Your Social Profile Is Not About You
Speaker 1: Welcome to the INSIDE inside sales podcast with your host, Darryl Prail. Join us every week as we interview industry leaders and experts to uncover the ways they're finding sales success today. Tune in as Darryl brings you actionable strategies and tactics that can immediately increase your sales and success.
Darryl Prail: Ah, it's another week here at the INSIDE inside sales show. I had to think about that for a second. Seriously, I had to think about that. You ever get on a call where they answer," Hello." And you have that moment. And you're like," Ah." But I can't say," Ah." I got to say something inaudible mental block. When I was saying that, I was like," INSIDE inside social." But I was like," Inside. Okay. Did I say inside once or twice already?" I was blanking. I am just like you folks. That doesn't matter when it's so inaudible you can't blank. It was interesting, on that front, because as you know, they had the recent lad there on jeopardy. I can't remember his name. He was the, what is he? The second longest win streak, third most money earned. And he was shooting for Ken Jennings. That's where he wants to get, but he just lost recently. And there was a lot of pushback from the world because he would always start every question, because jeopardy is a question, what is? He would start off with," What is?" So, why that matters is because let's say the question was," He is the 46th president in the United States." You would say," Who is Joe Biden?" But instead, what he would always do, he would do," What is Joe Biden?" And there's whole science that he was using. And the whole point was he did not want to get caught up on poor syntax. He did not even want to think about it. So, he was conditioned to what is, that's why he did it. And he got to the strategy. I understand all you grammar Nazis, and I am one too, would be freaking out on that one. But I understood there was a rhythm to what he was doing, his strategy and it's all about strategy. So, with that said, I want to set the stage a little bit for today's conversation. Today's conversation is going to be a fun one for you, but it's not going to be a fun one for me because I'm going to do is some foreign language. I am going to say, " I screwed up." I'm going to say to you, " I did not do what I tell you to do." That's right. I'm going to go out there and say," Don't be like me." Which is ironic because I'm here every week, right? And I'm saying," Do this. Don't do that." I may appear to be a pseudo expert, but the reality is, I'm just a guy who's just been doing it a long time and I've learned some common mistakes to avoid. So, what am I getting at? Just pril rambling and just get to the point. So, the point is this, I tell my reps, I tell you that every single time you follow up, it's got to be personalized, going to be contextual. It can't be about you. It's got to be about them. So, you don't open up, do a connection request, for example, on LinkedIn, or send an email to a new contact and you say," Hi, my name is Darryl. I work with inaudible. We do this and we do that. And our customers get this benefit. Our customers get that benefit. Can I have 10 minutes on your schedule?" That's what I tell you, right? And there's so many templates out there. We can smell the templates a mile away, which, again, they're such bad, bad templates. And we say," Don't do that." Pretty straightforward, conversational, be curious, drill down, ask them. We've talked about different email templates. One of my favorite ones is the one Josh Braun likes to use, TTTT. Trigger, third party, tell me, teach me, something of that effect, right? But the open one is always trigger, right? I say something provocative to trigger them. And that works on the phone, that works on social, that works on emails. And I train my reps to do that. I really, really honestly do. I've got great people. I've got great experts on a show every week. My reps listen to this show every week and do an actual report on it. And they always take away a nugget or two. So, we know. That's all my way of saying is we know. So, recently we did a phenomenal webinar. Ali Winfield was the host. We brought in Bryn Tillman. We brought in Victor Antonio. We brought in Sam McKenna. And then, we bookended it with myself and Sean Finder. And it was incredible. And all the stuff you wanted to ask were too polite, scared, it was just not acceptable to ask. And we asked all those hard questions and we had a huge turnout. We had like six or seven sponsors joining us on this thing. It was massive. Biggest one we've done in years since pre COVID. And now, it's up to us to follow up. So, we're doing the follow up and we do the follow up, right? And I'm assuming everybody on my team, because they're conditioned because I trained them. I know the expectations, they've done the messaging. I'm at a point now, as CRO, I don't check the messaging. I've got people for that, they know the drill. And then, I get an email or it might have been a LinkedIn message, I can't recall, from my good friend, Bill McCormick. Bill and Bryn. Bill, I like. Bryn scares me, just between you and I. She's so fricking brilliant, but she scares me because she's a force. And they said," Hey, Daryl. Bill got followed up upon because he had signed up to see the event because Bryn was speaking and he spoke to one of your reps and we want to talk to you." And I knew right then and there that I was FUBAR and we'd screwed up. I knew. And sure enough, I reached out and I went to Sean Finder and I said," Show me the email that we sent to Bill." Or," Send me the call recording." Whatever it was. I remember looking at the email and I went," What the hell?" And it was exactly what I just said never to do. And then, of course I lost it on Sean. And of course Sean was like," I know." And it was crazy. Yeah. We do it, too. So, with that said, I've set the stage. I said I suck. I said I'm a hypocrite. And to make it worse, I'm bringing in Bill McCormick of Social Sales Link to tell me how bad I am and to use me and my team as an example of what we should have done. Bill, welcome to the show.
