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The State of Sales 2017 (Report Findings)

LinkedIn recently release a report on The State of Sales 2017 and only affirms what I have been advocating for quite some time already: That, far from being resistant to new methods, more organizations have actually embraced sales technology, allowing it to become deeply embedded in their day-to-day operations. In this technology-driven world, this finding is hardly surprising. Interestingly, I find myself repeating this at every speaking engagement, and I’ll probably never get tired of saying it: It’s time that we realized just how ingrained digital selling has become in our society. But what do the numbers from the latest LinkedIn report actually say about the state of digital sales in 2017? And what should your next course of action be if you want to take advantage of this shift in selling and technology? In this article, I’ll examine the data that The State of Sales 2017 report presents, share my own insights and experiences about each point, and hopefully be of help to you in absorbing what all of this really means for your business. Digital sales and the tech-driven shift The LinkedIn report starts with a pretty bold (but unsurprising) claim. Based on their findings, over 91% of […]

How Sharing Content Gets You More Visibility and Sales

I’m sure you’ve often heard, content is king. But does that mean that you have to write everything you share? There isn’t enough hours in the day for that! Content marketing’s role in the continued growth and development of your business cannot be overstated. However, unless you are running a news agency, it is unreasonable to expect that you would be producing nearly all of the content you share on a daily basis. Doing that would not be productive in the greater scheme of things (as it would prevent you from focusing on other critical parts of your operations). It would also be unrealistic to assume that this can even be done in the first place. Lastly, because creating original content 100% of the time is likely to make you stick to the same, tried and tested types and methods, it creates a bubble that stops you from seeing what other kinds of content you should be producing for your audience. This is where content curation comes in. Simply put, content curation involves going through relevant content online that would be of interest to your target audience, then making a list of items and corresponding links that you can share […]

How Conservative Industries Have Embraced LinkedIn and Employee Advocacy

These days, even the most conservative and highly regulated industries are embracing LinkedIn and realizing why they should put more stock into employee advocacy. Financial services, legal firms, even government agencies; they’ve all finally begun to accept the power of social media, and they’re incorporating it into their day-to-day operations. Some may wonder why it took these industries so long. It doesn’t really matter why — I’m embracing that they are now, as witnessed from the number of speaking and training engagements I’ve had recently with highly regulated industries and government. Of course, different organizations have different approaches to embracing social media. I think it’s just been a lot easier for them to focus on LinkedIn, which makes a lot of sense because LinkedIn actually is the first platform you would think of if someone says the word “business.” What Drives Organizations to Use LinkedIn for Business? Business flock to social media for a number of reasons: LinkedIn and content marketing are necessary to reach and educate their target audience. Social media can give any company the chance to build and nurture their own community. LinkedIn provides advanced search functionality that can used to narrow down results and find exactly […]

5 Ways To Increase Thought Leadership & Build Trust

The concept of “thought leadership” tends to get thrown around a lot, especially in the realm of digital marketing. Depending on who you talk to, it could either be an objective to achieve, a reputation to aspire for, or a career-defining condition. Exactly how does one get there, though? And is there really a proven process for attaining a reputation for thought leadership? In his incredibly popular TEDtalk, “Start with Why,” Simon Sinek presents an interesting approach to doing business. Also, before it got shared and re-shared all over the internet, it seemed new. Sinek argued that people don’t actually buy what we do; rather, they buy why we do it. They are more likely to follow the lead of those whose beliefs and principles they also hold dear. Based on this, leaders who do not give their audience a clear idea of what motivates them are less likely to succeed. It is upon this alignment of beliefs that trust is built. This, in turn, leads to the establishment of thought leadership. To successfully build thought leadership, though, one must first understand what it truly means. An article on LinkedIn defines thought leadership as “the process of becoming a leading […]

10 Visual Marketing Statistics for 2017 [Infographic]

When you are scrolling through your Facebook newsfeed, what kind of posts are most likely to catch your attention? If you are like most people, it will be the posts that include eye-catching videos, graphics or images. Visual marketing has become a crucial tool for marketers, to catch the attention of their customers and engage with them on social media. In fact, visual marketing is so powerful that several social media sites (such as Instagram and Pinterest) are entirely devoted to it. The power and presence of visual marketing will only continue to grow in 2017 and into 2018, as can be seen in the infographic below, which surveyed 300 online marketers. 10 Visual Marketing Statistics You Need To Know (Source: Venngage) As we approach the fourth and final quarter of 2017 and all of the holidays that go with it, many marketers are looking for ways to improve their engagement on social media. Visual marketing is the tool that can make this happen – when done properly. Whether you are B2B or B2C, this is an excellent time to ramp up your image and graphic production. Whether you choose to hire a professional or create the graphics in-house (using tools […]

