Social selling has become more than just a buzzword—it’s become a strategy that brings marketing and sales professionals together to create and nurture more authentic relationships with customers and prospects. The esteemed panel of speakers shared their insights on how to best utilize content, social media tools and sales strategy to qualify leads and close deals.
Social Sales Strategy
One of the biggest hurdles any sales professional encounters is how to catch a prospect’s attention without coming off as a pushy car salesman. All sales professionals carry revenue accountability, which means they have a goal to achieve—finding and closing new business.
Creating a successful sales strategy is about understanding the audience, their struggles and presenting them with solutions—not products.
According to Caitlin Roberson, VP West at Skyword, the best way to reach a prospect without turning them off is to create and tell a story that is relevant to their team’s priorities and experiences, not focusing on product positioning. By doing so, a sales professional can create a connection and build trust before the actual sales pitch.
Working Together: Marketing and Sales
“When you think about what the role of modern marketing and modern selling is, it’s that intersection of humanity with brand message. The bringing forward the insight and understanding of the customer with the technology of the content,” said Meg Bear, Group VP at Oracle Social Cloud.
While it’s the responsibility of a sales professional to develop their own brand voice through social networks, their source for content should come from a partnership with marketing. Marketing teams help with not only content curation, but also with providing sales leaders with measurements of which messages are resonating with the market.
This way, the two entities can work together to make sure the content and sales strategies are aligned to achieve the goal of broadening and strengthening the relationship with current customers, as well as reach new customers and create loyal advocates.
Bear reiterated that strong communication inside the organization becomes critical in bringing these two departments together: “Marketing is their key partner…to work together to drive that deeper relationship with the customer,” said Bear.
Enabling Social Selling
For a sales team or organization that is looking for social selling, getting started can be uncharted territory, but according to Carlos Gil, Senior Social Marketing Manager at LinkedIn Sales Solutions, “It starts with building a social selling culture.”
Sales leaders and executives should be advocates for sales professionals when it comes to social selling. These leaders should create a social selling culture by encouraging and empowering sales professionals within their organizations.
Leaders should encourage sales professionals to create a professional presence online, and empower them with the right tools to target and reach prospects. Gil stated that building a professional profile with tools like LinkedIn is inherently important for establishing credibility right out of the gate.
Qualifying Leads with Social Tools
Utilizing these social tools to create and post rich content will help sales teams reach targeted prospects, and serve as a database of information to help intelligently engage with those prospects during the qualification process.
Isaac Garcia, SVP and General Manager at Central Desktop, said that during his team’s lead qualification process, they are using social tools to develop a rich profile on who they are targeting. Garcia went on to elaborate about his team’s process, saying that his team will use LinkedIn to check a prospect’s networks to identify the decision maker in the organization.
“We’ve definitely qualified more opportunities with these social tools,” said Garcia.
It’s clear that social tools have become essential for the modern sales professional to find and conduct new business. Ready to learn more about the best ways to utilize social tools to qualify leads, curate content and create an online professional presence?
Watch the entire webinar on demand and get the answers to all your questions regarding social selling.
And check out PGi’s free eBook, Join the Social Sales Revolution: Your Guide to the New Way to Sell, to learn more from this panel.