Sales and Sales Management Blog

April 11, 2011

Results of the 2011 Richardson/McCord Training Social Media in Marketing and Sales Survey

It has taken a bit of time and a lot of effort, but we finally have the 2011 Richardson/McCord Training Social Media in Marketing and Sales Survey results.

Some will be surprised, some won’t like the findings, and others will find they confirm what they suspected.

Two things stick out for me:

1.  Both salespeople and companies, whether they currently use social media or not, are struggling to figure out how to use it effectively. In fact, few—even those with sophisticated marketing departments investing time and effort into the process—have any real social media strategy.  Undoubtedly, this will be true for quite some time to come–and, of course, that means there are and will be thousands out looking to take your money to help you learn the hows of making Social Media work.  The lesson here: be extremely careful as there are many who know little more than how to construct a tweet who are anxious to take your money.

2.  To date, social media has been pretty useless in generating actual sales.  By far the most use salespeople and companies are getting from social media is in the area of prospecting–finding new prospects to contact using traditional means, not in making sales.  Again, this will probably be the case for a long, long time–it may always be the case.  Except for web-based sellers, few are realizing any real sales volume from their social media activities.  The lesson?  If you’re thinking you’re going to make easy money by spending time on social media and not having to do the hard work of prospecting, well, good luck with that thought.  On the other hand, if you’re not using social media to help identify and research prospects, you’re probably wasting a heck of a lot of time elsewhere.

Find out what else we discovered–it’s all in the survey.

I’ve decided to divert from the typical approach of requiring you to register to receive a sales oriented White Paper or making you subscribe to our newsletter.  Instead, I’m offering the report as a simple PDF download with the download link below.  I would encourage you, though, to either subscribe to the SELLING POWER Newsletter by simply shooting me an email at with the subject line “subscribe,” or clicking on the “Sign Me Up” button at the top of the sidebar to the right and subscribe to receive notification of new blog posts.  Subscription appreciated, not required.

If you have questions or anything needs a little more light put upon it, by all means, don’t hesitate to contact me.

Download social media survey



  1. Social media can be overwhelming. The way that a company uses it really depends on their industry and what they are trying to achieve. Some companies have found that it works as a great customer service tool.

    Comment by Nick Stamoulis — April 12, 2011 @ 9:01 am | Reply

  2. Thanks for posting these results from your survey. I think it is difficult to track the usefulness of social media, but don’t you think it is better to at least have a presence? It shows you are current and fresh.

    Comment by Steve Waterhouse — April 13, 2011 @ 9:47 am | Reply

    • Steve,

      Thank you for your input. I completely agree that for many, if not most, sellers having a presence of some kind is needed. I don’t think the presence is really an issue–it is the intent and amount of time spent. If the intent is to simply have a presence and minimal time is invested, I think it’s a great idea. If the intent is to sell and/or significant time is invested, I think that problematic. As long as the seller knows why he or she is there and has a realistic expectation, great. It’s those with the unrealistic expectation of easy sales–and there are certainly many who will hype that expectation–that will risk losing not only their money but very possibly their career.


      Comment by Paul McCord — April 13, 2011 @ 10:26 am | Reply

  3. Thanks, Paul, for dousing the smoke and cracking the mirrors. You’re right, there are so many social media “experts” out there promising quick results if we only do things “the way they did” regardless of what our businesses need. Chaching!

    Yes also to the prospecting value and CRM potential of social media, where the value signs are strongest. It is a great tool to remain top of mind with customers without having to attend endless Chamber mixers!

    Thanks for a terrific post and offering the PDF. ~Dawn

    Comment by Dawn Lennon — April 13, 2011 @ 6:46 pm | Reply

  4. Paul, thank you for sharing the results of this survey with us. I hope that those all of us in Sales take the time to read through the results and consider if we are currently using these tools and concepts to their fullest potential or dismissing them for some reason.

    Adapting to change is never easy. Frankly it can be a pain in the rear. The facts remain, however, the game has changed. Our customers, prospects and our competition have begun to incorporate many of these concepts into their daily work flow and expectations. Some are way ahead of the pack and booking results. Continue to ignore these ideas at your own peril.

    Comment by Miles Austin — April 21, 2011 @ 3:42 pm | Reply

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