By now you have probably heard a lot about the promise of social selling. Still, many find it hard to effectively utilize social networks as part of their sales pipeline. We have all gotten used to the scripts, conversion rates and process associated with calling and emailing that social media might seem like a hairy beast far out of our comfort zones. Not to worry! In this post we will outline a set of very specific steps that will help you create a social selling playbook which utilizes Twitter and Socedo to help you generate leads and close customers.
While there’s been a lot of thought and discussion on why every professional should be on LinkedIn, why should every professional care about Twitter? For the sake of keeping it simple, the open and public nature of Twitter is it’s best attribute. As a Twitter user, you can find anyone, and more importantly, discover what they’re talking about in real time. As a business, this ability gives you an indication of if a user would be interested in what you’re selling. If you don’t have a presence on Twitter already, the setup process is pretty easy. Think of the long-term benefits as being able to establish yourself as a thought leader and subject matter expert, all the while finding leads and engaging with potential customers. Here’s an easy guide to help you setup your Twitter profile to maximize social selling.
The other advantage of Twitter is that it is a highly scalable social network that makes it easy to build relationships with hundreds of potential customers at one time through short messages and quick actions. Socedo helps you do this by finding your best potential customers everyday and then automating the initial engagement. Imagine finding 100 relevant prospects in the morning and without lifting a finger, 10 of them are already having a conversation with you by the afternoon.
Alright, lets get down to business. Here’s how you setup Socedo in order to fully master automation, engagement, and lead generation. If you don’t have an account yet, feel free to sign up for a full 30-day trial at Socedo.com.
Step 1: Define your potential customer
The first step in lead generation on Twitter is to define the type of person or company you are looking for. Socedo helps you do this by asking a few questions in the criteria assistant. All of the fields are optional and meant to get you thinking about potential keywords that Socedo will use to find your prospects. Think about what you already know about your business. Who are your competitors? What keywords do your customers use when researching your space? What conferences and events do you normally attend or sponsor? Just throw in as much as you know to get started as these keywords can always be changed as we go along.
To help put this in perspective, we’ll use an example. Smithy McSmithers is a sales person who is selling online dashboard software to wealth managers. Here are some ideas of the keywords or hashtags McSmithers’ potential customers (wealth managers) would be using on Twitter.
Now for some events and influencer handles:I’m not a wealth manager myself, so this goes to show how easy it is to set up at least some vague keywords for your Socedo account. Simple Google and Twitter searches will help you find keywords, handles, and events in your industry area.
After the Criteria Assistant, you will reach the Criteria Panel which shows you how Socedo is using the keywords you originally specified. The conversational keywords are terms used within Tweets while bio keywords look at terms used within bios on Twitter. In our example, Socedo is setup to find folks Tweeting about #MoneyManagement who also have the word “Advisor” in their Twitter bio.
Okay, do a quick save and refresh and… surprise! Here are the people matching our keywords that have Tweeted in the past few days.
See the “Mark 20 relevant leads” progress bar? Before you go back to your criteria section, reach that goal of 20. This will be helpful to optimize your criteria. If you are finding that not many people are relevant then you can jump right back to the criteria pane to make some updates.
Step 2: Decide if a lead is relevant
When deciding whether or not someone is relevant to you, keep in mind you want to be liberal. The whole purpose of this process is finding as many people as possible to engage with (and hopefully they’ll want to engage back). Thus, relevance should be measured by figuring out if this user is in any way, shape, or form a potential customer. You can usually mark competitors, spammers, or news outlets as not relevant. The No button will remove them forever, which will make your results better over time. The Not Now button will ignore them for now but you will see that profile if they Tweet your keywords in the future.
Here’s an example from Smithy McSmithers’ account of a lead that is not relevant:
It looks like this is just a radio station that shared a Tweet which mentioned our keyword #nasdaq. Clicking the No button will get rid of this profile for good but we may want to make some changes to the criteria based on what we see here. For example, turning on bio keywords to be required would get rid of leads like this in the future because every profile would need to have wealth, manager, money or advisor in it. We may also reconsider having #nasdaq as a conversational keyword since it is pretty broad.
While you’re clicking ‘yes’ or ‘no,’ make sure you’re paying attention to why you’re clicking ‘yes’ on someone. Is there a specific keyword being used in their Tweets or bio? If so, consider adding that keyword to your criteria. This will help in the next step to optimize your criteria.
Step 3: Optimize your criteria for better results
Using those initial keywords will get you to a set of potential leads. As you see new Tweets coming in, you’ll notice other keywords you’ll want to leverage or take advantage of in your criteria.
