Is social media killing our sales skills?

Recently, I spoke to an organization that spent an ungodly amount of time, energy and money on social media to create lead generation. I asked, “Now what? How’s your closing ratio?” They looked at me like I had three heads.

Just because we believe that we’ve found a new way to generate business, it doesn’t bring in business … alone. Does using Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and blogging really bring in leads? Ideally, such a campaign should bring us opt-in emails, contact information and phone calls. If that’s happening, great—you have reached a very important step, but it is only a first step.

It’s important to make sure that, once prospects contact us, we use the right process to follow up with them. As salespeople, we often make assumptions that they are interested because they contacted us. That is certainly not true. We need to treat this lead like any other and follow the right process to handle it.

Understand that when someone contacts you, they are often contacting several people within your industry. You don’t have a relationship built. Is it better than cold-calling? When we get them on the phone, they will typically ask a simple question, such as this: “Hey, I see you guys sell widgets. Can you tell me if I were to buy a hundred widgets, what would that cost?” You negotiate a price, and they say, “OK, sounds good … ah, we’ll call you back,” or “Sounds good. Can you send me a proposal/price sheet/some more information?”

We send that information in writing, and we never hear from them again.

We try to contact them again, they don’t contact us. We try to call, they don’t take our call, and we leave messages.

Sound familiar? Of course, it does. The same situation has happened before. Prospecting hasn’t changed. Sales and the sales process haven’t changed just because they’re contacting you. In fact, I would say it is more difficult now, because we’re not as on top of our game because they contacted us and made us think we have a “hot” lead.

Want to learn the right process? Email me at [email protected], and I’ll send it to you. ♦

Greta Schulz is president of Schulz Business, a sales consulting and training firm. She is the best-selling author of “To Sell is NOT to Sell” and works with Fortune 1000 companies and entrepreneurs. For more information or free sales tips, go to and sign up for “GretaNomics,” a weekly video tip series, or email sales questions to [email protected].

You May Also Like

Five fundamentals to creating a legacy and stepping into your full leadership potential

As a business founder, CEO or C-suite executive,, you are always creating a legacy—here and now, and for the future. Your actions and words leave an impact on how you

Failure is an Option

Putting together a business plan, working on an idea, then seeing it all fail is certainly not easy to deal with, but it’s way more common than you may think.

USF’s $1 Million Branding Debate: Mistake, or Stroke of Genius?

The University of South Florida has abandoned the unpopular lime green bull logo unveiled in September 2018, replacing it with the iconic Bull symbol that the university’s athletic department has

►The Florida Board of Governors voted unanimously to formally designate USF as a “Preeminent State Research University,” which will bring the school $6.15 million in additional funding. The University of South Florida also appointed Michael Kelly the new vice president of athletics.
Manage Your Time This Summer

Summer can be a challenging time for salespeople and businesses. Yes, it’s a welcome respite from the demands of the job and a chance to recharge with family and friends.

Other Posts

MarineMax launches superyacht division after a series of acquisitions

MarineMax (HZO) became the largest superyacht services company in the world, after a series of acquisitions that included Fraser Yachts, Northrop & Johnson, Fairport Yacht Management, SuperYacht Management (SYM) and

Here are the winners of $300K from the Florida Venture Forum

Six companies have been awarded funding from the Florida Venture Forum, the state’s largest support organization for investors and entrepreneurs. The recipients were awarded a total of $300,000 during the

Tampa Bay Business and Wealth Magazine
Metropolitan Ministries launches crisis campaign to address surging needs amid skyrocketing housing costs

Metropolitan Ministries is seeking community support for families facing homelessness or other dire situations as housing and other costs continue to rise.  The organization, which serves those who are homeless

Bryan Stern to announce new rescue operation while commemorating 80th anniversary of D-Day in Normandy

Bryan Stern, a local combat veteran who founded and previously served as CEO of Project DYNAMO, will officially announce his next phase of missions to save lives at an expo