Social Selling Tips of the Week: Getting Warmer
Learn how to warm up skeptical prospects, reheat old contacts that have gone cold, and turn the temperature up on slow deals.
August 12, 2016
The dog days of summer are upon us. It’s hot, it’s humid, and things seem to be moving a little slower.
Whether the decision makers are on a summer vacation or it’s the muggy weather tamping down their motivation, you might find that your sales aren’t moving as speedily as you’d like.
Why not take a cue from the climate and learn how to warm up your prospects and pipeline? In this week’s top social selling tips, we explore how to reheat contacts that have grown cold, get skeptical buyers to warm up to you, and bring deals to a boil by slowly adding heat via incremental commitments.
How to Re-Activate a Business Contact
We’ve all been guilty of neglecting promising business relationships. You planted the seed ages ago: maybe you used to work together or were introduced through a mutual contact. But things got busy, you lost touch, and the connection grew cold. Now you realize that old contact could be a wonderful prospect, but how can you re-engage without seeming rude, hackneyed, or awkward?
Geoffrey James at Inc.com has the step-by-step solution to warm up frosty contacts. “To reestablish a relationship that you've neglected,” he writes, “you must make the initial conversation entirely about the other person and not about you.” James goes on to detail how to research these old flames on social media and engage with exactly the right message.
Turn Skeptical Prospects Into True Believers
Ever find yourself stuck with an overly suspicious prospect? You’re making an honest pitch, but they shoot back with icy skepticism (or even the cold shoulder). Don’t lose hope—you can win over these cold-blooded prospects eight tips to convert them into true believers, courtesy of HubSpot’s Aja Frost.
Among her tips: providing social proof as evidence. “A dubious prospect might not trust you, but they will trust other customers,” writes Frost. It might feel like an uphill battle, but the rewards are well worth it: “You may have to work a little harder to show them you’re trustworthy,” she writes, “but once you do, you’ll have won their loyalty for a long time.”
Increase Sales by Getting Customers to Commit a Little at a Time
Sales reps usually think about closing a deal as a single event—the grand finale that comes after you’ve dutifully led the prospect through the funnel. Unfortunately, that model doesn’t reflect reality according to Frank V. Cespedes and David Hoffeld of the Harvard Business Review.
In an illuminating article, they maintain that “buyers work their way through parallel streams (rather than a funnel) as they explore, evaluate, and engage in purchase decisions via web sites, white papers, social media, and contact with other buyers.” So, what’s the best way to approach these buyers if the old model is kaput? “Don’t treat closing as the last step of a linear process,” they write. “Instead, you should always be closing — always — throughout the sales process via incremental commitments.”
Whether you’re rekindling an old contact, melting icy shrouds of doubt, or securing a sale with incremental heat, these social selling tips can help you keep your hot streak alive—even in the sleepy weeks summer.
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