Social media is here to stay. The type of platform may evolve and change but people will continue to use social media and it has changed the way we socialise with family and friends. It’s also changed the way we make our buying decisions. Customers now research online and compare the results of what they find to help them make an informed buying decision. Social selling has entered the arena!
Some sales staff see these changes in buying habits as a threat, but they shouldn’t. If you work in sales you should see social media as a great opportunity. Social selling uses web technologies to deliver insight and value in to the buyers ‘sphere of influence’ when making buying decisions. It can reveal what customers are looking for, what their problems are and where they go to find their answers.
Here are five steps to help you win business by applying the power of social selling.
1. Identify your targeted buyers’ persona
Developing relationships is all part of the sales process. The first step in your social selling plan should be to identify the key decision makers in your target market and work out their level of online engagement. Which social media do they use? How active are they?
2. Listen and Gather
Gathering intelligence is critical when making an online connection. You need a strategy to listen to what your target market is talking about online. Find out what their challenges and interests are and become part of their sphere of influence when making their buying decisions.
3. Plan your content
Now you know what your target market wants you need to share relevant, quality content with them. Have a content marketing plan that addresses the topics and issues they are talking about. In addition to your own content, share other industry relevant content.
4. Become the ‘Go To’ source
Now you’re becoming a trusted source of information, and an authority in your field you can develop your sphere of influence. Be helpful, approachable and engaging with your material and you can start to influence buying decisions .
5. Monitor, measure and improve
You can use tracking technologies to review the levels of engagement with your content. You can tell what is popular, what gets shared and in turn target your content even more. You can also review trigger events like job changes, relevant comments or when people join groups.
You need to be part of your buyer’s journey early on if you are going to influence their buying decision. A well developed social selling plan that proactively helps customers through their buying journey will increase your chance of making a sale.
If you would like to learn more about introducing social selling techniques to your business, get in touch.