Even though I’m passionate about social media and its benefits, there are still plenty of people out there who don’t understand it. I can appreciate that, as I was there once.
Business executives that don’t understand social media or think it’s unnecessary for their businesses should think of it as an extension of their sales force.
What do companies hire salespeople to do?
Companies hire salespeople to make a sale and put money in the bank. But what do they do leading up the sale? Salespeople court prospective clients with personal visits, phone calls, emails and letters. This courting process builds a relationship with the prospective client and hopefully builds trust.
Once a sale is made, the salespeople continue to strengthen that relationship with small acts of kindness and staying in communication with the client. Keeping in contact will ideally increase frequency of purchase and, at the very least, will keep the brand top of mind.
What is social media all about?
Social media is about relationship building. People and companies share knowledge to do this. Who has the best food in town? Who is a reliable and trustworthy plumber? What are some quick tips to help you keep your pool cleaner? Eventually, you earn a good reputation online if you share enough relevant, reliable information.
People are engage in social media because they benefit from it. Otherwise, they wouldn’t waste their time. As a businessperson, you might not see any value in social media, but that doesn’t mean your customers share your view.
What can you do online?
Take some of the tips you teach your sales staff about building relationships and utilize them online. The concepts and goals are the same, but the medium is different with social media. For example, give away free advice on Twitter that your salespeople would share with clients in person. Create a blog post with 10 tips about making your house or apartment more energy efficient.
Sharing knowledge and tips online will help build relationships with people that your sales team has never met. When the consumer needs to buy your company’s product, they already have some level of trust in your company, which should make the salesperson’s job that much easier.
Does thinking of social media as part of your sales force help you understand the role it could have in your business?