Eyeball Share Leads to Wallet Share
One of my favorite bloggers is Paul Castain, who produces excellent content for the Sales Playbook website. Paul’s column this week, “A Deceptive Post About Cold Calling,” discussed important activities that can either replace or enhance cold calling.
Here are a few of the statistics Castain points out:
- 67% of the buyer’s journey is now done online (SeriusDecisions). This number ranges as high as 80% in some industries.
- There are now 2.7 billion social networking accounts worldwide and that number is expected to grow to 4.3 billion by 2016 (Radicati Group).
- YouTube receives over 1 billion visitors each month and those visitors watch over 6 billion hours of video.
- There are about 181 million blogs (AC Nielsen).
I’ve included many similar statistics in my blog posts and articles about pull marketing and the point is always the same – it is much harder to sell anything to people who do not know you. You need to capture their attention before you capture their money. To do this you need to meet them in a place they like to hang out and where they are more receptive. More often than not, the best place to meet them is in cyberspace and not the other end of a telephone line.
As the above graphic illustrates, there is a four-part process that people go through before they conduct commerce with you. First you attract them, then you educate them, then you engage with them, and only then do you transact business. This four-part process can happen in a few minutes or it can happen over months or years, but it usually happens in this precise order.
I once heard a seminar speaker describe the process in an interesting way. He said that if you are a young man interested in getting married, you don’t meet a young woman at a dance and blurt out, “Will you marry me?” There is a process that, if conducted properly, will get you to the end result, and it is wise not to try and skip the intervening steps or you will not make the sale or end up with the wrong partner. Likewise with marketing and sales.
The reason to establish yourself through social media and pull marketing is not to avoid personal selling but rather to lay the groundwork that makes selling easier. It is not an either/or proposition. Regardless of how good you are at pull marketing and social media methods, you will probably have to do some old fashioned push marketing – perhaps even some telephone selling. But isn’t it much easier to do so when the prospect already knows who you are – when you have a share of their eyeballs before you ask for a share of their wallet?
One other thing smart marketers and sales reps understand: The best way to capture eyeball share (and eventually wallet share) is to approach your social media and pull marketing efforts with a spirit of “What can I offer the marketplace?” and not “What can I get from the marketplace?”
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