Thursday, May 10, 2012

You Walk into a Bar. What do you do Next? (This is Sales and Marketing Related)

I promise this isn’t a bar joke.

 You walk into a bar, there are a group of people in a circle talking to each other; they all seem to know one another. You are by yourself and are looking to make some new friends. What do you do?  Do you run up to the crowd of 20 and say, "HI! I’m X. I live in X and I drive X and I love to play X and I just did X."  This would not only be extremely off-putting to the group you are announcing it to, but also not adhere to social norms of communication. Instead of assaulting the group of people, hoping that one might bite at your proclamations, why not wait for a point-of-entry? Or even better, listen to what the group is discussing and think of an engaging question that will trigger some of the folks to answer and engage with you?

There are two adages that most marketing and sales folks know: “Market to One” and “People Buy From People”.  Why don’t we try to create meaningful digital conversations that make emotional appeals and build relationships where both parties benefit and actually want to listen to one another?

Ever get an email where you are invited to a webinar from a sales rep and have no idea why you were put on a list cluttering your mailbox?  We all know that we are inundated with emails, so it is infuriating to get one more that just doesn’t relate to you and frankly, is wasting your time.

In the age of technology, we not only need, but also depend on automation software to organize, measure, create and stream our process for lead generation, segmentation and lead nurturing. But, with so much volume, there is potential for proclamations to the wrong person at the wrong time.  Using automation infused with event triggers and data allows you to mimic real human interaction, by allowing you to LISTEN for triggers that you can relate to and also letting you bring something relevant to add to the conversation when the time is right. In other words, don’t be Bob.

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