The Benefits of Social Selling: An Essential Breakdown
You already know how big social media is.
We know, sometimes it gets a bad reputation, especially in the B2B world, for being infiltrated with over-the-top “I-am-vacationing-in-Bahamas and I-got-married-in-a-lavish-ceremony” type posts.
But it is only one part of it.
It can work out wonders for your brand especially when it comes to social selling.
In fact, Neil Patel, one of the most popular sales and marketing professionals discussed in his blog how he generated $332,640 in 3 Months from Instagram alone.
Are you still skeptical about social selling?
In this post, we will discuss the reasons why companies today cannot afford to ignore the importance of social selling.
Well, you should be.
Because by the time we will be finished with this post, you won’t be able to undermine the importance of social selling anymore.
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1. Social Selling Allows You To Identify Your Target Audience
Some sales professionals have a penchant for having a cold and bland interaction with their prospects.
However, no matter what your niche is, the sales process should have personal undertones. After all, at the end of the day, you are dealing with humans.
I am sure we all can agree to this, right?
But the question is where and how will you connect with people on a personal level?
Surely, not through emails?
Are you kidding me? Not at all!
This is where Social Media comes in.
If you interact with your target audience personally through social media platforms, you are likely to get better results. Because whatever its downsides are social media is still a very personal, not to say omnipresent platform.
But hang on. The catchphrase here is the “target audience”.
You need to know who your target audience is before finding success in social selling. After all, how would you know whom to engage with?
Identifying your target audience
Identifying your target audience is a staple in social selling. Because you can’t initiate the process of social selling without identifying your target audience. For example, it helps you to identify whether you are dealing with a large or middle-sized company.
Therefore, the process of creating an ideal customer profile gets easier as it helps you discern the demographic, location, and other attributes of your targeted audience.
Once you identify your target audience, you will get the upper hand in the paid advertisement as well as customer engagement (we won’t get into too much detail as we will cover this part in the next title).
First, analyze the social media channel where you are most likely to find your target audience.
Have a look at the top ten social media channels in the world.
A lot of marketers actually start their social selling process without pondering over this point. However, it is worthy to note that every social media channel entails different groups of people.
For example, if you are a B2B sales consultancy, then you are likely to get more success on LinkedIn than, say, Instagram. On the other hand, if you are selling luxury handbags for women, then Instagram is your oyster juxtaposed to LinkedIn.
One more thing: the social selling process also allows you to assess what stage your audience is in.
Are they even aware of their problems? If not, then you have to initially work on this point. Or maybe they know what the problem is but need more assistance before choosing a solution?
Knowing this information is also a huge part of your social selling process and will come in handy down the line.
2. Social Selling in Increasing Engagement
As we mentioned earlier, once you identify every tidbit about your target audience, the next step is to engage them.
This is the time to turn your target audience into a prospective customer. And this is where the Social selling process proves its mettle the most.
Let’s ignore social selling for a moment.
How do you generally go about your selling process?
You probably get in touch with your leads through a phone call or email, right? This must be directly followed by sending in your sales pitch? Because let’s face it – making a conversation through these mediums is no walk in the park.
But the social selling process changes this game unanimously.
Social media helps you build a close-knit community that in turns increases customer engagement. Moreover, engaging on social media is probably the easiest thing ever.
And almost every successful marketing and sales professional do that.
For example, look at how Neil Patel, one of the most popular marketing and sales professionals interact with his followers on Facebook.
Do you think this sort of one-to-one engagement would have been possible if not for social selling?
This also bodes well for your brand. Wouldn’t you like a brand even more if they responded to your regular comments like a simple “thank you”?
Social Selling process also helps you answer your prospect’s queries directly within a couple of minutes. This wouldn’t have been possible otherwise.
Big companies like Jimmy Choo have now perfected this approach to engage their prospects and customers.
And I speak from firsthand experience.
I recently sent a message to Jimmy Choo asking about a product’s in-store availability in my country.
And ta-da, a few minutes later I got this reply.
It took them a few seconds to respond to my query. And they have a loyal customer in me now.
This is probably one of the biggest upsides of social selling, which is to have a one-to-one engagement with your audience without going through cumbersome measures.
3. Provide Effective Customer Support
Your job doesn’t end after the prospect makes the final purchase. Even after the deal is closed, sales reps have to continually reach out to maintain a symbiotic relationship with the customer. Moreover, it is important to make sure that your customer isn’t facing any problems with your product.
