The purists said, “You can’t sell using social media.” And the purists were wrong. Damn wrong. In fact, there’s little more social in the business world at all than selling. It’s just taken us until recently to get the social purists out of the way so we can get back to business.

And get back to business we will. Who better to help lead us there than David Meerman Scott, one of the pioneers who led marketing and public relations people down the path of the New Rules? He’s out with his new book, The New Rules of Sales and Service, and it couldn’t be a more perfect text book for the sales industry.

Jason Falls

About the author

Jason Falls is the founder and chief instigator for Social Media Explorer's blog. He is a leading thinker, speaker and strategist in the world of digital marketing and is co-author of two books, No Bullshit Social Media: The All-Business, No-Hype Guide To Social Media Marketing and The Rebel's Guide To Email Marketing. By day, he leads digital strategy for CafePress, one of the world's largest online retailers. His opinions are his, not necessarily theirs. Follow him on Twitter (@JasonFalls).

How to Respond to Online Brand and Reputation Attacks

by · August 26, 2014

Online brand and reputation attacks have become some of the easiest and most impactful mechanisms for individuals and companies to cause serious harm to businesses.

These types of attacks can originate from a variety of sources, but most commonly the “attackers” are competitors, disgruntled employees, unhappy customers, dissatisfied investors, extortionists or other people and businesses who become upset with a company and want to cause that company serious damage.

Further, these attacks come in many forms, including:

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Successful Marketing Starts With The Basics

by · August 25, 2014

The same people keep asking the same questions about digital marketing, social media and marketing in general. They keep wondering where the easy button is (there isn’t one). They keep looking for someone to swoop in with an answer (there isn’t one, but many). They keep thinking there’s some magic “thing” they’re missing (there is none).

Good marketing, online or off-, social or traditional, direct or mass, is the same now as it was 100 years ago, 50 years ago, 10 years ago. It will be the same 10, 50 and 100 years from now. The tools and trends change. The audience behavior may change, too. But the key to good marketing does not.

To answer your questions, start over. Go back to your college classes or the first few books you read and re-learn how to market. Stop obsessing with the latest tool, trend, website or hashtag and get back to the core – communicating messages to your audience(s) to persuade.

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5 Essential Components of a Successful Facebook Sales Strategy

by · August 22, 2014

With almost 1.5 billion registered users from all across the globe, Facebook is any marketer’s dream platform. Over the last couple of years, it has seen the average age of its users rise steadily, which means there are more people on Facebook with cash in hand and the ability to make their own purchase decisions (unlike teenagers or younger users).

All this presents a great opportunity for marketers and online sellers to increase their product sales and acquire new clients from Facebook. However, in order to create a successful Facebook sales strategy, you need to have certain components in place, apart from having a good quality product that fulfills a specific need. Here’s a quick look at some of them.

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Consider the trusted resource

by · August 21, 2014

A few weeks back Nichole Kelly wrote a series about ego and social and it took me a few weeks to really marinate in her words, the thing that I keep coming back to is this: We are overshooting social media. If the idea was to connect people with people with more immediacy than ever realized before, the opportunity for brands was to transition from monolog to dialog. It is simple. Have a conversation with your customer. Answer their questions. Take care of them when they need you. Occasionally introduce them to new products and services, but mostly, offer them an opportunity to dialog. It is something I like to see from my favorite brands. I like to get ideas for my home and get inspiration for dinner from my favorite brands.

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Your Presence Is The Best Present You Can Present

by · August 20, 2014

Flashback: My 2-year old daughter, like many 2-year-old daughters, has a doll that she has latched onto: Chandani. She carries it around; it rides in the car with us; she puts it down for naps. This particular doll has a bit of prescribed interactivity: touch her cheek, “mama”; tickle her foot, laughter; squeeze her hand, crying. My daughter does not understand why her doll cries out; however, her reaction is always the same. She does not sing to Chandani, she does not chastise her, she does not try and converse with her, she does not ignore her. She simply touches her doll’s head and softly states, “I am right here. I am right here.”

The one and only priority in this relationship is presence; rain or shine, good or bad, light or dark, my daughter simply assures, “I am right here.” Because to her, that is precisely everything that matters.

Yes, that is all a bit emotionally-tingly. However, there is a truth here that has resonated with me again and again during the five years since I first wrote about this. The idea of presence-above-all-else haunts me, as a husband and father, as an employee, and, especially in these days of Social ubiquity, as a marketer and brand representative.

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Integrating Print Signage and Social Media to Extend Your Marketing Reach

by · August 19, 2014

Now is a better time than ever to use a combination of both print marketing materials and social media tactics in a glorious cycle of promotion that gets all of your great content seen. While social media is king of communication and customer engagement these days, its ubiquitous presence is making print advertising more and more of a nostalgic novelty. In a world of things digital, our brains respond to advertising that is tangible and demands to be seen.

But how do you make your signage and social media accounts the perfect tag-team? There’s more to the strategy than tacking an array of social media icons onto your printed advertisements. Your content must interact coherently across all channels to advance your overall image and message.

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What’s the point?

by · August 15, 2014

For the last year, I have been lucky enough to regularly contribute to this blog. I love it and aim at all times to be useful. I do get preachy, #sorrynotsorry. I am passionate about the customer. I enjoy encouraging my fellow marketers to think about her. Consider her needs and wants. I like to spend a few hours each week in her shoes. I like to be her for a bit to tell the marketers who read this blog what she wants. And you know what she could use right now from you in social? A point.

A purpose. A reason for interrupting her feed. A point is something we seem to be sorely lacking in our social media marketing lives. Far too many times the point is either glossed over or lost. And when the point is lost, so is your message and brand because so much of social media is now simply noise. And even our friends are not rising above the noise factor, so how is your brand going to ever hope to get noticed? You’ll increase your odds of being noticed if you have a point.

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Could “Prospective-Customer Service” Best Traditional Marketing?

by · August 14, 2014

My latest obsession: Prospective-Customer Service (PCS) departments. Their time has come. In Nichole Kelly’s amazing blog post, Is Your Ego What’s Really Driving Your Social Presence, she asks:

“…if [our social presence wasn’t] about our ego, wouldn’t it be okay to simply go out there and help people? I mean help ridiculous amounts of people with all kinds of things that have nothing to do with us?”

It’s a question that I simply cannot shake. And I keep arriving at a follow-up question: Is it time for brands to focus less (a lot less) on navigating the ever-increasingly tricky marketing landscape and, instead, plant their flag where they can have the most impact: helping people? Helping ridiculous amounts of people?

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