In our efforts to diversify the content of Follow the Lead, today we present our first podcast. The podcast, in partnership with DemandGen Report, is the first of what we hope will be an ongoing series of podcasts exploring many of the hot-button issues of b-to-b sales and marketing, such as data management, lead generation/nurturing, cold calling in a digital age and whether social media is a legitimate sales vehicle.
Our first podcast, titled “Switching Marketing from Mono to Surround Sound,” features Clara Shih, founder and CEO of Hearsay Labs, and Steven Woods, CTO of Eloqua and author of Digital Body Language. Follow the Lead co-moderated the discussion with Andrew Gaffney, editor and publisher of DemandGen Report.
Shih and Woods discussed how social media is affecting b-to-b sales and marketing and the tremendous (and ongoing) shift that social networking is having on buyers’ relationships with prospects and customers; how social media is affecting budgeting and how listening more closely to social conversations online impacts brand reputation.
“Social media is really changing the way we sell and market,” said Shih, who was formerly a top executive at Salesforce.com and author of “The Facebook Era: Tapping Online Social Networks to Build Better Products, Reach New Audiences, and Sell More Stuff.” “Look at how people are sharing more information about themselves than they ever have in history, so through LinkedIn profiles, through ‘tweets,’ our customers and prospects are revealing a tremendous amount of information.”
She added that social media “presents a great opportunity for b-to-b sales and marketing executives to, obviously, respect privacy boundaries, but, also, when possible and where it makes sense, to be able to use this information to better target the messages, offers and the experiences they create for customers and prospects.”
Woods elaborated on the “flywheel” effect that social media is having on b-to-b sales, in terms of b-to-b sales execs moving away from one-time transactions and toward long-standing relationships, as well as why sales execs ignore social media at their own peril.
To listen to the podcast, please click here.