I try to watch and emulate others and you probably do the same. There is a lot of confusion, particularly with B2B, regarding how to implement social selling. Our hope is that these folks will inspire those of you are still on the fence and our goal is to share with you some of the best proven selling practices that you might wish to emulate!
Today we are joined by Timothy Hughes of Digital Leadership Associates. Tim takes the mystery out of social selling by consistently demonstrating key elements including …
- A desire to share, educate, and to promote others
Could you please tell our readers a little about you?
Started on Social Media 7 and half years ago and in that time I’ve built my Twitter following to about 170,000 followers. Some people have called me “an innovator and pioneer” of Social Selling. My book “Social Selling – Influencing Buyers and Changemakers” got into the best seller list during the prep-sale and has now become the defacto Social Selling book for sales people and brands.
How about telling them a little bit about your business?
Left Oracle 5 months ago after a 10-year stent and started my own start up called Digital Leadership Associates. Put simply we help organisations use social media to gain competitive advantage and drive revenue. We have Intellectual property (IP) that helps organisations at board level as well as helping people at a departmental level with programs around digital marketing and social selling. Currently we haven’t found a company that can offer what we do, which puts us in a great position.
How did you get started in selling and when did you begin adding social selling to your business?
I’ve been selling for 27 years and made the lead from “analogue” to “digital” selling some 5 years ago. Social allows me to do more with less and enables me to scale, I’m amazed more people are not doing it. When I started in social 7 years ago, purely because a manager told me I need to get into it. Thanks Vince.
What are your social selling goals, objectives, and strategies?
When Matt and I wrote the book, we wanted to create a narrative in the market about Social Selling because we felt that there were very few people driving the debate forward. We think this hasn’t changed much. So I blog weekly on LinkedIn to maintain and grow the Social Selling community. Social never stands still and I’m keen to keep the discussion and debate driving forward.
Do you have regular routines?
Have a routine which is all described in a blog on LinkedIn. This involves starting in the morning, working with Buffer and sitting down in the evening and going through all my interactions during the day. Use LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. Dabble in Snapchat but only so I understand it, which I need to do so I can advise clients.
How do you integrate social selling with traditional selling methodologies?
Interesting question. Social Selling is selling. It’s the way people sell in 2017. My background is Miller Heiman and Holden, which are the methodologies I would use, but social is business as usual.
How do you manage to stand out from the noise?
People have to be themselves and be authentic. People also have to work out what they want to be famous for. I want to be famous for Social Selling and hopefully I achieve this.
Could you please share with us a few of your favorite social selling tools?
Not a big tool user as Social Selling is a behavior, most of what I do is manual or with the Twitter app. There is a list of tools in my book, I use Buffer and Crowdfire daily and the social networks above.
How do you track your results?
In Xero. It’s all about revenue and we use Xero in our business to track all invoicing.
What do you feel are the biggest challenges facing salespeople as it pertains to social selling?
The biggest challenge we still see is the lack of support from a senior level in organisations. We often get asked about ROI. My blog “How to get 10 C-Level Meetings a week using Twitter” was written nearly two years ago, so there are a lot of companies way behind here.
What about their biggest mistake that salespeople make when trying to implement social selling?
They still think that social selling is “selling” over social. We have all accepted a LinkedIn request only to get an email with some pitch about a product that is completely irrelevant.
What is your “social selling superpower”?
The passion I have to drive the social selling debate and narrative forward.
How can our readers get in touch with you to learn more?
@timothy_hughes or LinkedIn or firstname.lastname@example.org
Please nominate somebody to answer these same questions!
I’d like to hear how Graham Hawkins works it!