Tele Sales versus Social Sales – first performance comparison

Social media is all OVER – BUT still not IN the sales departments. While there is a lot of noise around social media there were just not enough data points that prove the effectiveness of social media.

The top telesales guys can do 100 call outs – touch base with 10 and get to their goals with three – every day. Compared to chit chat on Twitter – a few nice words on Facebook or some discussions on LinkedIn groups.

But that is changing
As we started to develop a new product we tested an all new social sales process and a new product in an alpha version. Two points of view:
1) Social selling processes
2) Technology
The social sales person was able to reach out to 200+ people a day on a consistent basis, had interactions with 50 and drove results with 15. In other words the social sales organization was twice as efficient and 5 times as effective – or 5 times more successful.

Processes and Technology
New processes to actually engage socially in an efficient way was a big part of this result. Also the underlying technology. A shift in skills is also important to note: Social sales teams need verbal / writing skills versus tele sales teams need oral skills. Implications here are that prepared written quotes can be easier provided and applied than spoken word phrases.

Behavioral Change
A supporting factor for the substantial difference however lays in the behavioral changes in the market:
1) The Likelihood of a customer to take a phone call is simply much lower than responding to any kind of online social interaction
2) The ability to quickly grasp the customers profile, interests and desires and instantly respond to those is much faster than trying to explore the persons personal profile on the phone.
3) The high degree of attractiveness of the new social web furthermore indicates a new sense of social interest to the customer while the call only indicates “I want to sell you something”.

Organizational Implications
A first review indicated that a social sales organization is easier to manage and outsource than a tele sales organization. However tele sales people are widely available versus social sales people are basically an all new job category with a different skill set and a different process flow.

Summary
The superior results and the better customer experience however suggest that it is at least worth exploring this new method.

Happy to share more insight.

Axel
XeeSM.com/AxelS

  1. strategywebstrategyweb09-25-2009

    This is a great post and I fully agree that the principle of interruption makes the telesales model obsolete.

  2. All-Things-ImportantAll-Things-Important09-26-2009

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