What is social selling?: 22 experts answer the question

The sales content rush is on! I am  pumped about our upcoming virtual sales management summit on October 2nd — Please RSVP NOW. It’s going to be such a great event…Dave Brock, Scott Albro, Anthony Iannarino, Ryan Tognazzini….Join us!.

One of the events at the virtual summit will be on social selling. How to use Social Selling to Crush Your Number w/ Ryan Tognazzini from Sales Benchmark Index.

Ok, time for some content. I wanted a post on social selling and had some great content from Madlibs from some of my favorite experts — Voila! Crowdsourced!!!  I hope you enjoy…The way this works is: I start the sentence and the contributor finishes the sentence. In this case it was Social Selling is…Social Selling

And the answers

  1. Social selling is amazing and amazingly misrepresented. It’s not a selling philosophy (yet) but it could be. Social selling does not replace good selling, instead  it makes good sales people more effective. @funnelholic
  2. Social selling is a window into the “human clickstream” @simon_blackburn
  3. Social selling is about connecting, building personal relationships, leaving a lasting impression, educating others, challenging them, listening, and making things happen. It’s about being sincere and honest and focused on helping others whom you can best serve. @kyleporter
  4. Social selling is really tough for me to buy into right now in the SMB space – I just don’t think we’re ready to focus time there just yet. @chris_snell
  5. Social selling is utilizing social media to make your sales process more effective. @aseemb
  6. Social selling confuses me. I think Trish Bertuzzi said it best on these pages when she called it a “misnomer”. @peter_gracey
  7. Social selling is my domain @kokasexton
  8. Social selling is a misnomer. Social doesn’t sell.. people do. Now Social Prospecting I can get behind. @bridgegroupinc
  9. Social selling has been around forever with people like real estate agents and insurance brokers.  Somehow it’s taken us in B2B sales this long to figure out the power of social to sell. @srichardv
  10. Social selling is – a fun new buzzword but not a new concept.  We’re just building relationships in new and different ways. @gretchende
  11. Social selling is – is the future. All sign point to yes. Social Selling has a trifecta of elements working for it. @james_t_shanks
  12. Social selling is as over-hyped as SEO used to be. Many of us have always been social and value-added, now there are new tools to help with that. @scoremoresales
  13. Social selling is the process of using social media to network, prospect, research, engage, collaborate, teach and close all with the purpose of attaining quota and increasing revenue. @barbaragiamanco
  14. Social selling is sometimes important. Most of what people call “social” is less about selling and more about awareness. @danwaldo
  15. Social selling is not about technology, but about establishing deep connections with customers. We may leverage technology to do this. @davidabrock
  16. Social selling is a term that’s meaningless to most salespeople. @jillkonrath
  17. Social selling is nothing new. Social media channels are merely platforms. If it ain’t social, you ain’t selling.@salesdujour
  18. Social selling is a BS marketing term made up by those who need to sell social selling tools. B2B selling is not social, it is commercial. @tiborshanto
  19. Social selling is– reminding everyone that who you know is more important that what you know. A small network, or worse, a network filled with imposters, is a liability. A large network, filled with A-players, is an asset. @GregAlexander
  20. Social selling is overblown in the B2B space. If you are selling a complex service or product, let me know the next time you send out a tweet and pick up a $150,000 deal. Yes, I realize that this is an over-simplification, but really… @DanMcDade
  21. Social selling is: nothing new.  Ever heard of Kiwanis? Or Lions Club? Or the Country Club locker room? @damphoux
  22. Social selling is the wrong way to think about it. It’s just selling. Every gesture we use today has an online equivalent – for example, following someone on Twitter is the same as handing them your business card. After enough of us learn these gestures, the prefix will disappear. @vernonniven

Are you in sales or sales management? Join world class sales experts on October 2nd from 9am – noon for a free virtual summit sponsored by DocuSign, Citrix GoToMeeting, and KnowledgeTree.  Seriously — Do it!

Craig Rosenberg is the Funnelholic and a co-founder of Topo. He loves sales, marketing, and things that drive revenue. Follow him on Google+ or Twitter

Photo courtesy of A Name Like Shields Can Make you Defensive

  • trishbertuzzi

    OMG I love this post. My fave comments are from:

    @chris_snell – he knows his space
    @gretchende @scoremoresales @danwaldo @damphoux @vernonniven – it is what it is… just a new tool not the second coming
    @tiborshanto @danmcdade – tell us what you really think!

    Thanks @funnelholic!

    • Chris Snell

      Thanks Trish! (and thank you, Craig!)

      • Continuing the “thank you” fest….I have had a lot of fun pulling everyone’s answers together…Interesting to see the different takes.

  • Rini Das

    I was wondering if someone would ask customers or folks who actually do this to real-life customer management from branding to customer acquisition to customer retention instead of …Well! you know who I mean.

    #justsayin’ #changethediscussion
    Rini Das
    CEO, store.mypakragames.com

    • trishbertuzzi

      I would love to ask real world practitioners instead of pundits, Personally I think we would be terrified by their answers. Might burst a rather large bubble.

  • Chris

    Only read this now. I dont want to say too much as we are trying to label something we dont quite have words for. Because of that, I think there is miscommunication with some of the answers.

    In my opinion it is more so digital social selling. I dont want to say much more than that, but it is a game changer. Those who understand tech in- depth and why computers are powerful(economically), why we are at a historic moment(a few reasons), but economically, why the business cycle is shrinking etc.

    It is not the end of the world, it is nothing earth shattering. It’s simply the marketing/sales equivalent of the first marketing TV commercial. It will be highly affective at the start, then everyone will follow suit, and everything will balance out again.

    However, this is powerful because it allows for a “disruption” in the market place for businesses to grab customers, and guys like myself to build businesses up.

    Loved all the insights! Cant wait till you see how the market begins to twist in the next 4 years. There are huge underlying hints in recent disruptions. It is really exciting stuff~!

    • Chris

      @TheeKruger, suddenly realized this wasn’t connected to my twitter.