Each Social Selling platform is different; what the users on Facebook like might be disliked by the ones over on Twitter, Instagram’s algorithm works completely different from LinkedIn’s. So if you’re trying to use social selling on these platforms, you cannot have one template strategy that you apply to all.
Out of all the platforms in the digital world, LinkedIn is probably the best one for B2B social selling. If you want your social selling efforts on this business platform to be successful and on par with your competition, you need to know, understand, and practice the 4 elements of social selling on LinkedIn.
The 4 Elements of B2B LinkedIn Social Selling
1. Personal Branding
Regardless of whether you’re social selling for your own brand or for your business, personal branding plays a major role in it. If you’ve ever searched on Google or have an account on a social media platform, you already have a personal brand and each search, tweet, comment, and post adds to it, whether you’re aware of it or not. Your personal brand is open to go through and judge, including your potential clients on LinkedIn. So it’s safe to say that your personal brand is vital if you’re using social selling on LinkedIn.
Your LinkedIn profile should look professional and clean complete with a profile picture, a banner, and a properly worded biography. Not only that, your profile should be client-oriented; it should tell them what they get out of connecting with not, not what you do.
A strong profile should build your credibility and establish your position as an expert in your niche. If you have any proof that supports this, make sure to highlight it in your profile. When your client lands on your profile, they’re not looking for your business, they’re looking for solutions for their problems. Instead of listing out your qualities and features, describe how they apply to the common problems faced by your target audience.
The main objective of your personal brand on LinkedIn should be to build a relationship with your clientele and earn their trust. This will encourage them to connect with you and hopefully get converted into paying customers.
In today’s digital world — where you can get anyone’s information by a simple search, find anyone on Facebook and Twitter with a few clicks — everyone from GenZers to CEO’s of Fortune 500 companies are looking for personalized content. In response to that B2C companies to deliver on that want and develop algorithms that process their customers’ personal information and give out personalized content to them. This change in the B2C market has led to people expecting personalization everywhere, including your target audiences who are consumers buying from Amazon, Apple, and Netflix when they’re not looking for solutions on the business front.
It goes without saying that you can’t copy-paste template messages and expect to get the same results as a personalized message. The basic objective of personalization is to build a relationship with the individual you’re selling to before selling to them. This objective applies to B2B social selling as well, even if you are selling to a business. When you’re in B2B, it is important to remember that you’re marketing to the business needs but selling to the individuals who make up the business. These individuals expect personalization and if you don’t give it to them, they will move on to someone who will.
The best place you can put personalization into practice is when you’re sending connection requests to potential clients. You only have 300 characters to convince them to connect with you, so you have to make sure you’re wording it to appeal to them rather than boost your self-confidence. But personalization does not end with them accepting your request; you have to personalize every connection you make with them. Sending them only the content that is relevant to them will help you show your commitment to providing value.
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3. Content Marketing
People only buy from people they trust; this stands true in the B2B world as well. Content marketing is one of the best ways to gain your target audience’s trust. If used right, content marketing can help you grow your authority in your niche and build credibility and trust among your potential clients, which will give you a strong foundation to build your relationships with your clients.
With content marketing, you share content that is relevant and valuable to your target audience in a way that will encourage them to engage with you. Content can come in many formats; it can be written (blogs, whitepaper), audio (podcasts, interviews), visual (infographics, images), or video (webinars, tutorials). It can also be original or curated but every bit of content you give out should have 3 elements: value, quality, and engagement, in that order.
The goal of content marketing is to help your potential customers know that you have the solutions to their problems. But to do that, you need to know their problems. So research your target audience as much as you can to find their pain points. Then, find the solutions and deliver it to them. The quality of your content should also provide quality to your viewers. Remember though, what you consider to be quality content may differ from what your viewers consider quality content so, again, do your research. If your content is of high quality and provides value to your viewers will be engaged with.
Content marketing may not be a one-shot success story, but it is the quickest way you can get there.
4. Lead Generation
You can have a great content marketing plan that gets you thousands of views on each blog you post, but it’ll mean nothing if you’re not getting any business out of it; this is where lead generation comes in. Lead generation helps you figure out where in your sales funnel your targeted potential client is and shows you how to interact with them to get a lead that will turn them into a paying customer.
A good lead generation plan (preferably written down) should take you through 5 basic steps: finding the prospect, making contact, engaging, building a relationship, and going offline. First, you obviously start with finding the prospect. You can do this either by using LinkedIn’s Advanced Search feature for targeted research or by leveraging your contacts for introductions. Remember to choose your prospects with your business goals and product in mind.
Once you’ve locked in on the prospects you think will be interested in your services or products, you move on to making contact with them by sending a connection request. As seen earlier, make sure to personalize those 300 words as much as you can it increase the chances of your request being accepted.
After your request has been accepted, you can proceed to start engaging with them. Engaging with potential clients is vital as it acts as a foundation for your relationship with them. Try following up the acceptance of your request with a personalized message (not a pre-drafted template, that’ll have the opposite effect than what we’re looking for). If your prospect sends you a message, don’t ignore it; instead, start a conversation and keep it going.
Your relationship building doesn’t stop after one message or conversation; you will have to keep the momentum going by sending additional messages that’ll help you to get to know them better. It will also do some good if you share valuable and relevant content with them. But be mindful of how often you send these messages and avoid going over the threshold of friendly to annoying.
On LinkedIn, they provide you with lots of tools like the Advanced Search feature that facilitate lead generation, given that it is a business-based social media platform.
For more lead generation tips, go over to this blo.
LinkedIn is the best platform to practice social selling, especially if you are a B2B company. If you implement all the 4 elements just right and build a relationship with your potential customers based on trust, increase your credibility surely and steadily, and continue to provide your viewers with valuable, relevant content, you will be converting leads in no time.
As you’ve probably noticed, these 4 elements of social selling on LinkedIn are pretty interdependent. So to have a successful stint on this platform, you have to make sure you properly understand and incorporate all these elements into your strategy. If you miss out on any single element, it can put a big dent in your efforts and a long detour on your path to success. The best thing you can do to avoid that keeps learning about the platforms you function on and the market you’re in and educate your team with the same.
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