Social Selling 101 with Expert Dean DeLisle


Dean DeLisle

Dean DeLisle is the Founder and CEO of Forward Progress, a company that helps other organizations amplify their online presence and establish themselves as thought leaders in their niches. He is also the creator of Social Jack, a company that helps businesses accelerate their influence by leveraging digital tools and social marketing. He has trained and coached over 120,000 in more than 35 countries through the Social Jack Curriculum. He is the host of, “The Influence Factory,” and the author of the book, “First: The Street Guide to Digital Business Influence.”
WEBSITE: Forward Progress


  • What is Social Selling?
  • The Difference Between Traditional and Modern Office Culture
  • Best Platforms For Social Selling
  • Social Media Trends for 2020


  • LinkedIn Navigator
  • Google Docs
  • Google Sheets
  • Google Drive
  • Sprinklr
  • GaggleAMP
  • LinkedIn Elevate
  • Airtable
  • Social Report
  • HubSpot
  • Nimble
  • Active Campaign
  • Planable


  • 00:42 : Dean’s Formative Years
  • 05:09 : Hustling: How Dean Got His First Job
  • 11:32 : Learning to Build Social Communities
  • 15:42 : Understanding Social Selling
  • 19:52 : Exploring Career Paths
  • 21:20 : Entrepreneurship and Teaching
  • 26:36 : Old Rules vs Modern Rules
  • 29:12 : It’s All About Your Network
  • 33:08 : What Do Forward Progress and Social Jack Do?
  • 35:22 : Dean’s Book on Digital Business Influence
  • 36:56 : Social Selling and Mutuality
  • 41:16 : Platforms For Social Selling
  • 48:26 : Social Media Trends For 2020
  • 51:18 : Favorite Tools
  • 54:02 : DoA: Who Would You Have Dinner With?

Did you know that 61% of sales representatives believe that selling is tougher than it was five years ago? You need to invest a lot of time and effort into finding prospects.

Even then, you may not find people who are interested. In fact, according to the previously cited study, 50% of initial prospects may not be a good fit. Agreed, getting more sales is not an easy task.

So, how do you drive sales?

According to Dean DeLisle, CEO and Founder of Forward Progress, the answer is social selling. Promotional advertisements are passe. If anything, they may come across as pushy.

Instead, your focus should be on building meaningful connections and growing your influence.

In this article, let’s take a look at what social selling is and how you can make the most out of it.

What is Social Selling?

Unlike cold calling, social selling doesn’t aim to disrupt or interrupt your prospect’s life. The aim of social selling is to build a rapport with your prospects using social media tools.

According to Dean, this is the definition of social selling:

“It’s (about) building trust in relationships with an intent to close more sales and move faster through the pipeline with whatever social or digital tools you need. Like LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or whatever it is, wherever the audience you’re selling to hangs out.”

It doesn’t matter what you’re selling. It’s about knowing your audience and their preferences and catering to them. The key is to leverage social media tools to build connections and leverage relationships to get ahead professionally.

Social selling is not a hard-closing technique. It requires a lot of patience. You can’t expect to see immediate results with it. It’s like nurturing your leads.

You’ve got to be consistent with your efforts. It’s a tactic that is always ongoing, but there is no guarantee that you’ll get any tangible results out of it.

How Can You Leverage Social Selling for Your Business?

Now, you know what social selling is.

But how can you get started with it?

Here are some tips from Dean DeLisle:

1. Follow Your Audience On Social Media Channels

A big part of social selling is understanding your target audience. You need to understand their likes, dislikes, and interests.

But how can you do that?

Thankfully, we live in a digital world. So, it’s easy to figure out these preferences if you can follow them on social media channels.

So, the key is to find out which channels your audience likes to hang out on. LinkedIn is a natural fit for businesses as you can connect with professionals and find out what they do.

On the other hand, Twitter is great to find out more about your audience’s personal interests. By checking who people follow on Twitter, you can find out more about what interests them.

On Facebook and Instagram, you may get to see family interactions and holiday pictures.

You can start off with one social media platform and then figure out where they’re active and sharing the most content.

2. Leverage Social Media Listening Tools

Social media listening and monitoring tools enable you to monitor online conversations to check your brand mentions and relevant keywords. It’s great to keep track of your brand positioning.

But at the same time, you can leverage these tools to listen to your brand advocates and people you want to connect with.

To make the most out of these tools, you should make a list of the top ten brand advocates you have and then track them with these social listening tools.

Similarly, you can also leverage these tools to connect with influential people.


If you’re looking to land a deal with Microsoft, for example, you need to connect with the person who influences their buying decisions.

With the help of social listening tools, you can find connections in their inner network and get to know more about their team.

Tools like Sprinklr and HubSpot can help you find out what’s important to them. In a nutshell, these tools can help you familiarize yourself with them even before you connect with them.

Additionally, you can also set up alerts to get notified if there is a potential sales opening. It can help you reach out to the right people at the right time.

If you get a notification that another business is looking to partner with a company in your niche, you should connect with them right away.

3. Use Advocacy Platforms

One of the most underrated strategies for business growth is employee advocacy. If you want to amplify your reach and boost your visibility, employee advocacy can do wonders for you.

Get your employees to share stories about their achievements, events, or even a normal day at work. Just let people know what your work culture is like.

By putting out more content, you can build more credibility in your niche. It can also drive brand awareness and engagement.

To leverage advocacy, Dean DeLisle suggests various tool, including:

  • GaggleAMP: This employee advocacy tool lets you segment the content that you send to different groups. To incentivize employees, you can also leverage its gamification feature which allows employees to win rewards for their actions.
  • LinkedIn Elevate:  If your preferred social media channel is LinkedIn, this tool is your go-to resource. Using this tool, you can share quality content and make sure it’s reaching your network at the optimal time.
  • LinkedIn Navigator: This sales tool helps you target the right people, engage with prospects, and nurture them. It also provides customized lead recommendations for every business.

4. Ask For Referrals

Your aim should be to reach a level of trust where people can count on you. If they are working with you, they should be assured that you’ll provide value for them. Once you establish that level of trust, don’t shy away from asking for referrals.


Politely ask them if they know anyone who might be interested in your work.

If you’ve already found someone you’d like to get introduced to, politely ask them if they can help you out.

It’s a simple tactic that can go a long way in growing your social influence.


Let’s be honest: cold calling won’t get you very far anymore.

If you want to drive sales, you need to nurture your leads. Social selling allows you to build meaningful relationships with your prospects by engaging them.

To succeed with social selling, you should leverage social media listening and employee advocacy tools. They can help you understand your audience and get more visibility. To expand your influence, you should also ask for referrals.

Do you have any questions about social selling?

Please share them in the comments section below. I’ll be happy to answer them!

