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API Journal Authors: Rishi Bhargava, Pat Romanski, Elizabeth White, Kevin Benedict, Anders Wallgren

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Enterprise Social – Ensuring Your Sales Team Stays Ahead of the Curve

social-media2McKinsey provides an excellent insight into how executives should approach the increasingly important world of social media.

In Six Social Media Skills Every Executive Needs (requires free registration) they describe how the transformational power of this trend can be harnessed through publishing compelling content for inspiring better team collaboration.

We will be profiling this trend in an ongoing blog series: Enterprise Social.

Social Selling – Leveraging Salesforce 2.0

McKinsey makes the point that tapping this technology ensures leaders stay ahead of the curve, and we can challenge the sales team first with this goal.

One of the most practical ways to describe the underlying technologies and how any organization might apply them this way is to look at Sales – Improvements here have obvious tangible benefits and it’s a demanding work area where the tools need to be sharp and quick.

This scenario is often referred to as ‘Social Selling’, which has a number of dimensions that highlight what’s important about Enterprise Social.

For example there is tapping the large social communities quite simply for the contacts they offer.

In this presentation the authors describe how the Linkedin Sales Navigator can be used for the oldest and most fundamental of sales practices, using networking to gain access to prospective buyers.

Other good pieces on this include how Social Selling is On the Risethe Disruptive Hustle, the Salesforce.com mini guide and of course an infographic.

The flip side is that social technologies can also be used to improve the work of salespeople inside the enterprise too – Salesforce 2.0 – Indeed the core idea that defines Enterprise Social is how these two worlds blend together.

Salesforce.com is of course the best known example of a Cloud-based sales force automation tool, but it can also go much further than simply offering a hosted service – It offers a suite of additional tools for achieving an Enterprise Social strategy.

For example there is the LinkedinFliptop and Redkite modules for integrating social network contact data into your CRM profiles, and Hubspot offers one for integrating leads generated from these social media campaigns straight into your lead management processes.

Google Enterprise for the Salesforce

Similarly you can look to integrate the other Cloud giant into this same mix too: Google.

A new blog series we’re starting ‘Google Enterprise‘ will look at how their Cloud suite can be used in the enterprise.

As highlighted in a previous blog the Google tools are all about boosting personal productivity, Getting Things Done, and when this effect is applied to the sales force this boost can directly translate into increased revenues.

From a choice of many, Salesforce.com Google integration tools include:

  • Zapier – Creating Salesforce records from Google Drive documents
  • Appirio – Synching Google and Salesforce contacts 
  • Cirrus for integrating Salesforce directly into GMail

These integrated workflows yield the true power of what Cloud Computing offers – Significantly transforming and enhancing how work is achieved across highly distributed, mobile teams.

For sales teams this can directly and quickly translate into more and better client proposals, more time for customers and so forth, generating the revenue increase required for new technology ROI.


Read the original blog entry...

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