Ten Ways Twitter has Completely Changed the Sales Process

Twitter is fueling Enterprise 2.0 and changing the sales process by opening up how providers and clients discover, interact and close deals with each other. It’s not hard to imagine that all sales forces will be Twitter-based within a few years (if not Twitter, some other system that ties providers and clients into open networks). Viewed in this light, closed “Twitter” systems like Yammer that keep corporate data and communications more private would limit the sales process to the narrow channels that existed pre-Twitter.

Pre-Twitter

Post-Twitter

Sales opportunities run through channels and pipelines Sales opportunities also arise out of cloud, provider and client find each other via “shared business interest”
Sales happen closer to where the sales force is physically based Sales can happen virtually anywhere with priority
based upon size of opportunity
Relationships and networks facilitate execution Sure, relationships matter, but older networks usually don’t facilitate new opportunities. Twitter builds new networks quickly via search, target and network
Referral-based networking systems conducive to building business connections Sure, referrals work, but credible online reputation will now serve as a “self-reference”
Scheduling conference call three weeks in advance (frankly, I always thought this was arrogant) Instantaneous, and serendipitous conversations happen
Hard to get noticed by decision makers Retweet decision maker, compliment, and comment. Easy to start a conversation.
Dealing with the “gatekeeper” Twitter facilitates direct communication between relevant parties
Sales calls limited from 9 to 5 On Twitter, business conversations can happen any time (if one so chooses), because Twitterers are generally on 24-by-7
Closing requires face-to-face Twitter, social media and the recession facilitates closing by most economical means possible
Tedious sales support based on phone tree systems and locating the right resources Twitter begins to replace the phone system with new support and CRM tools (note Salesforce is integrating Twitter)

About Pat Kitano

Patrick Kitano works with brands in developing hyperlocal engagement solutions and is administrator of the Breaking News Network, a national hyperlocal network devoted to community service. He is the author of The Local Network on Street Fight, and is reachable via Twitter @pkitano and email pkitano@gmail.com.

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