Are your sales teams actively engaged on social? They should be. For B2B buyers, up to 70% of the buying process has been completed before they even talk to a salesperson, and their research is primarily done online. How can your sales people reach your buyer before they ever even come to your website? One way is by leveraging social media and by powering sales to engage in conversations and spread your brand's message in social channels.
What is Social Selling & Why Sales People Should Engage on Social?
Social selling is the practice of engaging in social networking throughout the sales process. Social selling involves the process of networking, answering questions, and providing valuable information for prospective customers in social channels. There's been lots of research recently about the benefits of social selling, but check out some of these statistics from Jim Keenan, social sales specialist:
- 78% of sales people using social media to sell outperform those who don't use social media.
- 54% of sales people who use social media can track social media usage to at least 1 closed deal and 40% report closing 2-5 deals as a result.
3 Rules of Engagement for Social Selling
1. Stop Selling. Add Value. Rule number one may sound a little backwards to sales teams. How can you effectively engage in social selling if you stop selling? However, that's exactly the point. When it comes to social media, no one is looking to be sold to. People are on social networks to be entertained, get information, network and meet people so it's essential that sales people do the same. Don't harass people with sales pitches. Instead be helpful by answering questions and engaging in conversation. Most importantly, be human.
2. Build relationships. People want to do business with people they trust. Interacting and engaging on social media helps build the relationships and trust that is essential in facilitating a business transaction. The beauty of social media is the opportunity to communicate with people all over the world so take advantage of it by meet new people and participating in conversations that you wouldn't otherwise be able to engage in.
3. Listen First. Listening on social media can be extremely valuable for sales people. By monitoring keywords relating to the brand and industry, sales people can uncover valuable insights about the industry and prospective customers. Another place sales teams can glean valuable information is through listening to the competition and staying aware of what they are doing and who they are communicating with.
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