There has been a lot of noise recently about Sales 2.0 with every Saas service jumping on the bandwagon. But what is it really? And, what does it mean for a sales producer?
In my opinion, a key element of Sales 2.0 is a methodology to leverage Social Media techniques to increase direct sales results. From a B2B perspective (my personal area of interest), companies need to implement a process to integrate Social Media tools into their day to day prospecting and communications processes. This includes tools like Twitter, Facebook and Linkedin and most importantly Social Media Monitoring and Analytics. Linkedin also has an application option to implement "buzz monitoring" right on the home page.
These tools should become a part of the CRM no differently than current use of email and telephone. The analytics tools will help understand industry issues, find prospects and monitor their ongoing needs relative to your products and services. From there, the communications vehicles can be used for effective relationship building and communications at the "opportunity" level. There are many instructional blogs to help your sales people learn how to use them.
Take a look at solutions like Insideview or Google's new Wave as examples of how best to integrate these capabilities.
But, stay away from pure advertising, it doesn't work!
Be sure to develop reasonable policies around the use of these tools so that everyone is able to clearly understand how best to leverage them within the organization. Some terrific examples are publicly available from IBM, Intel and others. These companies have baked Social Media into their daily sales and marketing practices and seen exceptional results.
Then, encourage your sales teams talking about Sales 2.0 applications in sales meetings and share successes or ideas. This is likely the best way to get started.
Looking forward to your comments and thoughts!