Start by being more specific with your conversational keywords. If you aren’t seeing a lot of lead volume, go ahead and broaden the conversational keywords.
For bio keywords, think about what types of things you want to see in your target customer. Remember, they may not use their exact title in their bio, so keep it broad by using keywords like finance, manager, money, management, advisor, etc. Get ideas from the bios of people showing up in Socedo who are relevant to your specific target market.
You can turn on the Required Option for certain keyword groups on the criteria pane. It is always required that at least one conversational keyword match before Socedo brings you a lead. You have the option to turn bio keywords or location keywords to be required. We recommend turning bio keywords to be required if you have more than 500 leads in your discover bucket.
Socedo also allows the use of Negative Keywords in any of the three categories to further refine your leads. All you need to do is place the – sign directly in front of the keyword. For example, adding “-Consultant” as a bio keyword will remove people who describe themselves as consultants in their Twitter profile. Adding “-UK” in the location field will remove people who have “UK” in their Twitter location.
See the updated criteria for Smithy’s account below. Noticed that he deleted #nasdaq from the conversational keywords as it was too broad and caused a lot of noise. He turned bio keywords on to be required so he can focus on wealth managers specifically and he added “-news” as a negative keyword to avoid seeing profiles that are just about money management news.
Step 4: Set up automation to save time while connecting
Think of Socedo’s automation as a replacement for cold calling. When cold calling you have to start a conversation with an innumerable amount of people. A small portion of the people you try to contact will pick up the phone or call you back. Automation does that whole process for you so you can save your time for people who are actually interested.
You access the automation capabilities by clicking the settings gear in the upper right of your Socedo dashboard. Socedo will automatically engage with leads that you mark as relevant by favorting their Tweet and then following them. This gives your prospect good reason to check you out and decide if they are interesting in following you.
Most of the time they will read your Twitter bio and make a judgment call if you seem interesting. This means you should tell people how you could help them in your bio. In our example, Smithy may have his bio as “Helping wealth advisors work with their clients more efficiently with easy to use web dashboards.”
Normally, 10 to 30% of your relevant leads will follow you back depending on how appealing your profile looks and the target market you are going after. These are people that have expressed interest in you and are now subscribed to all of your future Tweets. Socedo takes it one step further by sending an automated direct message to move the prospect to the next stage of the sales pipeline.
You can personalize the message to make it feel really personal and contextual. Socedo allows you to use the prospect’s first name and the topic from their original Tweet to make create high conversion rates. Normally there is one of two goals with the direct message: 1) start a conversation that will lead to a phone call or 2) send them to a landing page where they can provide contact information.
See the message from McSmithers’ example below. You can see he is sending people to a free e-book where they can fill their contact information out and Smithy can call them from there.
Step 5: Use Data to Learn From Your Conversion Rates
Just like traditional sales, social selling comes down to managing a pipeline and your conversion rates within that pipeline. If McSmithers’ went through his leads and discovered he only approved 2 out of his 20, this would mean he needs to rework his criteria to get a higher hit rate. Removing just one term, adding a negative keyword or requiring bio keywords might be all it takes.
Maybe out of the 20 he approved, only 1 followed him back. Then we would know that we need to check his Twitter profile to see if we can optimize his bio, picture, or types of Tweets in order to be more appealing to his target persona’s interests. Of the ten prospects that followed him, maybe only one clicked on the Bitly link in his message. This might mean the message needs to be worded differently.
Data makes it easy to know which parts of your pipeline to focus on and what changes to make. Social selling is always a process of trial and error so continue to experiment and see how changes affect your conversion rates.
Step 6: Make it a Daily Process
Finally, make it something you do every day. Go in, approve leads, and see who comes out on the other side. For those leads that are interested, follow up with them. The goal is to not have the conversation on social media, the goal is to get their contact information and go into a sales call. Also, you only need to spend around twenty minutes a day (Monday – Friday) in order to see real results.
There you have it! The simple, yet effective, process of setting up your Socedo account in order to find your perfect leads and easily contact them.
Today’s Author is Aseem Badshah, Founder & CEO of Socedo. Aseem founded Socedo with the goal of helping marketing and sales teams identify the right individuals to build relationships with and make that relationship a tangible connection via Twitter. By using social data, Socedo helps sales and business professionals identify relevant leads and engage with them through an automated process. You can read Aseem’s most recent blog post at http://blog.socedo.com or find him on Twitter.