How many times have you scrolled through your Instagram or Facebook feed and come across a product or service that got your attention?
Maybe you stopped for a second to view it, or you even clicked to find out more. Or perhaps you kept scrolling past it. But later, when it popped up in your mind, you went back on social media to search for it.
Sounds familiar? This is it—you’ve been the target of social selling.
Introduction to Social Selling
Simply put, social selling is sales 2.0. Social selling is the practice of using social media to find and engage with new prospects, providing value to sell your product or service.
These days, customers are looking for trustworthy relationships with brands they can relate to and connect with. For businesses, this means meeting customers where they are: on social media. For salespeople, it is an opportunity to expand their capabilities and network of contacts.
Did you know that 90% of decision-makers never answer a cold call, but 75% of B2B buyers use social media to make purchasing decisions?
Social selling is the latest wave in the tech-driven world. It generates better quality leads and boosts win rates.
Who Is a Social Seller?
You’ve probably already guessed that a social seller is a salesperson, leveraging their social network to attract the right prospects and to build trusted relationships. This practice is called social prospecting.
The social seller has to be a proactive, friendly person who likes to engage with people. Moreover, they should have at least a basic understanding of marketing to help them navigate the social selling process.
Social media are the business tools for social sellers—very powerful tools. Therefore, it is crucial to create a systematic and customized social strategy to make direct sales according to the audience’s specific needs.
There are 5 key elements involved in creating a successful social selling strategy that wins customers over:
- Target market research and identifying key social platforms
- Creating engaging, valuable content that tackles consumer problems
- Building credibility through thoughtful discussions
- Creative campaigns that stand out and make a difference
- A consistent strategy that continues to bring in new customers
What Are the Requirements For Social Seller
Employers usually care about these parameters when looking for a social seller:
- Previous sales experience
- Experience with social media and content marketing
- Social network and your engagement
- Team spirit
- Personality & charisma
Your Previous Sales Experience
Social selling is the new sales model, but it is still sales. Therefore, your previous sales experience matters to them. Do you bring any relevant experience to the table? Have you worked in this industry before? Do you have your contacts?
Social selling can be used across industries. However, industries like entertainment, real estate, fashion, or marketing excel more than social selling. Nevertheless, your experience from the relevant sector still matters.
Your Social Media Experience
Even though social selling is s a relatively new sales approach, experience with social media is necessary to deliver results. Social media have been here for more than 10 years now, and millions of people have had a chance to get acquainted with them.
Having experience with some of the social selling tools is a valuable asset as well: Canva, Buffer, LinkedIn Sales Navigator, or Nimble, to mention a few.
Your Social Network & Engagement
One of the essential factors for social selling is understanding your persona, where you find them, and optimizing the marketing & sales funnel.
Your employer might ask you about this as, without this knowledge, you might end up promoting content on the wrong platform or missing the mark with your messaging—which is not the desired outcome.
Understanding where your audience is the most active and what content they are interacting with the most is a cornerstone of leveraging your skills.
Through commenting, liking, or sharing content with prospects, the social seller becomes part of the conversation and boosts its credibility by showing an active interest in what its buyers are posting and talking about.
The best of the best social sellers are fearless in hiring a professional content writer to take their copy to the next level. 2023 might bring some changes as more users turn to AI software for answers. Find yourself a marketing agency that stays on top of trends.
Your Team Spirit
To be effective at social selling at an organizational level, everyone needs to be engaged. Like many successful business initiatives, social selling is a team effort.
The sales team may lead the charge, but marketing, HR, and other departments can all be an influence on social selling effectiveness. Here’s why more employees outside of sales should master social selling on LinkedIn.
Look for a social seller that can explain social media best practices and create clear expectations with staff. For example, is it really necessary to spend the entire day on LinkedIn to be productive? Or should this person have time for their colleagues to share and learn other aspects?
Your Personality & Charisma
Social prospecting and social selling are the art of listening to people—your clients, partners, or even competitors.
And at the end of the day, it is so true. Being genuinely authentic, kind, and empathetic is the best marketing strategy. It is about people, not mentions and keywords. Excellent sales & marketing make you forget it is sales & marketing.
Your goal should be to provide value and be approachable. Make sure that whichever social media platforms you work to optimize are grounded on a foundation of sincerity and honesty, as the alternative approach will ultimately turn off your target audience.
What Is the Salary of a Social Seller?
Based on PayScale, the average salary for a Social Seller is $55,222. However, your salary as a social seller might be up to $108k per year.
So this is social selling in a nutshell.
If you’re already using social media to promote your business, why not take it to the next step and start using it to generate more sales prospects?
Too many business people rely on their gut feeling regarding their selling strategies without considering the data that should drive their decisions.
Ultimately, leveraging your social networks when selling is critical to your success and better relationships with your prospects.