Social selling can be misleading because the term seems to convey simply selling on social media. Rather, the method is focused on building trust and developing meaningful relationships, specifically the relationship between salesperson and consumer, to sell more efficiently.
LinkedIn describes the term as follows, “Social selling is leveraging your own professional brand and social network to gather insights and connections, then use those information to help you discover new opportunities, sell, and get business done”.
In our technology-driven culture, social media has become a significant platform upon which to engage with consumers.
Before social media, salespeople were not afforded the luxury and convenience of having consumers’ preferences, pain points, interests, and behaviors all at their fingertips. This is made possible by social listening, which is enabled with tools such as Hootsuite, and Google Alerts. But salespeople are not just listening — they’re also injecting themselves into the conversation.
Social media has seeped into and parked itself comfortably in the sales realm; salespeople are commenting, liking, and sharing relevant information with consumers. Social selling is about being situated where your customers are and right now, the majority is online.
Here are 30 stats that prove why you need to implement social selling now:
2. 64% like it when a salesperson does Internet and social media research about them and their company before reaching out to them. (Hubspot)
3. 92% of buyers delete emails or ignore calls from people they do not know. (A Sales Guy Consulting)
4. 65% of buyers feel that the vendor’s content had an impact on their final purchase decision. (Brainy Marketer)
5. 82% of prospects can be reached via social media. (Sergey Gusarov)
6. 73% have engaged with a vendor on social media. (Salesforce)
7. Consumers are 5x times more likely to schedule a first meeting if you have a personal LinkedIn connection. (Sales Benchmark Index)
8. Up to 70% of B2B buying steps are completed before buyers connect with a salesperson, mostly by using online resources. (Sirius Decisions)
9. 55% of all buyers do their research by using social networks. (IBM)
10. 77% of B2B purchasers said that they would not even speak to a salesperson until they had done their own research. (Corporate Executive Board)
11. 86% of consumers buying IT products use social media to help them reach a buying decision. (Advertising Age)
12. 72% of respondents said they used social media to research the solution purchase. (Demand Gen)
13. 59% of social consumers are influenced by at least one social network when purchasing. (Salesforce)
14. 84% of B2B decision makers begin their buying process with a referral. (Influitive)
15. 53% of buyers said that they rely on peer recommendations before making a purchase decision. (Demand Gen)
16. 53% of sales professionals have received introductions to new opportunities from their coworkers. (LinkedIn)
17. 78.3% of salespeople are using social media to sell. (A Sales Guy Consulting)
18. 61% of B2B marketers use social media channels, such as LinkedIn, to increase lead generation. (INC)
19. 98% of the top sales professionals say relationships are the most important part of generating new business. (Business 2 Community)
20. 64% of sales teams use inbound marketing social selling to reach their quotas. (The Aberdeen Group)
21. 45% of sales people who do not use social media said it was because they did not understand it. (A Sales Guy Consulting)
22. Social selling leaders have 45% more sales opportunities. (LinkedIn)
23. Effective use of sales intelligence increases revenue productivity per sales rep by 17%. (Eloqua)
24. 78% of salespeople using social media outsell their peers. (Forbes)
25. Salespeople using social media as part of their sales process exceeded quota 23% more often. (A Sales Guy Consulting)
26. Non-social media users missed quota 15% more often than their sales peers using social media. (A Sales Guy Consulting)
27. 65% of B2B companies have acquired a client through LinkedIn. (Salesforce)
28. 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. (LinkedIn)
29. 54% have closed business deals as a direct result of social media. (A Sales Guy Consulting)
30. Eloqua has seen increased conversion rates of leads to opportunities 25% by adopting social selling. (LinkedIn)