More and more Sales Directors are now using the Social Selling approach to strengthen relations with potential and existing customers on LinkedIn. Times have changed, and so has the sales model. This guide will provide you with an overview of the essential points to consider for a successful LinkedIn journey.
In a digital world where the Hybrid Sales Approach has stepped forward with gigantic steps in the last 18 months, there is a significant need for acknowledging and being aware of this shift. Read more about the Hybrid Sales Approach here.
That is why Social Selling is crucial in your sales strategy. In order to create a successful journey with Social Selling in your organization, I will give you five practical tips:
1. Training, training, training
Good sales reps can also learn how to work professionally with Social Selling. I have trained more than 12,000 people, and my conclusion is clear: Basically, the investment in the education of your employees is better when you start with the commercial people or sales representatives, who already fulfill their personal budgets. For this reason, I tell many of the Sales Directors I meet that: “If your people can sell, then I’ll teach them how to succeed with Social Selling.” If they can’t sell, Social Selling is not the solution 😊.
2. The SSI score
LinkedIn has developed a simple and free tool called Social Selling Index (SSI). Using this tool is an easy way to identify your most active salespeople on LinkedIn. The tool makes the users who benefit most from their Social Selling skills more visible. With the help of the SSI score, your sales reps can see how they rank in the industry and against their network. Read more about the Social Selling Index here.
3. Being constant on LinkedIn is key
Social Selling takes time and does not follow the traditional sales approach. Today, most sales organizations approach their customers through digital channels. That is why it is essential to follow the steps for a successful Social Selling journey:
- Connect with relevant people
- Enrich potential and existing clients
- Build trust.
The pull effect must be monitored before taking action. After that, you can develop a personal pitch based on the potential customer’s specific challenges and how these challenges can be solved.
4. So-Me Guidelines
The presence of a Social Media Policy, which includes considerations about how the sales organization uses LinkedIn (and other social media platforms), is necessary.
Remember that you must acknowledge that it is your employees’ personal LinkedIn profiles that are being used for Social Selling. Therefore, you should consider the issues that may arise in this context. For example, problems could be the use of language, content shared, etc., and making them aware that they both must communicate and act as a private person and as an employee on LinkedIn.
5. Be a role model
As a leader, you should monitor the value of your Social Selling effort (along with marketing).
The quantity of traffic could measure the value of your website, conversions based on downloaded material, registrations for seminars/webinars, meetings that are booked through LinkedIn, increased profile ranking for your employees, etc.