One of the most important mantra’s of successful sales people is to ‘Earn The Right’; get some diary time, or hold a short telephone conversation with a new prospect or stakeholder, you must first ‘Earn The Right’ for their valuable time.
To get the attention of the stakeholder when you are selling social media, one technique is to inform what his peers or competitors may be doing. If his competitors may be gaining advantage from the use of social media then why wouldn’t he want to urgently explore this with you?
You may only have ten seconds in an initial contact with the stakeholder, and therefore your key message regarding their competitor (or other compelling justifications – I’ll cover these in future posts) must be snappy, relevant, and vital. For this reason, it is sometimes called the ‘elevator pitch’, i.e. you are in the lift (elevator in US!) with the stakeholder, and you only have a few seconds until he leaves at the next floor, what will you say to get his attention? Be concise and high level. Carefully rehearse the message beforehand. And then rehearse again, and again!
For example, I was watching breakfast television this morning, and Jeffrey Hayzlett, Chief Marketing Officer Kodak was interviewed, explaining how social media has re-shaped their business. He said that social media can excite, evangelise, educate, and engage their customers, and makes a real difference to their changing brand. Their brand was previously deemed old and out-dated, and now, with the help of social media, they have re-vitalised the company.
This is a great story. I know of at least five brands that would compete directly with this brand and I will contact them later today with my elevator pitch! Let’s see if it is effective and earns the right for a further dialog with them.
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