The foundations of an effective social selling on LinkedIn

salespoeple social selling social selling program social selling strategy socialselling srategy Oct 03, 2023

As we navigate the intricacies of the digital age, leveraging platforms like LinkedIn for sales has become a must. But with the vast expanse of the internet and the noise that accompanies it, how do you ensure your social selling activities are focused and result-oriented? Let’s break down six key considerations every sales professional should ponder before diving into the world of social selling.

1. Understanding your customer base

The age-old debate: Should we target new customers or focus on the ones we already have? It’s an acknowledged fact that selling to existing customers is easier than acquiring new ones. These loyal clients could be potential goldmines. Thus, it's essential to ask: Have we fully tapped into our current customer base? If the answer is no, LinkedIn could be your best ally. By checking which existing customers are active on LinkedIn and then integrating them into your network, you can harness the digital realm to strengthen and expand those relationships.

However, if your role leans heavily on new client acquisition, you must define an ideal customer profile. Factors such as preferred industry, company size, location, and their activity level on LinkedIn can provide valuable insights. It’s critical not to chase prospects who'll never convert, and to always remember: in the digital age, having a vague "customer who wants to buy" isn't enough.

2. Identifying the buying committee

Sales isn’t a solo act. Especially in sectors like IT, multiple roles influence purchasing decisions. It's no longer about a single decision-maker; roles like Transformation Directors and Security Managers are now pivotal in the buying process. It's essential to identify and understand each player's significance.

3. Role clarity in the decision-making process

With multiple roles in the picture, understanding each one's responsibility becomes crucial. This can range from:

  • Initiators who recognize a problem and seek solutions.
  • Decision Makers, typically from C-suite or high-level management, who give the green light.
  • Supporters and Influencers who back the decision-making process.
  • Those in charge of financial approval and negotiations.
  • End Users who might also inadvertently slow down the purchasing process.

To tailor your social selling approach, knowing who plays what role and their activity on LinkedIn is essential.

4. Evaluating client activity on LinkedIn

LinkedIn Sales Navigator is an invaluable tool for this. It offers a plethora of features, from checking the target group's potential and engaging with their content, to finding reasons for initiating contact. A strong client presence on LinkedIn means you need to be there, actively participating. On the flip side, a lack of activity ensures you don't waste precious resources.

5. Addressing client challenges

Modern-day sales isn't about pitching products; it's about providing solutions. Flip the script and view your offerings from the client’s perspective. What challenges do they face? How can your product or service address those challenges? By focusing on their pain points, you can craft a tailored, problem-solving approach.

6. Content is king

The importance of content in today's digital age cannot be overstated. Collaborating with marketing teams to understand what content resonates with your target demographic can be a game-changer. Answer their queries, provide value, and position yourself as a trusted advisor.

These preparations not only streamline your social selling strategy but also save time, money, and effort. By focusing on the right projects, defining your customer's profile accurately, and creating pertinent content, sales professionals can truly shine in their roles.

In summary, whether you're already utilizing social selling or just starting out, answering these questions lays a robust foundation for B2B sales and marketing strategies. The digital realm awaits, and armed with these insights, you're well on your way to mastering social selling on LinkedIn.

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