Full Transcript

Shane: Welcome to the podcast. I am Shane Barker, your host on Shane Barker’s marketing madness podcast. Today, my guest Dean DeLisle, he is the founder and CEO Forward Progress and Social Jack. For over 30 years he's been helping organizations and professionals accelerate their influence with the use of digital and social marketing. Listen to him as he talks about social selling entrepreneurship and the future of social media in this episode. Cool, man, Hey, what's going thanks for being on the podcast today. I'm really excited about the interview. And I figured we'd just start with obviously we know each other through this space and seeing each other out there. But I figured we'll just start like, did you grow up in the Chicago area, give me a little background here? Dean: Yeah, so I was born in Northwest Indiana in a farmhouse and then all of a sudden my mom in England in the military and then decided when I was in first grade that, hey, let's move to Australia, which is where I got my accent. I get to a place where we go to Australia and we ship all of our stuff, or we get to England because that's where my mom's parents are, shipped this stuff to Australia, my dad gets really sick. And so we get stuck in England and we lose all of our possessions. So imagine that you're growing up, you got teddy bears, and GI Joes and all this stuff. And you're like, you know, what are you five in first grade or whatever, and then all of a sudden, you're like, lost all your stuff. So we had to start over in England, three years of school, and I was a street kid. So we were living in the city. And we literally are running the streets of London, like Oliver Twist, right? So I'm just running with a pack of kids every day and very little supervision there was just no, not like today we have helicopter parents and stuff. There was none of that. It was like, just go and come back when you are hungry Shane: come back alive Dean: Right exactly so, I experienced that and then I was the kid with the funny accent over there. So I got bullied a little bit so I had to deal with some of that and being a tough kid. And then when I came back, my dad literally my mom just decided she was too young didn't want to be a mom. And that stuff happens and so they split up, my dad comes back to the states with my sister and I, which means you know, I have one other younger sister. And we start over at my grandparents’ house in the south side of Chicago and the kid with the funny accent, so I had to be tough and defend that funny accent. So I became like, this tough street kid, and then my dad remarries. Fast forward a little bit, I wind up in Northwest Indiana, which is a suburb of Gary, Indiana, which is right next to Chicago. So it's, again, just tough parts. And so I just grew up as a street kid, trying to save myself and my friends from the street life, which means drugs and gangs and street fights, so it was a very tough growing up environment. But I learned I was fortunate and this is what I wrote my book on that I literally just learned that if you want to get out of a bad situation or you want to move forward you want to connect yourself to better people. And so my dad was always hustling and at night he was going to school to be a school teacher because he was in industry and it was burned out on that. My new mom was a school teacher so I was exposed to a lot of education, a lot of teaching, and my dad was always selling stuff. So you know what network marketing is, right? Shane: Yeah, absolutely Dean: So my dad became one of the top guys in the country for Shaklee, which has been around since the 70s. Right, so in the 70s, he was selling tons of Shaklee in our garage, and our bedrooms were filled with product boxes, because you had to inventory stuff back then, it was no consignment, you know, so I learned how to sell, he was doing networking events in our house. And it was funny because all these shipments are coming in and out. And then my parents in this not very poor, but you know, lower middle class neighborhood in Hammond literally had shipments coming in and out but then they got new cars because they were selling so much. So my friends thought my parents drug dealers because they insist they sort of work Shane:  Different kinds of drugs. Dean: But legally, you know, but my dad was always about connecting, connecting, connecting, connecting. Oh, yeah so then I'm about 13 years old, fast forward some more and then we go into this restaurant that was a treat. Remember, you own some restaurants and so you get regulars in there so, you know your regulars man, you take care of those regulars and they bring people because they're regulars, and the world travels. And so we were regulars in this fine dining steak house. And this guy that owned the restaurant, we had our booth on Saturday nights and our waitress and our dining room, and the owner would pass by and buy my parents a cocktail from time to time and after a few years, I'm like, 13, and all of a sudden, I'm like, hey, I want to work here, my dad's like you're not old enough, got to get a work permit and he goes, but just asked Mr. Freddie, maybe he's got something you could do. So I go up to Mr. Freddie because he always had wads of cash. You know when you guys empty the registers and you go to the office and you put it in the safe and you're counting the dough and I'm like a street kid going, Shane: That's the life for me Dean: Yeah, if I work in this business, I can legally have wads of cash. So anyway, I literally I go up to Mr. Freddie and he's this big dude he's like, yes, young man and I'm like, Mr. Freddie, can I work here? And he goes, well, how old are you? And I go, well, I'm almost 15 now I'm 13 and something at the time he's like, well, how long until you're 15, he goes, and I go, well, about in a year and a half. He goes, look old enough he goes, come in on Saturday, we'll get you some work. So then all of a sudden, next thing you know, he's figuring out how to pay me. I become a busboy. And I meet all these business guys. And it's a business steakhouse where during the day and in the evening, and I love to work in the bar, because all the business guys came in there and they were networking and I saw patterns of people connecting and the who's who and politicians and all this stuff happening. And all of a sudden, you know, I just got to learn how to connect and literally to the point and you'll appreciate this. There was a guy in there that own like a couple of companies and he was a limo guy and everything else and he's literally always was connecting with people and I'm like, Charlie, because I'm like fast forward I'm like, 15, but no driver's license. I'm like 15 or 16 and I'm like, hey, what would it take for me to get a limo because I want to impress this girl, Jill, for the church carnival. He goes we'll come in on Sunday you can wash some limos. And he goes, if you can scrape up between what I give you, and the dough that you make, you can have a limo for like 65 bucks. And so I go for four hours on a Tuesday or Wednesday night or wherever it was, it was an off night for them. So here I am, I got to be like Middle School, whatever. And all of a sudden, this limo pulls up and my dad's like, so think about all my friends, right? So they see my parents let alone with packaging and new cars Shane: Drug dealers Dean: Now a limo shows up to pick me up Shane: Nothing weird about that Dean:  It’s like what's going on? I go, Charlie helped me get a limo for today to take Julie on a date. So it was just one of these funny things where I just learned how to connect, and I wanted side jobs and gigs and things like that. And eventually, I meet the CEO of Merrill Lynch, and I'm fascinated by computers and he becomes a regular in the dining room. And literally, I talked to him and I'm hanging out and I'm helping them throw parties. And back in the day Shane before you were a kid in the 70s, they had these big stereo rooms, ginormous speakers reel to reel, you know, and people would sit in the stereo rooms and just jam out. And so I'm sitting in the stereo room with the CEO of Merrill Lynch. And I'm like, Mr. Bradley he's like, yes, Dean, is about three in the morning you sure imagine, Merill Lynch three in the morning, Merill Lynch three in the morning All of a sudden, I look and I'm like, hey, what would it take for me to work at the border trade on all those computers you guys are working on it but is innocent of an asset you can make, he looks at me. I'm sort of nervous asking this question because I'm going to school for hotel restaurant management, no intent for computers and he looks at me he goes Dean, you can start in two weeks, I like you, I trust you, you're a hard worker, you're good man, you can start in two weeks. So now I'm really scared, I'm going to college, I'm a sophomore in college by this point that I'm making the ask, I'm switching my entire career, my life. Next thing you know, I'm in Chicago and so just learning the power of connecting the network. But more importantly, the power of asking, putting yourself in the game in the equation. Even if you're scared, just asking for things has always been a lifelong, those are two big lifelong things that I've always built from. Shane: And I think for me, the key takeaway is that the drugs that your family was bringing in you were selling them through the bar, is that kind of what is that right? I mean I'll translate a little bit for everybody else out there like I get it. It's all about distribution. Dean: If you consider food supplements, drugs Shane: They can be, they can be, I’m addictive Dean: I think they might have been doing that, I think some of those Shaklee vitamins are going around their bar Shane:  Whatever works, no it's interesting first of all, I love the history, I love the background, because obviously your dad was a hustler, right? I mean, he was out there doing this and doing that and you see that specially when it comes to MLM because that's