I know…it is amazing but in my experience there is still many Sales Professionals out there that still have not embraced the wonders of Social Media to better connect with their potential customers and many more that work for companies that have not embraced the power of Social to aid in growing both their Market Share and their Brand Loyalty. Social Media for me over the past 2 1/2 years of being a Technical Sales Professional allowed me to connect, empower and understand my customers so much better.
There are obvious advantages in the Business to Consumer Market (B2C) to leverage the power of Facebook and Pinterest but even in the Business to Business Market (B2B) there is still an advantage to be had by following companies, brands and people on those networks. What I find surprising though is the lack of effort put into a Google+ Profile by companies. The advantages to SEO results alone should empower Marketing Professionals (and their cousins over in Sales) to build a strong presence there but alas Facebook and Twitter seem to be the primary rule.
Over time I have found that there are several very important rules to building, maintaining and promoting a Social Network (there is a difference between Social Networking and Social Media) and I thought that I would share my successes with you today. In fact, I would hazard a guess that the success that I have had could be translated not only to Sales but to many other roles as well!
- Be Consistent – There is nothing worse than the random post that seems completely out of place. If you wish o share what you had for lunch great…but consistently do so (once per week on Monday’s and call it Lunch on Lundi) that becomes part of your own brand!
- Don’t just Sell – If there is one thing that I have learned from the strong positive response that I received from my customers when I left my last position is that the one thing that the all don’t want is a Sales Guy. When you say “How can I help” mean it and do the same with your Social Media Posts!
- Don’t Quit too Early – The biggest thing about Social Media is that at the start…you are the tree in the forest and while there are lots of people around…they have hundreds of competing items fighting for their attention. Don’t be discouraged by early failures…keep going, remain consistent and post often…then your voice will be heard.
- Be Relevant – You don’t have to be all about work all the time, but you do have to choose something that will keep your interest and the interest of your followers. Focus on a passion and become an expert in that. Be the person that your followers not only turn to first but be the person that your followers recommend to their friends first!
- Don’t Lean in for the Kiss too Early – Just because you have an extensive network, are relevant and consistent…don’t think that you can get what ever you want on the first date. The best sales relationships that I have built have been the ones based on mutual respect. Put a Ring on it…and it will be yours my friend!
Well those are 5 quick and easy rules that I try to follow with my Social Media Plans and as I re-enter the world of the gainfully employed I can not see anything that would change in how I would do what I do, even though the industry is completely different.