As in the past not much has really changed. You never know where you will meet your next customer. It could be anywhere from the barber shop to standing in line to get a cup of coffee somewhere. How you choose to begin that relationship with this new contact and future customer does have an impact on how well you well and can stay connected with them. The world of social media opens up an ever increasing way for you to meet people. Rather than at the barber or the coffee shop it can now be twitter or Facebook.
So you want to be a Social Media Business success? Follow these steps to get the necessary information to nurture your relationships and find customers
First thing is to just relax. Take it slow. I really don’t care what kind of business you are in. There is no real rush. Believe me. If you are in business to stay in business for a long long time, just relax. If you want to establish long term customers you need to do things one step at a time. Do them completely and thoroughly and if you’re like me, you can’t do this fast and on the fly. So again sit down have a cup of coffee.
Let’s look at it this way, you need to act online as you would as if you were meeting people F2F. If you exchange an online business card, if you email back and forth a few times, your LinkedIn connections, you need to treat them as if they are real people because guess what? They are real people. Each one is an individual who could and can become a customer.
The next step could be to invite these new prospects to receive your email or join your Facebook fan club. The idea is to get them involved with you.
Side note here is that if your sales cycle is 1 month or 18 months don’t think that just because this is online that it will shirk to half the time and go down to 15 days or 9 months. As in all your sales your cycle was created over time and the channel you are choosing to work in for your marketing is not going to change that.
Second thing is to use the information you are collecting wisely and keep it clean. Housecleaning might seem like a never ending task (and it is) but if you want to have data you can use keeping it clean and up to date is a primary task. What you are achieving here is making your database a prospecting pool to work though your sales cycle as you would any sales prospect.
Next and here is where most people mess up, contact people in the way that they want to be contacted. That’s right if you really want to connect you will contact them as they wish not as you wish. IN this kind of contact (which takes work) you start to stand out from the crowd and become a valued connection. The more value you are the closer you become to being on the “short” list. Why not be so bold as to actually ask how someone who you have exchanged a few threads with would really like to be contacted. Talk about finding a way to get noticed!
As in all sales you need to know when and how to ask for the sale. Don’t fool yourself into thinking that just because you have online interaction you have a done deal. You wouldn’t think that if they were in your office of store so why do you think that if they are in your online office or store? If you do, shame on you! Like any kind of sale you need to know when and how to close it. Use your sales skills.
If all this seems like a lot of work, your right, it is. Success does not and has never come easy for a sales person. We are not selling snake oil here where everyone with a slick tongue and a golden throat and sell anything to anybody. So as you march down the online marketing social media path, you might just want to remember that behind all those names are real people.
Larson Notes & Satire: I started with the request for you to sit down and have a cup of coffee. Now the fun starts. Stop collecting all those names and followers for a day or two and digest what you already have. Find those nuggets you have already laying on the ground. Now go on and read “Acres of Diamonds” it’s a good book.
Remember our 3 new programs for 2011.
1st is our Virtual Sales Manager Program.
2nd our Sales Function Outsourcing Program
3d our Virtual Business Consulting Program
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