really what it is right networking and doing this and getting people to buy this and do that and it really is the psychology of that. And so I think early on you saw that right and also running the street. So it's funny, so when I talk to people, I love to hear people's backgrounds, because that also helps in how we have a conversation because I'm not going to say I was running the streets because my mom's gonna not say that's true, but I was definitely out there doing some stuff where I learned a lot because of that, right? Like how to do business and how to work with people and how not to work with people what to do what not to do, some really valuable lessons. Dean: Didn’t you work in a bar and then wind up owning that bar? Shane: I did, yeah so I mean it’s funny your background is similar in the sense that I started bussing at a restaurant long I mean, I think I might have been 16 when I started it was a chain of restaurants here in California. And I worked there for a long time and went from busser to you know, started waiting and then all of a sudden I was bartending and then I actually went to corporate, and then they offered me a long time position, but I didn't really feel like that was the right spot for me. So I end up traveling and going back to school and doing that but I'm very similar backgrounds and a lot of that stuff I learned through, I'm going to say being on the streets I use that loosely, a lot of the stuff that I learned there of buying things and selling things and whatever that is, right. I mean, I used to buy cars like that was one of the things I did growing up, I had cash and I would go buy cars at a tow yard and then the tow yard would sell it to me cash and then I would go flip the cars and you know sell it Dean: Did you fix it up too, so you know how to do that? That's cool. Shane: So I didn't do a lot of the fixing up I had a buddy of mine that was also rich right so if I went in there and did that the car would have died and then probably would have blown up or something. So I had a buddy of mine that had a garage and he will say yeah come in and I don't have any business on a Saturday morning yeah, I'll help you out. And for a few hundred bucks I'll fix this up and I would go and flip them, I go put them on Craigslist or wherever. And I mean this is a long time ago now but I enjoyed that hustle like I was always as a kid growing up I always wanted like the lemonade stand or I was always checking like we would go into like seven elevens and I remember my knees, they would have these counters that I would go and get on my knees and I would look under them. They'd be like people drop change they'd like I'll screw it, is a quarter. For me, I look at it as like, Oh my god, there's like $1.15 and my mom's like, get out from under there. And I'm like, you know, breaking my neck trying to grab this quarter. I mean, for me, it was like, I always enjoyed that kind of like the hustle and the networking side of things, I think that you saw means awesome, right? I mean, my family wasn't in sales or anything my dad was a counsellor, then he was also president of teachers association. My mom was a nurse I was like, kind of a hippie hugging type kid, rights, so I was like, oh, let's hug it out. But I was like, well, we can fight too, if you want, but I just prefer to hug it out because that's kind of the way I was, but it's awesome. And it's kind of a cool background for sure. Dean: Well, and you and I talked about this before, I think if, especially in today's world, helping people feel and belong to you or your brand is I think, I believe people that grew up and had a connection to hospitality also are very good at building social community, we're both in this digital space and I think there's an element there and we call it hosting whether it's a live event or you're posting a discussion or more than facilitating which is too technical and blah, blah for me. But it's like if I'm in a meeting, I'm hosting people and it doesn't even have to be my meeting. But I'll walk into someone else's event or someone else's thing and I will help to host the room. And I think that is a mindset and a mentality where you help people feel welcome in any environment, it then begins to attract people to you which is how your restaurant or your bar probably got famous. And our restaurant was famous because they felt that connection of people welcoming you not just the hostess, but the whole staff. Shane: It's that normal thing from cheers, I mean, it really comes down to that and I think it's funny that you say that because I always think and I've always said this, I wish that everybody could work in the hospitality industry for a year or six months or something. Because I think it does as an individual because then you deal with hundreds of different types of people and you learn how to work with those folks, and you learn that some people are this way and some people are that way and some people are extremely rude but they're going to leave you big tip. Some people are extremely rude they're never going to leave you a tip, some people are from Europe and they don't tip at all. You learn this whole process. But I think that's invaluable and in the sense that also, as you did I come from a community of serving, I’m like, hey, I want to give you the best service not necessarily always about the money, but I just enjoyed that, I enjoyed people to have a good experience. Now of course, I've got a nice tip or something like that, life's good, but also the networking side of it. I think you obviously working at a high-end steak restaurant it doesn't get any better than that, especially in the Chicago area. And you have all these movers and shakers that are there, you get a chance to shake hands and kiss babies and people see how you work. And naturally that wouldn't have happened if you didn't have to ask, if you didn't go in and say hey, I'm kind of looking at this opportunity. They said, well, hey, Dean, I've known you for six months and you're always hustling you're doing this and you seem like a hard worker because that's one of the biggest problems with trying to find people today, is like who are the people that really want to work? They've seen you work and I can train anybody to do something, but I need to know that you want to really get your hands dirty and really knock some stuff out I think you showed that and so it was a no brainer, not to mention it was 3am and he's probably had a few drinks in him. So he's like, hey, why not hire Dean he seems like a good kid, I think it’s all about timing too. Dean: I think he had more than a few drinks. Shane: Probably, but either way it worked right, it's all about timing. Dean: Yeah, right timing there you go, so let's see it's connecting, making the ask and timing. Shane: Yes, and taking advantage, if you're intoxicated, that's a perfect time to take advantage of people from what I've heard. Dean:  Yes you are right dude you owned a bar you are so many times firsthand. Shane: I can't actually think where the statute limitation is over it yes, we did take advantage of people that had been drinking. That was the whole point of it and if you had a problem drinking, then we welcomed you in the bar with open arms because then you're going to be a returning customer so. Dean:  I'm going to give a shout out to a bar in Chicago called The Gauge, so if you ever get to Chicago, I'm taking you there because the food's good the people are good but there are people it's like a super high-end place, but it's like a high end version of Cheers and there are certain people that I know that hang out in a certain bars. It's just funny because I'm like, Holy moly, this is like another Cheers. You know, I said, I know that these guys are going to be here at these days and they're going to be here and if I want to go have a meeting and connect to them and Bla bla bla, I can know where to find them Shane: That’s awesome but the thing is that if you build it, you know, we're talking about social selling, right is the premise of this but it really comes down to that networking and it comes down to making people feel comfortable. And it's the same thing with social selling, I think there's a lot of parallels, even though we're talking about a bar that's offline. But if you make people feel comfortable, that cheers, then there's going to be a point where they're just going to come in, you're going to have good conversation, they're going to be a constant customer, they're going to be bring other people in for meetings and do this and recommend them and here we are talking on this podcast and you're recommending a bar that's in Chicago and people are hearing this worldwide like that's huge, but it's because of that, they've built there. Dean: Well, I probably read at least part of the definition a couple times a week to people on social selling because they're like, they tilt their head and you know, they're not sure and I just say you know, you want to use social media to close more business, okay, I can do that. So, but really, the essence of it is no different than how my dad was selling Shaklee or anything else, it's the element of building relationships, period. Secondly, with leveraging today's social media platforms of digital technology, that's the simple definition. And today, it's LinkedIn and Twitter and Instagram and Facebook and Snapchat and whatever you're using, depending on your audience but tomorrow, it could be five other technologies. We go over to Europe and overseas, we're like, and WeChat and all these other platforms. And so it's the vehicle where people gather, whether it's your bar, whether it's pretty steakhouse, whether it's The Gauge, whether it's LinkedIn, or Facebook, we tell people, when you log in, it's like going to an event or a restaurant. Shane: Yeah, on the other side we already talked about it, I call it the social touch it gives you an opportunity to educate people about what you're doing things you got going on, and also