getting things done. Is attentive to detail and accuracy. Learns and adheres to all organizational policies, procedures, regulatory standards, and our values. Acts with the best interests of the organization and team in mind. Accepts responsibility for failures and successes. Takes ownership of actions and strives to do the job right the first time.
Stays current with new technology enhancements and functionality used by seller organization and customers. Uses technology to engage and communicate with customers (i.e., social media tools, marketing automation tools). Uses technology to demonstrate business impact and value analysis (i.e., value calculators, advanced spreadsheets). Uses technology to improve collaboration (i.e., DropBox, SharePoint, WebEx, Skype). Models, leads, and mentors others in the use of technology for sales
Work Ethic / Attitude
Treats others with courtesy, honesty, and respect. Shows up for scheduled work on time and prepared. Possesses a positive, "can do" attitude at work. Exhibits a willingness to commit to the organization and invest time and best efforts in working toward the accomplishment of organizational goals.
Translates business strategy into operational reality. Demonstrates a strong understanding of basic business operations and key organizational systems, processes, departments, and functions. Understands the role and interrelationship of each organizational function.
Communicates effectively with all levels of the organization. Understands the organization’s vision and can clearly communicate it to the team. Clearly conveys information and ideas (verbally and written) to teammates, managers, and customers. Tailors communications to the needs and characteristics of the audience.
Make decisions and acts with customers in mind. Is committed to providing excellent service to our customers. Creates a work environment focused on customer service and quality.
Takes action that is consistent with the available facts, constraints, and probable consequences. Uses resources responsibly and effectively when making decisions. Effectively copes with uncertain circumstances. Quickly identifies key issues relevant to achieving long-term organizational goals.
Provides on-going feedback and coaching to his / her teammates. Provides honest and direct feedback to others. Inspires and challenge others to reach their full potential Recognizes and rewards the performance of his / her teammates.
Explores new ways of doing things and learns from mistakes. Remains effective when experiencing major changes in work tasks or the work environment. Embraces change and seeks opportunities to improve processes and / or service. Facilitates the implementation and acceptance of change within the workplace. Foresees obstacles and opportunities, and generates breakthrough ideas. Offers new ideas and suggestions for improving performance and work requirements.
Lives Our Values
Exhibits a willingness to commit to the organization and invest time and best efforts in working toward the accomplishment of organizational goals. Ensures that the organization's values and standards of performance are consistently upheld. Nurtures commitment to organizational vision and goals.
Holds others accountable for high performance. Makes each individual feel his / her work is important. Effectively organizes people and activities. Attracts, develops, and retains talented individuals. Clearly and comfortably delegates both routine and important tasks and decisions.
Understands personal strengths, weaknesses, and limits. Proactively identifies opportunities for individual growth and departmental improvement. Seeks opportunities for continual learning and professional personal growth.
Takes into account resources, constraints, and organizational values when establishing direction for the team. Quickly identifies key issues relevant to achieving long-term organizational goals. Has a clear vision for the business, operation, or team. Ensures that the organization's vision and values are at the forefront of strategic decision making
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