It’s Better Late Than Never to Embrace Social Selling

If have a business that sells products or services to other businesses (B2B), you’ve probably heard the term social selling. Its popularity has been growing over the past few years and there are many reasons why. Implementing a social selling campaign is not difficult if you do a bit of strategic planning in advance. The following guide will acquaint you with all of the essentials that will help you make all of the important first steps in effective social selling. Why Social Selling is Important Social selling is the utilization of social media for the purpose of interacting directly with prospects. Not only does it provide valuable information, it boosts engagement and speeds up the sales process. In today’s hectic world, people don’t have the time to go through a lengthy and convoluted process when they want to inquire about a product or a service. Thus, going to the social profiles of a certain brand and getting their question answered appeals to most. Through social media, salespeople can interact effectively with prospects without being disruptive or annoying. The audience has control over the interaction, which is a big difference between using social selling and relying on cold calling for the […]

What’s Brand New and What’s Coming with LinkedIn

Recently LinkedIn has been pushing out tons of updates and new features that enhance the social media platform’s functionality and power as a tool for marketing. Are you aware of these LinkedIn marketing enhancers? In this article I will cover all of their recent updates and there’s still more to come. Many of these new features will help you streamline and ramp up your LinkedIn marketing efforts. 8 New Features to Improve Your LinkedIn Marketing 1) Include multiple photos in your social Linkedin status updates Perhaps taking a cue from other popular social media platforms such as Facebook, LinkedIn has now granted users the ability to include more than one photo in your status updates if you’re using an iOS-powered device. This is one of the platform’s many functionality updates since it gave its user interface a major makeover earlier this year. The ability to post multiple photos in a single LinkedIn update makes it easier for you to share event highlights with your professional network. They have also confirmed that the same functionality will soon be available on Android and LinkedIn for desktop. 2) Share a draft of your content before you publish  Another one of LinkedIn’s recent updates […]

How to Use Instagram for Business [Infographic]

In case you hadn’t yet heard, Instagram now has 700 million monthly active users – over 400 million daily users, which makes it one of the most popular and heavily used social media platforms. In fact, 48.8% of brands are already using Instagram for business and 80% of Instagrammers (Instagram users) follow one or more businesses on Instagram. With such wide spread use and activity, it has become paramount for businesses to consider adding this visual storytelling platform to their social media strategy, if their customers are among those who are actively using Instagram. With features that include the ability to add photos, videos and Instagram stories as well as the capability to like, comment and send direct messages, this platform is an ideal way for your business to connect and build relationships with your customers. Here is a helpful infographic that covers the information you need to know to create your own Instagram strategy and the steps to get started. How & Why Use Instagram For Business (Source: Citipost Mail) With one of the highest follower engagement rates (4.21% per follower which is significantly higher than Facebook and Twitter), Instagram is a smart choice for your business if you […]

5 Methods to Profit from the Digital Sales Transformation

The buying process has changed over the years, thanks to innovations that make digital sales even more important than ever. The question is, have you begun the journey towards digital sales transformation yourself? And if you haven’t, how can you keep up at this stage of the game? Embrace Social Selling and Improve Digital Sales Strategies Thanks to digital selling, today’s companies must learn to quickly adapt to the rapid-fire changes in the buyer’s journey. One example is how customers are now able to make informed purchasing decisions long before they buy. This is made possible through peer reviews, recommendations, side-by-side product comparisons, and effective content marketing. The traditional methods of direct, in-your-face selling are also becoming obsolete because of todays digital savvy buyers. Salespeople, who are primarily reliant on cold calling, emails, and one-on-one meetings must quickly adapt to the rising trend of social selling. They need to start using social media channels to build stronger connections with their target audience or risk getting left behind. And these changes aren’t going to stop anytime soon. As Gerhard Gshwandtner, founder and CEO of Selling Power Magazine, puts it succinctly: “The changes have gone from ripples to big waves.” Anyone who […]

The Foolproof Guide to Build Your Personal Brand & Credibility

Your personal branding is very evident by your social media and online presence. Each time someone Googles your name, what shows up in the search results is a direct reflection of your personal brand. Your personal branding either conveys professionalism, trust and credibility…or it doesn’t. The boom in popularity of social media sites has made it possible for businesses to reach out to their potential customers in a way that never existed before. Now, physical distance is no longer a challenge for businesses aiming to reach a wider audience, as the digital world is literally boundless. Thus, it’s not surprising to see social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn transform into actual communication gateways between businesses and customers. Indeed, the business landscape has changed vastly over just the past decade. Nowadays, with competition coming in droves, you must figure out a way to establish a genuine connection with your target audience. This is the only way you’ll be able to convert them into customers — and to make them see why you’re the best choice from all the other businesses out there competing for their attention. Now more than ever, it is crucial for businesses to ensure that […]

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