Blog More To Sell More.

86% of customers say they would engage with vendors if they provided insights or knowledge about their industry, states LinkedIn. Blogging is an excellent selling strategy and platform to provide these insights.

You are in charge of your personal brand and your sales success. You don’t have to be an expert content marketer. You don’t have to be a social selling savant. You just have to take ownership and find a way to connect with your customer on their terms. You are in charge of your destiny.

You Are In Charge Of Your Sales Destiny

When I was young, my dad told me when I didn’t get picked for the basketball team or didn’t start in a game that I was in charge of my destiny. He said, “You are the only person that can get it done for you.” He was right, when it came to playing basketball. I only ‘got so good’ by relying on after-school practices yet was only going to get so far. Yes, I made the team, but never started a game, which quickly got very old. One day I decided to take charge and not rely solely on my support structure. I practiced more, learned more and differentiated myself. I learned how to shoot with my left hand and dribble behind my back. I took charge of my destiny. I turned my results around – finally starting and then making all-star teams for 9 years straight.

Use Content and Blogging To Differentiate Your Selling Efforts

This same advice and set of results applies to today’s sales organizations and your own efforts. whether or not you use social selling techniques. You need to do what it takes to get it done. And, blogging is one key tool to help your personal strategy.

Hubspot states that B2B companies who blog generate 67% more leads per month than those who do not blog. This statistic alone should motivate sales teams to take control of their lead development strategy by introducing blogging. They also state that 82% see a positive return on blogging efforts.

Blogging Drives ROI | marketingthink.com | @gerrymoran

Can you imagine walking into a sales appointment or bumping into a client at a trade show and have them reference a great blog post you wrote? A blog post that addresses deeper customer issues and information. A blog post that does not sell.  THIS social selling moment is nirvana … and will lead to a deeper relationship and a greater chance to help frame and close a more lucrative sale.

A Social Selling Guide To Blogging

Where do you find blogging ideas if you are a sales representative? Just look in your email inbox or your most recent customer conversations. TMG Custom Media reports 78% of consumers believe that organizations providing custom content are interested in building good relationships. A sales representative-generated blog post is a great step toward generating custom content. Consider these five sources of content marketing for your social selling strategy:

1. Questions your clients are asking. Have you been asked the same question again and again by your customers and prospects? For example, “Why is cloud computing important to a non-profit company?” When a question is asked more than three times, it’s time to write a blog post to answer it – backing it up with personal experience and research. This content destination can become your 24-7 relationship builder. TIP: Make a list of the 10 most popular questions you receive from customers and write ten 300-500 word posts to answer them.

2. Questions your clients should be asking. Many customers don’t know what they don’t know. When you can present the questions they should be asking, then you have a consultative approach and are out to help them vs. just sell to them. This approach will hep position you as a solver vs. a seller. Pass on this type of blog content before you meet a client, or follow up for when you leave the appointment. TIP: Make a list of questions that support the benefit statements for the products or services you sell.

“Don’t get me wrong, sharing content is a great thing. When you begin social selling, it’s one of the first things you’ll want to do to stand out,” says Amar Sheth on the Sales for Life blog. “But at some point you must create your own content. The power of your own thoughts on a subject matter are vital to your building a personal brand. In my mind, these two are inseparable.”

3. Current industry research customers should consider. Read your email, review your Feedly feeds, or pull a statistic from the Wall Street Journal and develop 300-word blog post on why this statistic is important to your client or their industry. When you leverage secondary research, you build your credibility through explaining why someone else’s statistics is relevant to your customer. TIP: A 300-word post takes no more effort than a well-crafted email.

4. Current trends in the industry or category. Current trends are always a great conversation starter, and many times customer are not paying attention to them or keeping up with them. Take the time to understand the current trends, identified in trade publications or via thought leaders, to map them to the needs of your customers. TIP: Create a Twitter list of thought leaders or trade publications to quickly follow real-time trends.

5. Explaining complex issues in an easy-to-understand way. Explaining a complex issue, like cloud or big data, with a story or an easy-to-understand way is a gift that can keep on giving for you. If you take the complex and make it consumable with a simple blog post, then you can become a go-to resource which will move you into the circle of trust. TIP: Explain your POV to your significant other, your kids or your grandmother to see if THEY understand it. If they do, then write it down.

These five buckets are only a starting point. Do you have other content sources you have used for your social selling strategy? If so, please share below. Or, reach out to me on LinkedIn, Twitter or Google+. You can also contact me on MarketingThink.com.

Writing content mapped to each of these buckets not only helps you help the customer but also trains you to be a master of your craft. Working on clearly articulating your POV and expertise will elevate you to a social selling winners circle. Take control of your own destiny and be an all-star on your sales team.

Gerry Moran is a global social media and content marketer. He is a marketing strategist, entrepreneur, educator and mentor with close to 30 years experience with iconic brands like Purina HBO, IKEA, and SAP. He’s also worked for award-winning digital advertising agencies like imc2, Whitman-Hart and Digitas. Gerry also founded a boutique marketing agency and has been an adjunct professor for over 10 years for St. Joseph’s University.
Gerry Moran

9 Comments

  1. david mortaz

    Good post. We also believe in the power of inbound marketing and using blogs to attract customers.

  2. Jackie Masteron

    Blogging is huge when you tap into correctly. If you can send quality traffic to affiliate offers, you can make some serious cash.

    I started a blog in the “cooking” niche about six months ago. I admit, my first three months we’re a complete and total fail. I was seeing little to no traffic, let alone conversions. Luckily I found this “blogging success” blueprint so to speak, and it taught me how to become a super-affiliate. Now my current averagely week is about $700. I can’t complain, considering I’m only doing it part-time, but lately I’ve been loving blogging! 😉

    For anybody interested in the blueprint, I believe you can find it here: http://bit.ly/1l94We5

    Great article! I’ll be subscribing.

  3. Edwin

    Another point I would add: Now with the LinkedIn platform to blog, this is even easier than before. I have found this as an additional means to reach my social audience.

  4. Josh Light

    Gerry,

    Couldn’t agree more. It’s also insane how blogging can cause so many unexpected things to happen. Phone calls out of the blue that lead to huge channel sales, or connections with advisers that can help lead to greater business success. Thanks for sharing.

    Josh

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  7. Gerry Moran (Post author)

    Great point and quote Josh! I love it! “nsane how blogging can cause so many unexpected things to happen”

    Gerry.

  8. Gerry Moran (Post author)

    Thanks for your real-life insight, Jackie! It is amazing the good things that blogging can make happen for big businesses, small businesses and solopreneurs!

    Thanks for stopping by and subscribing!

    Gerry.

  9. Gerry Moran (Post author)

    Thanks, David! We all need to blog more to see some amazing inbound marketing results.

    Gerry.

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