- 14 Sep
More and more, modern selling is social selling—the practice of finding, engaging, and connecting with prospects via social media. And while it offers sales teams major competitive advantages, social selling also represents a profound sea of change.
Like any big change, adapting to social selling is even more difficult for sales reps who struggle to stay organized or have rigid routines that make it hard to incorporate new tasks. In fact, both salespeople and sales leaders are often held back—not by their willingness to engage with social selling—but by their lack of a structured, daily routine.
This can create all kinds of problems: for example, salespeople interact with many leads and prospects at different stages of the sales cycle; it can be a challenge to stay in close contact and top of mind on a day-to-day basis. When these reps neglect their leads or fail to follow up, their chances for a win plummet.
Productivity begins at the top. In order to ensure success, sales leaders must support their teams as they develop a repeatable daily routine that incorporates social selling best practices.
Have a Road Map
In order to succeed with social selling in the long term, every sales rep must develop a specific plan to reach their social goals. That may seem obvious, but it’s more difficult to implement in practice.
Sales leaders may not always be able to strictly enforce the “road map” that each rep follows, but it’s crucial that they remain active in teaching them to draft it—while also putting checks in place to ensure that they don’t deviate as time goes on.
Every Deal, Every Day: Add Social Selling to Your Routine
Social selling leader Jill Rowley describes the ideal sales effort as an “every deal, every day” approach. The premise is simple—that social selling efforts will only lead to wins if you involve every account in your daily routine.
Making time in your routine for social engagement is the first step. If you’re not sure how to spend that allotted time, begin with the basics. Start fresh conversations each day with a few leads. When prospects view your profile on LinkedIn, reach out. Share relevant content as often as possible, while liking and commenting on the content that your prospects are posting.
Remember that your routine should be applicable to every prospect, with follow-ups baked in. You can use automated reminders to remember to touch base, but you’ll still need the discipline to follow the routine every day (and not just when the well dries up).
Structure Your Day
According to Gloria Mark, it takes an average of 25 minutes to recover from interruptions. You’re probably familiar with the challenge: you check one email, go down the rabbit hole, and find it difficult to get back on track.
We all have “holes” in our daily routine that eat up precious time and productivity. You can avoid this all-too-common trap by developing a structured daily routine. For example, aim to address all emails and social media notifications during one or two “chunks” of the day. Many find the beginning and end of the day to be the best time to sift through this information.
A structured routine makes it much easier to find time to incorporate new strategies, like social selling, without veering off course. Leaders should first make sure that they’re following a structure themselves, then pass their best practices on to the team as advice.
The results are already in: social selling leads to warmer interactions and, ultimately, more wins. Unfortunately, both organizations and individuals often find their social efforts hampered by a lack of structure. Undisciplined sales routines can hurt, but there’s no reason you can’t improve. In the end, your social activity will only lead to results if both management and sales reps buy in—and that requires organization, road mapping, and a commitment to proven best practices.
To learn more about becoming an effective social seller, download the Social Selling Index Kit today.
Originally published at LinkedIn Sales Solutions, reposted here with permission from our 2017 Gold sponsor, LinkedIn.
Alex Hisaka. (2017). Why Your Daily Sales Routine Is Probably Holding You Back. Available: http://www.nsconference.co.uk/blog/3-social-kpis-guide-your-team-social-selling-success. Last accessed 14/09/2017.