Sales leadership is achieved today by a combination of traditional principles and new practices. You can’t be successful today unless you use and incorporate the best of both and mold both into your personal sales strategy.
I spent 20+ years as a broadcast radio sales leader, when the primary media was traditional media. We cold called malls, strip centers, office buildings , smiled and dialed for new customers. Not much networking except a chamber or professional organization. Sounds kind of ridiculous for today’s sales terrain.
We covet the traditionalists Zig Ziglar, Tom Hopkins, Ken Blanchard, Tony Robbins, Stephen Covey and David Sandler, and they were and are very good mentors. But, times have dramatically changed and you just can’t get by on the traditionalists alone anymore.
Traditional sales principles are foundational, new media sales practices are essential
The foundational and essential assure we are building reach and relationships in real time. Combined, they give us all more options for prospecting, deepening relationships and engaging daily.
New Media sales practices are indispensable for 21st century sales success
In today’s business world focus online and content marketing, it’s a ” find or be found” mentality. Prospecting today is going where your target customers are online and engaging via email marketing, blogging, podcasting, social media marketing. This is how you “attract them to you”, meet people online, present yourself, join communities, interact and build relationships. My colleague and friend social media strategist Brian Solis talks about 5 social media practices for businesses here.
Building 21st century sales leadership
Does your sales process and approach need a lift and makeover? The first place to start is your personal branding.
- Are you presenting yourself in a current, fresh bold way?
- Are you ready to update your professional image both in person and online?
- Maybe a new hair style, color and look are in order for the new year?
- Are your social sites up to date, graphically pleasing and active?
Content Marketing establishes your sales brand and expertise
Here’s where new media sales practices kick in. Brian Clark talks expertly about this on CopyBlogger.com. Clark says: “Content Marketing means creating and sharing valuable free content to attract and convert prospects into customers, and customers into repeat buyers. The type of content you share is closely related to what you sell; in other words, you’re educating people so that they know, like, and trust you enough to do business with you”
When you fuse, apply and adapt traditional sales principles and new media sales practices to prospect, network and serve, you assure sales leadership and the ability to sustain it.
In all my years in sales, I have never seen a consistent sales producer and relationship builder let go or fired. There’s a lot of job security today in being a proven sales leader, not to mention how important solid sales skills are to an entrepreneur.
The Forbes.com sales leadership section offers some of the most savvy, dynamic, informative and useful articles and voices, who talk about 21st century sales, customer satisfaction, story telling, perfect pitches and more.
How are you fusing traditional principles and new media practices to achieve sales success?
Deborah Shane is Top 100 Small Business Champion 2012, Career Author, branding/media strategist, writer and speaker. She hosts her Toolbox Blogand a popular weekly Business Radio Show that has over 108K downloads! She is a regular contributor to SmallBizTrends.com, Monster, Blogher, PersonalBrandingBlog.com, Forbes.com. Her book Career Transition-make the shift is available on Amazon.com and all major book sellers. Deborah delivers smart ideas and solutions, which make her a popular go-to resource for CNN, CBS, Fox and Forbes.