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Gaining Support for Digital Selling in Your Business

Executive Summary

The digital revolution has significantly transformed the sales landscape, introducing a more efficient and effective approach known as digital selling. This strategy leverages online channels, social media, and technology to engage with customers at scale throughout the sales process, focusing on relationship-building and providing value. However, convincing non-sales and non-marketing colleagues to embrace this approach can be challenging.

To effectively advocate for digital selling, it's crucial to educate colleagues about what it entails and its benefits. Digital selling increases efficiency, cost-effectiveness, and scalability, allowing businesses to reach a wider audience and tap into new markets. It also improves customer insights, satisfaction, and retention. Addressing misconceptions, such as the belief that digital selling is impersonal or technically complex, is also essential.

Providing training and resources to help colleagues understand and embrace digital selling is also crucial, as is fostering collaboration between departments.  Frequently asked questions can be used to further clarify the role and benefits of digital selling, and key takeaways can be used to summarise the main points of the advocacy strategy.

The transition to digital selling doesn't have to be abrupt. It can be implemented in parallel to existing sales strategies, gradually increasing digital selling efforts while decreasing reliance on older strategies.

In conclusion, digital selling represents a significant opportunity for businesses to increase sales and profitability. By educating colleagues, addressing concerns, sharing success stories, providing training and support, and fostering collaboration, advocates of digital selling can effectively persuade their colleagues to adopt this approach. The future of sales is digital, and the time to act is now.


Contents

  1. Gaining Support for Digital Selling: Introduction
  2. Demystifying Digital Selling
  3. The Advantages of Digital Selling
  4. Addressing Misconceptions and Concerns
  5. Training and Support: Empowering Your Team
  6. The Power of Collaboration
  7. FAQs
  8. Key Takeaways
  9. Conclusion

1. Gaining Support for Digital Selling: Introduction

The digital revolution has transformed the way businesses operate, and one area where this change is most evident is in the field of sales. Digital selling, as it's known, is revolutionising the way businesses reach their target audience and achieve their sales goals. It's a shift from traditional sales methods, which often involve face-to-face interactions and physical transactions, to a more modern approach that leverages online channels, social media, and technology. this is why gaining support for digital selling is not just about selling products or services online, but it's also about building relationships, providing value, and creating a seamless customer experience.

However, as with any significant change, it can be challenging to get everyone on board. This is particularly true when trying to convince non-salespeople and non-marketers to embrace digital selling. These individuals may not immediately see the value in this approach, or they may have concerns or misconceptions about what it involves. They might worry that digital selling is impersonal, or that it requires a level of technical expertise they don't possess. It's crucial, therefore, to approach these colleagues with a clear, persuasive argument that addresses their concerns and highlights the benefits of digital selling. 

It will be important to explain to them that traditional digital marketing was initially designed for selling products to consumers, i.e., B2C, that is where demand generation, lead generation and ABM has evolved from.  Digital selling is designed specifically to sell to B2B and involves the use of digital tools and platforms, it doesn't necessarily require advanced or additional technical skills.  B2C purchases are carried out by individual consumers spending their own money, typically based upon an emotional purchase.  B2B buyers make decision based upon a defined or perceived return on investment, paid with company finances and agreed upon by a CEO or group with budget approaval. 

The first step in gaining support for digital selling is education. Many people resist change simply because they don't understand what it entails. By explaining the concept of digital selling in clear, simple terms, you can help your colleagues understand what it is and how it works. Emphasise that digital selling is not just about using technology to sell products or services, but about using technology to build relationships with customers and provide them with value. This can help to dispel any misconceptions your colleagues may have about digital selling being impersonal or overly technical.

The next step is to highlight the benefits of digital selling. This includes not only the potential for increased sales and profitability, but also the ways in which digital selling can improve customer satisfaction and retention. For example, digital selling allows businesses to reach a wider audience, tap into new markets, and provide a more personalised, engaging customer experience. It also offers increased efficiency and cost-effectiveness, as digital tools can automate many aspects of the sales process.

Finally, it's important to address any concerns your colleagues may have about digital selling. This might involve debunking myths about digital selling being impersonal, or explaining how digital tools can be used to create personalised, engaging customer experiences. It could also involve providing training and support to help your colleagues understand and embrace digital selling. By addressing these concerns head-on, you can help to alleviate any resistance and build a strong case for the adoption of digital selling within your organisation.

