You’ve probably figured out by now that social media alone doesn’t make a business. In fact, at each of my social media trainings, I emphasize that social media marketing isn’t a magic bullet that’s going to turn your business around overnight. Businesses take work as you know.
However, social media marketing has opened the door to connecting with your buyers at various stages in the sales cycle. According to B2B Marketing, “B2B buyers today are 70-90% of the way through their “buying journey” before they reach out to a vendor.”
Yet, many B2B companies are struggling with how to get value out of social + content. From my conversations with B2B salespeople and marketers, there still seems to be confusion around how social works and it’s value in the sales process.
Why not think of social media as the ice breaker? It’s the chatter at a networking event that can lead to meeting with a prospect.
Here’s how social media works:
Option 1: You connect with someone on Facebook, LinkedIn, etc. you forget about one another and disappear into the dark tunnel of cyberspace. It happens all the time, just like in real life.
Option 2: You connect with someone on Facebook, LinkedIn, etc. and you start liking, commenting on and sharing one another’s content because you like it. After a few weeks or months of this, you feel like you’ve developed a relationship with one another and you look forward to their content in your newsfeed. (This can work for a company account too).
It happens organically because you share similar outlooks. You’ll get to know one another through the types of stuff you each post. You’ll know if you resonant with one another or not.
It’s an easy way to “meet” people from the comfort of your home or office.
That’s your introduction.
They’re no longer “cold”. They have an idea of who you are. Now, your content–blog posts, videos, white papers, etc. has the opportunity to take your introduction deeper so when it’s time to make a buying decision, you’re there, a trusted adviser.
Deepening Connections Through Useful Content
For example, let’s say you’re in the business of streamlining widget production. You have developed a system to trim up to 50 hours off the usual process which saves thousands of dollars.
The Action Plan
- Your social media strategy includes posting your blog posts on LinkedIn.
- A widget maker happens across your LinkedIn post where you offer a few tips.
- They’d like to learn more so they visit your website.
- On your site, they’re able to download an ebook with more tips and tricks.
- You follow up with a well-crafted email series and–if you’re really on your game– in social media asking them what they think.
Each of these “touches” is an opportunity to build your trust factor. When it’s time for the purchase, your company has provided useful and helpful material to your prospects. You’re credible.
How much do you think you can increase your sales if you meet your prospects along the way?
Simple, yes. Easy? No. You still have to put in the work. What will you do today to build your trust in the marketplace?