What Is Social Selling and Why Your Brand May Need It?

Sales managers and executives these days have more or less the same job as conventional sales forces. But the way things are done now is vastly different. The days of cold calling people’s residential lines and warming them up for a sale are long gone. In fact, unless you’re a credible brand selling a credible offering like Optimum cable packages, most people are not going to engage with your sales team. On average, it can take up to 8 cold calls to connect to a customer. And even when you do get through to them, most of them will be very wary of a new brand or product/service.

Whether you’re selling to consumers or to other businesses, cold calls are not a very successful or efficient use of your sales budget. There is far less time or space to convince a customer who is hearing from you for the very first time than it is to cultivate leads over a broader audience. This is where social selling proves to be an immensely useful digital tool for brands of all sizes and types. Read on to find out more.

Understanding Social Selling

Thanks to the widespread use and dependence on the internet, we have seen a mushrooming of many new ways of engagement and interaction. Social media is by far one of the most significant channels the world has ever seen. Far beyond the original purpose of social networking, social media offers an extremely valuable channel for brands to market and sell their products to a large audience.

Modern social media platforms like Facebook have billions of active global users. This allows sellers to gain access to a much broader reach for a much smaller cost than conventional mediums like TV. And most importantly you can measure the success of your efforts in quantifiable terms. The advantages of social selling are numerous for most brands, including:

Small Brands Get a More Level Playing Field

Conventional marketing and advertising mediums have been out of reach for most small and medium brands for some time now. A national TV ad campaign could easily cost far more than a brand earns in revenues all year. It’s the same with national radio broadcasting, newspaper advertising, and much more.

For brands that want to appeal to buying customers, the cost factor alone is a big deterrent. That’s not to mention that the choicest advertising spots, such as prime time slots, are likely never going to be up for grabs on most networks anyway. In many ways, this saturation in conventional mediums shut out smaller businesses and only larger brands could make it past the cost barrier. But social media pages can be created for free. And with the right strategy, you can appeal to a much more receptive audience. You may even end up getting a far better ROI on advertising than a larger firm.

Reach Out to Segmented Audiences

Social media has billions of active users every single day. It has users from nearly every country in the world, of almost all demographics. But that isn’t much help unless you can define the audience you want to appeal to. Social media platforms help connect advertisers with the right audiences with their segmentation options. Using the right campaign parameters, you should be able to segment your audiences and ensure your ads only appear to the kind of people you want to show them too. This ensures  much more efficient use of your advertising budget, and with much greater chances of success.

At the same time, social platforms gather information on their users to segment them based on age, gender, occupation, likes, interests, and that of their social network on (or off) the platform. With targeted advertising at your disposal, you can target audiences closer to your ideal buyer persona. You don’t waste time or money trying to market your product to audiences that don’t need it.

Expand into Non-local Markets

One of the biggest advantages of social media is that it does not have an audience base limited by geography. For instance, Facebook has over 2 billion users across most of the world. Of course, if you have a steady but local customer base, you’re already miles ahead of many similar businesses. However, you may very well be missing out on additional markets to expand into. Most brands will appreciate any revenue streams they can discover. And social media can help broaden your appeal far beyond your local markets. Even into overseas ones that may prove to be far more profitable in the long run.