Social media has quickly become ubiquitous with many facets of everyday life, the most obvious ones being social and sharing recommendations with friends and family. But new research shows that a growing number of sales professionals are using outlets such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn to close deals, and it’s having a serious impact on their bottom lines.
The newest ‘Social Media and Sales Quota Attainment’ study from KiteDesk and A Sales Guy Consulting shows that roughly 75% of sales professionals who exceeded their 2014 sales quota by 10% or more described themselves as ‘highly effective’ or ‘better than most’ at utilizing social media to close deals.
However, this goes well beyond just friending, following, and linking with potential buyers. In addition, social media savvy sales professionals take advantage of the social data, social insights, and shared knowledge at their disposal – making them six times more likely to beat their quotas compared to those who claim to have ‘no social media skills’.
5 Steps to Selling Through Social Media
Whether your outlet of choice is LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Blogging, or Google+, Forbes Magazine recently outlined five steps to making a sale through social media, which boils down to the following:
Step 1: Join a community and create a persona that doesn’t misrepresent who you are, but is also likable and trustworthy.
Step 2: Determine the best way to connect with prospects, but you don’t have to limit yourself to the “big three” (Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter). Blogs, live chats, and comment sections are also great places to generate leads.
Step 3: Connect with new clients that to have similar interest and problems as previous ones.
Step 4: Build a relationship; don’t just try to develop a lead. Building a relationship online is much easier and less time consuming than playing 18 holes of golf with a potential client.
Step 5: Engage in conversation and try to make a personal connection. Rather than start off with a sales pitch, seem interested in your new connection’s problem and discover how your product or service will help them.