Bill McCormick: Hey Darryl, thanks so much for inside, inside, inside, inside sales. Too many times.
Darryl Prail: You've been waiting an hour, haven't you?
Bill McCormick: crosstalk Yeah. I was thinking that. And by the way, Bryn scares me too. That's how she keeps me in line, actually. But, hey, kudos to you for taking our call and not saying," Yeah, okay. We know we screwed up, but I'm not going to talk to you. We'll just fix it on our end." And it's something that's happening again and again and again on LinkedIn. What we're seeing are people are reaching out and for a lack of training, for a lack of understanding of what to do, they figure," I'm just going to do something. I'm just going to do anything." And so, cold calling work, cold emailing work. So Hey, cold messaging on LinkedIn, that must work. The funny thing is, what was the title of the webinar? I think it was something like the state of cold outreach.
Darryl Prail: The state of cold outreach. Yes. That was the big, okay. Listen, I'm being honest and transparent here. Now, you're just putting the dagger in hard. Okay. But yes, it was the state of code outreach.
Bill McCormick: I just want to set the stage. And so, I didn't, I signed-
Darryl Prail: Just for the record, folks, Bill's an ass and I don't like him, all right? But you should still follow him on LinkedIn. Carry on. I'm sorry.
Darryl Prail: Yeah, exactly.
Bill McCormick: And I'm jaded because I'm a salesman, and selling to salespeople is very, very hard because we are jaded. I look at everything like," What are you trying to get from me?" So, what we have to do is connect authentically and look for reasons to authentically connect. And when they join our network, we, then, need to have some resources that we can provide them that isn't pitching our product, but it's just simply helping them. We all say we want to help people, we need to stop saying that we want to help people. We just need to help them. So, we have a huge content library that's full of master classes of past webinars, past podcast, making sales social, Darryl Prail on there this week. It was amazing. We have all that available that's for free. And so, when I connect to someone," Darryl, thanks so much for connecting with me here on LinkedIn. Hey, if you'd like some complimentary resources on leveraging LinkedIn for business development, let me know. I've got a link, I'd love to send it to you." So, we used to just send a link and then a LinkedIn trainer said to us," You're spamming people by just sending a link." And we pushed back. We're like," No, we're not. We're providing value." But they didn't ask for it. So, we're like," We're going to prove you wrong. We're going to test it." We sent a hundred messages that gave the link that said," Here you go." 19 people opened the link. 19% is a pretty good return. Then we did it the other way where we said" Darryl, if you'd like the link, let me know and I'll send it." 69 people out of 100 said," Yes, send me the link." 59 out of 100 opened the link. So, 19%, 59%. You're the CRO. Which one do you want?
Darryl Prail: Nobody said there's going to be math on this discussion, right? That's not fair. But if you're pushing me, I'll take the bigger number please, for$ 200. So, it was funny folks, when I was talking to Bill and Bryn, we were chatting about this and I had Rick, that's Bill's name for the rep, on the call with me. And Rick didn't say much. Rick is, by the way, a very nice person. I just inaudible personally, great person. And Rick was like," Yeah. I know." And nothing to be gained by hammering him. Rick knew that Rick had messed up and Rick showed up for the call where we debriefed. And it was a very encouraging, educational conversation we had. Here's the thing, Bryn and Bill did not have to reach out to me at all, but they did. And that's the power of the community in the tribe. And we have each other's back a little bit. And of course, because of that, if someone comes to me and says," Hey, who should we talk to you about? Social sales and social selling and LinkedIn and how to do it and do it right, and my reps need training." I'm going to go and say," You need to talk Bryn and Bill at Social Sales Link." That's what I'm going to do. That's the beauty, that's adding value. That's another way of adding value. There's lots of ways you can add value. But when we're having the conversation, I said," Bill, we haven't had you on this show. We need to get you on the show." And I said," Why don't we do this? We'll talk about the deal." And Bill was funny, he was like," No, we don't have to talk about that." In other words, he was trying to protect me, trying to protect our reputation and our brand. But the reality is I did want to talk about it because our team screwed up, but we didn't screw up maliciously. We just screwed up. And I want you to understand that, I want you to understand that if your team's not perfect, if you are not perfect, if you're making mistakes, if you listen to any of the other podcasts we've ever done, where you're like," Oh, Prail's talking about that. And I already knew that and I haven't done that. I'm a loser." No, you're not a loser. You're just human. And even, go ahead Bill.
