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How to Leverage Social Selling to Boost Sales

Discover how to boost your sales using social selling strategies that help you connect with your audience on a more personal level.

Social media marketing is a powerful and cost-effective strategy that enables small businesses to compete with major retailers. With over 93% of internet users on social media spending an average of 2 hours and 28 minutes per day on different platforms, it's crucial to have a robust social selling strategy that attracts customers.

Social selling, the art of building customer relationships through social media, offers businesses a unique opportunity to engage customers on a personal level, which is not possible with traditional sales methods like cold calling.

By leveraging social selling, you can nurture leads easily and create a loyal customer base. In this article, we'll explore the benefits of social selling and how to measure your success on social media, so you can enhance your sales efforts and take your business to new heights. Keep reading to learn more.

What is social selling?

Social selling is a sales method that allows you to build relationships with prospects through social media. You can use your social media channels to connect with prospects and develop relationships that build trust and lead to sales.

Many social media marketing efforts, such as advertisements and organic posts, can help you attract leads, but many small business owners don't realize they can communicate with leads via social media to guide them through the sales funnel with less friction.

Social selling differs from cold calling in that it involves leveraging organic posting methods to boost engagement and entice prospects to interact with your brand, rather than sending unsolicited messages. By using social media to nurture leads and engage prospects on a more personal level, businesses can establish a meaningful connection with their target audience.

These more meaningful interactions can drive sales by helping generate leads while building valuable relationships with prospects and customers alike, regardless of where they land in the sales funnel.

Benefits of social selling

Social selling takes a more modern approach to sales by leveraging social media platforms to find and nurture leads. With increased engagement, you can naturally build credibility and meaningfully interact with customers, facilitating lead generation efforts regardless of the social selling platform you use. Here are a few of the advantages of a social selling strategy:

Increased brand visibility

Social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn allow you to use social selling techniques that increase brand awareness and visibility. With social selling, you can organically build relationships while sharing thought leadership, insights, and other important information by linking to your website and driving traffic.

Better insight into customer needs

With social listening, you can better understand your customers' pain points and find ways to address them to drive sales. Social selling tools enable you to monitor social media conversations about your brand or industry and engage with potential customers already interested in your products or services.

With social selling tools, you can "listen" to your potential customers' needs to understand their wants and needs and tailor your offerings accordingly. The more you learn about your customers, the better you can tailor your sales pitches for each customer segment by identifying pain points.

Improved customer relationships

Social selling takes the sale and makes it more personal. While cold calling is still effective in many industries, building relationships with warm leads streamlines the lead nurturing process to help convert more prospects into paying customers. With active engagement, you can improve relationships with prospects without trying to constantly sell to them, making them trust you and your expertise more.

Higher conversion rates

Nurturing your leads allows you to learn more about them before making a hard sell. Instead, you'll learn about their wants, needs, and pain points to find the perfect way to pitch your product and/or service. The more personalized your sales pitch, the better your chances of making a sale.

Additionally, social selling platforms allow you to cross sell and upsell more naturally. For instance, if you know a customer has purchased a particular item in the past, you can recommend similar products they might be interested in. Or, if a customer is interested in a certain product, you could upsell them by promoting a higher-end version.

Social selling best practices

You can use social media platforms to do more than promote—you can use them to sell. Social selling tools allow you to reach more customers and convince them why your brand is the best, facilitating the sale process and making it easier for sales reps to close deals.

Social selling is a modern sales process that uses social media, so sales professionals must have social media skills that allow them to communicate effectively with potential customers.

Define your target audience

Before you start social selling, you'll need to define your audience. If you've already invested in social media marketing, you should already know who your target audience is, including important information like their pain points.

You can also use social media networks to learn more about your target audience. For instance, social selling tools like Facebook and Instagram provide insights about your followers' demographics you can use to tailor your sales pitch.

Share valuable content and demonstrate your expertise

The key to social selling success is creating valuable and relevant content. Regardless of the social media platforms you use to sell products or services, you'll need a comprehensive social content plan. The content you share on social media platforms can help you build a more professional brand.

You can work with content marketers, social media managers, and sales teams to determine the best type of content to share with prospects based on what you've learned about your audience.

Build authentic relationships

One of the main duties of any sales team is to build relationships with new and existing customers. You can use your social media presence to help you find sales opportunities by engaging with potential customers across channels. Your brand's social media channels can help you learn more about your prospects and find new ways to communicate with them.

Unlike other marketing and advertising strategies, social sales enable you to communicate directly with potential clients and customers, offering two-way communication between brands and potential buyers that improves lead generation efforts by building more personal relationships.

Show social proof

People usually start online when they shop for anything, whether it's products or services. Social proof in the form of testimonials and success stories can help build your brand's reputation on social media, making it easier for sales professionals to convince new customers to enter the sales funnel.

Sharing success stories, testimonials, reviews, and star ratings is crucial for building relationships with potential customers because they build credibility.

Demonstrate consistency

By providing potential customers with relevant content, social sellers can facilitate the buying process by demonstrating consistency across channels. So, whether you use social platforms, cold calling, or any other forms of communication, you can keep a consistent customer experience that builds upon your sales success.

Set up alerts

Your social selling efforts depend on your ability to listen to prospective customers. You can use a social selling tool to set up social listening or something like Google Alerts that will give you relevant information that helps you stay up to date on the latest trends. Additionally, you can use social listening to learn more about your competition to understand their own strategies.

Social listening also allows you to monitor your reputation. Are existing customers happy with your product or service? Your reputation can impact your ability to secure business leads because social selling relies on relationship building with mutual connections and engaged customers.

Track your results

Your social selling performance will determine whether your sales strategy is effective. Sales leaders already know the importance of measuring their results. You can use social selling platforms, customer relationship management (CRM) tools, and other sales tools to help you determine whether your social selling strategy is working to attract new customers and future leads.

Social platforms allow you to track engagement metrics like likes, comments, and shares to help you gauge customer interest in your product and services. However, having high engagement stats and poor lead generation stats could indicate an issue with your sales funnel or strategy. Therefore, it's crucial to go beyond social network stats and compare their performance with your sales performance.

How to measure social selling success

LinkedIn is the most popular social selling tool for business-to-business (B2B) companies because it's one of the few social platforms that lists someone's job title. On LinkedIn, sales reps can learn more about their prospects before reaching out to them.

Additionally, businesses can use LinkedIn Sales Navigator, the platform's social selling tool, to improve sales prospecting and lead generation with more personalized messaging options. Sales reps can find and engage prospects with LinkedIn Sales Navigator, but that's not all. The social selling platform allows you to search for leads and companies, provides recommendations, and integrates with your CRM to help you track the sales process.

LinkedIn is responsible for a metric called the social selling index, which is used to measure a company's social selling performance. It measures your effectiveness at finding the right buyers, sharing relevant content, and building relationships. It can give you insights into your strategy to help you make the necessary adjustments to drive sales.

In addition to your LinkedIn social selling index, you can monitor sales performance using network growth, engagement rates, referrals, conversations started, and actual sales generated from social selling initiatives.

Leverage social media to increase your sales

B2B companies should prioritize social selling to improve relationships with prospects and help them navigate the sales funnel. With social selling tools, you can find prospects, build relationships, and measure your success.

Of course, to leverage social media to increase your sales, you'll need to create relevant, valuable content. Mailchimp can help you create social media posts that build brand awareness and attract more leads. Take advantage of our all-in-one marketing and sales platform today.

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