I’m reading a very interesting book – “The Age of Engage: Reinventing Marketing for Today’s Connected, Collaborative, and Hyperinteractive Culture” by Denise Shiffman.
It’s basically saying that with the internet, we now can make whatever choices we want, AND we’re all connected. SO we must be in relationship with our customers – bring relationships to a new level. She’s calling it Relationship Capital. “Hearts, not eyeballs, count.” Good stuff.
I think with the economy doing it’s thing, we’re going to have to shift the way we’re doing business now anyway. I’m writing a new book now that gives sellers a new job: that of Servant Leader, to help buyers manage all of the mystery going on within their environments. They are risk averse now: with different stakeholders, no understandable measurement tools, and no way to make the decisions they used to base their purchasing, hiring, financial decisions on, sellers might as well help. Buyers will continue to be risk-averse until they make sense of the sorts of data they will use to make new decisions on.
I also have a sneaking suspicion that ‘people’ will be one of the new decision criteria factors. It used to be money, time, competition. But I think we’re all going to end up using human criteria for our decisions. Let’s see.
BTW my friend and colleague Jill Konrath (www.sellingtobigcompanies.com) is creating a 2 week ‘Stimulus Package’. She’s getting a bunch of really good speakers together to talk about ways to be successful in this economy. I’ll be one of her experts on her 2nd round. Take a look. She’s one of the nicest, smartest people around, and the field of sales is lucky to have someone of her integrity.