Bill McCormick: Yeah. Well, what I was going to say is, don't beat yourself up on it. You don't know what you don't know. And one of the problems with listening to too many LinkedIn or social sales trainers is that we tend to live in an echo chamber and we think we know what's best. And so we," Oh, I can't believe that person did that. Can you believe that?" I live in the real world, okay? I had a quota. I know what it's like to have three days left in the month and almost your whole quota to go and," Oh, my God. What am I going to do?" And having a boss breathe down in your neck. I understand that. I get that. But once you know something, once it's been brought and made aware to you, now it's time to do something about it and much kudos to you, Darryl, for seeing this and saying," Okay, yeah. Now, we've got to fix it."
Darryl Prail: Sorry. It's got to be fixed, right? And that's what I always tell my team. Don't sit around, beating yourself up for a mistake you made. I don't care about inaudible. You made a mistake. You know how many times I make mistakes? Every single fricking day. It's not the mistake you made, it's how you respond moving forward. That's where I care about.
Bill McCormick: This isn't life or death, okay? I used to be a 911 dispatcher. Those mistakes were life and death, right? But I would tell the people I trained all the time," Learn from it. Learn from it and move on and don't make the mistake again." That's what it's really all about.
Darryl Prail: Ironically, I used to be the VP of marketing at a company that manufactured 911 hardware and software. So, look at that. Our paths are crossing. This is scary.
Bill McCormick: Very cool.
Darryl Prail: You might have made a mistake using my gear, Bill. What are the odds of that?
Bill McCormick: Maybe.
Darryl Prail: There you go.
Bill McCormick: I won't admit to it, though.
Darryl Prail: All right. Okay. I've got Bill here from Social Sales Link. So, Bill, I want to shift gears a little bit. I want to leverage your knowledge and your expertise. I want to share a story and then I want to segue a little bit. Yesterday, I posted something interesting on LinkedIn and I was talking to Bill in the green room and I was saying," It's amazing. It's always those posts that are kind of off the cuff and not intentional, where you're not trying to play the algorithm and all the right techniques. It's always those ones that just get a life of their own and go nuts." And sure enough, this post I did went crazy wildfire, it's got tons of traction and it's been fun. And I like when that happens. Now, one of the biggest complaints I get from people, sales reps especially, is" Darryl, you tell me to build a personal brand and get out there and do content and have an opinion, have a take. I do it. And no one engages, ever. They never engage." So, that's half of my story. I did a good post. It got engagement. But the biggest complaint I get is that when others do it, they don't get engagement. Second half of my story. Because of that post, I got a lot of new connection requests, as you might imagine. I get lots of InMails and messages with their opinions, privately, they want to share with me. I got one this morning, it was brilliant. The fellow was saying," Darryl, I just wanted to say that post caused me to look at your profile and look at your other content. And when I looked at your profile, I was shocked all of a sudden, you had a video in your profile head talking at me and I'd never seen that before and it blew my socks off. And Darryl, I think you have the absolute, most amazing LinkedIn profile I have ever seen. And I just wanted to share it with you." Which was very nice to hear. That was very, very nice to hear. So, two lessons from those two stories. One, you never know when your post is going to take off and if you stop posting, it'll never happened for you. Two, when people look at your posts, even though they may not comment, they're still checking out your profile.
Bill McCormick: Yes.
Darryl Prail: And your brand is everything. So, I'm looking at you here, Bill, no pressure, you with Social Sales Link, I expect you to have the world's most ostentatious, incredible, amazing, inaudible LinkedIn profile ever. And so, I'm reading your experience. And I love this, one of the things you say is," As a sales trainer, I work with sales professionals, from team leaders to top performers. Two, bullet number one, develop professional brand that attracts teachers and engages targeted stake orders." And then you go on and you got lot of great stuff there. Folks, Bill McCormick, Social Sales Link, that's the linkedin. com/ in/ billmccormicksocialsaleslink. Go there, follow him. So, there's my question for you, Bill, what do I need to do to have a kick- ass profile? And then, what do I need to do, from an algorithm or a style list of point of view, to get engagement because too many of my sales, up and coming rock stars, quit this social thing because they just don't get engaged and they don't think it's a good investment of their time.
