Social selling is a procedure that uses social media platforms like Facebook, Linked In, etc to connect and engage directly with your target sales candidates. It’s a familiar way of building meaningful relationships with prospective clients, replacing the old method of cold calling. However, it doesn’t require any hard selling or direct selling strategy.
Nowadays, sales are all about creating strong and trusted relationships with your clients. Using social media for sales leaves prospects the impact that you’re an expert and an impressive figure in your field. It puts you in a big position against your opponents, who still use traditional sales methods.
Social selling uses social media to tap the right prospects, build brand awareness, and build relationships with potential clients. This sales approach brings you to the height of your potential customers’ minds, giving you the first person or brand they think of when they’re finally willing to purchase a product or service like yours.
Benefits of Social Selling
One excellent thing about social selling is that it gives a more efficient sales process. This helps bring in more sales in return. Let’s look at some of the advantages of this sales method.
1. Saves time & Shortens the sales cycle
Shifting to social selling will help you to cut out cold calling. Statistics show that about 39% of B2B experts said that social tools decreased the amount of time they spend on studying contacts. Clients interest in online communities and ask for recommendations from industry rivals. Being present on these online platforms lets you listen, monitor, and react to such communications. If you are putting yourself as an industry expert by consistently sharing valuable and helpful content to your potential clients, the chances that your qualified prospects will do business with you are much higher.
2. Find New Possibilities
Taking your sales game on social enables you to get the decision-makers asking questions or support in online groups. The chance to communicate with a prospect won’t be available to you if you stick with traditional methods.
You can share a piece of content that answers their questions or quickly help them with their problem via direct message. However you choose to help them with their confusion or inquiry, you’re giving a solution to their problem, building trust, and moving through a possible sale.
3. Build Real Relationships
A good 31% of B2B specialists say that social selling tools enabled them to develop deeper relationships with clients. Social selling is all about building an agreement and making genuine communications between you and your prospects. It includes sharing content or information that speaks to your target prospects’ needs and pain points on your public social media profiles.
Moving away from cold calling and other common sales prospecting methods enables you to earn the prospects’ trust without stress. Moreover, when your sales team optimizes their profiles and shares content online, it increases as increasing your brand clarity since their networks also become more aware of your business.
4. Increased Number of Leads
A survey shows that one in three B2B experts said social selling tools served to increase the number of leads. Companies need leads, and social selling benefits them to attract and gain more leads compared to traditional prospecting.
This modern way of doing sales is also an attractive way to make sales results. After all, more clients and customers mean improved revenue for your business. With social selling, you can begin the path to a sale by giving support when your potential customers best need it.
5. Better Customer Retention
One of the main goals of social selling is to establish trust. And, in the long run, keep contact with your previous clients in a less intrusive and non-invasive manner. With a social selling approach, you don’t need to call them for check-ins, updates, or sell a product they may be involved in.
Making yourself free and present on social media lets you do the job easily. For example, you can put out relevant content where they can see it. And also you can make yourself ready whenever they have questions.
The Best Channels for Social Selling
There are many social media channels out there. Instagram for community-building, Reddit for forums and discussions, and LinkedIn for leading business professionals. You need to decide where your listeners are to know which platforms to be in. Below are 3 useful social media channels for sales executives.
Facebook is the most famous social networking site, with roughly 2.6 billion monthly active users. Business-wise, there are more than 80 million small- and medium-sized businesses using Facebook Pages. And around 6 million using the advertising platform. With Facebook, sales reps can share photos or videos in separate formats. It’s an outstanding platform for sharing a lot of links and articles, such as when promoting your newest blog post. It’s a more private network for social selling.
Before social media, sales executives used their directory for cold calling. Today, they can find more data on social networks like LinkedIn than their phone book. LinkedIn, the world’s greatest professional networking platform, has over 690 million members and 50 million businesses. People and businesses or brands can share company news, announcements, updates, and more through posts and features on their LinkedIn profiles. The site promotes video content, as well.
Twitter is a unique social media channel since it sets a 280-character limit on each tweet. This means you have to make the most of your tweet—keeping your message carefully and making it straight to the point, but compelling enough to attract engagements. Twitter has about 330 million monthly active users. It’s the ideal network for promoting upcoming events and web content. It’s also a good channel for social listening and monitoring public opinion about your brand, products, and services.
How to Start with Social Selling
1. Set a Goal
To make your social selling strategy useful, you must know your goals, watch your progress over time, choose metrics that follow those goals. For example, you may try for conversations started, the number of meetings scheduled, and deals closed. You can also make it your goal to give value to your prospects and build long-lasting relationships.
2. Know the right Social Media Channel
It’s necessary to discover where your target audience is most active when choosing the most important social media channels you can use for social selling. You can do this by thinking about the social networks that match your target market and potential customers.
3. Build a Professional Social Media Profile
Require your sales team to build a professional social media profile that they can use for social selling to increase their reputation with prospects and act as experts who can bring something new and relevant to their business. With this in mind, make sure that their social profiles attract potential clients, not recruiters.
4. Connect, Interact & Engage with the Right People
Selling is a personal task where your soft skills are in the driver’s seat. The more you communicate and engage (even by liking, sharing, retweeting, and commenting), the better. Before you start developing relationships, assure that you connect with the right network.
5. Share Content to Build your Credibility
The prospects’ most important questions and discuss their needs and pain points by sharing relevant and engaging content. Do this consistently, they’ll see that you’re the best person to go to when they find themselves in demand of advice from an expert. This puts you closer to getting a sale.
6. Track & Measure your Social Selling Performance
Much like tracking, analyzing, and improving your marketing strategies, it’s important to track and measure your social selling progress to see what works, where you’re lacking, and what to change. There are many metrics you can measure on social media, but since your focus is social selling, you must calculate metrics like reach, engagements, leads, and conversions
Social selling is sales 2.0. Adapt it, embrace it, and see your business grow. If you’re already using social media for marketing your business, take advantage of powerful tools like Feedly, Canva, HootSuite, etc to optimize your sales and maximize its benefits. Hopefully, this social selling guide can help you to enter the conversation that’s now happening around your industry, brand, and offerings. Combining social selling with your sales strategies can help you find the right leads and unite with people who want to hear from you faster.
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