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2. Demystifying Digital Selling

Digital selling is a term that has gained significant traction in recent years, but what does it truly mean? At its core, digital selling is about leveraging online channels, social media, and technology to engage with prospects and customers throughout the entire sales process. It's a shift from traditional sales methods, which often involve in-person face-to-face interactions and physical transactions, to a more modern approach that takes advantage of the digital tools and platforms available today.

However, digital selling is not just about using technology to sell products or services. It's about using technology to build relationships with customers, provide them with value, and create a seamless customer experience. This means that digital selling involves much more than just posting products on an e-commerce site or sending out mass emails. It involves creating engaging content, personalising interactions, and using data to understand and meet customer needs.

This aspect of relationship-building is crucial to digital selling. In the digital age, customers have more options than ever before, and they expect businesses to provide them with personalised, relevant experiences. Digital selling allows businesses to do this by enabling them to engage with customers on a deeper level, understand their needs and preferences, and provide them with tailored solutions. This not only helps to attract new customers, but also to build loyalty and drive repeat business.

The difference between traditional and digital selling can be stark, and it's important to highlight this when convincing colleagues of the benefits of the latter. Traditional selling often involves one-way communication, with the salesperson delivering a sales pitch and the customer listening. Digital selling, on the other hand, is much more interactive. It involves two-way communication, with the salesperson and customer engaging in a dialogue. This allows the salesperson to better understand the customer's needs and provide a more personalised solution.

Moreover, traditional selling is often limited by geographical constraints. Salespeople can only reach customers in their local area, or in areas they can travel to. Digital selling, however, allows businesses to reach customers all over the world, at any time. This opens up a whole new world of opportunities, allowing businesses to tap into new markets and reach a much wider audience.

Traditional selling can be time-consuming and costly. It often involves travelling to meet customers, attending trade shows, or hosting events. Digital selling, on the other hand, can be much more cost-effective. It allows businesses to reach a large number of customers at once, without the need for travel or physical events. Plus, digital tools can automate many aspects of the sales process, saving time and reducing costs. By highlighting these differences, you can help your colleagues understand the significant advantages of digital selling.

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3. The Advantages of Digital Selling

One of the most compelling arguments for digital selling lies in its inherent benefits. The first of these is increased efficiency. Traditional sales methods often involve a lot of time and effort, from travelling to meet clients to manually tracking sales and customer interactions. Digital selling, on the other hand, leverages technology to streamline these processes. Online platforms can automate many aspects of the sales process, from lead generation to customer follow-up. This not only saves time but also ensures that no opportunities are missed.

Video, Live Stream & Podcast

The basis of digital selling lays in the ability to deliver content in a format that prospects can choose and is not predetermined by your marketing department.  We all consume different types of content at different times of the day, hence the need to provide B2B Video, Podcasts and Live Streaming to simply service the requirements of prospects.

The real significance of digital selling is when you are able to use live streaming to reach an unprecedented number of prospects on a regular basis and get the lead on your competitors.  This can be quickly taken advantage of by repurposing the live stream content as a podcast, which further expands your reach.  finally, now that you have all the filming and audio equipment to hand it gives you the opportunity to start recording videos for a host of other content material such as interviews, case studies, events, product demonstrations and general introductory content that remains evergreen.

Click on some of the links above to learn more about our approach to digital selling. 

Digital Face-to-Face

Digital selling allows salespeople to reach out to prospects at any time, from anywhere, exploiting digital face-to-face selling. This means that they can engage with potential customers when it's most convenient for them, increasing the chances of a positive response. Moreover, digital tools can provide valuable insights into customer behaviour, enabling salespeople to tailor their approach to each individual prospect. This personalised approach can significantly increase the chances of a successful sale.

Due to advances in pro-sumer digital video and live streaming technology, the quality of content delivery has changed immensely.  Your salespeople can have mini studios created wherever they live to ensure the most effective use of their time and technical facilities.

We've all heard of Zoom and Teams, well current technologies allow you to empower salepeople everywhere to deliver the most visually engaging and effective presentation and calls whilst collaborating with others in the wider teams, delivering live shows to enthusiastic prospects. 

