Dear Socially Stephanie:
I'm a salesperson for a B2B company. I want to know how I can use my personal social media accounts to help close more deals. Do you have any advice?
Selling Socially in Seattle
Dear Selling Socially,
I am going to take good care of you. I like salespeople. I'm one myself. In sales, time is money, so let's jump right in.
In order to be successful selling online you need to have a strong personal brand. In fact, your personal brand is oftentimes more important than your company's brand. People do business with people they like, know, and trust. In order to be likable, known and trusted you need to have an online persona that speaks to your buyers and hits them right between the eyes.
My number one tip for creating a strong personal brand online is to be consistent with what you share. I've found that people don't like surprises. In general, they will begin to follow you for a reason and stay with you if you deliver what they expect. Consistency is key.
The next part of the personal brand equation is creating content. Ahh, yes. The "C" word. By creating content you have the unique opportunity to show off what you know and how you can help your potential buyers. As you know by now, I'm all about the blog as my platform for content creation. But video or graphics could also be the thing that gives you the edge over your competitors.
If your company doesn't have a blog yet or a place to host unique content urge them immediately. B2B companies that blog generate 67% more leads per month than those that don’t. Leads increase your sales. Increased sales lead to higher commission checks and things like Porches and vacation homes. Get it? Beyond that, a blog can help you close those on the fencers. I can't tell you how many times I've had someone change their mind because I emailed them a link to a blog post. Published work is effective, even if it self-published.
Lastly, make sure you have a strong lead capture page set in place for your social media outreach. Wait, what? Don't worry, I'm about to explain what I mean. You should have a place to capture leads. The thing we overlook is that your social media outreach and sharing isn't going to sell people right away. It's going to help you capture leads to sell them later. With that said, you need a place to send people with a special deal, an added-value proposition or an ebook. They give you their email, you give them the special. It's that simple.
All right, outreach time. As a B2B salesperson, LinkedIn is the best network for you to focus on. Because everyone is already interested in business and networking while frequenting the site, you don't have to push too hard to get into the door. My strategy for lead generation on LinkedIn goes like this. Connect with people who could potentially be buyers, send them an email introducing myself, then send them to my lead capturing link. Boom, I'm ready to make some sales.
Sounds easy enough right? Go out there and sell them. I won't ask for a finder's fee.
Do you have a question for Socially Stephanie?
Please email SociallyStephanie@socialmediatoday.com and let Stephanie help you solve your social quandaries, queries, and boondoggles. (Questions may be edited for length and clarity.)
Illustration by Jesse Wells