While the marketing team is the one that is responsible for generating buzz about your company's product or service, the sales department are the ones that will be dealing directly with customers and forming the relationships that will lead to ultimate success and growth. Sales is largely a people-oriented business and using social media can make a huge difference. Most salespeople aren't familiar with the various ways that social media can be a boon to business. However, it is becoming more and more important to utilize modern technological tools to get a leg up on your competition. Here you will find 5 easy ways to leverage social media for your sales team.
Reputation is Vital
When it comes to dealing with customers and closing sales, you need to know what they are thinking about your team, your company and your product. The reputation that you have nurtured as you have grown is going to be the most important part of your team's ability to close sales. Social media provides a quick, easy and accessible way to keep your finger on that reputation in real time. By having an active fan base on a social media network, you can get real-time updates about specific reactions to your product. Promotions can be tracked based upon immediate reactions- something that has never been possible for sales teams before.
Keep Your Ear to the Ground
There is nothing that will boost sales like having relevant and up-to-date information that can be put to use right away. Social media is king when it comes to finding out about people: both what they think and how they structure their lifestyles. When it comes to working with sales, you absolutely must be on top of this information gathering process. It is essential to knowing the needs of your customers and what products and services they will be open to. For example, if you know that half of your fan base are young parents, you aren't going to try to market a retirement program; if you do, you will approach it in an entirely different way than you would with a more mature audience. Social media is notorious for being excessively open, and this is a huge advantage to a sales team.
Lead Generation is Key
While you will probably begin your social media experience with customers that may have already worked with you, don't negate the chance to use the forum to find new leads for your sales team. Regularly search for updates about your product or service, and that of your competitors. Also, many social networking sites follow a format where any interaction you have with an existing customer is seen by their own network. Developing relationships with your fan base will ensure that you gain more exposure with their associates, leading to a higher likelihood of generating new leads. Different social networks have different advantages when it comes to lead generation, so become familiar with each forum that you use and determine the best ways to tap into the extensive customer base that is available to your sales team.
When it comes to sales, nobody in the field is unfamiliar with the old saying that word-of-mouth is the best form of promotion. However, this can be a very slow process. On a social network, though, things can quickly go viral. Recently, a popular social networking site saw millions of women post their bra color in an attempt to promote breast cancer awareness. This began with one person and an idea, and spread like the plague! Imagine how much better the impact would have been if the campaign had been more organized and there was a connected base. This is what you should try to create. Get your customers connected, and talking amongst themselves. Be accessible on your social networks; share information; let your customers pre-sell for you.
Be the Facilitator
Not everyone feels like they are tech savvy, and there are likely people that you would like to reach that are in this position. When you begin using social media as a sale's strategy, you may have to overcome some biases and roadblocks along the way. Take the opportunity to actively promote social media, in general, among your customer base. The more people that use these sites, the better your sales team will be able to do their job. Offer workshops and seminars discussing social media and how it can help you stay in touch. You might be surprised at how many people are interested, but don't know where to start. Offering this instruction can be the first step to developing a long-term relationship with potential customers.
by David Steel
David Steel is one of the nation’s leading experts on the topic of Sales Motivation. He’s a popular and widely recognized author and motivational speaker who works with businesses and individuals as a sales management consultant, offering insights into hiring, compensation, goals and strategies, and teaching the use of sales management skills to build and maintain highly aggressive sales teams. David teaches that incredible sales management is available to all of us; an invisible force that guides and motivates sales teams. When we follow his proven strategies, we are led to sharp increases in sales, less employee turn-over and a sales force focused on selling. He believes we all have the ability to access and develop great talent and achieve long-term goals. For more information he can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Website: http://www.thesteelmethod.com
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