The arrival of Social Selling hasn’t replaced the fundamental usefulness of traditional sales techniques such as cold calling and email. Instead, social media channels offer new convenience and efficiency in establishing relationships and closing deals. Social Selling can enhance these sales techniques when you engage potential buyers with relevance and context. Here is a quick look at how Social Selling can help streamline five traditional sales tactics for the modern sales professional.

Cold Calling

When you make your first contact with someone by phone, your success hinges entirely on your ability to quickly establish rapport. Social Selling can provide you availability to a quickly-accessed treasure-house of information on your prospect, to help build rapport. You’ll understand the relevant duties associated with their job title by reading what they post on LinkedIn while Twitter can give you a sense of the person’s day to day pain points.

Nurturing Leads

The core method for nurturing your list of leads is by establishing authentic commonality and staying in frequent contact. Entrepreneur.com comments that “Companies that excel at lead nurturing generate 50 percent more sales-ready leads at 33 percent lower cost.” This statistic is presented in an article on Social Selling, in which writer Monica Zent states, “Social Selling is about engaging with people in a disarming way.” Social media outlets allow you to share your values and ideas in a highly efficient way, forging and maintaining relationships.

Asking for Referrals

Every salesperson knows that the core of successful selling is to always be seeking new referrals. James Berkeley, a management consultant interviewed by Forbes, estimates that over 80 percent of his clients came to him by way of a referral. Berkeley suggests listing your 12 highest-potential relationships, and then mapping out these people’s peers and contacts before asking for referrals to those peers. Because social media is built on networks, that mapping-out process is now effortlessly streamlined for you; people’s lists of professional contacts are readily available on whichever social media platform they use. Furthermore, the ask is easier because making referrals is the matter of a moment; everyone is already connected, so an important new contact can be formed with just a link and a few introductory words.

Sales Emails

Direct personal email contact is a powerful tool for salespeople, and its utility is enhanced by social media. HubSpot marketing statistics found that “59% of B2B marketers say email is the most effective channel for generating revenue.” The reach of social media means you let users know about the valuable content that you offer. This content may include an email newsletter that they sign up for directly from your Facebook page, or it may consist of specialized high-value information via an e-book or video on your website. Users who find you through their social media networks will be motivated to give you their email addresses to gain access to the extra content or discount that you offer, and you can subsequently maintain contact by way of direct email.

Sales Presentations

When you make sales presentations, it’s helpful to know who your buyer’s competitors are. If you do a bit of homework before your sales pitch, you will be able to show your buyers how your product can help solve their pain points. You can use platforms like Hoovers or Crunchbase to get a sense of who the competitors are (or just do some Google searching), and then add extra intelligence from LinkedIn, Twitter and Google Alerts.

The digital changes in today’s marketplace can sometimes lead salespeople to wonder if the expertise they’ve developed during their career is still relevant. The answer is that the human art of selling is more important than ever, and Social Selling enhances that further. It doesn’t eliminate any of the traditional sales techniques however it does add a new layer for efficiently accomplishing what you already know how to do.

Jamie Shanks

Author: Jamie Shanks

Jamie Shanks is a world-leading Social Selling expert and author of the book, "Social Selling Mastery - Scaling Up Your Sales And Marketing Machine For The Digital Buyer". A true pioneer in the space of digital sales transformation, Jamie Shanks has trained over 10,000's of sales professionals and leaders all around the world.

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