Social Media’s influence is inevitable and should not be considered only as private communication channels only. They are also a great tool for businesses! Not only you can get in touch or keep in touch with interesting leads, but also generate sales opportunities on social media. This is what Social Selling is all about!
Great. But what exactly is Social Selling?
Social Selling is characterized by a process of research, selection and interactivity with potential prospects on social media. Social Selling allows sales and marketing teams to develop and/or accelerate business opportunities.
Why you should care about Social Selling?
More than 70% of internet users use social media. That number clearly shows the ubiquity of social media in our everyday life.
78% of sales representatives who are using Social Media as a sales platform have way better results than those who don’t
Therefore, Social Media can really boost your sales. First, by identifying Top of the Funnel prospects thanks to the accurate data available. That way, Sales Representatives can waste less time with unqualified prospects.
Selling is by nature a social process. Social Selling places prospects and customers back in a direct relationship between the seller and the buyer. Rather than using traditional techniques such as cold calling or cold emailing, the sales process goes now through Facebook, LinkedIn or Viadeo.
The main goal of Social Selling is modifying one’s commercial prospection by using social media as an entry point in the sales funnel, improving interactions between the prospect and the seller. One of the other strength of Social Selling consists of easing up the setting of a marketing campaigns which have numerous metrics which allow you to analyze returns on investment.
The use of social media within the B2B field is also dominant with more than 65% of potential buyers using social media to inquire about the sellers. The latter use tools such as Viadeo (10 million subscribers in the hexagon) or again LinkedIn (10 million). By connecting assets on the same network, these softwares allow the establishment of numerous relations which will later represent many sales opportunities. Every seller has his buyer, and every buyer has his seller.
And it works. The sales results are way better, because the decision of buying is already made by the customer when spotted by the seller.
How to proceed?
Find your Ideal Customer Profile
Whatever talent you are gifted with, you cannot sell everything to anyone. It is necessary for you to determine the business sector of the aimed companies, aswell as their turnover, the position occupied by the typical customer within those companies, and last but not least, the concerns he could face – Which could be solved by the product is sold. This research process could seem long and boring but it is essential for the rest of the prospection. That is what we call ICP (Ideal Customer Profile)
Master social media
To start the process of social selling, the tools are simple and within reach of all. The first stage is to have an account on one of these professional networks: Viadeo, LinkedIn or even both at the same time for more opportunities. Although Twitter is for the general public, it says useful in certain situations.
Within the social networks, particularly LinkedIn, you find at your disposition plenty of payed tools such as Sales Navigator which allows you to consult as many profiles as you would while, at the same time, making your researches more precise and relevant.
Other tools such as Datananas will allow you to directly retrieve information about your prospects from professional social networks. The latter tool can be a considerable asset in the process of social selling.
By being present on professional social networks, you can establish a contact which can be decisive during the sales process. Always be close to your potential buyers and participate in as many group discussions as you can to get in touch with them and gain a reputation.
The bigger your network is, the more chances of a successful prospection you will have. You visibility plays a key-role in Social Selling. Here’s 13 tips to increase your visibility on LinkedIn.
Stand out by generating interesting content
Content Marketing allows you to help the prospect throughout the purchasing process. Wether it is under the shape of a feature article, a white paper or a customer case, the content always needs to be in correlation with your activity aswell as with your product. It is also the opportunity for you to present your solution and its functioning. Besides, Content Marketing will also allow you to answer its issues and strengthen your expertise in its regard. You can and have to liven up your profiles with relevant content (wether it is taken from external sources or yours). Care particularly about the quality of the latter because it represents the spearhead of your Social Selling strategy.
Social Selling is a mixture between the inbound marketing (entering marketing) and the content marketing. It is the customer that has to come to you when he has a need to fulfil and wants to buy something; but it is the strategic work of interpersonal skills that will lead him to the sales representatives whom he will know best and foremost, particularly if the latter knew how to present themselves as experts in the subject.
Build your Dream Team
For your Social Selling to be efficient, you need to have an unstoppable squad. The latter must be familiar with social networks and needs to master them. For that purpose, look among your current sales team for the person who resorts to social networks for a personal use. Besides, your team has to be close to your marketing team to put the light on the right content at the right moment.
The Search Media Optimization
The Search Media Optimization (SMO) or the social media optimization allows us to attract visitors through social networks. It is one of the Social Selling pillars. Indeed, the visitor is attracted by the content coming from a blog (Articles, infographics, videos) or directly by social networks thanks to the “call to action” buttons that naturally redirect you to the corporate website of the company. Therefore, its referencing is major and thus deserves your attention.
All this, of course, can only come true with a good dose of tact towards the prospect and owes a lot to the adaptation capacities of the seller, who knows the product and can answer all the questions asked above by the potential buyer. That human contact through professional social networks is the key of social selling, which makes this new method a fearsome way to lead a prospection.