Building a personal brand helps to put a face to your brand and bring a relatable personality. There are lots of social selling tools to take advantage of in LinkedIn and if you’re still not convinced, here’s a few benefits/reasons to add social selling to your sales process.
Social selling is a strategic method of connecting and building relationships with potential prospects using social media platforms. Social selling is beneficial for both B2B and B2C markets, as it has replaced old and outdated sales tactics.
In this blog, I’ll be talking about what social selling is and how it can benefit your business and the best platforms for social selling!
What is social selling?
So social selling sounds great for your sales strategy – but what is it?
You’ve probably heard the terms “virtual selling”, “social selling” and “online selling” and you may even have wondered what they meant. They are all describing a very similar principle, namely using online platforms, email marketing and tools like Microsoft teams to sell to clients. They all work towards the same goal of selling to potential clients virtually.
Social selling is a relatively recent concept that is the secret to growth in the online world. A growing number of businesses are utilising social selling and reaping the benefits of really getting to know their community and nurture their audience.
For example, cold calling used to be a popular, but time consuming way to generate leads and potential customers. The problem with this is it’s often not greatly appreciated by customers (or your sales team) and doesn’t always help build strong, meaningful connections with potential customers.
Building relationships with customers is so important and a primary reason customers stay loyal to a company is because of trust and their overall customer experience.
Social selling allows business professionals to connect with others and build meaningful relationships with prospects, that are likely to buy your product. You can directly learn your target audiences wants and needs and learn how to better communicate your product in a way that solves them.
How does social selling work?
The social selling process works by creating a community using interesting and creative content. You entertain and interact with your community and build connections, getting to know your audience on a deeper level.
The aim of social selling is to get attention from your target prospects, engage them and turn them into loyal customers. By utilising platforms like LinkedIn, you can get a first-hand look at your prospects profiles to see their interests, wants, needs, frustrations and values. Using this information you can tailor your brand’s voice and profile to stand out from the crowd and create posts based around solving these needs in a fun and interesting way.
You can also build a personal brand if you’re a solo business owner too which opens up a raft of opportunities to become a well known face in your industry and your brand visibility increases. Building a personal brand helps to put a face to your brand and bring a relatable personality.
There is a variety of social selling tools to take advantage of on LinkedIn and if you’re still not convinced, here’s 4 benefits from adding social selling to your sales and marketing mix.
Top 4 benefits of social selling
1: Create an authentic, engaging brand
Combining social selling techniques with building a personality for your brand on the most relevant social platforms for your audience will engage your target audience and help you to position yourself where you want to be in the market.
You can use your platform to gain insights into how your customers think and feel and then address your customers’ paint points.
Another benefit of using social media is the insights it offers. You can look at the impressions and engagements to see how well your social selling efforts are paying off. You will also be at the top of their mind when potential clients are ready to buy, as you’ve already created a positive reputation for yourself.
2: Shorten the sales cycle
One of the primary benefits of social selling is shortening the sales cycle. You can ensure more success with reaching your sales goals as you have the ability to answer clients’ questions as they think of them and interact with prospects.
You can get an insight into where your customers are in their journey and where you need to focus more of your efforts.
3: Reach a wider audience
You need to have more than just a website to make the most out of being online. Having an online presence means being active on social media and being consistent with posting, liking, commenting and interacting with the community and your target audience.
You can learn a lot about your target audience and optimise your profile on social platforms to attract them. This will make the sales process substantially easier if you’re already gaining a following of the audience you want to sell to. Your customers are online right now – so that’s where you need to be too.
4: Beat the competition
One reason why some business do better than others in the same industry is because they keep up with the changing times. Get ahead of your competition and start developing relationships with prospective clients before they can on various social platforms.
“78.6% of people using social media for sales outperform those who don’t.” (sproutsocial.com)
Establishing a presence and implementing social selling before they do (or more effectively…) gives you the upper hand in your industry and will help you to reach your sales goals. If you leverage social selling techniques then you can be miles ahead in the digital retail environment and businesses who don’t will potentially fall behind and suffer in terms of revenue growth and lead generation. However, if you refine your social selling strategies with your sales teams then you can avoid being a part of that statistic!
The social selling benefits become greater if you prioritise social selling, because of course this boosts web traffic too, so you will gain quality leads and direct sales through your website.
Is social selling inbound?
Social selling the inbound way is about building relationships with your potential customers. These relationships are designed to attract potential customers to you, whereas outbound marketing means companies are proactively reaching out to their prospects. Therefore, determining what your potential customers need is essential.
What is social selling not?
A social selling strategy is NOT the same as having a social media marketing strategy. They work together. Social selling is carried out by the sales team to use social media platforms to their advantage by engaging with prospects daily. While social media marketing is used to create content that appeals to your audience and achieves the branding and marketing goals of the business.
What are the best platforms for social selling?
Social selling happens on every social media platform including LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. Social selling develops brand advocates, which are people or customers that speak favourably about a brand to other consumers.
The largest benefits of social selling and the reason it’s so successful is because of the number of leads generated. There are many social platforms available for you to engage with your audience, but you’ve got to pick the most relevant to your customers. Look at the age range and interests of your audience.
We hope you’ve gained some valuable tips about social selling and why it’s so important in today’s world! If you need help with your sales or social selling strategy, don’t be afraid to contact us!
If you think social selling doesn’t work, then think again. We’ve written about why social selling does work here.