This blog is a collaboration between Falcon.io and Netino by Webhelp.
Why social selling?
With millions of conversations now happening on social media, it is a great opportunity for marketers to actively listen to communities and engage with audiences which brands couldn’t even reach before. Beyond engagement, social media is now becoming the right place to increase the scope of your sales strategy.
More and more sales professionals are incorporating social selling into their sales initiatives as one of their favorite channels. It does not only concern a B2B niche of professionals trying to get the first contact on LinkedIn or Twitter. It is also a major B2C sales opportunity.
Today, a GE Capital study shows that 81% of B2C shoppers will search online before making a purchase. That’s an impressive figure so this article is designed to guide you with the first steps toward a social selling journey!
1) Define your objectives
When starting a proactive social selling approach on social media, your main driver is what you actually want to get out of it. Do you need to increase sales? Do you want to have a push or pull sales strategy? At which step of your sales funnel do you want to reach your customers? Do you just want to warm them up (closer to awareness strategy) or close your sale?
Along with this objective, you should also decide on the length of this campaign, as this will establish the framework for your project and determine how you are going to approach the project as a whole.
2) Choose the teaser
Based on the objective of your campaign, you will need to decide how you would like to trigger engagement. That includes thinking about the type of conversation you want to get involved in. Some examples:
- Conversations where your brand is mentioned
- Conversations where your competitors are mentioned
- Conversations where an audience discusses generic subjects with little to no connection with your business
You may be thinking what does this Tweet have to do with social selling? Well, picture it. This conversation is a social jackpot for an insurance company scouting the web interested in Twitter users that just bought a car. They can jump in on the conversation, not only to sell car insurance but offer their congratulations and therefore establish the initial contact.
While there are countless opportunities to engage with target audiences online, it is of utmost importance that you set an objective for each of them.
Finally, you should choose the right call to action. And remember, it may differ on a per campaign or audience basis. Do you offer a discount, link to a website, link to a form, an appointment proposition or initiate a DM?
3) Understand your customers and choose the right segment
Deciding the client persona that you will address will not only help you target the right people but also help ensure consistency in message and tone of voice. Having this in mind will help you to be more focused when engaging with the audience and therefore increase the efficiency of your campaign.
A good way to understand your customers and where they like to express themselves is through social listening analysis. Through Falcon.io you can find new, relevant audiences to target by building social listening queries based on product, category or popular topics just to name a few.
Thanks to an audience analysis you can define aggregated customer segments by topic. Do you want to create a list of people that like tennis? Identify them on Twitter and create your specific audience list.
Your segmentation could be based on gender, demographics, age, but also on communities or interests.
Use Case: We Are Unicorns and Social Listening
In conversation with Chris Dickerson, Senior Strategist and Partner at marketing agency We Are Unicorns it became clear that one of the first places to get a temperature check of what people are thinking is social media. Social media is a rich channel through which to collect valuable customer feedback to improve customer service and provide valuable insights to your entire organization. But where do you start? You want to tap into social listening to monitor conversations about your brand and engage with your customers.
Social listening is important because it allows you keep your pulse on what your customers are staying up-to-date with, latest trends and how you respond to those.
Tracking mentions is essential to an effective engagement strategy. However, when you examine the context and larger trends from those conversations, social listening can help you communicate better with your target audience.
Twitter alone contributes to 500 million daily tweets—so which conversations do you listen to? It’s humanly impossible to go through every single interaction with this volume of consumer and industry data.
We Are Unicorns uses Falcon’s Listen module to check in on sentiment and see the 5,000-foot visual view of how people are using hashtags, what customers are saying and what type of content images they are posting to see if they can feed into that.
4) Choose a platform of engagement and engage!
If you are a B2C company, Twitter is probably your best ground for development as most profiles are public and conversation really lies in the DNA of the network. However, you still need to be careful not to cross the line and make sure your engagement efforts are not perceived as intrusive.
For a B2B company, Linkedin is probably more appropriate. However, it might be more difficult to access conversations as Linkedin is not as open as Twitter (especially in groups, which can be private).
Once you have chosen the right platform, you can start your engagement process:
- Select your social seller dream team
- Pick the engagement platform that suits you the best
- Start engaging your defined audience with your best teaser
A social inbox can help sort the (ideally) high volume of incoming messages.
5) Define KPIs
In order to be able to drive a successful proactive campaign, you will need to decide on and define KPI’s to follow in order to measure your success. Some examples: conversion rate, engagement rate, conversation volume or click rate.
This should be directly linked with your objectives and be set in such a way that demonstrates the quality of your engagement activities without being impossible to reach.
In a social selling, metrics are the keystone of a successful campaign. Monitoring your KPIs will help you optimize your strategy and results: pivot your teaser, adjust your audience. We’ll leave you with a final thought: A/B testing is great if you’re orchestrating a large social selling campaign.