Leveraging Social Media to Sell your Services
Mar 30th, 2016|
By Zach Leader, Marketing & Communications Intern
Social media usage in the United States has reached almost two-thirds of the entire adult population. That being said, it is crucial for businesses to leverage such a large platform to reach out and sell to their target audiences. Social media is a great source for gathering information on the latest news and trends which will help you as a business increase your chances of a successful sale. Customers also often use social media to engage with potential sellers, so it is best for you to be readily available to answer their questions, engage with them, and establish a relationship when they contact you on social media. To effectively leverage social media, you should be using it with the intention to close more sales, not just gain a wealth of followers. Here’s how you can effectively fish for new business and keep the fisherman (your company) alive and well.
1. Know your Audience: Set the Bait
Ultimately, your goal should be to convert your followers into leads for potential sales, but in order to do so you need followers first. This involves getting to know your audience in detail. You should be using analytics to see which type of “bait” (content such as videos, written posts, visuals, etc.) is most interesting for your target audience as well as which social platform (Facebook, Twitter, etc.) they are using. Knowing this information will allow you to see your most effective content, your least effective content, and where this content is working and where it’s not. Keep in mind that what bait works in one pond may not work in another.
For example, 61% of LinkedIn users are ages 30-64, and the majority of these users are employed and come from higher-income households. Whereas 53% of Instagram users are 18-29 years old and the majority of users have less than a bachelor’s degree. A company who relies primarily on sales to other businesses will likely have much more success on LinkedIn than on Instagram. However, this does not mean this company should give up on Instagram. Instead, it should be more attentive as to what content is most effective to find its niche with the target audience on Instagram. So, pay attention to your statistics. You should adjust your content and its placement accordingly to appeal to as much of your target audience as possible. Using the right bait in the right place provides opportunity for hooks.
2. Conversion: Hook and Reel
Now that you’ve got the fish attracted to your bait, it’s time to hook and reel! After getting to know your audience and attracting them with the best content you can provide them, you need to convert your followers into leads. Once they click on your post or visit your website, you need something to reel them in. Use landing pages and web forms to make offers to potential clients/consumers and collect their information so you may contact them directly. Some social networking sites such as Twitter and Facebook allow you to create landing pages so that your potential customers never have to leave the site they’re on, and the information you want to have about this potential customer is still gathered. That way it’s convenient for the both of you. Always make attempts to convert your followers into leads. Followers are not going to make you money. Keep your business alive by generating sales through social media, or, in other words, put your bait to use and catch those fish!
3. Maintain a Relationship: Keep the Fish Alive
Once you’ve caught the fish, your job is far from over. The most important part is to not kill the fish. Let it go so there’s the potential for you to reel it in again. In order to do this, establish a relationship with your customer and maintain it. Engage with them by exchanging business ideas, answering their questions, and by participating in the same conversations through Social Networking Groups and Online Communities. “Social networks are a popular and convenient way to engage with like-minded people and gain insight on selling your business.”
Being a part of the same groups and conversations as your clients benefits your business by keeping your relationships alive. It also allows you to converse with new businesses who are like-minded to you and your clients. This means meeting new fish in the sea! Converse with these new potential clients, direct them to your social sites, and add to your list of leads. Participating in forums and following blogs allows you to share opinions and tips, as well as stay up to date with other businesses and their needs and other news. So, in this context of fishing, you should never kill the fish, enjoy the feast and be complacent with your successes. Always stay hungry for the fish, old and new.
Go Get Your Reel!
Social media networking is an essential part of the business world today. Just like fishing, you need to use the right attraction, at the right place, and at the right time. Then, once you’ve reeled them in and have completed a sale, keep the relationship alive and keep attempting to attract them for repeat business. Stay hungry, and be ready to adapt to your target audience’s tastes, but always remember to not oversell. No fish likes being caught too many times or they’ll start swimming somewhere else. Happy fishing!