The great promise of Social Selling is more sales and a more effective sales process. In this blog post you will learn about the specific benefits that Social Selling offers and why this sales strategy has become indispensable for many B2B companies.
Before we dig into the statistics on social selling benefits: if you're looking for a quick overview on the opportunities of B2B social selling, we'd recommend you also take a look at the following blog post: The Great Opportunities of Social Selling for B2B Companies
1. Shorten Sales Cycle, Close the Deal Quicker
Amongst salespeople, it is a widespread nuisance that closing important deals can take what feels like an eternity. There is always a potential customer who keeps your employees busy with questions for months on end and then doesn’t buy anything. The cause of this problem lies in the traditional outbound sales process. Many companies still rely on cold calling and therefore continuously generate customer contacts – however, this leads to complex meetings and numerous phone calls and emails. While this strategy may prove successful, it gives the potential customers the feeling that they are doing your company a favour, regardless of whether they ever develop into truly qualified leads.
In the end, dialogues with no or not enough qualified leads do not lead to the desired success – despite the very best intentions of your sales staff. After all, B2B buyers generally make their decision before the first conversation with a salesperson. Social Selling enables you to interact with your customers on a human level and to exchange valuable information with them at the right time. This way, you establish yourself as a recognised expert and give your brand tangible value. In doing so, you awaken the desire to work with you in potential customers early on and will not need to do a lot of persuading during sales cycles. In direct comparison to classic outbound approaches, the cycles are shorted by an average of 20 days.
2. Gain Intimate Insights, Discover Sales Potential
Social Selling gives your employees deeper insights into the wishes and needs of interested people. In seemingly trivial conversations, you can find out what your customers actually think of your products and services. It provides you with the opportunity to eliminate doubts and misunderstandings at an early stage by supplying useful information for customers. At the same time, it’s significantly easier for your salespeople to generate leads and identify relevant customers. 65 percent of all B2B customers and consumers currently say that they would not find it creepy to receive messages from a salesperson with connections in common on the business network LinkedIn. 64 percent actually like it when salespeople do social media research about them and their company. In this way, this sales strategy not only helps you achieve revenue and sales goals, but also helps you to far exceed them.
3. Build Up a Competence Profile, Influence Buying Decisions
In the coming years, building a strong customer relationship will play an increasingly critical role in the sales process. 72 percent of all B2B buyers say that they do intensive research on social media before making any purchase decisions. On average, they look at five to eight copies of the content offered before deciding which offer to choose.
Studies have shown that 65 percent of decision-makers believe the vendor’s content had an enormous influence on their purchase decision. At the same time, 54 percent of salespeople are experiencing a significant increase in their sales as a direct result of social media activity. That’s why 98 percent of the top sales professionals are convinced that strong relationships are the most important foundation for an up-and-coming business.
4. Maintain Online Reputation, Strengthen Brand Impact
With Social Selling, you not only strengthen your brand’s online presence, but you also strengthen your company’s credibility. In addition, this sales strategy enables you to effectively manage your online reputation. Several studies have shown that 95 percent of all B2B customers review the vendor’s content before making a purchase. Therefore, the online presence and the popularity associated with it have a huge impact on the sales of a B2B brand. While having a positive reputation can help you win customers, having a negative reputation has a negative impact on the success of your business. Social Selling methods ensure you have a direct influence on the perception of your brand and can thus provide advantageous references.
5. Engage in Natural Dialogue, Retain Customers in the Long Term
Many companies focus primarily on acquiring new customers. However, recurring clients are the ones that drive sustainable growth and are therefore the key to your long-term business success. With Social Selling, you not only attract new interested people, you also retain existing customers. Consistent engagement based on continuous writing, sharing and commenting keeps you in contact with 45 percent of former customers in the longer term. Your customers will find out about new offers and useful innovations, and will therefore make use of your services again.
Social Selling Ensures Sustainable Sales Success
More and more companies are benefiting from the advantages of Social Selling. Studies have revealed that 98 percent of sales reps with more than 5,000 LinkedIn contacts were able to significantly surpass their sales targets. In a Social Selling trial project a few years ago, IBM achieved a 400 percent increase in sales. Impressive examples like these are no longer isolated cases today. With an appropriate strategy, you too can profit from this sales strategy in the long term.