I am indebted to Michael Gass for this quotation: “Social media is scary. Not doing social media is scarier”.
There are risks in opening your business to social media. But there is probably a greater risk that, if you don’t, you will be sidelined and overtaken by more nifty competitors.
Your prospects and customers are using social media now and, if your sales and business development teams are not immersed in it, then you do have a problem!
Progressive individuals will always dive in and use technology. The challenge is to use it in a corporate way and monitor and measure your use of this new medium.
We’ve talked about risks: the flip side of risk is reward and the final ‘R’ is resources.
Rewards can be measured by linking sophisticated buzz monitoring tools to your use of social media and measuring your positive mentions. You can then build a correlative worksheet to link positive mentions and sales and your bottom line starts to reflect what a gut instinct tells you is right.
Resources need to be considered. Diverting business development effort towards social media has an immediate sales payoff: your outbound calling can be reduced, if not eliminated, and sales staff can make much better use of their time by having 50 conversations a day with prospects, rather than five on the telephone.
So, back to the telephone. Early in the twentieth century, businesses were saying the same thing about the telephone as they did, later on, about the fax and the Internet. “Having a phone is scary. Not having a phone is scarier.”