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Sales, Training

Content As Your Outbound Call

Jacco van der Kooij

Written by Jacco van der Kooij

Founder, Winning by Design


We all know the key tools to outbound being; write an e-mail and make a phone call. Heck some of you social sellers, may even tweet, share, and comment.

Volume is not the answer

The problem with all of these is that they are based on volume. By phone it can take as many as 15 calls to connect with someone – and most likely they are neither the right person, nor are they interested in talking to you.

Email specialists recommend a 12 email sequence, spread over two weeks to get through to a targeted buyer. These carefully crafted email campaigns are sequenced to go out at specific times, written in specific way, coming from a specific address. All aimed at drawing attention.

Tweeting has capitulated as a sales tool too. A tweet during normal hours has an average life span of 24 minutes, at peak times it is measured in seconds. Social Media guru’s recommended you retweet at least 10 times, with slight tweaks to the wording, to ensure coverage.

Tools drive up volume

With tool vendors driving up the capability and ease of setting up automated calling, emailing and tweeting campaigns, everyone can now “sell” sipping on a coffee at Starbucks.

Volume tactics is NOT a sales strategy

Folks 15 calls, 12 emails and 10+ tweets to reach a “buyer” is not “drawing attention” of your customer. It is more like stalking of prey. Merriam Webster defines stalking as:

To follow a person you are trying to capture by moving slowly and Quietly

To follow watch, and bother someone constantly in a way that is frightening, dangerous, etc.

As I looked up the quote, a vendor who’s website I recently visited to buy $119 worth of credits continues to “stalk” me. Ugggh leave me alone please, I am already a happy customer!

There is a better way

There is however a far better way, to use the same skills, the same tools, yet to do it right. And guess what? It actually is remarkable easy for Sales Professionals who know their customers – and it is very difficult for those jokers who are just blindly copying email templates and clicking buttons.

Share your insights and your clients will come to you. Billion dollar search industries like Google and LinkedIn will take care of that. LinkedIn with its posting feature, which I am using right now, is complete setup for this, it is there ready for you to take advantage of.

What do you mean… my insights!?

In this short video below I explain how you as a sales professional can create content, based on your insights, and use that to help your client. This content will act and behave very similar as an Outbound call – minus the stalking!

Result – Customer happiness

In a recent Social Selling Meetup hosted at The Resumator, 30+ sales professionals gathered from companies like: Yesware, Fliptop, Liftoff, Near-me, AffinityLIVE, Jumio, Totango, ToutApp, LookSharp, and more to discuss this topic. The best practice shared was to use content + video (very similar to this post) and trust that those interested will find it. Dan Smith, a Sales Happiness Officer did just that – his two post since have been read 1,200 times with 80+ shares, and 20 comments. The insights Dan provided are valuable, and his customers (sales professionals themselves) are responding to it, by sharing those insights.

It’s so simple – Why not start today?

  • Start simple: Compile experiences during the week your clients are talking about – some from conversations, some from emails, some from articles – aggregate the inputs. Then share your take – your insights – in a simple blog post. You have been doing this for months – you are the specialist! Have a colleague proof read it to make sure you covered spelling errors etc. Teamwork!!!

              EXAMPLE: Joshua Adragna on hiring

  • Few simple tips that make a world of difference: (1) add a sincere picture that fits the LinkedIn format, if needed edit it in a picture editor, (2) create a provocative title, (3) write it “scan read” – e.g. each paragraph should have a summarized headline – where possible use bullets and make the key words bold, (4) add a few relevant pictures – but not too many, and (5) above all – DO NOT SELL – just share your insights.  I hope this post may act as a reference.
  • Share it with your network: Post your insights on LinkedIn, WordPress, G+ wherever your clients are – and let billion dollar search engines such as Google and LinkedIn do all the heavy lifting – 24 FRIGGING HOURS A DAY – 365 DAYS A YEAR. If the article is a hit – it will take care of itself. If not – don’t worry. Keep “doing!”.
  • Don’t aim for 1 million views: This is not entertainment – this is knowledge sharing. Be happy with 58 views, you are on the right track. Be proud with 100+ views, you are talking about something people like. Get lunch on the company when you achieve 500 views – you just wrote a killer article!
  • Be patient, and improve steadily: Practice writing good posts the same way you practice how to handle a good outbound call (Ring Ring), and a great outbound email (Research, Reference, and Request). Do it. Improve on it. Do it again. You are your own worst critic. You are becoming an online sales professional.

Bring You into your work

Coaching hundreds of sales professionals every month, my advise to them is straightforward, celebrate your uniqueness, celebrate it!  Don’t hide it.   Don’t just show it. Put it to work for you, in a professional way. You love DJ’ing on the weekend, I bet you there are thousands of “buyers” online who love to learn your insights as seen through the eyes of a DJ!  Rock climbing?  Surfing?  Skiing? Triathlete? Let’s hear it we are ready for more of you and less of “corporate”.

The YOUnique Selling Point

YOU are the U in Unique Selling Point. Everything else can be reproduced by prefabricated emails, tweeting engines, and canned junk content. It is YOUR insights, YOUR customers, and it is YOUR career at stake. Don’t feed your customers junk content – they want to hear from you!

Make how you sell as important as what you sell, and you will become the unique selling point

Join us at the next SDR/AE meetup

You pumped!? Excited!? If so join us the next SDR/AE Social Selling Meetup to join in on the sharing of best practices.

These are the lessons gained working with over 50 SaaS sales organizations in the past 24 months.  More lessons on how to build scalable SaaS organizations can be found in a book we recently launched “Blueprints for a SaaS Sales Organization”, available on Amazon.  In this book we share best practices on how to design, implement and launch scalable SaaS Sales organizations.