Social Selling: Selling Without Selling Out
With a frenzy of flashy new digital marketing tools available to us every week, it’s easy to forget the value of good ol’ fashioned social media as a way to have genuine connections with potential clients.
The tricky part is developing these connections without overdoing it with a hard sell. Unless you’re selling a used car—and ideally not even then—diving into a sales pitch too quickly on social media is a great way to get people to tune you out.
Here’s how to help your team leverage social media to build relationships for your business – also known as social selling.
- Brand You
You don’t need to slap a logo on your forehead, but it is important to build a professional brand to highlights what the business offers and show examples of that work. Social media is prime real estate to market the qualities and services your business sells. Don’t talk about what the company offers, show people how it does so.
- Develop genuine relationships
Authenticity breeds trust. Think of it as online dating. It’s never wise to rush into a relationship with a hard sell about long walks on the beach, so why risk turning off a prospective client with pushy sales tactics right out of the gate? Instead, ensure front-line sales staff develop relationships with potential clients by being genuine. Ask them to engage people with information that’s useful to them, share resources, provide insight into a challenge, or offer advice. Yes, for free.
- Measure success
There are many tools available which allow a brand to monitor the success of its efforts. Keep track of who’s engaging with your business most often; what kind of content works well; and when engagement is highest. In doing so, you and your sales and marketing team can have smarter conversations in the right places at the right time. Take advantage of tools such as Google Analytics or Twitter Analytics to monitor how you’re doing and what kind of actions your conversations are triggering on the company website or elsewhere.
- Seal the deal
Making the move to close a sale can be tricky – move too fast and your sales pro risks turning off the potential client, but move too slow and he or she can find another provider. It’s crucial that as a genuine relationship is built, everyone has a solid grasp of the needs and desires of those involved. It’s important to talk about expectations around timelines and projects before moving in to seal the deal with a potential candidate. It all begins with a genuine relationship built on trust.
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