Don’t worry. This isn’t another post about how we are about to be overrun by cyborgs and that this is the end of humanity as we know it. What is evident, however, is that the sales and marketing functions are about to move into an entirely new era. Their roles are being fundamentally changed by technology. This is a blend of AI, machine learning, data analytics, video, voice and automation. Central to all of it is the customer buying behaviour.
Hootsuite & Forrester describe it elegantly:
The basic premise of sales and marketing has not changed. One still needs to create value in the buyer’s mind, influence them as to why your brand, product, service is the best at doing that. What has fundamentally changed however is the “self-education” aspect of this.
Facebook has changed the way we interact with brands beyond recognition. Followed by the slew of other social media websites. Then we have Amazon, Uber, AirBnB, Deliveroo which are disrupting buying journeys by making them “frictionless”. In short, the better the buying experience, the greater the loyalty of the customer:
We are moving into unprecedented territory where customers expect not only a personalised experience face-to-face scenario, or on the phone or via video – they expect the same in the digital world.
Ask yourself this. When did you buy from a brand where their website was difficult navigate, where there was little third-party validation, or there were less than four gold stars. Whether we like it or not, this buying behaviour and expected buying experience is re-programming us.
I was at a conference where the head of financial services from Facebook, Nicola Day, shared this statistic: You have 1.3 seconds to keep someone’s attention before they will thumb down to the next piece of content.
This world of hyper-personalistion into which we are entering is summarised here by Femme Fatale, a promotions & media business in Canada :
The full article can be found here
The unstoppable rise of account-based intelligence
Now throw in some AI and machine learning and you are moving to what is now being referred to as Account Based Intelligence – the founder of Node.io , Falon Fatemi explains it far better than I could in a short video .
Nearly all the research I read about our direction of travel suggests that there is always one common theme which underpins all of this. Social. None of this would work without Social. It is the foundation to all of this – but more importantly it is going to be what feeds decision making processes more and more. To that point that if your business is not engaging in social, you will not even be found to be given the opportunity to influence your customer or prospect buying experience.
To engage in social selling, you have to free yourself from the way that things have always been done. You have to change your mindset and approach. You have to let the technology augment you and work with it, not against.
Social selling is the glue that holds all of this together, across your entire organisation as this infographic shows:
If you want to understand how social will transform the way you do business, then please get in touch with me: firstname.lastname@example.org
Digital Leadership Associates: We are a Social Media Agency. We do three things: Social Media Strategy, Social Selling and Social Media Management. Drop us an email and let’s talk about how we can make an impact on your organisation.