Reducing Costs

Cost-effectiveness is another significant benefit of digital selling. Traditional sales methods can be expensive, with costs associated with travel, events, and printed materials. Digital selling, on the other hand, often requires a much smaller investment. Online platforms and tools can be used to reach a large number of prospects at a relatively low cost.  For example, it is free to broadcast live on LinkedIn, Facebook and YouTube and it only costs approximately £50.00 per month to use a platform called Restream, to broadcast on all three platforms simultaneously. 

Additionally, digital selling allows for precise targeting, ensuring that resources are focused on the most promising leads. This can result in a higher return on investment, making digital selling a cost-effective choice for many businesses.  It has long been the case that salepeople are the ones in control of finding new business - and certainly not marketing.  Whilst salespeople know who may or may not be in the market, it is for these reasons that many business fail to achieve the levels of business the need.

Digital selling places the business in control of generating new business because the process put in place are designed to encourage engagement between your company and the prospects and not salesman to prospect, which is axchieved in the following section about your Total Addressable Market.  

Reaching Your Total Addressable Market (TAM)

Scalability is another key advantage of digital selling. Traditional sales methods can be difficult to scale, as they often require a proportional increase in resources. For example, reaching more customers might mean hiring more salespeople or investing in larger events. Digital selling, however, can easily be scaled up or down as needed. Online platforms can handle a large volume of interactions, and digital marketing campaigns can be expanded or contracted based on the business's needs. This flexibility makes digital selling a great option for businesses of all sizes, from small start-ups to large corporations.

Let's look at yout TAM.  If you can sell to 10,000 businesses in the UK, only a small proportion of them will be in the market at any one time.  Research and the grapevine shows that between 1% to 15% are planning to begin their buying journey each week.  that means you need to find 100-1500 businesses out of 10,000 - impossible right!

Our approach means you email all of them every week and tell them you're broadcasting a live show.  If they're in the market they may well tune in, especially as you do not and cannot personally identify them, which Gartner say 83% of prospects prefer. 

Digital selling can lead to better customer insights, improved customer satisfaction, and higher customer retention rates because you can engage at scale. Digital tools can track customer interactions, providing valuable data on customer behaviour and preferences. This information can be used to improve products, services, and marketing strategies, leading to higher customer satisfaction. Moreover, the personalised approach enabled by digital selling can build stronger relationships with customers, increasing their loyalty and likelihood to make repeat purchases. By highlighting these benefits, you can build a strong case for the adoption of digital selling within your organisation.

Social 444 Exposure @ Scale

As part of the ongoing awareness and engagement strategy, digital selling also enables businesses to reach a wider audience and tap into new markets. With traditional sales methods, businesses are often limited to their local area or regions they can physically reach. Digital selling, however, knows no geographical boundaries. Businesses can reach potential customers around the world, opening up new opportunities for growth. This can be particularly beneficial for businesses looking to expand internationally.

Adopting Social 444 means you're able to promote and present your content through repeated multiple adverts posted on LinkedIn or other relevant social media platform.  We recommend you create 120 adverts and auto-post four adverts, four times a day over four weeks and repeat for up to eighteen months. 

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4. Addressing Misconceptions and Concerns

When advocating for digital selling, it's crucial to address any concerns or misconceptions that your colleagues may have. One common misconception is that digital selling is impersonal. This stems from the idea that digital interactions lack the human touch of face-to-face interactions. However, this is far from the truth. Digital selling can actually enable more personalised and engaging experiences than traditional selling methods.

Digital platforms allow for exciting and effective two-way communication, enabling businesses to engage with their customers and build relationships. This can create a more personal and engaging experience than traditional selling methods, which often involve one-way communication.

Another concern that non-salespeople and non-marketers may have about digital selling is that it requires a high level of technical expertise. Many digital selling tools are designed to be user-friendly, with intuitive interfaces and helpful tutorials. In fact most people already use all of the tools available on a daily basis if not for work then for personal reasons.  Moreover, businesses can provide training to help their employees get up to speed with these tools and more importantly help salepeople become the 'faces' of the business.

