Are there any truths more objective than numbers? It’s preceisely why mathematics is considered the “language of the universe” by folks much smarter than us.
So, let’s take a look at some numbers around social selling:
89% of top performing sales people say social networking platforms, such as LinkedIn, are important in closing deals and are part of their sales strategy
70% of sales professionals are active on LinkedIn for business purposes
Of the sales reps who invest in social media, 64% of them hit their team quota
Among those who do not sell on social media, 48% meet their quota
As these stats establish, social selling is essential to business profitability.
In this article, we’ll lay out the essential tips, techniques and strategic action you need to establish and drive your social selling to its expected goals (and possibly surpass them).
What is social selling?
Social selling is a sales strategy that involves using social media platforms to connect, engage and build relationships with potential customers.
Social selling relies on grabbing user attention with valuable content that can convince the customer to trust a certain brand. The way to go about building that trust is by not just talking about your brand or products. Rather, you focus on building one-on-one relationships and providing value before asking the customer to even consider a purchase.
Most businesses can (and do) use social selling (with varying degrees of efficacy) – be it a large corporation or a mom-and-pop store. Social selling can benefit your brand or product, regardless of what you offer.
Social selling makes it easier to talk to potential customers without meeting them in person. You can use messages to connect with people and win them over.
10 social selling tips and techniques to improve conversions
1. Find the right prospects by following the right conversations
Customer expectations keep changing every fortnight and if you don’t keep up with the latest trends, you could very well lose out on potential business opportunities. Therefore, monitoring online conversations becomes all the more important to stay relevant in today’s competitive business landscape.
A social media management tool like Sprinklr Social with integrated social listening and monitoring capabilties can help you find and follow relevant conversations – the ones that reveal what your prospects want and need. You can also use the tool to identify the pain points your existing customers are facing while new customers provide key insights into which pain point you can solve for them (which is what your topic of conversation should be with them). This is also a great way for your brand to find topics for social media content creation and create value-driven content.
2. Use social media info to connect with people
Use publicly available information to connect with prospective leads and build rapport. For example, let’s say a potential customer (the CFO of a significant startup in your space) posts a LinkedIn update about achieving a personal milestone. Congratulate them publicly with a heartfelt message.
Be sure to write a personalized message to this individual but use only publicly available information. Doing that will help establish a genuine relationship with the prospect. So, start noticing the right people and show real interest in their achievements. This will help push them down the conversion funnel much more easily.
3. Build public-facing credibility
If you have built solid relationships, ask your connections and employees to write endorsements, testimonials and recommendations. They are visible on your profile and make your brand more credible in the eyes of prospects who may look you up.
Do remember to get your testimonials from authentic sources. Conscientious customers, in particular, will do their research and they should have no reason to question your brand’s authenticity.
4. Engage with your followers and other businesses
Generate thoughtful and valuable content that benefits not only prospective customers but also other businesses within your industry. If your content truly provides value and is shared by those businesses on their social media profiles, it enhances your credibility even further. It also makes said businesses more likely to reach out to you to discuss your products and services.
Conversely, it's essential to actively engage with your followers by addressing their questions and sharing your relevant content when applicable. Not every interaction needs to translate into an immediate sale.
5. Join the right social media groups to find the right customers
Are you targeting jazz musicians on social media? In that case, consider becoming part of jazz discussion groups on Facebook and LinkedIn, and apply the same strategy for any other business niche.
These groups are also great places to actually talk to customers, get their feedback on your offerings or ask folks what they’d ideally like from a company like yours. Ask the right questions and people will be more than willing to engage with you.
6. Serve before selling
We know you want to make that sale. But people don’t really like being sold to, even if they know that is what’s happening. So, give people something they can use before you ask them to buy anything.
When you lead your interactions with the thought “How can I help?” instead of “What can I sell?”, you actually have a better chance of making that sale. You also have a better chance of creating sustainable relationships, which is a great asset for any brand.
Download Report: Accelerate your social-selling strategy with conversational commerce
7. Be consistent
Don’t expect immediate results as all things social media take time to yield desired outcomes.
Once you find the right prospects, you’ll have to consistently deliver value to keep them engaged. Ensure your posts, shares and comments align with the topics that resonate with your audience. Consistency matters; avoid posting once and then disappearing for a week.
Also, be sure to share industry expertise, solutions, relevant hashtags, insights from influencers and other pertinent information to maintain visibility in your customers' view.
And we cannot stress this enough, have patience. At times, social selling requires a long-term strategy. Some prospects may not be ready to buy immediately, but they will be in the future. Consider reconnecting with certain connections you haven't contacted in a while. Doing so may lead you to someone ready to make a purchase. Use the opportunity to provide assistance, guidance and solutions, even if they aren't directly tied to your brand, product or a sale.
8. Be active across multiple platforms
You have to be visible to customers across multiple social platforms — X (formerly Twitter), LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, to name a few. This is important as it makes it easy for people to find you. It also enhances your brand's credibility and projects a tech-savvy, modern and forward-thinking image for your business.
Interesting Watch: How consistent brand experiences are created
9. Rely heavily on data to shape your strategy
For optimal success, it's essential to regularly analyze data from social platforms and adapt your strategy accordingly. Examine your essential social media KPIs like reach, engagement rate, numbers of leads generated and even connection requests (on LinkedIn). These will tell you if your strategies are working.
10. Continue to prioritize existing customers
This is among the lesser proclaimed social selling techniques but we believe it is among the most important. Don’t neglect the customers you already have. It is six times more expensive to win a new customer than convince an existing one to make another purchase.
If someone has purchased from you, they already hold a favorable view of your brand and perceive it as reliable. If you put in the effort to maintain those relationships, and provide them with value even after they have made the purchase they will likely buy again.
Ask the right questions, show interest in their experience with your product and maintain consistent engagement to show that you care about the relationship. Explore their social media profiles to gather information about them, ensuring you always have engaging topics of conversation at your disposal.
Social selling is simpler with Sprinklr Social
Creating, posting and monitoring social media content on multiple channels is a lot of work, even if you have a big team around to help. The monitoring, especially is a Herculean task, because you have to collate up-to-date data from numerous platforms, place them in a single view, and only then can you compare and analyze numbers to adjust your social media strategy.
Don’t forget that you also have to find the right conversation on social media, so that you can engage with prospects in meaningful ways that promise long-term relationships.
None of this is possible without the right social media management tool.
If you have to examine customer interactions consistently on every social channel, including websites, chat and messaging, you need access to state-of-the-art tools. Constantly scanning social media to view post performance, updated numbers (likes, comments, shares) and brand mentions, and engaging with every comment and query is not something a team can manually do.
This is where a tool like Sprinklr Social can make all the difference.
Sprinklr Social lets you scan and engage with audiences across every digital channel. You can view and interact with prospects on every channel from a single, unified dashboard.
Here a few standout Sprinklr Social features (the ones that matter to your brand strategy):
Enables interaction with customers across 30+ social and messaging channels
Provides integrated listening to identify, study and participate in relevant conversations that don’t directly involve your brand
AI-driven automated inbound triaging allows you to categorize messages by intent; you’ll know which conversation to prioritize for engagement
Track branded content from development through deployment across all digital channels — and enable cross-team collaboration and visibility every step of the way — on a single platform
Account-level permissioning and governance so you have controls in place to prevent PR crises and the publication of off-brand content
Does this sound like Sprinklr Social can help you with your social selling KPIs? We certainly think so. If you do too, feel free to get in touch with us.