Put the Social into Selling: A Sales Mastery Interview with Ago Cluytens

As I’ve been writing and speaking for the last 7 years about Social Selling and why salespeople need to adapt to changed buyer behavior, it still comes back to one key point:

If you keep trying to sell the way that you’ve always sold, you lose most of the time!

I have a number of kindred spirits who think as I do regarding this changed world of selling, so it was with great delight that I sat down with Ago Cluytens to talk about his views on what salespeople need to do to succeed in today’s complex B2B sales environment.

Ago shared some practical tips that salespeople can put into practical application now. One of my favorites is Ago’s three golden rules for sales success using social channels to sell. It all breaks down to:

  • 40% sharing
  • 40% listening
  • 20% talking

Given that I’m observing a lot of sales (and marketing) people spend 80%-90% of their time talking about themselves and what they want to sell – and I am being kind with my percentages – I want people to take Ago’s advice to heart. Using social channels to crank out generic sales pitches just do more harm than good and people WILL turn you off. Another time, I’ll tell you about the person I had to shut off on Facebook, because I had finally had enough of the constant self-promotion.

Anyway, as I always say, it is great interview with a sales thought leader who has amassed years of experience on both the marketing and sales side of the house. I know that you are going to enjoy my conversation with Ago, as much as I did!

Let me tell you about Ago…

As Practice Director EMEA at RAIN Group, Ago Cluytens specializes in helping clients sell complex, high-end professional, financial, and technology services to senior decision makers and C-level executives in the Fortune 500.

His early track record as a management consultant with “Big 4″ professional services firms Ernst & Young and Arthur Andersen (now Deloitte) made him intimately familiar with “selling to the C-suite.” Spending over a decade as an executive with Fortune 50 financial services firm ING helped Ago develop a unique insider’s perspective of how corporations really buy and make decisions.

As former Global Head of Marketing (CMO) for the Private Banking division, Ago is a former CxO – with a deep understanding of what other CxOs look for when evaluating providers.

He has worked with corporations such as Ernst & Young, Toyota, Telenet, Arthur Andersen, Deloitte, ING, Keytrade, JP Morgan, Accenture, Procter & Gamble and Firmenich, as well as dozens of smaller firms.

Ago is a regular contributor to industry research and a panelist and speaker at conferences hosted by organizations like Brits in Business, Executives International, Wealthbriefing, Dukascopy, Marcus Evans, Terrapinn, and the Financial Times (FT).

And to ensure his insights stay current, he hosts an online TV series called the Coaching Master Series – learn more at www.coachingmasters.tv.

When you listen to my conversation with Ago, you’ll learn:

  • What buyers are really thinking about during the buying process and how they determine who gets the meeting and who doesn’t.
  • How social fits when selling in complex B2B sales situations.
  • Why Ago made the leap to social selling.
  • About several great social selling tools.
  • What a former marketer who has now crossed over into sales has to say about the difference between social selling and social media marketing.
  • Ago’s tips for getting started.

And more…

Enjoy the interview!

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