Author: Savvy

Late

Social selling is about utilizing your social network to find valuable prospects and establish trusted relationships to achieve sales goals. This method eliminates the need for cold calling by building rapport and confidence through connections on social media platforms.

The following are the four key steps to leveraging social selling and adopting them into your organization’s sales and marketing strategies.

1. Create a Professional Brand

B2B buyers are understandably careful with who they do business with and will only work with sellers they can trust. A strong professional brand proves you are relevant in your industry which will result to more inquiries from quality leads.

Complete your profile 100% with a professional profile picture, headline, summary, and experience. Keep the customer in mind and publishing meaningful and relevant content that identifies you as a thought leader.

According to LinkedIn, 81% of buyers are more likely to engage with a strong professional brand while 92% of B2B buyers engage with sales professionals if they are known industry thought leaders.

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SS2

 

Social selling is when salespeople interact directly with their prospects through social media. This process of developing relationships as part of the sales process commonly takes place on social media platforms. For B2B technology companies that usually means LinkedIn.

The sales technique of social selling eliminates the need for cold calling. And because the interaction takes place on a platform that both buyer and seller trust, building and maintaining trust can happen quicker than traditional selling methods.

According to Hubspot, “74% of B2B buyers conduct more than half of their research online before making a purchase or contacting a salesperson.”

With online research playing such an important role in B2B sales, it makes sense for salespeople would to meet their prospect customers online. But how do sellers measure the effectiveness of their social selling efforts? Is it quantifiable? How is it commonly analyzed?

Measuring Social Selling Effectiveness

The SSI Score

SSI (Social Selling Index) is a score created by LinkedIn to rank members use of LinkedIn as a social selling tool. The score is based on four criteria: creating a professional brand, finding the right people, engaging with insights, and building strong relationships.

Each criterion is assigned a value from 1-25. For the overall SSI score, the scores of the four criterion are totaled. According to LinkedIn, “social selling leaders create 45% more opportunities than peers with lower SSI.”

Based on research conducted by LinkedIn, “78% of social sellers outsell peers who don’t use social media.” The research further states that “social selling leaders are 51% more likely to reach quota.”

The SSI is just one of the ways to measure the effectiveness of social selling.
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bREAKFAST

With more and more companies hiring marketing agencies to complement their in-house sales and marketing teams to perform specialty skills that their existing team is not equipped to do, it is easy to pass the accountability to the agency and feel you can back off.

However, a good marketing agency doesn’t just work for you, but with you. If you’ve hired a marketing agency and they don’t make an effort to get detailed information on your products, services, customers and history, then your collaboration is bound to fail. Here are three things that your agency should be asking you about your business:

 

  1. Your Goals

If you’ve given your marketing agency the vague response of wanting “more customers” as your company goal and they don’t press you to be more specific, they may treat your organization with similar ambiguity. They are likely to apply the same default marketing strategy on your business as they may have with their many other clients.

A good marketing agency will be a strategic partner. They should probe you about your organization, goals, customers and perspective. They will ask you about your past marketing tactics, including SEO, email, and inbound. A marketing agency that is eager to meet your needs will gather as much information about your current strategies and future goals to come up with a marketing plan tailored to your organization.

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SSelling

The number of B2B companies adopting social selling methods is growing fast. In fact, according to Hubspot, 62.9% of sales professionals report that social selling has become important for closing new deals.

While sales teams still use traditional methods such as dialing for dollars, or building relationships on the golf course, chances are that someone on your team is already using social media platforms to generate revenue. Your high-performing competitors are already establishing social selling strategies.

A 2015 MHI Sales Best Practices Study states: “World-class sales performers are accelerating the progression of social selling from secret tool to mainstream sales competency in their organizations by establishing guidelines and standards for the use of social media in their organization. As skills improve, results will increase, and salespeople will win more.”

As your sales team incorporates social into their bag of sales tricks here are four ways marketing can help them succeed.

1. Develop Strong and Professional Online Profiles

Because social selling takes place on social platforms, the space that each of your team members creates should be one that is representative of your organization. Encourage them to maintain professional profiles on LinkedIn is where the greatest rewards are found. Complete profiles with professional profile photos and descriptions enhance their personal brands.
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top

 

As a B2B marketer, what are the key trends that you should be acting on in 2017? What techniques should you be focusing on to align your organization with the B2B sector and what are the latest technologies that you should be leveraging?

Here are the top strategies that B2B marketers should be focusing on based on past trends and industry research:

Influencer Marketing

Influence marketing has been around for a while, and it’s importance will grow in 2017 for B2B marketers.

According to a Linquia survey of 170 marketers revealed in the The State of Influencer Marketing 2017, “In 2016, 94% of marketers found influencer marketing to be effective. As a result, influencer marketing budgets are set to double in 2017.”

