Social media has always been one of the best ways to reach targeted consumers. Native social selling is going play a crucial role in the success of businesses who are looking to reach more customers and diversify their brand presence across social media.
As per Statista, the worldwide social commerce revenue has grown from $5 billion in 2011 to $30 billion in 2015 and this trend is expected to continue in recent years.
What is Social Selling?
Social selling is the art of interacting with targeted audiences across social media in order to pull them towards the end of the conversion funnel. It is all about finding new customers on different social platforms and nurturing them for conversion and retention.
Advantages of Social Selling
The old days of cold calling do not work anymore! Today’s millennial audiences like to be nurtured across social media. Here are the top advantages offered by social selling:
- It helps to generate quality leads.
- It shortens the sales cycle by educating the prospects and pulls them deeper into the sales funnel.
- It improves the brand reputation online.
- You can reach the people during their micro-moments.
- You can reach people who really need your products or services.
- It positively impacts your bottom line.
- It lets you build a strong personal brand and acts as a powerful way to attract and convince customers.
- Both productivity and customer retention is increased.
How To Get Started?
Follow the below steps to get started with social selling:
Step 1: List Your Products Natively On The World’s Largest Social Networks
The very first step is to list your products across the world’s largest social networks. You can take the help of a platform like Shopify to natively list your products across the world’s largest marketplaces. Potential customers would be able to Instantly purchase your products through social platforms like Facebook, Instagram, messaging apps, Pinterest, and more.
Step 2: Use Social Listening To Your Advantage
Top brands around the world leverage the power of social listening to achieve their business goals. You can use tools like Google Alerts and Mention to start listening to the conversations related to your brand.
Identify the tweets or mentions where looking for specific products or services that your business sells. This way you can reach new prospects at their exact micro-moment and sell the stuff they need the most.
When engaging in a conversation with the prospect, make sure you remain real and provide offers that your potential customers can’t ignore. You need to get personal and provide a response that enhances the conversation.
Step 3: Gather Data and Motivate The Sales Teams
In a case study, SAP was able to increase 32% more revenue from social selling by gathering data and using it to train and motivate the sales teams. In the words of Kirsten Boileau, director, SAP experience innovation at SAP, “We focused on making sure frontline sales managers were really involved from the very beginning – when we go to a team to actually train them. If you don’t have that sales management buy-in, you’re missing out on the key influencers for that team.”
Everything rests on believing. Your sales team must believe that change is possible and it will definitely lead to results. Moreover, you need to identify people who can become your ‘social selling ninjas’. One of the best ways to do that is to shortlist those team members who are polite with your customers and always handle their tasks in a patient manner. They should be friendly in nature and the customers must feel happy when they deal with them. They must build their own personal brand in their own way so that the customers love to engage with them and the business on the whole.
Step 4: Take The Help for Content Marketing
Content marketing is the backbone for social selling success. The entire sales process starts with educating the prospects and ends with training the prospects. Hence, content is the lifeline of branding, sales and customer service.
We are already living in the content excess age where people already have access to a lot of content than what they can consume. Hence, you need to act smartly in this regard. I will suggest you the best content types that you need to target in order to educate, entertain and convert your prospects. Here you go:
- User-generated content – Run a contest on social media and invite people to share their story or images with your brand. Share awards for the best posts that receive the maximum shares and engagement.
- Infographics – People love infographics more than any other thing. The key here is to share data that not only educates the consumers but also amazes them. If you can amaze them then you can surely convert them.
- Interactive content – This is perhaps the newest form of content marketing where you present personalized content to every user based on their choice. Interactive content lets the audience engage with the content as per their liking thereby generating the maximum engagement.
- Happy emotions content – Share content pieces on social media channels that can evoke happy emotions because studies suggest that people are more likely to share content that makes them happy.
- Video content – You can’t become a successful marketer if you don’t use videos in your social selling strategy. People find it easier to watch videos with captions more than anything else so you need to capitalize on this medium to generate a lot of branding and raise your sales.
- Newsworthy content – People love to stay updated and this is the reason newsworthy content can generate an instant buzz which is crucial to make your business presence felt.
Step 5: Leverage The Power of Influencers
In step 1 and 2 above, you have listed your products on the leading social channels and started a conversation with your prospect. Now, you need to get in some niche influencers to spread the word for you.
People always trust their peers before making any decision and when it comes to buying a new product or trying out a new service, people trust the advice of friends and influencers.
An influencer is a person whom people trust and follow. If the influencer promotes your business then it can make a big impact on the reputation of your brand. You can use an influencer marketing platform like Traackr to find niche influencers who can promote your business on social platforms.
People are present on social networks and you definitely need a native social selling strategy to engage and convert your target audiences. Follow the advice provided in this article for shortened sales cycle and effective lead generation. Always remember, social selling not only helps to increase sales but it also helps to improve customer retention.