Digital selling tools, such as live streaming and Social 444, can be used to create personalised and engaging experiences for customers. Live streaming, for example, allows businesses to interact with their customers in real-time, answering questions, demonstrating products, or sharing behind-the-scenes content. This can create a more engaging and interactive experience than traditional selling methods, which often involve one-way communication.

Social 444, on the other hand, is a tool that allows businesses to manage their social media presence, track customer interactions, and gather data on customer behaviour. This can provide valuable insights that can be used to tailor interactions to each individual customer, creating a more personalised experience. By highlighting these tools and their benefits, you can help your colleagues understand how digital selling can create engaging and personalised experiences for customers.

Caution:  SEO + Pay Per Click Performance for B2B

No doubt SEO and Pay-Per-Click has not passed you by.  I have done some significant research in to SEO and not so that I can sell you SEO services, far from it.  I want you to be aware of the expectations Google has for its own SEO services and to be clear where Google makes its moeney.

Google Search may seem free, but it is not.  You and your website are its product and Google wants to serve its content to its customers and keep them on-side, on-site and maintain a high 'dwell time'.  They are no snooping on your content, rather they are 'parsing' it through an algorithm that scores it mathematically based upon the words and coding used in your articles.

You may write a brilliant article and your whole company praise you for it.  But there's no guarantee Google will firstly index it and then, if it does, will it rank it and if so where?  It could be ranked number 560,000 who knows, but it certainly does not benefit you or your website.  That is why marketing directly to your TAM and Social 444 are so important within the digital selling infrastructure.  You must be in control of your destiny, based upon your calculable efforts and not have your business subject to global calculation designed for the consumer market or PPC.

Just finishing on PPC, All PPC banners link to a landing page.  Most landing pages have a form that needs to be completed before the browser can view the content.  Firstly, any content befind a form is invisible to Google and could never be indexed.  Secondly, 80-90% of all browsers refuse to complete an online form for content in the B2B space because the don't want to be cold called.

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5. Providing Training and Support: Empowering Your Team

A useful application presentation training and show hosting training.  A very small team will become responsible for communicating your message to a previously unprecedented size of audience and therefore it's important to emphasise that digital selling is not just about using technology, but about using technology to build relationships and provide value. This means that the most important skills for digital selling are not technical skills, but skills like communication, empathy, and problem-solving. By addressing these concerns, you can help your colleagues see that digital selling is not as daunting as it may seem.

Training should cover a range of topics, including the basics of digital selling, the use of digital selling tools (mini studio set ups), and strategies for engaging with customers online, e.g., for Business Development Rep's (BDRs) to learn how to engage with online Chat platforms. It's also important to provide training on data analysis, as understanding and interpreting customer data is a crucial part of digital selling. This training can be delivered in a variety of formats, including online courses, workshops, and one-on-one coaching sessions. The goal is to provide team members with the knowledge and skills they need to effectively engage in digital selling.

In addition to training, it's also important to provide ongoing support. This could include technical support for using digital selling tools, as well as strategic support for developing and implementing digital selling strategies. Support could also involve providing resources, such as copywriting and photography, to assist team members in their digital selling efforts. This support can help to alleviate any concerns or challenges team members may face, and ensure that they feel confident and capable in their digital selling efforts.

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6. The Power of Collaboration

In the context of digital selling, collaboration is not just beneficial—it's essential. Digital selling is not an isolated function that only involves the sales or marketing department. Instead, it's a holistic approach that requires the involvement and collaboration of various departments within the organisation. This includes not only sales and marketing, but also product development, customer service, and even finance. Each department has a unique perspective and set of skills that can contribute to the success of digital selling efforts.

Collaboration can also lead to more innovative and effective digital selling strategies. When different departments work together, they can bring diverse perspectives and ideas to the table. This can lead to new insights, strategies, and solutions that may not have been discovered otherwise. Moreover, collaboration can help to foster a sense of ownership and commitment to digital selling across the organisation. When everyone feels that they have a role to play in digital selling, they are more likely to embrace this approach and contribute to its success.

Emphasising the importance of working together to create a cohesive and effective digital selling strategy is key. This involves not only collaborating on the development of strategies, but also on their implementation and evaluation. By working together, teams can ensure that digital selling strategies are effectively integrated into the organisation's overall operations and that they are continually refined and improved based on feedback and results. This collaborative approach can lead to more effective and successful digital selling efforts.

