A big part of Social Selling is about moving up the funnel and engaging with buyers that may not yet have a buying need or indeed are researching their buying need.
I often liken this to sales moving up into marketing territory where traditionally they would be sourcing leads to hand over to sales. Similarly, marketing are moving into sales territory, crafting content and measuring their impact on pipeline acceleration.
The truth is that in an inbound driven world where we have to attract rather that interrupt the buyer, we need to focus both sales and marketing on the same goal - revenue.
I find that during Social Selling workshops we deliver, the temptation to jump in and engage with the buyer is just too much for some people. They looked at my profile - shall I connect? They liked my content - shall I connect?
There are engagement triggers that you need to watch in order to connect but it needs to be done with consideration and caution. Social selling is about holding back to some extent. Adding value. The moment you start "selling" is the moment you start pushing your buyer away.
In this environment, sales professionals must learn how to engage the buyer indirectly. Your sales team members will have indirect contact with a potential buyer long before they achieve direct contact. After all, your sales reps shouldn’t be waiting until buyers are almost 70 percent of the way through their buying journey to reach out. Instead, utilize a multiple-channel strategy to create a strong social presence with engaging content. Buyers will still want to communicate with an actual person at the end of the journey, but the initial grab will be through solid marketing and awareness of the product. After all, almost 70 percent of leads come from social channels such as Twitter, while a mere 15 percent originate from lead lists.