SOCIAL SELLING: Techniques to influence buyers and changemakers by Tim Hughes and Matt Reynolds

Genres: Marketing, Social media

Rating: 2/5

Recommend to: People new to sales, marketing and using social media as a tool to boost brand awareness and sales.

Number of pages: 196 pages


The book covers an interesting and in this days important subject. So after checking some of the reviews online on Amazon and on Goodreads I was sure this is going to be a good book. But to be honest I was very disappointed! I do not know why so much good reviews and endorsements are made, but the only reason I can think about is that people have no real comprehension of how important social media is for business and how social media works. Anyone who uses Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn knows that by commenting, sharing, liking other people posts your friends see those posts and who posted them in the first place. So I do not see the need of writing a chapter about liking, commenting and sharing other posts. Or the issue I have with this book is that it talks about an interesting idea how social media could be used for business but then it does not elaborate or give examples how to implement certain strategies. And yes maybe someone right now will say – “hey you just said you didn’t like when the author talked about sharing, commenting or liking posts as a way of expanding reach or getting new followers”. Yes I said that. I do not see the need for those actions having their own chapter as it is something you automatically do when you are on social media. It is like writing a manual how to walk on a sidewalk…

But lets say you have never been on social media and you are thinking of using it for business and you are not sure if that is the right way how to invest your time and money. Then and only then I would recommend this book to you, as it makes a couple of good point, that in my opinion every person using social media already knows. The title of the book should have “for beginners” somewhere in the middle. Then I wouldn’t be so disappointed about the book. Like I said this could have been such a good book, but the author only starts to talk about interesting aspects of social media and gives a little taste of what you could profit from using the strategies he/they know and have implemented for others but he/they do not really share them in the book. In the end of the book I got a bitter aftertaste as I have just been reading a self-written recommendation of the authors references, capabilities and knowledge about the subject but not really taking anything away from the book. The best point made by the book is that using social media is important and how you use it is even more important – do not just pump out content but also engage your readers. But otherwise for me it felt like the author is tooting his own horn and not giving too much value.

A key takeaway is that it is not so much about what you know, but what you give to your community/followers. If you do not have a community and you are not building one you are certainly giving an advantage to your competition who is using social media to creat it. Times change, where and how people get information change, so should your strategies. Provide people with information, connect with them, listen to them, show them you understand them and that you are there for them.


  • The big jump that people need to make is the move from corporate thinking to working in the networked or connected economy is that you are working in communities or tribes. Not in a corporate structure. You need to be supportive and add value in the community.
  • People are hungry for real conversations and real relationships. It just has to be authentic, genuine and sincere.
  • You only get out of community what you put in and if you are taking and not giving in at least equal quantity then you won’t grow your follower base, your community and you won’t get to create the leads and revenue you want.
  • Companies need to build their own communities online by using the commonalities of community, adding value to your community members, being supportive and sharing.
  • The need for creating community comes from the fact that companies that have a community that carries their “torch” for them will have a bigger reach than the companies which they alone carry their own “torch”.
  • Create communities using humour, asking questions and getting interactions.
  • Interact with everyone who shows interest in your content, even if they are not your customer. you never know when they will want something you offer, and they will come to you, because they have a great connections with you.
  • Community is the new competitive advantage.
  • An online network is not the same as an online community. In a network you have coworkers, partners, PR agencies and other people who want to be seen as connected to you or you to them, but there is not inter-sharing or crossovers with other communities. But in an online community there is a lot of sharing and feedback. Interaction is key. Interaction is value!
  • In the connected society, social sellers will become the sought-after salespeople.
  • To build a community you need to understand your customers, the business issues they are facing, and the competition.
  • With all social networks the idea is not to put out endless updates but to get engagement and comment.
  • When people post online about their pets, hobbies,… they are giving you free material to build rapport. It’s like coming to someones office and you see a picture of their family, pets, achievements,…
  • Gaining online influence is a slow, careful process that has to be done constantly.
  • If you look at what people post, you can get a very good idea of their interests.
  • With social selling the primary job of a salesperson is to build trust, relationships and authority, and not to sell.
  • Your main focus should be to be perceived as being useful for people in/on the network. You do this by being a supplier of timely information. Use networking events to connect and show your value and not to sell.
  • The bigger the set of people following you on social media, the “louder your bell” will be when you ring it. As a result you will be able to create more leads, more sales. This is called your reach.
  • As a salesperson you need to dedicate time to finding great content in your niche, absorbing it and sharing it on social media.
  • In order to undertake social prospecting companies need to be on the channels where their customers are active.
  • Only when you own the online world will you enable yourself to gain a market-leading position. You do this by engaging, adding and educating.
  • Salespeople need to start creating their own content.
  • The digital maturity of an organization is connected to the digital maturity of the leadership.
  • Strategy is on paper whereas culture determines how things get done. Anyone can come up with a fancy strategy, but it’s much harder to build a wining culture. A brilliant strategy without a great culture is “all bark and no bite”. While a company with a winning culture can succeed even if its strategy is mediocre.
  • It is easier to change strategy than culture.
  • In todays customer-led market, the sustainable advantage is in knowledge and engagement with customers: owning the community, listening and engaging with customers and influencers and locking the competition out.
  • A social selling programme will not blossom until an organization places trust in its employees.
  • People no longer read ads, they would rather speak to somebody in their network who has used a product or service. This means that ordinary people can influence purchase decisions.
  • In the world today, it is not what you know, but what you share with the communities that you build.
  • influencer marketing offers the highest level of trust for the buyer but the lowest level of control for marketing.
  • In the digital world personalization of message is key.


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Thank you for your time. I hope you have found this book review helpful. Talk to you in the comment section.

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