Social Selling solves this predicament like nothing else.
It helps you provide exemplary customer service to your customers. And the best part is that you garner a lot of goodwill when other people see the efforts you are putting in to keep your customers happy.
Goodwill, you say?
Yes, you will be surprised to know how powerful social selling can be.
Don’t believe us?
Have a look at what happened to Snapchat.
Snapchat’s market value dropped by over $1 billion after Kylie Jenner’s tweet implied that she doesn’t use it anymore.
It would be skewed to say that the whole plummet in shares happened due to one single tweet, but still one can’t refute the impact these sorts of things have on a brand.
Cue Snapchat’s reply is trying to placate the whole situation.
In this whole situation, the best thing for Snapchat was to be able to respond quickly and through a medium where everyone can see the reply.
When people see that you are quick to come to your customer’s rescue, they are more inclined to use your products and services.
4. Platform To Share Your Success Stories, Testimonials & Social Proof
If you are starting social selling right from scratch, it can be tough to close as many deals as you would like.
But the social selling process makes it very easy for you to build an audience base.
One of the best ways to do this is by sharing your success stories and testimonials on social media.
And it totally makes sense.
If you want people to take an interest in your brand you have to give them a reason for it. So, if you show them how you have helped your prospects in the past, or what your existing customers have to say about your services then you can arouse their interest easily.
Here’s our own personal experience.
We recently forayed into social selling. So for a while, we kept on posting with barely any followers.
However, owing to our regular posts that include statistics, infographics, and yes testimonials, we have garnered hundreds of followers on both Twitter and LinkedIn (because that’s where our target audience is).
Over the past few days, we have been getting good traction which might eventually lead to something productive.
And the good news:
As you can discern, it is not something that only humongous brands can do. All you need to do is to keep posting stuff like this to arouse the interest in your audience.
Not convinced yet?
Then this statistic might just change your mind:
According to a research report, 92% of consumers read online testimonials and reviews when considering a purchase.
Apart from Testimonials, you can use various other types of social proofs.
Here are 6 major types of social proofs:
I think it’s not even a secret anymore that people these days prefer social proof in the form of testimonials and reviews, especially over blatant promotional ads.
And the social selling process gives you an incredible platform to share your positive testimonials. The idea here is to showcase why you are the right choice for your audience without being overly promotional.
In a hurry to reap maximum profits and close sales deals?
That will eventually come. First, you have to provide genuine and valuable output before reaping the profits.
Don’t forget that building a loyal base of followers will take time. This isn’t your regular cold calling routine where you call hundreds of prospects and get hung up by more than half but still hope that a few of them may convert. Show that you are really worth giving a chance!
5. Keep Track Of Prospects’ Activities
Another amazing reason which makes the social selling process an absolute favorite is that it helps you keep track of your prospects’ activities.
It’s simple: the social selling process helps you to spy on your targeted audience.
Wait! It isn’t as creepy as it probably sounds.
Okay, let’s replace the word “spy” with “monitor”.
Social Media monitoring is done right can actually work wonders for you.
For example, it can help you get unbiased input both how people really feel about your brand. It can also help you identify whenever people say something nice about your product.
Based on the feedback you get, you can respond accordingly. If someone is not happy with your product then you should consider helping them out.
6. Drives Traffic To Your Website
People often talk about their website conversion rates. But aren’t they overlooking something important?
What about driving traffic to your website first?
You can’t jump straight to conversions without generating traffic for your website which is the first step.
And there are no two ways about the fact that the social selling process can drive a whole lot of traffic to your website. Even prominent digital print magazines like Entrepreneur use social media to drive a lot of traction by sharing their articles accompanied by a catchy headline.
But the key is to get as many social shares as you can get.
Therefore, simply sharing your blog article won’t cut it for you.
We would personally recommend you repurpose your content in various forms including infographics, videos, presentations, and more.
In fact, according to 41% of marketers, graphics like infographics show the best results.
Because people have a penchant for sharing videos and infographics more than a regular textual form of content.
Therefore, in this way you are likely to get more shares resulting in massive traffic for your website.
After going through the aforementioned point, are you now willing to give the social selling process a chance?
But don’t give up after a couple of weeks. If you fail to see any glaring results initially, don’t forget that you are not alone.
But if you believe that it is something that you cannot do alone, then also there’s nothing to worry about.
The internet is inundated with lead generation services that are more than willing to help you.