Non-salespeople and non-marketers can contribute significantly to digital selling efforts. For instance, product development teams can provide valuable insights into product features and benefits, which can be used to create compelling sales messages. Customer service teams can share feedback from customers, which can be used to improve products and services, as well as sales and marketing strategies. Finance teams can provide data on sales and revenue, which can be used to measure the success of digital selling efforts and make data-driven decisions.

Then there is the opportunity to incorporate collaboration from a direct sales perspective.  Whilst your business may sell a certain type of product, there will be other businesses who sell products that will complement your.  You don't sell theirs and they don't sell yours, but your prospects may well be interested in each others products.  This leads to a wider opportunity of growth by working together with other companies and sharinf each others prospects whilst not competing with the other vendors or possible 'partners'.  

Collaboration will always foster a sense of ownership and commitment among team members. When everyone feels that they have a role to play in digital selling, they are more likely to embrace this approach and contribute to its success. This sense of ownership can also lead to increased motivation and engagement, which can further enhance the effectiveness of digital selling efforts.

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7. FAQs

How can non-salespeople and non-marketers contribute to selling efforts?

Non-salespeople and non-marketers can contribute significantly to digital selling efforts. They can share their expertise and insights, collaborate on content creation, provide customer insights, and participate in training and support initiatives. For instance, product development teams can provide valuable information about product features and benefits, while customer service teams can share feedback from customers. All these insights can be used to improve sales and marketing strategies.

How can digital selling improve customer satisfaction?

Digital selling can enhance customer satisfaction in several ways. It allows for personalised experiences, relevant content, and a seamless customer journey. By using data gathered from digital interactions, businesses can tailor their offerings and communications to each individual customer's needs and preferences. This personalisation can lead to more effective communication, faster response times, and better customer support, all of which can significantly improve customer satisfaction.

What are some common digital selling channels?

Common digital selling channels include social media platforms, email marketing, content marketing, live streaming, webinars, and podcasts. Social media platforms, such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, allow businesses to engage with customers in a more informal and interactive way. Email marketing allows for direct, personalised communication with customers. Content marketing involves creating and sharing valuable content to attract and engage customers. Live streaming, webinars, and podcasts can be used to provide engaging, interactive content.

How can digital selling help with lead generation?

Digital selling can significantly enhance lead generation efforts. By targeting and engaging with potential customers through various online channels, businesses can increase their brand visibility and attract more leads. Digital selling also allows for the creation and sharing of valuable content, which can attract and nurture leads. Furthermore, digital tools can automate many aspects of the lead generation process, making it more efficient and effective.

How can we measure the success of our digital selling efforts?

The success of digital selling efforts can be measured through various metrics. These include website traffic, social media engagement, lead generation, conversion rates, and revenue growth. For instance, an increase in website traffic or social media engagement can indicate increased brand awareness, while an increase in leads or conversions can indicate successful sales efforts. Revenue growth, of course, is a clear indicator of financial success. Additionally, using tools like Google Analytics can help track progress and make data-driven decisions.

What are the key components of a successful digital selling strategy?

A successful digital selling strategy involves several key components. These include a clear understanding of the target audience, a strong online presence, engaging and valuable content, personalised customer interactions, effective use of digital tools, and ongoing measurement and improvement. It's also important to ensure that the digital selling strategy aligns with the overall goals and objectives of the organisation.

What kind of training and support is needed for effective digital selling?

Effective digital selling requires comprehensive training and ongoing support. Training should cover the basics of digital selling, the use of digital selling tools, and strategies for engaging with customers online. Support should include technical support for using digital selling tools, strategic support for developing and implementing digital selling strategies, and resources to assist with content creation and other digital selling tasks. By providing this training and support, businesses can ensure that all team members have the skills and resources they need to contribute to digital selling efforts.

