Whither the Sales Role – Deconstruction or Decimation?

Recently, I was in a large city that I frequent often for business, and got to witness – yet again – the shocking power of the Web. This time in a very new, very tangible way.

A way that functioned awesomely efficiently. One that was also almost black-market in its effectiveness. And one that had absolutely NO Sales persons involved in the transaction, in any way. Yet I ended by having what I needed…in under 40 minutes…on a Sunday night. Totally incredible.

How this happened, was that I left in a rush for my trip, and forgot the power cords for my laptop [yes, not a tablet, I know…a laptop!] while having several large client projects due. Ones that had to be completed while I was there. How was THAT going to happen now?

In a panic, I thought about Craigslist, the bane of many, but also savior for many. I merely typed in the model of my laptop [a 3+ yr-old machine, I should point out, not brand new at all], and up popped someone, just a neighborhood away, offering the very power cords I needed!

Even better, he returned my voice-mail within 5 minutes AND offered to bring them downtown for me, at no extra charge! On a Sunday night!

40 minutes later, I had brand new cords, and was done. Ready to finish my client work, with no worries.
– – –
Why am I pointing this out? Easy: WHERE was the role of the Sales person in this transaction?

Were there…ads sold to Craigslist, to build awareness…or build ‘Brand’? Was there a Best Buy-type storefront, with smiling faces to help me “if I need anything?” There was nothing of the sort.

So, with that, much has been written lately [especially in Digital Media Sales], about ‘Whither the Sales Role for Sales Professionals’. These stories burgeon even as systems like DSP’s and ATD’s rear their heads into the space.

Will the same apply in Media Sales [of any kind], as with my power cord story?

It’s too easy to say here that “Salespeople will not be used, where they are not needed.” Like with the demise of the Buggy Whip, we can all figure that out.

No, with the lightning-fast creation/destruction/deconstruction tendencies of the Web, we will see it is more angular, even surgical, than that.

Much more we will see key areas that work, requiring Sales talent. And we will see key, defined areas that do not.

Stay tuned for more exploration of this topic by MoM[S] coming soon.

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~ by MindOnMediaSales on March 19, 2012.

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