kind of keeps people on the loop. And it is that opportunity to build that and I think that the problem is I think a lot of people look at it like oh, it's just putting something out there, just go throw something on Facebook real quick. And it's a lot more than that, because it takes time like anything, I mean, we are talking about if you want to go to the gym and you want to have albs like, it's not just you going twice, right? I can tell you that because I've tried and I haven't got albs from that, right? So it's gonna probably take 50 times but it's the same thing with social selling, it's like, you can't expect to like tell people hey, go buy this and you got 1000 people go buy it, it's the idea of building that up and building those relationships And then there's gonna be times where you start putting some stuff out there or you start recommending some stuff people are going to say, well, Shane doesn't sell a lot of stuff but he's you know, I like his content like what he puts out there we have a good relationship. And if he says this is the TV to buy or this is the product to take on then I should do that at least take it seriously but it takes time and that’s social selling is not an overnight type thing. But it all comes down to investment of time. If you put that time in anything in life, if you put time in if I work out for six months straight and eat right, I'll probably have abs. But guess what, I'm a beer drinker. So I'm not going to have albs and I'm okay with that. Like, screw the albs, like I'm married, I don't need albs, that’s for the… my son has albs. So he's doing it for me. We're good. Dean: I have albs, I just have some tender covering Shane:  Yeah I don't even know if I have albs underneath there, like anymore I'm not really sure about that like I started doing the whole another conversation polities just because I needed to make my core stronger and I don't know I mean I went from literally like footy and rugby and really rough sports too, now I'm doing polities and that's what happens when you get old but I mean, it's just like I'm just giving up like I just, like 60 year old ladies that are just… Dean: Onward dogs Shane: That’s it man, that's a whole another conversation I mean, Yeah, that's it Dean: No stretching on this show Shane: That’s a whole nother podcast yeah, that's a whole another demographic. But are you still in Chicago right now? Is that where you're living now currently? Dean: I live right over the border in Northwest Indiana so funny is, I was in Chicago for 30 some odd years and I met my wife who was from Northwest Indiana. And I remember I went from all around and then I wound up with Merrill Lynch moving to Chicago. After about 30 years, you know, I met my wife, mid part of that journey. I had Jackson who you know, my son, and then all of a sudden he's five and we're thinking about private schools and what do we want to do and nannies and all this stuff and I'm like, well, let's go where there's family and babysitters and I can pretty much work from anywhere. So we're actually in the same home we moved to Chicago, or to Northwest Indiana, but we kept our offices in Chicago so we have like an office in the house and then we also have studios like this in the house. So sometimes you'll see me with this type of background and you'll see me in the Chicago studio on my... Shane: But it’s right across the river, is it across the river? Dean:  No it's along the river so if you were to just go south down the state line, it's literally 45 minute drive or an hour depending on traffic. Shane:  Gotcha, gotcha, so nice and close, so did you end up going to college, I mean, because your college was growing up I mean I feel like the school of hard knocks. I mean, which is to me a good school to go to, but I mean, did you actually attend college? Dean:  Yeah. So I did a couple years with Purdue and I was going for hospitality. Then I switched and when I was at Merrill Lynch, I was in operations, which they sent me to IBM school. And it was a lot of technical schooling. So I left Purdue, I'm living downtown, I'm going to school and I'm literally in the movie, The Wolf of Wall Street, if you've ever seen that, I was like Jonah Hill you know what I think, so that's a whole another podcast. But anyway, so imagine trying to keep focused, learn a bunch of high tech stuff. Computers I'd never seen before, never didn't have a background for but a lot of people didn't at that time. Shane: Yeah, so who did? Dean: But so all you had to do is learn fast and learn fast and apply. But the programmers were making all the dough. So I'm like, I'll do some coding so I tested at a really high logical skill rate, which was funny I wasn't super good at math, but I was great at programming and I thought that was like, impossible. So anyway, I tested really well and then I went for a trade degree, as a systems programmer, then a systems analyst then a network engineer. So I did a lot of technical degrees, and I was really good at that stuff. But the challenge was, I was a people person. So then I transferred to DePaul in Chicago few years after that, and then I wound up leaving Merrill Lynch because you know, long story short CEO sort of got into some challenges and troubles and anybody that was associated with him also had to leave at some point. So I was like okay troubles going down. I'm going to leave finish up some schooling and then I'm going to start a company, I started a company at the age of 23 yeah, 23 office on Wacker drive, no college degree, but I was going to school, but I never did finish that degree so it was, like you said school of hard knocks. And then I just had companies just formed companies and just networked and build networks to generate contracts and which is funny because I've always been a teacher. As you know, I teach a lot of course, you and I talked, back to back and workshops and things like that. And I love teaching, I love the reward of people coming up and go, wow, that really helped me that felt good and I have graduate school programs that I've written technically and taught, and technically, you're not supposed to teach grad school unless you have a graduate school degree, legally, but it's all about who you know, which is my tech clients. So anything's possible if you know the right people and so I've been, all shout out to the universities out there that have had me come in and teach or license my curriculum for the betterment of their schools, and I work with universities every day. Shane: That's awesome. So you know what's funny about that, and this is kind of my, I always thought this was unique, not just to me, but at UCLA, like so this is funny. So my UCLA story is that UCLA reached out to me about teaching and I was like, well, but I don't have my masters and they're like, it's okay. Like, sometimes we allow that to happen, which I thought was awesome, because I was actually looking to go back and get my masters only because there was a local college here in Sacramento that was like, hey, we'll hire you in a hot second. Like, when the teachers like follow my content they say listen, we need somebody like you that, we have some of these other instructors that just aren't hip to what's going on. They say that they are but the kids are like, we know you're not on Snapchat like don't and they need it. So like, would you be able to come in and be an instructor? I said, Yeah. And they said, we get your masters. So I was weeks away from starting my master's program. And then UCLA reached out which I thought it was like a friend playing a joke on me or something like ‘hey you want to teach at UCLA? I'm like, Yeah, sounds good John will see for beers tonight, don’t be an ass and ever text me like that again, or email me. And it was really UCLA. And so that's how I got the job over there. And I just told them, I don't have that degree and they're like, no, it's cool. Like we can grant other people in and we're just looking for the right individuals. And I thought that was great, because I thought it was crazy that over here at the junior college, they were like, well, you have to have your teacher’s credentials, you have your MBA. And I'm like, Yeah, but you guys want somebody who has expertise and you have this other person teaching the course that doesn't know what they're doing right. And it's very evident to that, but yet they have their degree to teach, right? So it's like this weird kind of like, I'm not saying they shouldn't learn how to teach because obviously, that was a learning curve. But at the end of the day, it's like I don't need my Masters to be able to do that. I shouldn't have to do that. If you're looking for a practitioner. Somebody it's in the space and doing it. So I hope that there's more universities that look at that have more of like, this person has the experience because you need that real world experience. It's one thing to read a book, anybody can jump in a book and Oh okay, guys, we're gonna talk about these three things and look at a book and all drool on the book. But it's another thing to say, let me show you how this applied to the real world. Let me show you about a campaign that I did. Let me show you guys. Because then it's real world, then you're looking at this going, oh, wow, I have that profile. Oh, yeah. It's something I could do. or this could be good for my business, or this is interesting on this angle. It's just a different way of looking at things. Dean: Yeah, and I really appreciate you know, all the people that have their masters and a lot of our clients that have doctoral degrees, and I just applaud them for all their work. It was just my circumstances. But here's the funny thing is the particular university that I started off with that I taught the first grad school program and was literally like, Oh, hey, can you use your LinkedIn thing and help empower our students? Absolutely. I've been doing career workshops around LinkedIn, how to get hired, dah dah dah… it's really building the