You may have been hearing about hearing a lot about using social media marketing to increase your company’s sales. There certainly is no shortage of pundits and experts touting the benefits of using social media for your business but how exactly does this happen?
Social media has come a long way from its humble beginnings, unfortunately it has a stigma to overcome to win over many small business owners skeptical about it’s ability to increase sales. To some, the term “social media” often creates an image of a middle-school aged teenager updating his twitter account to let friends know what she ate for lunch. While there is certainly some of that still happening, an increasing number of people – including some of your clients – are using social media to find information and solutions to their problems. In essence, social media is the online version of asking your friends and family for recommendations when you are thinking about using a new product or service. Used used effectively social media can increase sales by providing your prospective clients valuable and relevant information and encourage them to pick up the phone to have an in-depth conversation. A well-executed social marketing strategy is one that provides leads calling in already educated about how your products and services solve their problems – which leads to higher sales conversions and customer loyalty.
Below we’ve outlined a plan for action for using social media to educate your prospective clients and increase your sales conversions:
- Get inside the head of your clients - EVERYONE says this and it is because so few do it. Because you are an expert in your field, it is easy to approach marketing conversations from a “solution-side” perspective. Start with the problem and build the bridge to your solutions.
- Write content that is useful and actionable - no one likes being stuck in a problem, so make sure that your content is easy to read and sheds some much needed light on the problem. Helping your customers overcome uncertainty – simply understanding the problem – helps reduce resistance to sales efforts.
- Use social media to get the word out AND listen - treat social networks like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+ as if they were billboards on the side of a major freeway. Now imagine that you could hear what people were saying about your ads as they drove by. Now imagine that you can talk back to them and have a meaningful conversation. This is the power of social media – it’s not just for teenagers.
- Use analytics and tools to get customers offline and on the phone - a dirty little secret in the marketing world is that there are a number of helpful analytical tools to know whether or not social media is causing your phone to ring. We found a useful tool, CallRail, that tracks which social networks and marketing efforts are driving people to call your sales team. It is a perfect compliment to any phone/telecom system.
Social media is a powerful tool that compliments the sales process and when used in conjunction with a lot of useful tools, enable business managers to confidently step into the world of social media marketing.