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The Times They Are A Changin’

Come gather ’round, people
Wherever you roam
And admit that the waters
Around you have grown
And accept it that soon
You’ll be drenched to the bone
If your time to you is worth savin’
And you better start swimmin’
Or you’ll sink like a stone
For the times they are a-changin’

1960’s America was a culturally charged time; race wars, power struggles and contentious wars; you might think that everything has changed, but nothing has changed.

The same perhaps cannot be said about 2020 business and the sales environment in which you operate. Everything has changed. And if you don’t change with it, if you don’t start swimming, you run the risk indeed of sinking like a stone. The more traditional sales people among us will have seen drastic and immediate changes that have been threatening for some time, but only now has your hand been forced.

This rate of innovation across business has sped up exponentially. That doesn’t mean to say the direction of travel wasn’t already set, it simply means the rate of adoption due to the global pandemic appears to have accelerated the innevitable change in all our activities and our overall dependence on tech but more-so the dependence on the relationships we build with the help of that tech.

Zoom, the online meeting tech giant has definitely been one of the winners in 2020. Their daily download rate accelerated exponentially in February and March 2020 (business of apps).

The daily download rate of Zoom accelerated exponentially from February

I wrote in a previous article about how we should be planning for the changed future and it seems that this ‘new normal’ in which we find ourselves might well be just here to stay for a long while yet.

Are you ignoring over half of your marketplace?
Nearly 70% of B2B buyers are millennials. Over 90% of millennials are active on digital and social media.

We don’t make these numbers up. You can see by the research carried out by Catalyst that suggests that by 2025, three quarters of the world’s working population will be millennials. Also, according to Oberlo, 90.4% of Millennials, 77.5% of Generation X, and 48.2% of Baby Boomers are active social media users. Users spend an average of 3 hours per day on social networks and messaging. (source:


Why do you not use social media as part of your sales strategy and sales plan?

Some of the real reasons we have heard as to why social media isn’t yet a real part of a company’s sales planning and business strategy.

  • “Social media takes up too much time”
  • “We tried social media once, it just doesn’t work”
  • “We make our team share corporate messages”
  • “Our competition might see what we are doing…”

All of these reasons (see, excuses) are centred around the behaviours and actions of the business leader themselves. What the business leader or senior management team assume to be correct is what is fed into corporate culture. This lack of understanding and aversion to change is seeing the waters rise and very soon the shift will be irrecoverable.

You must adapt to a modern customer buying journey and appreciate that the modern buyer behaves in a modern way, and that modern way incorporates communication and relationship building methods to which you may be uncomfortable with. By burying your head in the sand and continuing to do what you’ve always done because that’s how it’s always been you will get less than you have always got. You must adapt.


Are you ignoring half of your market because of your old sales habits?
And you better start swimmin’
Or you’ll sink like a stone
For the times they are a-changin’
92% of buyers (your customers!) are willing to actively engage with industry and sector thought leaders.

Only 62% are simply willing to connect with ‘sales people’. If you portray yourself on social media simply as a ‘buy my stuff’ merchant, likely thing that is going to happen will be you’ll attract the exact same type of people (who you wouldn’t buy from!) but expect vast results in return.

If you treat the platforms available with the time and respect they deserve, you will be rewarded with a joined up approach that works for you. It will build better relationships in a modern setting, lead to increased traffic to your website of the right kind of people and provide an exceptional bank of content and positioning work for follow ups from your more traditional activity.

92% of your customers are willing to engage with industry thought leaders.
Stop the job snobbery!

In a time when buyers are expecting to engage with the decision makers and influencers in their respective fields, it stands to reason that means they want to speak to you!

I’m not the sales person, I’m the accountant. I’m not the sales person, I’m the CEO. I’m not the marketer, I’m the owner.

We hear this time and again that the leader or decision-maker of the business – the one who loves doing their job – that they are not responsible for the delivery or results of sales activity or business development. This must change if you are to adapt to a modern sales environment. You are responsible for the success and failure of your business and you must step up and step out to be seen as the business leader in your sector that you are.

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