network, making the Ask build the network. I don't want to make my book sound simple, but, or my programs, but that's at the core. And now there's a bunch of science and social emotional intelligence and cool stuff under the hood. So they're like, Oh, my gosh, you've got all this science in here. You've got all this cool stuff. And you've got social emotional intelligence. You've got network science and all this technology and all this cool stuff. I think they just assumed I had the degree. So what happened was I helped them fill some events for recruiting for the grad school. And they're like, Oh, my gosh, you're just packing the room. We should have a course in this. I'm like, oh, help you do that. Now mind you at that point, I had never written a course in my life. You and I think talked about that. It's like, yeah, you're gonna need to do a rubric. And I go, what the heck is a rubric. So I'm calling my buddy who's like super smart and writes college courses. I go, dude and he goes, Oh, yeah, I hope you put one together. And I put one together my first one and the dean looks at it and she goes, this is the best rubric I've ever seen. I go probably because I put my whole self into it not knowing what it was. I thought I was gonna get graded on my own rubric. So anyway, and I put together this detailed plan and it was like, probably to this day one of the best courses I ever wrote. And so then I think they just assumed I had all this background, the degrees and then when I'm going through the main office and the people that check out your background and stuff, they're like, Hey, we got a problem. I think that's a your problem. Yeah. Shane: I didn't sound like my problem. Sounds like I'm still doing good. Sounds like you guys should have checked into something Dean: I think you guys. Sounds like you have the wrong rule. Shane: Yeah, exactly. That's exactly it. Dean: But it's funny to your point, then all of a sudden, they figured out a way. And I think that's where we're at in our world in our life. I always say that so many companies, businesses are living by these old rules and this old stuff and you know this because you're around content and social media. It's like, Oh, no, we can't have our people on the line. Someone might steal him or you know, this fear, whole fear factor and all this corporate America and all these worlds, I'm like, no man, I said your people are the most important thing you should be bragging about who works there. Shane:  Yea for sure. Dean: And there's not enough of that still, as much as it's happening, there's still not enough. Shane: Well, it, isn't it I do feel like and this is common, there's just a lot of these old ways of thinking. And it's really difficult for people to change. And they really nervous about that, right? Whether that be I mean, we have that here as a stupid example of like craft beer laws in California. They're like, well, you can't do this in this certain area. And you can you can't do this. So I'm like, well, yeah, but that was because of laws in the 1930s. Like, why are we right? It's the same thing with businesses, like I understand you're worried about somebody taking somebody but at the end of the day, there's headhunters everywhere. They need to find out who works for your company, they're going to do it anyways. It's not right. And if you're taking care of your employees, then they shouldn't be looking for you know, making an extra $10,000 or having a ping pong table shouldn't be the reason they leave. So if you're taking care of your people, right and doing good things, then you shouldn't have to worry about and the person leaves, that's the way it was supposed to be like it's that hoarding of information. You know, I started my blog eight years ago. And when I started writing the content, I remember marketers were like, dude, you're an idiot. Like, why are you sharing all this information? Like you're giving people keys to the castle? I'm like, Yeah, but who cares? Like, at the end of the day, if it's enough for them to go and be successful, like, that's my goal. If I give them enough information, they don't know how to do it. They're like, well, we need to hire somebody. Great, here I am. But it's just a different way of doing things. Like it's you know, now of course, there's a lot of education there's a lot of things you can learn about online. And I think that's going to continuously evolve and hopefully more companies understand that like, hey, like the employee advocacy side of things is important and there's some good stuff that can happen there. If you know what you're doing and if once you can put some parameters in place, but some good things can happen. Dean: Yeah, and that's why we tie it all together. So you were talking about social selling and so at the very core essence, we work in areas that are regulated so you think banking, finance healthcare, we're really good because I came from Merrill Lynch and I understood that whole world and I was a rule breaker, I got in trouble. So then I got to know compliance on both sides. So it was even funnier as I became a bank auditor, within an accounting firm. Imagine that. So I'm in an accounting firm with no degree and I'm a bank auditor. So just because I knew computers, and I knew how to hack, so I knew that whole pathway. But at the end of the day, it's not about posting and posting the wrong stuff and all that it's about building relationships, having conversations, really having a good network. And then really after you, they know who you are, and your credibility is elevated, go have some conversations and get some easy meetings. And it's really the essence of that whether you're in a highly regulated industry, or you're just selling whatever it honestly doesn't matter. And so we just give you the step by steps and we call them power moves to build those relationships, activate the network. Let people know that you exist, and then draw those people in and our favorite thing, this is my favorite thing and you're going to love this. I was dying to talk to you about this. I go into big companies. We love the small companies and the small tactics because this works for anybody but we’ll go in and we'll go give us your national accounts and give us the top 10. You can't move on, give us the top 10 Deadwood in the pipeline, you can't get in the door and 100% we get in the door every time. And all we're doing is network science, which was if you want to google it was developed by the US Army, but we take tactical network science and everyone's connected now. And you can see the connections. We literally map a network map of how to get into that company. And Dude, I used to do this when I was in Chicago, and I was selling you know, when I had my own company or in between gigs, I literally would go and I would work like the security guard at the front desk. I'd bring him doughnuts and like I send pizzas for lunch. And I would bring candy in and I'd be like, Okay, so let's see on the 15th floor. This is sears or whoever it is. And I said, I want to know when these three people come in and out so I can ride the elevator with no one to be in their lobby. And I would just walk the guys that way, and I was just doing the same thing. I was mapping out the building. I knew who was in there. And then I was working the security guards because they were the ultimate gatekeeper. And then I was just like, without social media, I was doing the same doggone thing. Shane: Is that how you met your wife through stalking? I mean, is that like food? Okay. I mean, Dean: No, no, yes. No, no, yes. Shane: I actually knew it. Dean: My best friend, my best friend was a lawyer. She was his legal secretary. And at that time, as a side hustle, I was helping all my friends because computers and software new get off of whatever the hell they were using, like these. Whatever they typed on before computers typewriters.  No, but I'm saying there was other there was other, there was something else they used to but anyway, so dictation machines, right, those dictation machines. So anyway, I was the first one to put like, I think it was WordPerfect or something. And computers in their offices. And I would take care of my bar tab for a week because we were out all week. It was a pretty expensive project, maybe like, alright, I'm gonna do another installation and my bar tab picked up for the whole week. So one of my best friends, my wife worked for him. And she was working there and I'm installing the computer and everything. And I think at the time, she's six years younger than me so she's in the office, and she's super young, and I'm like, really wasn't paying attention because she was super young at the time. And then she left, went back to school, and then she came back and she's 21. And I'm like, Hey, who's that? And so he goes, Oh, that's Holly. She used to work here. And I was like, Oh, that's her. Shane: She's legal now? Dean: Exactly. And then next thing I know, we started meeting up in bars, and we actually dated behind his back for six months, and he'd go, yeah, she's dating some scumbag. He keeps her out all night, and she is late for work every day. You know. Shane: What a loser Dean: He buyer doesn't buy her dinner, takes her out drinking all night. And he never put the two and two together that I wasn't with him on those nights because we're out like every night. I wasn't with him. I was with her and so he never put it together. And it was like finally he figured out what are Shane: Scumbag best friend. That's awesome. It's all about your network. It's all about your network. Dean: It's all about your network man. Shane: That is too funny, that's awesome by the way. You have your two different organizations right? You have Forward Progress you have Social Jack, like, give me a breakdown of each one like so I can better understand. Dean: Yeah, so Forward Progress is digital marketing. So just like you guys do content marketing, things like that, and thank you for all your mentorship and help I heard you've really helped change Monica's world at our office so she is praising you like Shane Barker I said will you just keep pushing his content out there if he's helping you help him back Shane: I felt so bad I just sent an email yesterday and a video on some stuff and it once again I got sick and there was some other stuff that happened tell her Monica if you're listening to this tell her she can anytime she needs information for me she can keep send me emails, I felt so bad because I didn't respond to her for a few days. And then Dean: No, I told her you were like an instant bull or something, she is like overseas somewhere Shane: I know but still I hate the fact that you guys, we've always shared information back and forth and so when I didn't get back to her like within the few days, I was like, I dropped the ball on that, and then I'm like, I'm not gonna drop the ball again, so Dean: We're all human, man, we're all human, but now appreciate the permission… Shane:  Absolutely. Dean: So you can find them on social media that's where you go that's how you find any of us.  