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8. Key Takeaways

  1. Education is Key: It's crucial to educate non-salespeople and non-marketers about the benefits and potential of digital selling. This involves explaining the concept of digital selling, highlighting its benefits, and debunking any misconceptions. By providing a clear understanding of what digital selling is and how it works, you can help alleviate any resistance and encourage your colleagues to embrace this approach.
  2. Address Concerns Head-On: Addressing concerns and misconceptions is a vital part of advocating for digital selling. This might involve debunking myths about digital selling being impersonal, or explaining how digital tools can be used to create personalised, engaging customer experiences. By addressing these concerns directly, you can help your colleagues feel more comfortable with the idea of digital selling.
  3. Share Success Stories: Sharing success stories and case studies can be a powerful way to demonstrate the effectiveness of digital selling strategies. These real-world examples provide concrete evidence of how digital selling can lead to better results and increased revenue. They can also provide inspiration and ideas for your own digital selling efforts.
  4. Provide Training and Support: Offering training and support is crucial for helping non-salespeople and non-marketers understand and embrace digital selling. This could involve providing resources, such as copywriting and photography, to assist them in their digital selling efforts. It could also involve providing training on how to use digital selling tools and strategies effectively.
  5. Encourage Collaboration: Encouraging collaboration between departments is key to creating a cohesive and effective digital selling strategy. This involves not only collaborating on the development of strategies, but also on their implementation and evaluation. By fostering a collaborative environment, you can ensure that all team members are working together towards a common goal.
  6. Leverage Digital Tools: Digital tools play a crucial role in digital selling. They can automate many aspects of the sales process, provide valuable customer insights, and enable personalised customer interactions. By leveraging these tools effectively, you can enhance your digital selling efforts and achieve better results.
  7. Measure Success: Measuring the success of your digital selling efforts is crucial for understanding their effectiveness and making data-driven decisions. This involves tracking various metrics, such as website traffic, social media engagement, lead generation, conversion rates, and revenue growth. By regularly measuring and evaluating these metrics, you can continually refine and improve your digital selling strategies.
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9. Conclusion

As we navigate the digital age, the importance of adopting digital selling within your organisation cannot be overstated. It's a strategic approach that requires careful planning, collaboration, and a commitment to ongoing learning and improvement. However, the potential benefits for your business are immense. From increased efficiency and cost-effectiveness to improved customer satisfaction and retention, digital selling offers a wealth of opportunities for businesses willing to embrace it.

To convince your colleagues to adopt digital selling, it's crucial to present a clear and compelling case. This involves educating them about what digital selling is and how it works, addressing their concerns and misconceptions, and highlighting the benefits of this approach. It's also important to provide them with the training and support they need to feel confident and capable in their digital selling efforts.

Remember, success stories and case studies can be powerful tools for persuasion. They provide concrete evidence of the effectiveness of digital selling and can serve as a source of inspiration and motivation. Don't hesitate to share these stories with your colleagues, and to highlight how your own organisation can benefit from adopting digital selling.

As you embark on this journey, remember that you're not alone. There are resources and experts available to help you navigate the world of digital selling. One such expert is salesxchange, a company dedicated to helping businesses implement effective digital selling strategies. By contacting salesxchange, you can gain access to a wealth of knowledge and expertise, and receive the support you need to make your digital selling efforts a success.

In terms of implementation, it's important to remember that digital selling doesn't have to replace your existing sales strategies overnight. Instead, consider implementing digital selling in parallel to your existing activities. This allows you to gradually increase your digital selling efforts while simultaneously decreasing your reliance on older strategies. This approach can make the transition to digital selling more manageable and less disruptive for your organisation.

In conclusion, digital selling represents a significant opportunity for your business. By embracing this approach, you can reach a wider audience, build stronger relationships with your customers, and drive increased sales and profitability. So, take the first step towards harnessing the power of digital selling. Contact salesxchange today, and start planning your digital selling strategy. The future of sales is digital, and the time to act is now.

Go to our Digital Selling pages to see how you can change the way you work and scale up your business.

30 April 2024

How to Master B2B Growth using Digital Selling Techniques

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Author

The author and founder of salesXchange, Nigel Maine is a B2B marketing and sales expert with a proven track record in scaling up growth for Technology, SaaS, and Professional Services organisations. With 30 years hands-on experience and unique approach, Nigel has developed an effective strategy that dramatically increases exposure and profitability for B2B organizations.

Nigel has founded multiple start-ups, is a published author, public speaker and hosts both a podcast and business live streaming show, broadcast on LinkedIn Live, YouTube & Facebook. He also has extensive knowledge of MarTech software, creative hardware and software, and A.I. prompting tools.  Contact: 0800 970 9751 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.