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Social selling: Meaning, benefits and go-to tactics.

Branding your business on social media has become a necessity to boost its online visibility and generate more leads. From sharing your mission and spotlighting your team, to responding to comments; your social media presence can be utilized, analyzed and shaped to maximize sales.

So, what is social selling?

To put it simply, social selling is selling on social media using an ultra-personalized approach.

More than boosting your posts, creating online ads and marketing your services on your business’ social media pages, social selling is about connecting with leads and nurturing relationships as part of your sales strategy. 

It’s not about polished pitches, but creating real conversations with your target audience.

Any type of service-based business can start social selling, from those in retail and beauty, to healthcare and consulting.

Benefits of social selling (because you need to try it)

It enhances your sales strategy

According to LinkedIn, there is a strong correlation between social selling and achieving sales goals. An internal study found that 78% of businesses that use social selling as part of their sales strategy outperform competitors that don’t. Moreover, these businesses are 51% more likely to reach their sales quota.

You create more meaningful connections

Social selling helps your brand to connect with prospective customers on a deeper level. You get to know what kind of conversations they’re engaging in, what their needs and concerns are, and how your brand can help address their problems. Your interactions become more authentic and credible through this knowledge.

It’s a cost-effective way to increase your customer base

Through compelling storytelling and engaging conversations, your social media channels become spaces for leads and customers to get to know you. Learn what channels your target audience uses most and stay active with unique and varied content. You can even involve your team and customers in curating your channels, developing a sense of community. This is increasingly important to consumers as we go into the new year.

Social selling examples for inspiration

Start a conversation around a prospect’s concern

LinkedIn share example.

Source: Derek Debenham’s LinkedIn page

Typically, this type of post wouldn’t link to an online checkout or any kind of transactional flow. Be sure to direct your audience to, for example, a blog post that highlights potential solutions. This establishes your subject matter knowledge and willingness to assist.

In turn, your brand garners more trust. You can capitalize on this by including a booking link in your content. When a lead is looking for an expert, they know how to reach you.

Post stories that resonate with your target audience

Source: RMS’s Beauty Instagram page

Get your loyal fans to participate in your social media content. Positive word of mouth and customer testimonials are invaluable to humanizing your brand and getting new leads to buy in.

You can let others do the talking sometimes – they’ll tell the world what works for them.

Share user-generated content of your services in action

Source: Batoko’s Instagram page

Branded posts only go so far. Share content from your customer base to vary what leads see from you and highlight that your brand values loyalty. Not only does this lessen the need for you to create unique content, but leads get an image of your service quality from the people who champion you.

Create memes that get your brand noticed

5 Tips To Make Your Meme Go Viral - Spiceworks

Source: Jimmy John’s X page

Humor can work wonders for engagement if the joke is a hit. Consider your brand voice and target audience before committing.

Tactics to get started with social selling

1. Always offer value

Sending the right message at the right time is a must for successful lead conversion. An overly sales-y approach from the get-go could discourage potential customers from engaging further. Nobody wants to feel rushed, after all.

Use your social media channels to provide beneficial content and recommendations within your wheelhouse. By positioning yourself as a thought leader, your offering appears more reliable and competitive.

2.  Choose the right social media platforms

Pinpoint your niche and establish buyer personas to find the best channels for selling on social media.

  • Understand your unique selling proposition (USP)
  • Conduct market research
  • Segment your market
  • Evaluate customer’ demographics, such as gender, income and occupation
  • Assess behavioral factors, such as purchasing patterns, brand loyalty and product usage
  • Closely analyze your competition

We discuss these steps further in ‘How to build your brand on social media’. Social selling on LinkedIn is ideal for B2B as your content can target a wide range of professionals, locally, nationally or internationally. You can also converse on a brand or individual level.

A platform like Instagram is highly-visual, making it ideal for businesses in fashion, food, and retail, where aesthetics play a crucial role in attracting customers.

3. Be authentic and personal

For impactful social selling, authenticity is everything. Be genuine in your interactions and avoid overly scripted and repetitive messages. Instead, personalize your outreach, tell relatable stories and discuss shared interests to establish unique connections. One message that shows care and effort speaks volumes.

4. Tailor your approach

Creating compelling posts and engaging with your followers is only part of social selling. Explore different arenas to make your voice heard and drive traffic to your own social media pages. This could include conversing in relevant Facebook Groups, answering questions on Reddit or Quora, or replying to directory reviews.

Ensure you leverage tools to find relevant discussions and potential leads, and enable people to reserve your time without needing to wait.

  • Social listening tools, such as Hootsuite, Brandwatch and Mention, can help you track and monitor social media conversations about your brand.
  • LinkedIn tools, such as LinkedIn Sales Navigator and Social Selling Index, help sales professionals discover, segment and reach out to LinkedIn leads.
  • Booking apps, like Setmore, enable business owners to take bookings and payments online, directly from their social media pages, messages and posts. This ensures that when your content hits the right note, it’s straightforward for a lead to schedule an appointment.

5. Make it convenient to contact you

Social selling relies on nurturing connections to acquire new customers and generate sales. Your prospects could want to book at any time during your conversation, whether it’s on day 1 or day 100. Don’t make them ask for your contact details or a booking link; have what they’ll need readily available.

  • Add your website’s URL, an email address and business line to your social media page’s About or Bio section.
  • Embed a ‘Book now’ button on your Facebook and Instagram pages that allows people to schedule appointments or reserve seats online.
  • Respond to comments and DMs swiftly; you could even implement live chat so new leads are engaged 24/7.

Wrapping up

Social selling is a cost-effective method to promoting your services online and increasing revenue. By establishing a meaningful connection with your prospects, driven by personalization, you can convert more into loyal customers. 

Have any tips to share? Find us on Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn. Happy scheduling!

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