I’m a social seller. It’s who I am when I go to bed at night. It’s part of my DNA, but I understand that others may not find it so intuitive. Many people out there have had old, out-of-date hard sales tactics drilled into them. The good news is that every one of them can become just as effective at social selling with dedicated, on-going training and strong support from management.
From all those salespeople trying to get a handle on a social selling routine, I tend to hear the same question over and over, asked in a hundred different ways: “What do you actually do all day?”
I’m thick-skinned so I don’t take this the wrong way. It’s simply a direct question from a professional who has witnessed social sellers outperform their peers. They want to know how to use the latest technology to sell the right way. When they see social sellers smashing quotas, pocketing big commissions and dipping into a fat lead pipelines, they want to be part of that.
Social Selling Means…
To help them out, and so I can stop answering that question, I’ve put together a handful of daily sales habits. Here’s part of what successful social sellers are doing today and every day after that.
1. Social selling means making a commitment to new relationships every day.
Don’t expect immediate results. Social selling depends on building a solid reputation and relationships. These goals can only be achieved when social activity is performed on a daily basis. When sales managers commit to ongoing social selling training, they turn daily routines into revenue-generating habits.
“Social selling is a continuous journey. Salespeople must commit to infusing social media into their daily routines for social activity to have an impact on revenue.” – Jill Rowley, What Social Selling Isn’t
2. Social selling means sharing content every day.
Sharing generic content sporadically will bring zero results and is one way to guarantee failure. Creating and curating content every day is the only way to build an engaged audience that comes to expect valuable content from you. The quality of content you pump out will position you as a thought leader in a particular field of expertise. Decide in which area you excel and go full tilt to become the king of valuable content.
“Forrester reports 70 percent of buyers trust content provided by an individual, while 10 percent trust ads on websites (think about the tweets that point to the registration page). So, it makes sense for sales executives to create their own content.” – Gerry Moran, Content Marketing is the Key to Open the Door to Your Social Selling Success
3. Social selling means building trust every day.
Social selling is not about trying to sell things to strangers. It’s about sharing valuable information and opinions that help your connections trust you as an authority. Display your expertise, but let your customers know that you are in touch with their pain points. The goal is a steadily expanding network of contacts who brag that they know you personally.
“People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it.” Simon Sinek, How Great Leaders Inspire Action
4. Social selling means guiding prospects along the buyer’s journey every day.
Buyers don’t need your information, they need your advice. Seventy percent of a buyer’s journey is already over before they reach out to sales. Your job is to generate digital bread crumbs for prospects to follow through all the stages of the journey. At the end of that road, your content will lead them to select your company as the vendor of choice.
“In fact, the buyer controls the buying process more than sellers control the selling process. This means that you need to get inside your buyer’s journey. – Jamie Shanks, Remember: It’s the Buyer’s Journey, Not a Sales Cycle
5. Social selling means checking your engagement levels every day.
Check your social engagement on LinkedIn & Twitter on a daily basis. Use tools like LinkedIn’s Social Selling Index and Twitter’s Analytics. When you know what gets people fired up, you’ll find it easier to start prospect conversations. The goal is to convert prospects outside of your first degree network into LinkedIn connections. With direct connections, you can message prospects directly for free when you need to reach them, stay top-of-mind throughout the buyer’s journey and develop their networks for opportunity referrals.
“Sales pros are constantly searching. They’re hungry for new prospects, searching for new opportunities and longing for insight to create engaging conversations with these prospects. Social media is a colossal clue buffet.”
– Koka Sexton, Drive Mouth-Watering Leads with Sales & Social Media
Don’t kid yourself. It’s hard to form new habits. That’s why following a daily routine of these five social selling fundamentals will teach you how to be consistent and prevent sales opportunities from falling through the cracks. There’s actually a great deal more that I do every day, but these are the foundation. Get these down cold and watch your sales start climbing, day after day.
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