Learn
Learn
Close

They Ask, You Answer

A revolutionary approach to inbound sales, content marketing, and today’s digital consumer.

Learn MoreLearn More

Free Courses in IMPACT+

Dozens of sales, marketing, and content courses inside IMPACT+. Start learning now.

See all coursesSee all courses
Events
Events
Close
IMPACT+ Membership
IMPACT+ Membership
Close
Coaching & Implementation Services
Coaching & Implementation Services
Close

Services Overview

See how you can dramatically increase your inbound leads and sales.

Services Overview

Digital Sales and Marketing Mastery

Fast track your team’s success with IMPACT's most popular service.

Digital Sales and Marketing Mastery

Web Design

Launch a beautiful website that consistently generates leads and revenue.

Web Design

Virtual Sales Training

Equip your sales team with comprehensive training designed to help them close more deals in today's virtual-first world.

Virtual Sales Training

HubSpot Training & Implementation

Train your company to take ownership of HubSpot and get the most out of your investment.

HubSpot Training & Implementation

Case Studies

See dozens of examples of companies succeeding with Digital Sales and Marketing Mastery and They Ask, You Answer.

Case Studies
Become a Coach
Become a Coach
Close
4 Ways to Integrate Social Selling Into Your Sales Process Blog Feature

September 4th, 2014 min read

shutterstock_211504087This post originally appeared on the Force Management Blog. To read more content like this, visit the blog here.

It’s no longer a bold statement to say that your organization needs to be in the social game if you plan to achieve optimal sales productivity.

Social media helps sales organizations drive pipeline by (1) engaging with buyers earlier in the sales cycle, (2) maintaining relationships with current customers and (3) demonstrating valuable market insight. 

Eighty-seven percent of decision makers in B2B sales organizations spend time researching products and services on social media.

Just like having a website in the 1990s, buyers are now judging the legitimacy of an organization based on their presence (or lack thereof) on social media.

Research shows that salespeople who use social media are more successful, but how does a sales organization begin to embrace social activities as part of a sales process?

The first step is to recognize that social selling isn’t your magic bullet.

Creating an account on LinkedIn or Twitter doesn’t mean that the leads will start pouring in and the sales will practically close themselves. In fact, you can get hundreds of followers, thousands of likes, and even make valuable connections, but if you don’t employ a system of capitalizing on these interactions, you’ll never see the kind of return that drives bottom-line impact. 

With social media, salespeople are able to engage with prospects and current customers, demonstrate value and differentiation and gain access to individuals with whom they couldn’t get to before.

The true value of social media comes only when you as an organization are able to bridge the gaps between your buyer, your social platform and your sales process. Social media isn’t a quick fix, but incorporating it into your sales process in a way that drives repeatability will set your organization up to reap social selling rewards. 

Integrating Social Selling Into Your Sales Process

While you may get lucky here and there, a customer is unlikely to make a purchase based on your social media posts. Social selling isn’t a new way to sell. It represents one more tool in a seller’s tool belt - one that can help you execute on your critical sales skills: uncovering customer needs, articulating value and differentiation and positioning value. 

Here are Four Ways to Integrate Social Selling Into Your Sales System:

1. Right Place, Right Time:

Social media can be used for far more than just making connections with new prospects.

Use social to answer questions and continually demonstrate value throughout your sales process and even with current customers.

With the growth of the connected buyer, salespeople play a huge role in customer retention and life cycle satisfaction. Providing your salespeople with a rhythm that defines social activities as part of their sales process will help them use social throughout the sales and customer engagement process

2. Consistent Messaging:

Social media is often owned by an organization’s marketing team. However, since social media can help a sales organization reach buyers earlier in the sales cycle, it is important for sales to participate in the overall social media strategy.

As with any customer-facing materials, it is critical that sales and digital marketing work together to create message consistency. A defined process that helps sales organizations leverage marketing’s digital content will help drive consistency and repeatability.

3. Regular Engagement:

One social media post is only going to get you so far. The key to capturing the true value of social selling is to make it consumable for your sales team. Provide a process that enables your salespeople to engage regularly without it monopolizing their time. Here are some tips:

  • Use software technology to schedule posts throughout the week

  • Schedule time every day, even if it’s only 10 minutes, to engage on social media

  • During your scheduled time, respond to posts, retweets, or mentions (try to do this within 24 hours)

  • Search, or “explore” for new connections using hashtags or following trending topics

  • Set a weekly goal that puts purpose behind your social activities 

4. Post with Intention:

Intention might be the most important part of the social media process.

If you engage with a person on social media, have a purpose. Whether it’s simply to increase your visibility, or to set up a sales call, every interaction should serve a purpose.

Defining that purpose will help your sales team see the value of their engagement, rather than the burden of one more thing they need to do with their time.

Want to learn more about digital sales and marketing?

Master digital sales and marketing when you join IMPACT+ for FREE. Gain instant access to exclusive courses and keynotes taught by Marcus Sheridan, Brian Halligan, Liz Moorehead, Ann Handley, David Cancel, Carina Duffy, Zach Basner, and more.

Sign up for free
Take a peek

Access hundreds of FREE courses and keynotes

Free Course
Digital Sales & Marketing Framework for Today’s Buyers
By: Marcus Sheridan
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Keynote
A New Way to Compete & Win
By: Brian Halligan
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Virtual Keynote
How To Genuinely Feel Confident, Be Likable, And Build Trust On Camera
By: Liz Moorehead
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Keynote
The Future of Marketing is Conversational​
By: David Cancel
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Deep Dive
HubSpot On a Budget: Getting Started with HubSpot Starter Hubs
By: Courtney Caldwell
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Course
Assignment Selling: Content is Your Greatest Sales Tool
By: Marcus Sheridan
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Keynote
The Big, Bold, Brave New World of Marketing​
By: Ann Handley
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Course
Investing in Incredible Digital Sales and Marketing Results
By: Chris Duprey
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Course
How To Show Your Content Makes Money With HubSpot Marketing and Sales Hubs
By: Liz Moorehead
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Virtual Keynote
The Visual Sale
By: Marcus Sheridan & Tyler Lessard
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Keynote
Marketing Tech: What’s Now, What’s Near and What’s Not Anytime Soon?​
By: Dharmesh Shah
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Course
Inbound Lead Generation & Conversion Optimization
By: Carina Duffy
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Virtual Keynote
Fundamentals of Videography: You Can Be a Great Videographer Too
By: Zach Basner
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Deep Dive
The Ultimate Customer Service Toolkit for Any Budget
By: Andriti Gulati
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Course
6 Topics Subject Matter Experts Need to Address
By: Kevin Phillips
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Keynote
Fanocracy: The Power of Making Business Personal​
By: David Meerman Scott
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Keynote
The Power of Pillar Content
By: Liz Moorehead
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Keynote
SEO for the Future
By: Franco Valentino
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Course
Fundamentals of Social Media Marketing
By: Stephanie Baiocchi
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Deep Dive
A Practical Guide To Video Graphics
By: Colton Trcic
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Session
How To Get Your Community To Know, Like, And Trust You With Video
By: Marki Lemons Rhyal
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Course
Video Sales and Marketing Strategy
By: Zach Basner
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Here Are Some Related Articles You May Find Interesting

Want to Contribute Content to impactplus.com? Click Here.

IMPACT+ Sign Up
A FREE online learning community with on-demand courses, hundreds of expert-led sessions, thousands of your peers ready to support you, and much more.
Check it out
Hundreds of courses and recorded keynotes, completely FREE
Check it out
Access hundreds of digital sales and marketing courses and recorded keynotes, completely FREE