So anyway, you know, what we really focus on the employee advocacy piece. We call it humanizing the brand, anything that humanizes the brand, we really have these engagement boosters, where we go in, we attach people to networks, we wake them up, and then we take really good content like you guys do. And we present thought leadership for the people and the brand, okay. So you know that's the content that we focus on and then there’s a digital things that we do all around that so that's traditional digital marketing, if you will. Social Jack is more committed to education, it's an academy it's online coaching, all the 120,000 plus people that we've trained on social selling, influencer development, and we're more on the b2b influencer side where we're helping business people become influencers and thought leaders in their industry. So we have programs that they come in, they train and coach with us and then they might say, can you help me look better and then all of a sudden we switch, you know, we bring in the Forward Progress team and they get them a facelift and we have 90 day sprints that we just can take them through the factory and boom, they pop up and they look really good. Shane: Awesome, so novice I know and I've read your book, but obviously not everybody listened to podcasts, so tell us a little bit about your book. So we have the streets guide to digital marketing influence, you've already kind of talked about it a little bit and now the tying of running the streets and you know, taking over and running drugs and stuff through the streets and drinking all night, which is I mean, that's just kind of part for the course for the podcast. Tell us a little bit about the book. Dean:  Well, the book is called First right and it's the street guide to digital business influence. So if you think about anybody in business, they either want to be you know first hired or the first considered to be hired, whether it's a job or whether its sales, or you own a business doesn't matter. So it's always about in the first top of mind, the one people think of it's like, oh, I want some really good content strategy, oh, I've got to call Shane Barker. I want influencers or I want my employees to be champions, I'm going to call Dean over at Social Jack, you know, so it's like, you want to be that person that people think of first, so I named it First. And it talks about taking those lessons, even from Freddie Steakhouse and all the way through and the Shaklee lessons and everything else and really the steps that we use step by step to be first in your network. The first one that people think of top of mine, the first one that people want to hire in the first within your industry and the first online that they find, so really give you all those tactical steps. Dean: Awesome, all the stuff that you've learned from the school of hard knocks right? That's it Dean:  All the way through. Shane: Yeah, yeah so why don't we define it because you kind of talked about it earlier about defining social selling? So what is your definition of social selling for somebody goes, Okay, I've heard it, and obviously, you've kind of defined it a little better through the conversation, but what exactly is your definition of social selling. I think when people hear the definition they're gonna go. Okay, that makes sense. Dean: Yeah. So it's really building trusted relationships, building trust and relationships and leveraging for the intent to close more sales to move faster through the pipeline, with whatever digital tools that you need, like social tools like LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, whatever it is, wherever that audience that you're selling to hangs out. So it doesn't matter what you're selling to who. And again, it's almost like if you were to target the bar where you know those guys hang out at, or you're going to target an event because you know, your ideal audience, it's filled with doctors or whoever you're selling to, you can go to that specific event. Social media is no different. And so if you understand the formula of building relationships, and leveraging those relationships, and I want to emphasize for us, we always teach it with mutuality. So like you and I, in a short amount of time over the course of a year or whatever had become friends and we share probably things we busted our butt to put together. But it's like, I have no problem going, Hey, here's a contract I use, or hey, here's how we do it, you know. And so that's where you need to get to with people where there's this feeling like, Oh, you know what I trust that they're going to do the right thing with it. And they're not going to like, just put their name on it, screw me or something. So it's about building trust and relationships with the intent to be on that buying journey together, so that you're going to help them be better and look good within their organization, be better and look good within their job role. And then you're going to participate in that whole function. And for us, it's the challenge of overcoming the challenge and being the last one in the pipeline. We want you to be the first one in the pipeline. Shane: I love that. So and it's funny because I am very much an open book about just anything. I mean, obviously through my blog, and when people ask me questions, and I think it's funny like you and I hit it off instantly, and when we were sharing stuff back and forth, I thought it was awesome how you were instantly just sharing stuff, knowing me, but not knowing me, and just saying, Yeah, absolutely. Here's the contract. And this is how we do it. That's really awesome. Because that's the way that I am right, I'm very open. It's like, even if it's a competitor, like, I don't really care, like to me, there's enough business out there for everybody. And so when I think you and I instantly kind of hit it off, like we had been running the streets of Chicago together like 20 years ago, 30 years ago, or something. So I appreciate that. Because once again, it's been awesome just when you have those types of relationships, because then you kind of put all the fear or worry or whatever you have, and it's like, hey, let's just help each other out. Because at the end of the day, if I can help you learn something, and you can help me learn something, or send a contract that you spent money on that I don't have to go spend money on wherever that is, it's just awesome when you have those kind of relationships, because that's rare. I don't think that happens a lot of the time. Dean: Right. And it's funny in our office, we have this thing. We say it probably once a week, so you should probably get a royalty check at some point, but it's like I go well, what would Shane Barker do and then Monica said I think last weekend her mating, you know if it's for content related, she's like, well, what would Shane Barker Shane: I love it Dean: So just so you know your name is ringing through the halls of Chicago Shane: Men, that is awesome, I know we have to come out we're gonna have to come out and have a few beers. I don't even know what to say about that Dean: Wait till it warms up we'll get you to Wrigley Field Shane: Yeah, now you just threaten me with a good time so okay, I'm gonna take you up on that I’ll come on out there. What would Shane Barker do, that's all I might go buy that domain name and just put a picture of me going I don't know what I would do I have no idea. I'm not really sure. Dean: Ask Shane, be like the simplest call to action in the world. Shane: I can’t promise you that it's going to be the right answer but there will be an answer so just you know good luck with that. Dean: Well, if you do that I could be standing there pointing Shane: This is him. This is the guy what would Shane Barker do God that feels like what would Jesus do so so close to that is scary to me like I'm a hoo. Dean: Well you probably don't remember but back in the day it was like EF Hutton commercials Shane: Oh, yeah. For sure. Dean: So and then they'd be like, EF Hutton, then everyone would stop Shane: Like what is he going to say? Man, I'd tell you, I feel like I talked enough but I don't know if anybody's listening but that's good to know your offices I mean, that's that my wife quit listening. I think my son might listen to the podcast. I think my mom's downloaded it once. And my aunt twice Dean: Hi mom. Shane: That's it, that's my audience. We are a very small group here, so it's just you know, it's only eyeballs. Dean: It’s all family Shane: Yeah, for sure. So regards to social selling what I mean can you touch on some platforms? Are there any platforms? I know it always depends on the product and service. But like, Are there any platforms? You've seen some great results with some of your clients? I guess I need a lot of b2b stuff. So LinkedIn I think would be a natural fit… Dean: Yeah, LinkedIn, Twitter is good because people listen and