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15 Things I Would Train Salespeople On Instead of Social Selling

If I could give salespeople training in only one thing, I would pick any of the fifteen things on this list before I would train them on “social selling.”

  1. How to Cold Call and Book Appointments: There isn’t anything higher on this list because cold calling is what would improve most salespeople’s results faster than anything else.
  2. How to Overcome Objections (or Resolve Concerns): No matter how good you are, without the language and rationale to deal with objections, you aren’t creating or winning an opportunity.
  3. How to Differentiate Themselves and Their Company: I’ve never asked a salesperson what make their company different and gotten a compelling response, even when their leadership team believes they know their differentiators.
  4. How to Leverage the Buying Cycle: Salespeople would benefit more from knowing how to serve their dream clients as they go through the stages of buying more than anything they might learn about Twitter.
  5. How to Understand What Makes an Opportunity: Unless and until your dream client agrees to pursue change with you, you don’t have an opportunity.
  6. Why They Need to Follow Their Process: Most companies don’t follow a process, and neither do their salespeople. I’d teach them why they should follow it and how it helps them win.
  7. How to Target and Nurture Their Dream Clients: Too little time, too many prospects. You have to focus on the clients for whom you create the most value. You need to nurture those relationships.
  8. How to Plan a Sales Call: Honestly, most salespeople don’t plan their sales calls at all. It’s a mistake to waste a client interaction.
  9. How to Open a Sales Call: Without the ability to open a sales call effectively, you quickly come across as an amateur and a time waster.
  10. How to Do Good Discovery: Without understanding your dream client’s most strategic needs, it’s difficult to be compelling, and it’s more difficult to frame your solution.
  11. How to Gain Commitments: First, most salespeople don’t know all the commitment they need, and when they do, they don’t have the language to gain those commitments. I’d teach them to close.
  12. How to Build Consensus: No one builds consensus on LinkedIn. Complex sales require consensus. Without it, you lose to the status quo.
  13. How to Think Like a Businessperson: In B2B sales, business acumen and situational knowledge are what allows you to create value. I’d teach this before I’d let the salesperson flounder around on Facebook.
  14. How to Tell a Story: One of the ways you prove how what makes you different makes a difference for your clients is through the stories you tell. Tweet that.
  15. How to Negotiate: Most salespeople crumble at the first question about price. I’d teach them to negotiate around value.

I could extend this list by another 15 competencies salespeople need more than they need social selling. If you want to build a personal brand that stands the test of time, being good at what you do counts for more than being known.

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Filed under: Sales 3.0, Social Media

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