10 Social Selling Activities Statistically Proven to Get Results
Learn how to amp up your social selling with these ten activities. Don’t take our word for it—all ten have statistically proven results.
May 10, 2015
We all know that social selling can be a powerful driver for sales success. But no one becomes a social selling superstar overnight: it takes a commitment to improving aspects of your sales approach every day.
If you're not sure how to move the needle today in terms of finding the right people, building relationships, and ultimately driving revenue, just follow the numbers.
Here are ten social selling tips that are proven to make salespeople more effective, along with the stats that back them up:
1. Use tools like Advanced Search to find the right people
LinkedIn’s Advanced Search has over a dozen filters to help narrow your search by industry, job title, time in the position, and more. Become an Advanced Search All-Star to fill your funnel with the right prospects.
Salespeople focused on new business who exceed quota perform 52% more people searches each month. Smart searching can generate more qualified leads.
2. Explore an organization’s buying committee
Use LinkedIn to explore the structure of a target company and make contact with multiple decision-makers. The days of a single buyer making a major purchasing decision are over; the CEB estimates the average B2B opportunity has 5.4 decision makers. Multi-threading your accounts increases the likelihood of success.
Sales reps who viewed the profiles of at least 10 people at each of their accounts were 69% more likely to exceed quota than sales reps who viewed fewer than 4 people at each account.
3. Capitalize on new connection opportunities
Now that you’re using Advanced Search to find new connections, you can follow up with connection requests. Make sure you’re connected with your co-workers so you can all leverage your extended networks for warm connections. Keep the requests personalized and polite to increase the odds of a friendly response.
- Reps focused on new business who exceed quota send 148% more connection requests each month
- Reps focused on existing business who exceed quota have 24% more VP+ connections
- Reps focused on existing business who exceed quota have 32% more internal connections with co-workers
4. Engage with your LinkedIn network
Engage with your network by liking, commenting on, and re-sharing content. You can also extend the engagement beyond your network: save prospects as contacts (or leads, if you have Sales Navigator) and follow them for opportunities to engage with their posts.
Salespeople focused on new business who exceed quota make 39% more engagements each month (likes, comments, reshares).
5. Find insightful or practical content and share it.
Liking, commenting, and re-sharing content from your network helps build connections. Sharing excellent content that you discover fosters the perception that you’re a good source for useful industry information.
Make your LinkedIn feed a destination for people seeking engaging and insightful articles about your industry. These 25 resources can help you find great content to share.
Reps focused on existing business who exceed quota share 23% more content each month.
6. Max out your LinkedIn Groups
There are roughly 1.5 million LinkedIn Groups, and you can join up to 50 of them. LinkedIn Groups are a great way to establish common ground with a connection. Explore the profiles of your qualified prospects to see what groups would be beneficial to join.
You are 70% more likely to get an appointment or if you cite a common LinkedIn Group.
7. Become an active member in your LinkedIn Groups
Once you’ve joined those fifty groups, pick as many of the most relevant as you can manage and join in the discussion. When you add value to a discussion, prospects tend to notice. One way to stay on top of groups is to pick just four groups a week to read and post on. That way you’ll post in each of your active groups at least four times a year.
People who post or engage in Group discussions get 4 times as many profile views.
8. Capitalize on your 2nd-degree network
When you’re prospecting with Advanced Search, you can specify 2nd-degree connections. When you find a connection in one of your contacts’ networks, ask your contact for an introduction. Here are some guidelines to requesting an introduction to keep in mind.
- 84% of B2B decision makers begin their buying process with a referral
- B2B buyers are 5x more likely to engage when the outreach is through a mutual connection
9. Automate searches to gain access to the buyer journey sooner
You can save Advanced Searches and setup automatic notifications, based on industry, title and location. Be the first to know when new hires fitting your target profile occur, when prospects or contacts change jobs, or other trigger events.
- 50% of sales go to the first salesperson to contact a prospect
- A 2013 study found that newly hired executives are up to 10x more likely to make a major decision than those who have been on the job for a while
10. If you don't have a killer LinkedIn profile yet, drop everything and complete it
Your LinkedIn profile is the face of your professional brand. It’s likely to be one of the first search results people see when they search your name
- 50% of buyers avoid sales professionals with incomplete LinkedIn profiles
- Increase your LinkedIn profile views by 11x by simply including a photo
The numbers don’t lie: if you’re looking to optimize your social selling success, you can start with these ten tips. When you improve a few aspects of your sales approach every day, you’re on the path to becoming a social selling superstar.