social selling

Can Social Selling Amplify Your Sales Efforts?

How often do you answer a random number from a caller ten states away? How often do you reply to cold emails offering marketing services? Let’s face it – prospects get inundated with inputs on a daily basis. The question for salespeople is: How do you cut through the clutter to initiate a quality conversation and close a deal?

The answer may lie right in front of you, in fact, it’s in front of you (and your prospects) nearly two and a half hours per day on average. According to Statista, internet users spend 2 hours and 27 minutes on social media daily. It’s time to make the most of that time. In this blog, we explore “social selling”: what it is, how it can transform your sales efforts, and how to get started. 

So, what is social selling? 

We’ll start out defining social selling by saying what it is not: social media marketing. Rather, social selling uses social media as a tool to identify, connect with and build a network of potential leads. You can consider it a modern approach to relationship building, with a personal flair that email and phone calls can’t touch, and at a scale that far surpasses in-person networking.

LinkedIn defines the steps of social selling in more detail through their Social Selling Index (SSI) 

  1. Establish your professional brand – By curating a profile with the customer in mind you can become a thought leader through meaningful posts and informative information.
  2. Find the right people – Through search tools, you can identify prospects who may benefit from your product or service.
  3. Engage with insights – By striking up an informed conversation, both you and your prospect can benefit from a newfound relationship whether a deal is made or not. 
  4. Build relationships – You get to strengthen your overall network by connecting and establishing trust with decision makers.

Why try social selling?

Digital tools allow us to connect with more prospects faster and more efficiently. But they often lack one key ingredient needed for a sale. Trust. Trust is paramount in building a relationship and closing a deal. When connecting out of the blue, trust is hard earned. Emails and phone calls lack the personality of a social profile, turning off many potential customers. This is where social selling has a leg up. 

A well-curated social profile serves as a multidimensional business card, showcasing your experience, knowledge, and (hopefully) convince your prospect that it is worth their time replying to you. Most importantly, social selling can humanize the sales process. Your profile may highlight volunteer work, past work experience, home state, or even your favorite sports team. You may even share a social tie with a prospect, for example, you may have attended the same college, further instilling a sense of trust and enabling richer, informed conversations.

connected world

 

How can you get started?

If you (or your company) has a social media account, you’re halfway there!

Similar to how you wish to provide value to a prospect through your product or service, the same idea applies to your social selling efforts. You can provide value even before initial conversation by making yourself a thought leader in your area of expertise. Posts, blogs, helpful links to your offering, and informed conversation will serve to showcase your expertise as you embark on relationship building.

After curating an insightful profile on your social media platform of choice, it’s time to discover prospects. Consider joining groups based around your skills, industry or interests. Think outside the box –  consider groups based around your alma mater, geography or volunteer organizations. Tools like LikedIn Sales Navigator offer advanced search functionalities, while others like Commonality provides you ready-made lists of prospects who share social ties, allowing you to focus more on the conversation, and less on the search.

Need more proof that social selling is worth the hype, consider these statistics:

  • More than 50% of revenue across 14 major industries is generated by social sales (LinkedIn – Truth About Social Selling)
  • 78% of social sellers make more sales than their counterparts who aren’t using social media. (LinkedIn – Social Selling Index)
  • 75% of B2B buyers and 84% of C-level executives are influenced by social media when making purchasing decisions (IDC)

So what are you waiting for? Make social media work for you by amping up your social selling efforts and closing more deals!

Schedule your free demo today!