Social selling generates higher quality prospects, increases pipeline and success rates and deal sizes. Typically thought of as a process for sales teams only, social selling has expanded far beyond that and is also a critical feature of today’s organisations. Let’s take a closer look at social selling: an important asset for companies.
Social selling: definition
In order to attract the right prospects, social selling is a necessity. It consists of creating a positive relationship between customers. Social selling is about creating a strategy for meeting sales targets in response to questionnaires posed to prospects. Social selling is about using tools such as social networks to build relationships; define your brand; gain visibility with your target market; provide value to your target market and build credibility.
Using social networks to stay ahead of your competitors
When it comes to sales, beating the competition can mean the difference between a major deal and a crushing let down. Increasingly, you don’t have to wait for your rivals to come out with a banner ad to discover their latest move. Major initiatives are usually the result of months of planning; months in which the main themes will be presented in presentations and conference speeches and may even be quietly tested on selected market segments. Social tools can help to prevent such major positioning changes in advance. They can help you monitor what your competitors are saying, what individuals within their company are discussing and the responses they receive, allowing you to spot competitive movements earlier and react accordingly.
Social selling: building relationships with prospects and potential customers
You may have the best product or service, but that does not guarantee that you will win the business. Successful selling depends on insight and, even more difficult to quantify, empathy. That’s why all good salespeople research their prospects before making any contact. Before social networks, this could be difficult. The best a salesperson could do was to look at the company’s website, browse the annual report and check the mentions on commercial websites. Salespeople often felt they were just scratching the surface with little hope of having the in-depth knowledge of a prospect’s needs that it takes to really tailor a pitch.