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Everything You Need to Know about Social Selling

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As a business owner, you might have already engaged in social selling without being aware of it. For example, if you can connect with other people through social media, like other’s posts, and receive likes on your posts, you are already actively involved in social selling. 

However, social selling is more than just liking and engaging with posts. If you want to build a network of prospects and sell your products to them, you need to take a deliberate approach to social selling. In other words, you cannot afford to just leave everything to chance. 

Your social selling end-goal is to become the first person in your customer’s mind whenever they need your product. This article will teach you social selling tips you can use to your advantage. See them below:

1. Decide how you will measure results

Several businesses don’t have an adequate system for measuring their success through social selling. The most common way to measure success is through the number of leads generated. Thanks to the invention of sales automation software, tracking your results has become much more manageable. 

Social selling is about building relationships, so you need to measure specific metrics even before the connections lead to fruition. Below are ways you decide to measure social selling:

Social network size: Every social media application has a system for measuring the size of your social network. On Instagram and Twitter, there are the followers and following sections, and on LinkedIn, there Is the number of connections. A larger network will give you more qualified prospects, leading to more chances at building sustainable relationships that will lead to sales. 

Source: blackvacay story

Presence and Engagement Rate: The best way to determine these two metrics is through content production. Ask yourself how much content you have put out in a month and how much of this content was heavily interacted with by your audience. 

It is easier to measure your content engagement rate on social media thanks to likes, shares, comments, reach, engagement, views, and saves. If you are into B2B and own a website, it will be great to ensure that your B2B web design is done professionally, as it also determines the impression your audience will have of your brand. 

2. Use social prospecting

There isn’t social media selling without social prospecting because that’s how you build relationships. Prospecting via social networking gives your business an added advantage. 

Below you will find tips to network on the different social networks and through emails:

Timely outreach: To successfully carry out a timely prospecting, you must know your target audience and speak their language. For example, on Instagram, you can connect with your audience by commenting on their post; you should comment on fresh posts that haven’t surpassed a week. Also, only say relevant things in the comment section

Personalize your content: Whether you’re sending out emails or social media DMs, you should use the recipient’s correct name. You also need to make your content relatable. However, you shouldn’t appear too eager to make the sale. Build a connection with your audience first, then address their needs. 

 

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You should target people who have more in common with the buyer persona of your product. This way, you can focus your energy on the right people. Use the geographic location, influencers, and topics they follow as filters. 

3. Create lead stages

Lead stages are pretty similar to the customer journey map, but they are still two different terms in marketing. A lead has shown interest in a company or its product. For example, someone willing to exchange their contacts for getting an ebook is a lead. 

Bringing this term to social media, a social media lead is someone who may have followed, liked, or commented on a post on your page. 

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Below are the three lead stages you can implement on social media:

The Subscriber Stage: An Instagram user discovers your page through exploration thanks to content that grabbed their attention. They check your page and find more content that they like, and they eventually follow your page because they don’t want to miss out on your content. You have just gained a prospect who may become a fan. 

The Lead Stage/Nurturing Stage: You have a new follower; how do you ensure that the person initiates a notification to not miss out on any post? This is where you have to stay consistent with informative, engaging, and relevant content. 

Sales Qualified Lead: At this stage, the lead is informed and knows that they can trust you. You can create curiosity through content marketing about your products and discuss the benefits. You can also offer discounts and other incentives at this stage.

Every time you create content, ensure that it’s targeted to your audience in at least one of these lead stages to avoid wasting time and resources. Also, make sure that every new content is an improvement over the last one.

4. Craft relevant content for each stage of the funnel

Thanks to content marketing and social media mix, we have social content marketing. Now, businesses are more dependent on selling through content. 

How else will you find quality prospects if your social media pages have little to no content on them, or even if they do, the contents are low quality? 

Below are examples of content ideas you can implement at each of the lead stages:

The Subscriber Stage: Run a contest or giveaway, an interesting how-to tutorial, or an engaging this or that poll. 

The Lead nurturing Stage: Share behind-the-scenes videos, milestones in your business, in-depth tutorials to showcase your expertise, and host AMAs.

Sales Qualified Lead Stage: Create an exciting showcase of your product’s benefits through listicles or a video showing the problems your product can solve. Create juicy offers and also use testimonials to sell.

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This content post from the Brandwiz group is specific to the nurturing stage of the three social media lead stages. In addition, it also uses another social network (Telegram) to engage with potential customers.

5. Segment your social media leads

Social media lead segmentation involves grouping your leads into their different demographics within a social media platform. You can use different demographics to segment the leads, and they include:

Age: Age group plays a lot of importance in segmentation. Specific age groups use specific social media networks more than others. For example, more than 60% of Instagram users are between 18 to 34 years old.

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Location: You would have to do a little more research on the social media networks that are most commonly used in each country. For example, if you live in the U.S and are looking to sell to people within the United States, you can use Facebook or Instagram. If you’re trying to enter the South Korean market, you may use Naver instead.

Population: If you plan to go international with your business, it would be wise to determine which country dominates the different social media networks. According to statista.com, the United States has the highest number of Twitter users, followed by Japan.

From the above, you will see that segmentation can help you understand your audience’s behavior better as millions of people use these different social networks for various reasons. You should take advantage of social media segmentation for success at social selling.

6. Track employee performance

Why is it essential to track employees’ performance for social selling? You can’t handle every area of your business by yourself and can’t have results without direct (i.e., employees’ effort) or indirect actions (i.e., word of mouth). 

It is essential to track employees’ performance to know whether your company is achieving its set social selling goals, and below is how:

Use SMART goals: The best way to see if you achieved your goals through social selling is to set them yearly, quarterly, and monthly. This way, you will be able to track which employees did what. For example, you may want to achieve two sales by the end of the week. That is a SMART goal, and you should make plans with your employees to achieve it.

One to one and report systems: You need to build relationships with your employees to ensure effectiveness in delivery which is where one-to-one comes in. The reporting system allows for every employee to track their tasks. 

For example, an employee may have to handle ten qualified leads daily and ensure that content goes out to the social media page regularly. Reports allow for checks and balances within an organization

Project management tools: managers within an organization need project management tools to track each member’s performance. Popular management tools include Asana, Monday, and Trello. 

To succeed at social selling, you must have invested time and some cash into achieving qualified leads. You should also track employees’ performance to help you gauge your success and improve on avoidable setbacks. 

Conclusion

In this article, you have learned the importance of social selling and tips on measuring and improving it. These tips include: deciding how to measure your results, using social prospecting, creating lead stages, crafting relevant content, segmenting your social media leads, and tracking your employees’ performance. 

Which of these strategies have you implemented to achieve successful social selling? Nevertheless, if you benefited from this article, you might want to check this other article on 5 Ways Your Sales Team Can Use Social Media To Generate Leads.

About the author

Ian Loew is a web entrepreneur and inbound marketing expert, and the Owner & Head of Business Development of Lform Design. After four years of helping Fortune 500 companies with MGT Design, Ian embarked on his freelance career before establishing Lform Design in 2005. He leads a team of creative professionals to deliver inspired online experiences via modern, responsive websites that reflect his clients’ core values. When not at the helm, Ian can be found mountain biking with friends or spending time with his family.