Social media is the king of the internet. It is impossible to escape something that has taken the world over. Recent research has revealed that Americans spend more time on Facebook than they do with their own pets. Sixty-two percent of Americans get their news from social media sites like Reddit and Twitter. Half of the American public turned to social media to get educated about the 2016 U.S. presidential race.
If you’re a business, you can’t afford to miss out on the sales potential of such a massive digital market. Companies need to develop new strategies to capitalize on the opportunity social media represents. Namely, social selling.
Talk with Them, Not at Them
The core principle of social selling deals with developing a meaningful bond with potential customers. It has to be authentic and impactful—facilitate situations where you’re talking with potential buyers, not at them. Yes, you are marketing to them to sell a product, but your goal is also to establish brand trust.
One of the better ways for a business to accomplish this is with social CRM such as Agile CRM, which IBM called the “new frontier in customer relationship management” over the course of a study that surveyed more than 1,000 customers and 350 executives. Social CRM means integrating social media with your CRM.
This allows you and your team to learn about your customers—their fears, concerns, needs and desires—and cater your content and interactions appropriately. If you can consistently deliver actionable content, then you’re ahead of the curve and your competitors. You’ll become a go-to source for customers seeking content. They will think of your brand and business when they want something or they’re ready to make a purchase.
Another tip is to strengthen the relationships you’ve started. Don’t let them stagnate, and don’t let your social channels become an endless series of ads or pitches. Make sure your customers know they can depend on your brand and not feel like they’re being sold to. After all, Americans today are exposed to anywhere from 3,000 to 20,000 brands per day. With social CRM, the connections you make with customers can be deeper and more intimate because you’re building them through genuine social interactions. They will remember you.
You should also consider the benefits of going cross-channel. Integrate a standardized message across all platforms that highlights your ability to keep customers happy on a consistent basis. Remember, reliability is key.
Agile CRM is a great tool for this. It lets you manage your social presence and customer interactions across Facebook, Twitter and Google+ while simultaneously running email and marketing campaigns. It’s a true Social CRM.
Grab Contacts from Social Channels
With Agile CRM, you can pull profiles from sites like Twitter and Facebook, add them directly into the CRM and see real-time social profiles on the contact pages with Twitter. From there, it’s simple to turn those social leads into prospects by monitoring their behavior and interacting right from the dashboard.
You have to create trust with those profiles, however, because behind every profile is a person. Treat your fans and customers with respect. In a way, you’re rewarding them for their attention by providing content and solutions to their problems. They in turn will reward you with revenue.
To continue building that trust and respect, consider offering more than content. Offer free access to events like marketing consultations and webinars your followers will find useful.
Social selling—and, by extension, the social CRM you use—is a combination of marketing and sales. It is at once an outreach to attract potential buyers and the act of building a relationship with them to make a sale. With these tips and a solid strategy, there’s no reason your business can’t master the task.