Seventy-nine percent (79%) of sales reps who incorporated social selling achieved their quota over the last calendar or fiscal year compared to 43% of the Industry Average. Right out of the gate let’s consider a few more things:
- 5% of B2B purchasing is influenced by social.
- 57% of buying decisions are made before the rep gets involved
- 97% of the time cold calls do not work, down every year since 2010
No matter if you are focused on B2B or B2C audiences, a social communications strategy for your sales force is essential. That is not to say that giving your sales team access to social channels will immediately result in increased sales, but a carefully planned approach to day-to-day use of social media will help build toward a trusted advisor role and set you apart from the rest.
Using online channels and digital communications has never been more relevant. Buyers are finding their information online, and from unbiased sources they trust. One particular move in 2012 really stands out as my favorite social selling partnership of 2012, and that was the Nimble and HootSuite integration that happened towards the end of the year. This is groundbreaking because you have Nimble which is the CRM solution with social in its core, and you have HootSuite which is a social selling enablement and management tool that oozes social from its DNA. The Nimble app for HootSuite enables users to transform limited social profiles into complete contact records with conversation history and context. Combining these tool solutions offer the first real sCRM that gives a multi-layered three-dimensional social view of your customers, prospects, and partners. Long have I yearned for the ability to nurture and interact with leads in real-time. Let’s see how these two leading tools for social selling work together to amplify the power of social contacts.
How though, do we even find these prospects on social? If your sales team operates geographically, you can set up a search that is restricted to a specific location and target people talking about keywords in your space. The beautiful thing is as you identify them you can just drag and drop them from your search into your running list of prospects. A simple Twitter user search allows you to find contacts by searching their bio. This is a quick and easy way to find important contacts by company and/or job title on Twitter by using HootSuite.
How can you close the loop on social selling? Let’s start by surrounding your prospects socially, and connecting with them on a multitude of social networks. With HootSuite you can monitor current prospects and hound out new ones through strategic searching, list building, and monitoring. Below are two streams every sales person should have. First, a Twitter list of all current prospects you build and maintain daily. By monitoring this list you can learn about what makes them tick, who they’re talking with, and if any buying triggers are noticeable. Once you build out your list, I find it help full to filter the stream by Klout influence score as it helps me decipher decision makers as they usually, but not always, have a reasonably high score if they’re active on social media.
Connect & Close the Loop
Once you find someone that sets your spidey senses off and more knowledge or action is needed, this is where Nimble becomes so crucial. The Nimble plug-in gives you quick access to all the key information from the Nimble contact, such as: other social networks they are using, any calendar bookings you both have with each other, background info, email, phone, and date of last contact, if any. I use this tool to identify the other social networks that they may have and socially surround them by connecting via several channels. The Nimble plug-in can launch you directly in to the contact page to log any activities, notes, or next steps. These two solutions empower sales teams to find, manage, track, and engage with partners and prospects in order to deliver the right message to right person at the right time.
Questions and comments? Please add them below, or reach out to me directly.