Social Selling is here to stay. A lot of people start to see this and a lot of people start to act like real social sellers! I’m a big believer in the importance of social selling for every professional. But like every other social media tactic, social selling is changing. Change is a good thing to me, it means that we as social sellers have more and innovate opportunities to be successful with social selling. When I look at the changes in the social media landscape I see a couple of trends that will change the way we do social selling:
Trend 1: Video content
Video content is massive for social media marketing. And this means it will influence and change the way we do social selling as well. People prefer to consume information via video. This means that you, as a social seller, need to leverage this opportunity. Personally, I’m very excited that native video is part of LinkedIn’s roadmap. This means it will be easier to share video content with our network. Social sellers have the opportunity to build their personal brand using their own video content. We all have a mobile phone in our pocket which means we can create our own video’s to tell our story. This will help to build better and stronger relationships because we make it so much more personal and real. Snapchat and Instagram stories have already proven that we are not afraid of the camera. If we, as social sellers, create video content that is relevant and interesting for our network we have a massive opportunity to get so much more out of our personal brand.
Trend 2: Sales funnel and buying cycle
Content is important for social selling success. But social selling is no longer about sharing random content. Social sellers need to understand the buying cycle and the sales funnel and use this knowledge when they share content with your network. Tools like Sales Navigator help social sellers to understand what’s on the mind of their prospects and who are involved in the buying cycle. It is so longer necessary to share random content with prospects, with all the social data and information that is available we can now be very personal and relevant for every prospect or customer. When social sellers share content that fits the different stages of the sales funnel they can nurture prospects down the funnel. In the coming months, it will be possible to use Sales Navigator data (saved leads) to target audiences with ads which mean that sales and marketing can work even more closely together!
Trend 3: Multiple social channels
We as social media users no longer think in separate channels, we think across social channels. This means that a lot of users (including yourself) don’t really see the difference between the channels anymore. We share content across multiple channels and we know people consume our content across those channels. This is exactly the same when we look at social selling. Social selling is no longer a LinkedIn activity it goes across channels. We as social sellers have the opportunity to find information and data about our prospects on Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat, Pinterest or Twitter. And our prospects and customers expect us to review those channels and to be prepared before we send a message or pick up the phone. (and yes, social selling helps us to be successful online and offline!)
Trend 4: Everybody is a social seller
Slowly people start to see that social selling is no longer only a tactic for salespeople and I believe this trend will grow. Every professional is a social seller. Social selling can be used to get a promotion or a dream job. This works for sole traders, people in B2C companies or B2B companies and across every department. Social selling to me means building a personal brand that helps you to be successful in your career. So if you are not in sales and you want to be successful start social selling today!
Trend 5: Quality over quantity
This is a trend I’m very happy with. Social selling is no longer about the number of followers or connections you have. It is about the quality of your network. More and more people start to see that building a relevant and engaged network is much more valuable than having a big network of random people. But this trend also means it will be more difficult for social sellers to connect with prospects and customers. Personal messages, nurturing and engaging with prospects will be key before sending connection requests or before scheduling calls or visits. I believe we will have smaller networks but we will get better results out of our social selling activities.
What do you think of those trends? Are you ready for the new way of Social Selling?
With love, from Dublin…