4 Tips to Help Your Sales Team Benefit from Leveraging Social Media
The digital marketing industry has experienced explosive growth in the past decade, driven by continued technological advancements, changing consumer preferences, and increased connectivity. To change both with the industry and with consumer behavior, many sales teams are relying increasingly on social media to support their efforts. An estimated 91% of American businesses leverage social media marketing daily. In the business-to-business (B2B) niche of digital marketing, increased social media usage and the growth of social media marketing present a unique challenge.
Not only are prospective buyers more likely to have their purchasing choice influenced by their social connections and peers, but there’s a seemingly endless list of competing companies vying for their business. Some businesses are overwhelmed by expanding connectivity and options. Others jump at the opportunity to harness the power of social media to increase their sales revenue and grow their network. If your company wants to learn to harness the power of Social Selling to revolutionize its sales process–this post is for you.
What’s With the “Social Selling” Hype?
The newest buzzword in B2B marketing, Social Selling, is the process that sales teams use to target, build rapport and win prospects within their digital network. Considered by some to be the newer, smarter alternative to cold calling, Social Selling has picked up speed thanks to its seamless integration with social media and its relational foundation.
People can tell when you’re trying to sell them something. More importantly, people can tell when you’re trying to befriend them with the end goal of selling them something. Without a solid, trust-based relationship in place, traditional selling practices of years past have become nearly obsolete.
Instead, B2B sales teams are utilizing social media channels to make new business connections and grow their network, to share value about their product or offer, and to give back to the community. Social Selling, when done right, turns the concept of investing in social media from a time-waster into a powerful selling tool with nearly infinite potential.
4 Ways Your Sales Team Should Be Leveraging Social Media
With 78% of sales teams who do business on social media outselling their peers who don’t, the opportunities social selling brings are something your business (literally) can’t afford to waste. As you consider leveraging social media to benefit your B2B sales, consider these four tips to help ensure you start off on the right foot.
One of the most significant benefits of social media, social networking sites, and applications (apps) is their natural group-building and networking capabilities. Groups, hashtags, related images, and events bring like-minded people together and make it easy to find your target audience and ideal buyers. Once B2B firms have identified qualified leads, sending or posting highly-targeted content to engage this target audience is a natural next step. It really is this simple: find your people, connect with them, network, and engage!
Provide Real-Time Engagement
Social media thrives on current events and real-time news. Additionally, the 2019 Demand Gen report shows how quickly a vendor responds to inquiries that have the most significant influence on B2B customers’ decision to work with that vendor. If your sales team doesn’t have a designated team member responding to the questions and inquiries that come through social media, consider making real-time engagement a higher priority. Once consumers see your sales team being active and engaged on social media, the more likely they will be to actively participate in return.
Add Unique Value
Meredith Hill, Founder & CEO of the Global Institute for Travel Entrepreneurs, put it best: “When you speak to everyone, you speak to no one.” If your published content is too general or explores concepts every industry authority has already covered, you’re not bringing anything of value to the table. Instead, grow your brand’s reputation and influence by speaking into problems that only your product or service can solve. With 75% of buyers finding vendor information through social media, your goal shouldn’t just be promoting your business; it should be sharing why your product or service can meet their needs better than your competitors.
Grow and Retain Business
While our first three tips could benefit any sales team, the main reason to leverage social media is to expand grow your consumer base and to keep them coming back – even after the deal is done. 3.48 billion people worldwide utilize some form of social media. Even with the world’s best B2B sales team and the largest budget allocation, it would be impossible to reach that many people in person. Social media provides free, unfettered access to the most extensive consumer base on the globe. Organic growth and paid media work together to help maximize your reach and maintain connections with existing customers. While social media should only be one aspect of your B2B sales funnel and marketing strategy, it’s an ideal way to push social connections towards your website and products unobtrusively. From there, it’s easy for your sales team to take over and complete the process.
Optimize Your Social Media With Proofpoint Marketing:
Even if you understand the value your B2B sales team can glean from leveraging social media, not every company has the dedicated time and resources needed to grow and maintain a strong presence on social media. If your company finds itself in this proverbial boat, contact Proofpoint Marketing. Our experienced B2B marketing professionals are eager to partner with your team in giving your offers, products, or services the social support they deserve.