Influencer marketing has always been important for selling software. Once you have those first few happy clients, you have a story to tell. Genuine stories from “people like me” that cover the problem, evaluation, selection and ROI in a business environment are golden. Even better if your customer will speak with prospects on the phone, and offer a site visit. With marketing fluff saturating the Web, these influencer clients are more valuable than ever. In many ways, they are the future of your business. Take good care of them.

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IMG_2600

As a marketer you know social media is important to your marketing mix, but doing social media well consistently is a challenge.

Often social media management is a task assigned to an in-house team with other responsibilities and it doesn’t get done well. Building a strong social media presence is incredibly time-consuming.

Social media marketing is now considered a specialty skill and not something that your current team may be equipped to do. It requires skills in audience development, search engine optimization, analytics and pattern recognition, content curation and other digital marketing tasks.

Your social media management is a task that can be easily handed-off to a specialist. Not only will it be cheaper, but you’ll experience much better results.

Here are seven social media marketing tasks it makes sense to outsource.

1. High-quality content

Growing your social media presence by curating and creating quality content takes time. While software companies are filled with employees that have product and market knowledge getting the information out of their heads and into the form of an article is challenging, especially week after week. And, keeping up with the latest news relevant to your customers can suck up an entire morning. In a fast-paced software company, the best social media intentions get pushed aside by the crisis of the day.

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Expect:  30-50 prospect meetings, 500 new targeted connections and a robust LinkedIn executive profile and network that enhances your career. Dramatic increase in social selling score.
Ideal for: Sales professionals in a new territory/vertical. Sales executives with a strong pipeline focused on closing. Executives seeking strong social profiles.

Cost: $1,750/mo. plus $229/meeting
Type: 6 month contract, 30 guaranteed meetings
Required: A LinkedIn Premium Plus membership (approx. $45/mo.)
Includes:
 LinkedIn social selling optimization and management, target list development, daily outreach for professional connections and engagement, thought leadership content, appointment setting, monthly reporting.
Ramp: Immediate LinkedIn activity, with first meeting in 9 weeks.

Savvy Social Selling for B2B Tech Companies

Digital disruption has transformed how software companies sell.  Leading social sellers create 45% more opportunities and are 54% more likely to achieve quota.

While social selling is the future, making the switch from how you’ve always sold takes effort. Connecting with prospects in target companies, building the relationship, and securing the first meeting is mostly administrative, and takes time away from what you do best — sell.

Savvy builds your social connections and sets meetings with your targeted prospects. Social selling is more than just appointments however. We help you build you executive brand online, teeing you up for success now, and for the rest of your career.

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Skull

 

A product built through biased research will die a painful death from poor adoption.

Cognitive biases are among the imperfections that make us human, but they are bad news for product marketers. A bias, simply put, is an idea or prejudice that the respondent or the researcher brings to the research process and that can distort research findings.

Biases can affect all phases of customer development, from survey design to data collection and analysis. Unless the product marketer is aware of these biases and takes steps to reduce their impact, the results of customer discovery may become misleading.

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linkedin

You’ve put in a lot of effort ensuring your LinkedIn profile is complete. You’ve got a professional looking profile photo, and you carefully constructed your summary to speak directly to your target industry. How do you now measure your LinkedIn success?

How many views does your profile receive daily? Weekly? These numbers matter. Your profile views are your way of gauging if your profile is making its rounds through your connections ensuring the exposure of your personal brand.

If you’d like to see an increase in the number of visits your profile receives, here are 5 easy tips to get your profile noticed:

1. Engage

Perhaps one of the biggest ways to get noticed is to start engaging. Take the time to appreciate the content that other people in your industry put out there by liking it or sharing it. Make an effort to write a comment that shows your read the article and have an informed opinion on the subject. Not only will you get noticed, but they will also identify you as someone who speaks their language. This is almost a guaranteed way to get a profile view.

2. Viewing othersContinue Reading..

pam

On a scale of 1 to 100, how do you think your social selling efforts measure up? How do you think you stack up against your industry peers and your network on LinkedIn?

Knowing your Social Selling Index (SSI) will allow you to see if you have been effectively using LinkedIn for your social selling efforts. Your SSI tells you how well you’ve been leveraging your social network to make the right connections, build trusted relationships, and ultimately reach your sales goals. Your SSI is calculated based on the following 4 variables:
• Establish your professional brand
• Find the right people
• Engage with insights
• Build relationships

If you want to give your SSI a much needed boost, then you will need to go deeper into the 4 determining components. The following 12 hacks will dramatically increase your SSI Score.

Establish your professional brandContinue Reading..


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