on Twitter you can usually know what they pay attention to personal interest you can see what they follow. It's super transparent. I like that. Instagram, you get the sort of the visual humanitarian part of people if they're on there, you know, not everybody's on there. Facebook if they're open, I like that because usually get to see the family interaction at some level. So I like those, again, depending so we'll even have tactics where you start on Twitter, but then you go and look where people hanging out where they should and stuff and how can you get to know him better and what common thing so we like all those I mentioned. And then there's advocacy platforms like gaggle and elevate with LinkedIn that are good. LinkedIn navigator helps out. Unfortunately, it's restricted to LinkedIn. So any of those LinkedIn products sometimes are obviously a little more biased for tuning in there. So those we like and then there's some good listening tools out there like sprinkler and some of those where you can listen to your advocates and there's we're just getting ready to release a top 40 list because I don't know if you know, but in the influencer space and social selling, what you're trying to get to is get to the person that's going to influence a buying decision in their company. So they're influencers in the business world, even within their walls, right. So you can use listening software to listen to those influencers, if you're trying to get in a Boeing or Microsoft are a big company, you can actually listen so I would suggest listening tools as well. Shane: That's Awesome, and you've actually like sprinkler and this and other ones that you've you kind of put out there. I think that would you know, once you need help understanding what people are saying about the company with people internally are saying, Dean: Yeah, there's different budgets and things. So you just gotta have to sort of navigate around that. But we help people sort that out and figure out what's best to use if you want. Shane: Which will make sense. Dean: Yep. And don't forget about YouTube's social network and so is Amazon. So there's a lot of social networks out there that you can find people sort of being themselves doing their thing and know what they like and what they don't like. And sometimes that's part of building a relationship and learning those things early or ahead of time can help you gain that traction. Shane: Yeah, that makes sense. And I know you guys work with obviously a lot of bigger companies as well. But if you have any tips for like smaller businesses that are going to start doing social selling, that don't have huge budgets and are saying, hey, like what can I do to be able to participate in this to build drive sales? Dean: Yeah, if you go to social jack, we have a lot of free classes. We're like Shane, we give away way too much. My wife yells at me at least three times a week. So we give away way too many classes but we have very affordable classes for individuals and small business if you go to, I think it's I think you can get our entire course for 100 bucks. I mean, so if you do that, and you listen to those, just the fast track four modules, we take you through LinkedIn. And I always recommend navigator, or at least the advanced version, if you're serious about sales, social selling, but if you're going to buy it, there's no pixie dust here, you don't just buy the course for 100 bucks, you don't just buy navigator for 70 bucks a month or whatever it is that special price. And then magic things are going to happen. You have to show up and have conversations, build a network, build your list, and so you need to start going into that process. So I think it's important for people to know not just to buy things, but they need to do things with what they bought. It drives me nuts to see people buy stuff and go it's not working. Shane: That's mind blowing to me, so you actually have to do work. So your program you have to do work. It's not like you just buy it and then sales are going to come in Dean: Shane, you know how much time per day we require? Shane: Probably an hour or two? Dean: 20 minutes a day. Shane: 20 minutes, folks. Dean: Yeah, it's like eight minute apps or six minute apps or whatever that came out with, so it's like, we've had 20 minutes a day, just so you know, we were the first 20 minutes a day, I think, like nine years ago. And so I'm a Time chunker Time blocker. So I do everything in time chunks. Shane: And I think that's awesome to hear. Because really anything in life, if you want to be successful, I mean, it's going to take some effort, right? So when you look at something, and whether it's a three second app, and you look at that, and you're like, if you really think that's going to work in three seconds, and you probably have to evaluate how much effort and time you're really going to put into something, 20 minutes a day is nothing, right? But I think the value of it is like it gets you used to like, hey, instead of spending five hours on social media then jumping out of the matrix and realizing you didn't do anything. It's having intent right? You are like, Hey, I'm gonna go spend 20 minutes on this and this is what I'm going to do. I'm going to go I'm gonna knock it out and I'm gonna be off of it and onto the next thing because as entrepreneurs in a small business, you're president, Secretary, Treasury, everything right? So how do you like to divide that up in 20 minutes a day is nothing. Dean: Well, and there's even better than that. Some people you know are like you should generate one referral or one appointment. If you're on point, every five minutes again, you're setting that intention to log in to come out with an appointment. And so decades ago, we used to train people to go into events and go I don't care if there's 1000 people if there's 10 people your intent is to come out with an appointment with every five to 10 minutes of networking activity, physical networking, well with social media, you are so much more efficient because you can see who they are what they do you can see so much more about them where you don't have to have full on conversations to get to the deal. Shane: Yeah, and that's what's awesome because you can, I mean that's the thing is you can, people are on social there's networks everywhere they talk about everything their kids this that their favorite football team, what they do on the weekends, this, I mean, you have so much information that we talked about that when we do the trainings for brands and stuff and talk about working with influencers and I'm like, spend a little more time to get to know the influencer. Let them know that the reason why you're a good fit, right, just sending a blanket email to 10,000 people and praying that somebody responds, that's not the way to do it like there's a lot of information out there, people are disclosing way too much information on a daily basis that you can go and collect. And you people go, Wow, that's awesome that you knew that I just had a baby three months ago or that I just started my business three years ago or that I just hit 50,000 followers on Instagram, like, there's information out there, and you should use that right, that's valuable. They usually would take hours of conversation and you can literally go stalk somebody and make it seem like you're their best friend within minutes. Dean: I have a PSA is why I'm laughing, so a public service announcement. So all of you that keep emailing me telling me you're going to help me generate more sales on LinkedIn, I think I already know how. If I had a dollar. Shane: I'm telling you, then every time I see it, I’m like I think what it is and what I really think happens with that. I think there's somebody that has a LinkedIn course, and everybody's bought it because it's the same thing like hey, you want to get more leads online and we do b2b stuff. And it's like, man, like you guys, is that working for you? Because I mean, I've gotten this message 100 times like if you were the first person to send it to me, maybe I might have reacted, but we get to a point where it's just mind numbing. I'm just like, oh my god, like, instantly if I look, I'm never going to add them on my profile. If it says I'm a b2b lead generation person, I'm like, No, no, you're not. Please leave me alone. Satan, please leave me alone. Not today. Dean: I'm going to teach you something you've never heard. I was like, okay, you probably stole it off my slideshow. Shane: Exactly. You can't be selling me my own stuff. I'm not going to give you $100 to buy my stuff back. Well, how do you see 2020? How do you see the landscape of social change? I mean, do you see anything, is there anything that you've seen in the last year that you're like, wow, that's kind of crazy. In 2020, it's gonna be more different or is it a lot of the same tactics? Dean: Yeah, well, a lot of the same tactics. I think videos obviously always going to continue to get stronger, which we all talk about, but I think that networks are actually going to get smaller before they get bigger. So that's a prediction of mine that people are going to start wising up and it's like, oh my god, I have 10,000 connections, but I have no sales. I think it's going to get to the point where people are going to realize and we've had people highly successful with like 100 200 connections and core counts of their database, you know. And I think people are starting to wake up to the fact that if they have 10,000 connections, they're going to get 9000 pieces of junk. Because they have 10,000 connections, did you hear what I said? Wake up. So I also think with this whole movement of Instagram, are removing likes, I think it's going to generate a little more authenticity. And I'm hoping for that not certain it's going to happen. But you know, I know people are highly reactive to it. But I think you need to earn the business, I think you need to earn the credibility and the right to have the business and build relationships with