Bill McCormick: Yeah. And that's what we hear from a lot of people," Well, I tried that social thing. It didn't work. I did five posts and nothing happens."
Darryl Prail: Yes.
Bill McCormick: We want to press and play. We want an easy button. We want an easy button with prospecting. We want an easy button with LinkedIn. There is no easy button. It takes time and commitment, but listen, it's not hard work. We're not digging ditches. We're not clearing out septic tanks. That's hard work. This just takes time. And it takes consistency. It takes a system, right? James Clear in his book, Atomic Habits says," If we don't rise to the level of our goals. We fall to the level of our system." So, if you don't have a system in place, it's not going to work. But let's talk about profile. It's not about you. Your profile is not about you. Your profile is about your ideal client and you need to make it about them. So, LinkedIn was an HR site, that's how it started. It started for people who were looking for jobs to find jobs. Recruiters to find people. So, it defaults to this resume base that's all about me and all my years of experience. No, it's about who you help. It's the first piece of content people consume, right? And there's five things we want all content to do, including your profile. We want to resonate with the right people that when they look at your headline, they see you help them. They go," Okay. Yes, he's talking to me." Right? We want to create curiosity. Bryn talks about the pug tail, you ever see a dog hear a funny noise and the go, right? I call it a lean in moment, right? You want to create that curiosity. We want to get them asking questions and get them thinking differently about the problems that we solve. And then, the last thing is we want to get more hands raised and you can do that with your profile, but you have to make it about them and not about you. So, that's where we start. And I say all roads lead back to the profiles, it's the foundation of everything you do, because there's a number of lurkers out there. There're more lurkers than there are people that are engaging in content. They're reading your stuff. They're looking at it. And by the way, everybody has that cute video thing that Darryl has. He's not special. Well, he is special. He's just not special in that way, right?
Darryl Prail: Good recovery.
Bill McCormick: Thanks. You have to go to the mobile version to do it. It's called cover story. And if you go to the mobile version, there'll be a little circle with a plus sign next to your profile picture. You click that. It can be 30 seconds, only 30 seconds long. So, you have that. But let's talk about posting content, how the algorithm works and all that happy hoo- ha. Listen, the algorithm is a complex monster. And everybody's algorithm is different because your network is different. So, start by building a quality network, right? Because when you release a piece of content, it only goes out to 10% of your followers, right? So, if you have 1, 000 followers, almost spilled my water. If you have 1, 000 followers, it's only going out to 100 people. And those 100 people have to be on LinkedIn when it goes out and they have to see it, engage on it for LinkedIn to look and say," Yes, this is worth it going further." When you're posting content, don't post pitching, post asking questions, post content that's of value, that teaches them something. And, as sales people, we always want to talk about what we want to talk about. I love to do posts about automation, guess what? My clients don't really care about automation. So, I have to do posts about what they care about. We call that social listening. Go out and find out what is it that your clients care about. What is the content that they're consuming. Look for what we call magnets, right? In the sales training world there are magnets like Jeb Blunt and Larry Levine, Darryl Amy, they sell into the same clients we do, but we don't compete. So, I look at what content are they writing? What questions are they answering? And share content around that. When you're sharing content, ask questions, right? Because that will increase engagement. If you're asking somebody to answer a question, they do that in the comments, you reply back, you begin to get a back and forth. That's why Darryl's post went so viral, is because people began to comment a lot. And for the early part, Darryl was in there commenting back. He didn't reply back to my comment, but that's okay. But commenting will help it go further. And so, you want to increase comments. Do polls. Richard Van Der Blom is a LinkedIn trainer from the Netherlands. And every year, in the fall, he does a study on the algorithm. He just completed it. You can go to his profile, there's a 44 page slide presentation on it. And the biggest takeaway from me, polls have a 405% times more reach than any other type of post. So, if you create a poll, I guarantee you're going to get a lot of engagement on it. And it's great because you can ask your clients their point of view on a topic and you get to see how they all voted. So, it's amazing. But here's the thing with the algorithm, you have to be consistent. There's no right time of day or day of the week to post anymore. The pandemic took care of that. In fact, if you're selling into C- suite, Saturday's one of the greatest times to post, because most of those people are too busy during the week to look at LinkedIn, they're looking at it on Saturday. So, be consistent, post good quality content. Find some people that you can gather around you, that you can kind of help amplify each other's posts, but do it authentically. So, we have a private community of basically single, small business owners, entrepreneurs, and they take part in the coaching with us twice a week. We created an engagement thread on LinkedIn, it's a chat group. It can be up to 50 people. And what they do is when they create a post, they go in and they post it there and say," Hey, can you help me out with some engagement on this?" We go and we look at it. If we can share some engagement, we do. We vote on posts and it helps it go further. And when you start having those little wins, you'll find out that it's much easier to do LinkedIn, to post on LinkedIn, because then it becomes fun. But it really does take time and you have to be consistent. That wasn't Darryl's first post yesterday. Am I correct?
