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IN THIS ISSUE:
Social Media Shift: The Dawn of Social Selling
How to Master Social Selling

April 2014
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Social Media Shift: The Dawn of Social Selling
Are You Moving Online With Your Customers?

WSI VIDEO: “APPLYING THE POWER OF SOCIAL SELLING”
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Marketing involves the promoting and selling of products and services. If you’re a marketer you’re essentially a salesperson, even if that’s not how you perceive your job. Most people think a “sales” role consists of these typical activities: endless cold calls, prospect meetings and a whole lot of proverbial doors slammed in your face. But in today’s business world, the tenets of selling are evolving right along with the core focus of marketing. Consumers no longer stand for being forced and bullied into a decision; instead, they prefer to build relationships with brands, gather information and eventually come to an informed conclusion on their own. Your job as a marketer or a salesperson is to do a better job of highlighting the value of your products and services than your competition.

Social Media Is Changing The Business Landscape
The ability to adapt is one of the most important components of success in both business and marketing. This willingness to pivot and take risks is especially important for truly great digital marketing campaigns due to the fast-paced nature of the Internet. One aspect of the digital space that is significantly shifting the business environment is social media. While some companies are still getting acquainted with the idea of social selling – using social media platforms to generate leads and close sales – the early adopters are busy reaping the benefits.

The simple fact is that in order to sell, you need something very specific: a potential customer. Logic follows that to interact with potential customers, you need to be where they are (waiting for them to come to you just doesn’t cut it). This is exactly why websites and strong digital branding have become such a vital part of marketing over the last decade – if you don’t have the website customers expect it makes a bad first impression. As consumers flock to rapidly growing social media platforms, social activity is becoming just as critical as an engaging website.

From a numbers standpoint, the stats speak for themselves. Recent Forrester research shows that 91% of B2B IT buyers are involved with social media. On the other end of the spectrum, studies found that 78.6% of salespeople who use social selling out performed those who weren’t using social media. Essentially, social media platforms are like giant, can’t-miss conferences that literally never stop running. The people who attend achieve more success – it’s not a coincidence. Do you really want to actively ignore an opportunity that big?


How to Master Social Selling
The Selling Process

While it may seem like a daunting task, getting into a daily social selling routine is relatively simple. It just takes 30 to 60 minutes a day and a lot of practice, patience and determination. To get you started, here’s a look at our framework for a social selling routine:

  • Choose platforms: do some poking around and try to determine which social platforms are most popular in your market. Pick two to start – you can’t afford to be overwhelmed or discouraged. Get acclimated to the social environments of each platform and set up and optimize your profiles.
  • Research and share: one of the keys to social media is sharing the right stuff. Don’t just share the first article you find and never share something you haven’t completely read. Do your research and only recommend posts and articles that you truly believe bring value and enrichment to your potential customers.
  • Connect: whether it’s LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook or Google+ it’s easy to see who is engaging with you socially. So ensure that you connect, follow, add or circle anybody that seems interested and, you know, be social!
  • Measure and follow-up: an upside to social selling is that every social platform is easy to use, no matter your location or device. This means you can cut down on speed-to-lead time by quickly engaging with people who share your content and immediately responding to messages and inquiries, even while you’re on the go.

This has simply been a brief outline as to why you need to consider social selling and how you can get started. Dedicated social selling is becoming more important to keeping up with the competition and meeting your sales goals. For further information or guidance on how to better understand and develop a social selling strategy, get in touch with a local WSI Consultant today!



 

MARKETING STATS

 

SMBS + Social = Success

• 98% of businesses surveyed found content marketing to be and effective social media.
More than 10% intends to put more social content services and reputation management services.

Click here to read the entire eMarketer article.

 

ON THE BLOG

 

 

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Get further insights from WSI experts

Question: I’m not sure whether my target audience is even active on social media, so do I really need to invest the time and energy into social selling?

Answer: This is a question many small businesses and even large companies struggle with. But whether you’re a blue-collar plumber or a B2B software company, you can benefit from a social media presence. You do, however, have to take the time to understand the concepts and ideas behind social selling; it’s certainly not as simple as setting up a Facebook page, uploading a cover photo and hoping for the leads to pour in.

In the case of a bigger company, there are almost always going to be opportunities to network and socialize on the big social platforms. You just have to put in the work to find your audience, join the group and start highlighting your knowledge and value. For smaller companies, it might take more digging or even finding a small, niche social network. But the reward for a social presence is often larger for these local businesses, mainly because less of the competition is active in social spaces. In today’s fiercely competitive business world, you need to seize any competitive edge you can find – and social selling can be that edge, regardless of your industry.

For more information about a developing a social selling strategy for your business, contact your local WSI Consultant now.

 

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