Businesses dislike receiving cold calls from sales people and marketers. Research suggests it's one of the most frequently cited pet peeves in business and it often makes a person's blood boil. Even worse, cold calling has a success rate of between one and three percent — a significantly small number that might not even justify the time and resources spent on this marketing method (https://blog.hubspot.com/sales/the-pet-peeves-of-todays-buyer).
Luckily, there are a number of other ways to reach prospects and drive prospects through your B2B sales funnel. Social selling — a method where marketers reach business clients through social channels like Facebook and Twitter — could prove far more lucrative. In fact, this type of marketing could boost conversions, lure more leads to your online store and drive business growth. Here's how B2B sales can benefit from social selling.
Unlike conventional types of B2B sales — phone calls, direct mail and the like — social media networks like Facebook and Twitter let you communicate with clients 24 hours a day, seven days a week in countries around the world.
You can segment your client base by geolocation and create marketing campaigns for each group for more effective results. Send marketing messages via Instagram for your clients in Canada, for example, while delivering targeted social messages via Twitter for leads in the United States.
Studies show that social selling is one of the most effective ways to reach a global audience. A whopping 78 percent of salespeople who use social selling outperform their peers, according to research, while 62 percent of marketers who don't use this method miss their sales quotas completely (https://blog.hubspot.com/sales/social-selling-stats-that-will-inspire-you#sm.0001z0lanp7j9e6lzmf20yoigroko).
With conventional B2B sales, you're often preaching to the unconverted. You'll likely call clients to inquire whether they are interested in your product and service. Most will probably have never heard of your brand before. Others might have but probably won't be interested.
While this method can still prove lucrative, social selling can produce far more effective results. That's because you are targeting leads who already follow your social profiles. These clients know a little about your brand, what you stand for and what you specialize in, making lead generation so much easier.
A whopping 82 percent of business prospects are on social media, which means you can target clients even if they don't follow your pages (https://www.brainshark.com/ideas-blog/2016/september/social-selling-stats-b2b-sales-reps). One of the most effective social platforms to drive interest in your brand and get yourself noticed is LinkedIn. Here, you can converse with other businesses in your niche, talk with suppliers and potential partners and mingle with industry experts, influencers, and authority figures in your niche. One of the most effective social platforms to drive interest in your brand and get yourself noticed is LinkedIn. Here, you can converse with other businesses in your niche, talk with suppliers and potential partners and mingle with industry experts, influencers, and authority figures in your niche.
Using traditional B2B sales can be a cumbersome, complex process. If you're using direct mail, you'll need to wait for your recipient to receive your message and then for them to reply. The phone can be quicker but not quick enough. You might have to call a client several times before you can speak to him or her. Even then, it might not be the right time to call and you could lose out on a sale.
With social selling, the process is a lot easier. According to research, average daily social media usage of global Internet users is 118 minutes per day, just a whisker under two hours (https://www.statista.com/statistics/433871/daily-social-media-usage-worldwide/). This means you are far more likely to reach certain clients and convince them to sign up to your services or purchase your products.
Many social media users consume the technology across a wide range of devices, including desktop, laptop, and mobile, too, increasing your chances of securing a deal. You'll be able to optimize your lead generation campaign across multiple channels for more effective results and bigger revenue.
B2B sales aren't just about generating new leads and encouraging them to visit your online store. You can also retain your existing clients, too. This marketing method makes it easy to track and monitor high-value clients that you want to continue to work with. You can then communicate with them via your social channels and exchange marketing messages to convince them to invest in your brand.
Another way to keep interest in your company consistent is to enhance your social profiles for better client engagement. This means updating your Facebook, Pinterest or LinkedIn pages on a regular basis with must-read content that keeps your audience engaged. This way, you can continue to have a relationship with your business clients, even if they are not currently buying your products. Don't forget to encourage your readers to share and like your content, too.
Research has shown that social selling drives more sales than traditional sales models, meaning this is the most lucrative way to communicate with clients. Ninety-one percent of B2B buyers are now using social media to reach clients, a number that will likely increase in the next few years as this technology becomes even more commonplace (https://www.superoffice.com/blog/social-selling/).
Unlike phone calls and direct mail, you can reach more people in a quicker time frame with social selling. Use this marketing method to tell clients about your brand new products or announce company news that secures a new contract or investment.
Millennials are one of the most lucrative age groups in business. If you are trying to reach younger clients and convince them to do business with you, using social selling can provide you with a significant return on your investment. Many millennials are active on social media and often check their profiles on a regular basis. This means you can send them marketing material over a period of time, telling them about your brand and why you want to work with them. You can use your social platform's direct message system to exchange information, brainstorm ideas and collaborate on business projects.
Some of the world's biggest brands are using B2B social selling, and you could, too. This marketing technique boosts sales, helps you retain more customers, lets you reach a truly global audience, shortens the sales cycle and helps you target more valuable leads. Start by creating a solid B2B sales campaign that lets you communicate with your clients over a period of time. This way, you can move prospects through the sales funnel, turning them from leads into fully-fledged customers.
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