Almost daily now, my LinkedIn inbox contains a new message that looks something like this:
I came across your profile in the B2B Lead Roundtable Group and thought as a Sales Consultant you would be interested to hear how you can turn your company’s anonymous website visitors into hot business leads…”
The email then goes on to tell me about their technology and how I would certainly benefit from a demo and free trial.
ARE YOU KIDDING ME?
I understand LinkedIn is a valuable tool for social selling but just because you glanced at my profile doesn’t mean the FIRST message I get from you should be a sales pitch.
I sincerely hope you would not approach someone at a networking event and open the conversation with: ‘Based on your fabulous outfit, I thought you would like to hear about what I can sell you.‘
SO WHY DO PEOPLE BELIEVE THIS BEHAVIOR IS ACCEPTABLE ONLINE?
If you want to use social media to sell you need to:
1) Start a conversation based on something other than pitching your crap (my go-to strategy is flattery)
2) Introduce yourself and say hello… you know… maybe connect with them first?
3) When appropriate, ask their permission to present them with something they might be interested (and only then)
4) Present them with whatever product or service you actually believe will be valuable to them.
Selling is really not that difficult as long as you wake up every morning and pretend your job is to go out and interact with other real human beings just like yourself.