Social selling is all about nurturing, because every time you come into contact with a prospect—via Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or some other social media—you have to nurture the relationship. It doesn’t develop naturally; it takes work.
Once you have established a relationship with a client, you must maintain the relationship. In recent years, many sales reps have focused on getting new business, overlooking the importance of retaining the clients you already have, says my latest guest on PowerViews, Ardath Albee, a B2B marketing strategist and chief executive officer of Marketing Interactions Inc.
Ardath, who has more than 28 years of marketing and sales experience, discussed how important writing and storytelling has been to her success.
Below are some salient takeouts from our conversation, which can be viewed in its entirety here.
A Move Toward Customer Retention
Click to start video at this point—I asked Ardath what changes she has seen in sales and marketing this year. She said she’s seeing a renewed focus on customer retention. She said this is important because retaining clients is one area where marketing can get some quick wins. Clients who renew tend to buy more long term than new clients, so focus on the quality of your clients, not the quantity.
“There has to be a strategy that helps content do its job.”
Click to start video at this point—Content marketing has been a hot topic lately, but Ardath said that many sales and marketing businesses are discovering that the content they’re creating isn’t moving the needle on new business. Part of this stems from a lack of strategy. She says it’s not just about creating content and putting it out there; it’s about creating content that helps people do business. Without a strategy, that’s not going to happen.
Salespeople Need to be Given ‘Content CliffsNotes’
Click to start video at this point—Ardath said that most salespeople think marketing is ineffective. Marketing is pushing out a ton of content, but salespeople aren’t even going to read it, she said. They need “content CliffsNotes,” which would be a way for salespeople to skim and find something that might work.
“Marketers are telling the story longer through the process.”
Click to start video at this point—Nowadays marketers remain involved in the product’s story telling for a longer period of time. But if marketing and sales aren’t working together, then the stories don’t connect, Ardath said. The story for the buyers becomes fragmented, and she doesn’t think companies are realizing what’s happening as marketing evolves and sales tries to keep up.
You can connect with Ardath and learn more about Marketing Interactions via the following resources:
The next PowerViews will be with James Obermayer of Sales Lead Management Association.