Getting to grips with Social Selling

Social selling, or the process of building and nurturing one-to-one relationships that enable a more efficient and effective sales cycle, is becoming increasingly important to successful Business Development programmes. If done well it can be a regular source of leads, insight and a great way of engaging new prospects.

Social selling takes advantage of the powerful new opportunities offered by social media platforms to share valuable, timely content with a wide range of customers and prospects. However, many are still getting to grips with how to really use social media as an effective Business Development channel.

According to a recent ‘action guide’ by Simon Kemp (Founder at Kepios) and Hootsuite, the most effective social selling approaches combine a variety of existing concepts that many salespeople and marketers will be familiar with, particularly one-to-one engagement, employee advocacy, inbound marketing, and customer lifetime value management (as illustrated below):

LinkedIn has become a key tool for every day Business Development. However, all too often you can spend hours crafting a thought provoking article and sharing the latest insights and trends to your network on LinkedIn, only to end up with a 100 views and a handful of likes.

We spoke to Digital Marketer and Growth Hacker, Oren Greenberg to get a few of the tips that regularly helps Oren to generate over 10k views on his posts and a regular flow of leads and referrals:

  • Build up your influence. Oren has successful boosted his connections to 8000+, focusing on those with a high number of connections themselves. LinkedIn allows you a maximum number of 30,000 connections so you need to think about quality too.

LinkedIn prefers text based posts like this:

Other tips to keep in mind are:

  • Don’t just post links to articles, text based posts can be more effective. They are easier for connections to digest as they scroll through feed and will get more views due to the way LinkedIn works.
  • Keep them regular. Rather than spending hours writing one article, break it up into posts like this that only take 20 minutes to write.
  • Make sure you are concise. LinkedIn character limit for these type of posts is 1300.
  • Keep it genuinely authentic and valuable insight – no one needs more cat videos.

How can you put this into practice? 

Our recommendation is to try this out with a simple post and see how you get on! Then identify and analyse the activities of the people in your network who seem to achieve higher levels of engagement and recognition, and ask yourself:

  • What are they doing particularly well?
  • What do they do differently to you and others?
  • Which of their approaches and techniques could you adopt to improve your own results?

The nature of social selling is that it is ‘social’, so many of your best insights will come for free by watching others.

Have you tried social selling? What have the results been like? We’d love to hear more about your experiences and how you plan to integrate social selling into your digital marketing strategies, so feel free to let us know in the comments, or better yet drop us a line.

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