May 16, 2020
My guest, Adam Gray is co-founder of DLAignite, a global social media consultancy that helps clients transform to use social media. We are currently in a bit of a hiatus many businesses are not quite sure what to do. Adam remembers an investor saying the thing that kills business is not lack of money, its time. You simply run out of time to get it off the ground. The biggest challenge that people face is one of wasting time.
Making your profile reflect who you are and what your USP is, is quite a difficult and soul searching experience. Now is a perfect opportunity to invest time in making sure our footprint reflects precisely how good we are. When COVID19 lockdown finishes, the improvement in your footprint is there forever. Do not waste this time, says Adam, you will never ever get another time like this.
LinkedIn is a network of nearly 700 million people when you focus on what you have done. There is going to be someone better than you. It is about refocusing and recognising on the old adage, people buy from people. The purpose of the profile, says Adam, is to make yourself look interesting and approachable and funny, and an expert. If the reader likes you, feels they know you, then this is a massive competitive advantage.
We think what we need to do is we need to demonstrate our expertise, say, Adam; then everybody is saying the same thing. You are selected based on a subjective view, the only differentiator you can have is by saying, for example, I am a bald bloke who plays the guitar, sometimes. And if you like the guitar, or you like music, or you like bald people, there is a chance that we can have a conversation. The more touchpoints: the more significant basis for conversation and connection, demonstrating that the buyer can trust you because really, we are just the same.
We cannot ever move enough towards being buyer-centric. An issue with salespeople, certainly from my observations, is that they believe the whole Glengarry Glen Ross narrative, always be closing. Let's be honest, said Adam, nobody wakes up saying today I want to speak to a salesperson. What they do is actively try to avoid having those sales conversations. Focus on using these platforms to position yourselves not as a salesperson, but somebody that's a genuine helper. Every time you try to turn a conversation where you are helping you into a conversation where you are selling, you burn bridges. Instead, grow a bigger network, and I share better content into that network, so the network is always looking to consume the stuff that I'm sharing, you maximising the chance of being in the right place at the right time.
The book Social Selling has been around creating processes and procedures that make the stuff that you know you need to do. Doable. It's your job says Adam, to go out there, to find people, to engage them in a conversation, to convert them to be champions of yours to develop conversations with them, and ultimately let them buy for you. LinkedIn is the perfect tool to enable you to be able to do that at scale and efficiently.
This is an excellent metaphor for what you need to do in the social space. A while ago, co-founders Timothy Hughes and Adam were in a meeting, and there was somebody else there who said, I've read your latest book, Smarketing, he said, I could have written that and Tim said, Yeah, but you didn't, did you? You can do everything that I can do on social; you can have a great profile, you can create great content, you can share great content, you can engage with people, you've got all of the skills, you need to do that. But you don't, and particularly at the moment with COVID-19, you must.
Smarketing: How to Achieve Competitive Advantage through Blended Sales and Marketing
Social Selling: Techniques to Influence Buyers and Changemakers