Darryl Prail: You may be correct. Yes.
Bill McCormick: Yeah. Go check out some of Larry Levine's content about, I don't know how long ago it was, Keenan challenged Larry to post every single day. And God bless the man, he does Saturdays and Sundays. He posts every single day. I tried to give him some advice about the algorithm. He said," I don't care about the algorithm, leave me alone." And I respect Larry so I did, because it's working for him. But you don't have to post every day. Just be consistent when you do, if you post once a week, you're in the top 1% of active LinkedIn users, because only 1% of active LinkedIn users post at least once a week. So, if you want to get out of the 99% and into the 1% post, at least once a week.
Darryl Prail: You're doing brilliant. I've been busy. Here we go. Richard Van Der Blom, got that right? Am I saying that right?
Bill McCormick: Van Der Blom, correct.
Darryl Prail: So, if you folks are wondering how to spell that, because I've been inaudible working on my own LinkedIn search to find it right here. I am not a first connection with him. How is that possible?
Bill McCormick: Tell him I sent you.
Darryl Prail: I will. Well, that work for me against you. crosstalk.
Bill McCormick: It should work. crosstalk. Tell him.
Darryl Prail: Okay. I'll tell him Bryn and Bill did, but we all know it's Bryn that's going to work. Richard Van, V- A- N, space, Der, D- E- R. Space, Blum, B as in brown, L- O- M Van Der Blom. And he apparently is a global LinkedIn thought leader and trainer. So, I am going to go, here we go. I'm looking at it right now, two weeks ago." All you need to know about the LinkedIn algorithm. See your annual LinkedIn algorithm report edition 2021." Bill, where have you been all my life? This is awesome. This is brilliant. So, that's it. Folks, I began wanting to be transparent with you. And so, you knew that we screw up too, and we're supposed to be thought leaders and best practice or people. And clearly we slip and fall. But it's not what you do, it's how you respond. And I responded by coming here to tell you, I want to bring in Bill. I want to thank him for humiliating me and reminding me that my team sucks. And as a result of him doing that, I actually asked him for a quote to train my team. How's that for a gig? He adds value by telling me I suck. And I reciprocate by asking him to quote on business.
Bill McCormick: We tear you down so that we can build you back up.
Darryl Prail: Yeah. And he offered, he gave me 100% list quote, but he's verbally told me in the green room, publicly sharing it now, that I get 80% off. I'm pretty sure that's what he said, anyway. So, with that, my friends, Bill McCormick. Give him a call, Social Sales Link. He is a machine. I love him. I love Bryn, the medium. If you're not good at it, it's there to be had if you just follow their advice and their lessons. Folks, I can't make you do it, but I can introduce you to the people who can show you what to do. And the easiest way to learn, in all honesty, is learn from others who have gone before you and have made the mistakes and have figured it out and said," This is what you need to do." Once you've got that figured out, then you can start experimenting on your own. But that's my advice to you. Do that. Thank you, Bill, for your time today. I'm so grateful.
Bill McCormick: Thanks so much, Darryl. It was so fun. Happy to come back again anytime.
Darryl Prail: Great. And if I never hear from you again on another sales call, it will be too soon. So, with that, we're done my friends. That's another episode in the books. I shall see you again next week. Take care. We'll talk to you soon. Bye bye.
Speaker 1: Thank you for listening to another episode of the INSIDE inside sales podcast with your host, Darryl Prail. We hope you enjoyed the show. And if you did, we would greatly appreciate you taking a moment to leave us a review on the platform you're listening to the show from today. Also, please free to share this program with your friends and colleagues. Thank you. Darryl will be back again next week.
Your social profile is the first piece of content your customers will see about you. Have you ever considered making it about them and not yourself?
In this episode of INSIDE Inside Sales, Darryl is joined by Bill McCormick, the social selling mastermind and trainer from Social Sales Link. Darryl and Bill discuss solid techniques for connecting authentically to your buyers, such as crafting your presence to reflect the interests of your ICP, and simply being genuine in your reasons for outreach. They also share what you should avoid, such as spamming likes, posting pitches, or using bad templates.