your network. So I think the platforms are forcing us to go that way. And I like that feeling and so you're going to have to develop tactics to really generate those relationships. Shane: Well I think that's what's interesting is the problem is what it used to be is, there's still issues with brands with this as it used to be that the quantity right oh, I have 10,000 followers, I have 30,000, I have 50,000 but we're seeing this with micro influencers is like it's not always I mean, if you have 3 million people, that's awesome. That doesn't mean you have 6 million eyeballs looking at this, right? If there's no connection there, then you're just following them because they're a bikini model or because they're this. It's like there's no real engagement. And I think we see that with brands that are hopefully praying, the ones that go to my workshops are understanding like, Hey, quit going after just follower count. Like, that's not the number one thing because you can have tons of people, but if they're not engaged, and they don't like your product, or it's a wrong demographic, like we're seeing the smaller ones and I agree that I think it's gonna pull back on that and like, I've said this 1000 times, I would rather work with somebody that's 100 or 1000 engage people than that have 100,000 not engaged, right? And so in you and brands have to look at that. And I think that's a big issue with it's the numbers thing of like, oh, it must be more successful because it has bigger numbers, they have bigger fellowships, and that's not true. That's just not true. Dean: Let the brands have those bigger numbers. But you know what, for the individuals and the people and those of us especially business influencers, think about it. Most of ours are nano influencers or micro influencers that are highly successful, some making millions of dollars a year in their bank account individually. Shane: Yeah. Yeah. Dean: As top producers. Shane: Yeah, for sure. And it's in I think it comes down to those connections and like you're saying the networking that you have there. So I think that's awesome. So, tell me, I know we're getting to the end of this thing, I know, this is the hard part. Because this is where things get really emotional, because we're not going to see each other for a little longer. But tell me about what are the three of you like your favorite online tools? Like are there any tools that you're like, Oh, my God, I can't live without these tools. Like with regards your agents here, maybe some of you personally use? Dean: I would say my computer, the internet and chrome Shane: And clearly go, you are like I go with the big ones. Dean: So anyway, and just so you know, out there, I'm a big time office user. So I use all the office tools you know, I'm just like I buy them anyway and use them but I would say I'm a big fan of navigator. You know, LinkedIn navigator as a social sales tool. I think you know what I'm impressed with too, even though I'm a Microsoft guy, and Windows guy. I do like how Google Cloud Google Drive and Google Docs and Google Sheets. I think they've done a good job. Another couple of free things that might be good helpful tips is I'm a big fan of HubSpot. I think they do an excellent job with CRM and, getting people out of the gate for free even though you'll pay eventually. But I think if you're looking for that quickstart CRM management of relationships, it's a really good platform. I like Nimble, another CRM platform I like. For email, my favorite pick is probably Active Campaign out of all the email tools out there. I use them all, I still use a couple at a time for different clients for different things. But Active Campaign bang for the buck inbox delivery I think is really good. And then there's all kinds of support. There's all kinds of things like sprinkler we like plantable for content collaboration with our clients. It's really good to see what type of content platform. For social, social report has some good analytics at a discounted price compared to the rest of the ones on the street. You know what’s another good, I'm a big project management guy and we use the air table. Shane: Yeah, for sure. Dean: Yeah. So it used to be Smartsheet. And they were charging us per user and everything. And honestly, I haven't hit a limitation and air table and we have 25 30 people on it without paying a nickel. Shane: You know, it's funny. Air table, that was one of the ones that I looked at I was like, God I really feel like we should implement, we never did before, but I might have to I went to pick your brain about that. But yeah, we also use Nimble. I'm a big fan of John actually, I just met John at the SEM rush global thing here in San Francisco. And he was out there. Dean: Oh yeah, John's a long term friend of mine. I was one of the gold mines... Shane: He is something else. I love that guy. I mean, he had a brain tumor something going on. And then now he's like, he's all about life and how you're, I mean, it was like, I felt like I should have been taking notes when he's talking. I was like, let me take some notes. I was like a prophet or something, but a good guy, nothing but a solid guy. And I love Nimble. I started using it years ago because I knew some of their employees and we had good relationships and it was based on that and then once It's awesome platform. So all right, so we've got we're getting to the end of this thing. So, if you were going to have dinner with three people dead or alive, who would they be? And why? Dean: Besides Shane Barker? Shane: Yeah, I mean that guy. I mean, obviously, what would Shane do? I mean, that’s kind of like a statement, I’ll go get that tattooed somewhere probably on my arm or something. Who knows? Dean: I've been a long term fan and a follower of Tony Robbins, just as I grew up with fire walks, and I used to do coaching for him and some others, I’ve done a lot of his programs. I think that would be a fascinating one. I think dinner with Ben Franklin. I mean, that guy was freaking… I see him like me, too. You know, like, he was just like, whatever it takes. I'll do this. I'll try this. I'll make this happen. And a third person. I'd have dinner with my dad. I miss my dad. Shane: Ah, there we go. Family family. How long did your dad pass I’m assuming? Dean: Yeah, but I think it's about two three years now. Shane: Gotcha, man. Dean: Yeah, I give anything to have dinner with him. Shane: Yeah, family man. That's awesome. That's awesome. Alright, so this is the last question. This is the one that really throws people for a loop and thank goodness, I sent you the questions at a time. So this is gonna be a lot easier for us today. But what about a lottery ticket? If I was to give you a $10 million lottery ticket? What would you do with the money? Curious? Dean: Yeah, so I've had this on my board, and I'm going to work hard in 2020. But Social Jack has a whole digital citizenship program that we have taught Jackson's taught too in schools and churches to help the young kids of today understand the responsibility or being a good digital citizen, I would get that foundation and have it rocking throughout every school in the world. I mean, every country that can afford it, every neighborhood that can't, doesn't have a chance just to help those people know that if they can really make a few good positive connections from where they're at. And if they can really know that they're, put themselves in the game, all they have to do is ask for help. People are going to be around at some point that will give them that help. And if they can get that simple structure and just be responsible online, they can have whatever they want. Shane: That's awesome. Dean: So I would get that… Shane: Yeah, give them back, man I love that. I love that. It's so funny. I love people's answers because it, you know, when you give some in theory giving somebody $10 million, I'd love to hear how they would, you know some people do certain other things, they want to buy something, take their family somewhere and for you you're looking to do, I would say Social Jack, I almost feel like you should call it company social good. But anyways, I mean, it is what it is. Dean: And honestly, and just so you and I know because I'm always authentic. I didn't read your questions. Shane: Yeah, I love it. I love it. Good. Dean: Because I always like how you and I talk and flow and I'm like, I'll be able to talk and answer whatever the heck I did glance over, but I was like, you know what, I got this. I'm gonna… Shane: And that we're being authentic and truly honest, I didn't write them. Shout out to my team. Okay. I mean, they did the research. I know who you are. You know, this is awesome. I feel better now. I was a little worried about you thinking that I wrote the question but you didn't read them. So this is easy. Dean: I scan them and that's my disease in this world. I scan a lot of material so and I miss things but I like the spontaneity Shane: Yeah, we knew this is gonna be a fun interview. This is how we get down. All right, Dean if anybody needs to get in contact with you, people are gonna be clamoring to know more about your companies and stuff like that. How can they get in contact with you? Dean: Go to or just hit me up on social and pretty much on most any other channels and I'll respond so Shane: Sounds like a plan brother man. Hey, man, thank you so much for being on the podcast. This was an awesome interview as I expected. Dean: Yep, same here, man. And I appreciate you and everything about you and keep doing all that good out there and helping folks. Shane: Absolutely, man. Well, we'll be talking soon. Dean: All right. Thanks. Take care.  


Shane Barker is a digital marketing consultant who specializes in influencer marketing, product launches, sales funnels, targeted traffic, and website conversions. He has consulted with Fortune 500 companies, influencers with digital products, and a number of A-List celebrities.


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