Social Selling is the use of social media to interact directly with prospects, to answer questions and offer thoughtful content until the prospect is ready to buy.
Social selling is not hard selling. In fact, it’s the opposite. It’s about discovering people who may eventually be interested in what you’re selling – then making yourself useful to them. For salespeople, especially in B2B industries, its purpose is to establish relevance to prospects rather than interrupt their daily lives with cold calls and sales pitches.
It’s not a buzzword. It’s a real way for generating revenue and results. Here are 27 facts about salespeople who are Social Selling.
- IBM saw an Increase of 400% in sales in a Social Selling Pilot Program (source: IBM)
- 98% of sales reps with 5000+ LinkedIn connections achieve quota (source: Sales Benchmark Index)
- 90% of C-suite executive say they never respond to cold calls or email blasts (source: Harvard Business Review)
- 89% of customers begin their buying process with a search engine (source: Fleishman-Hillard)
- 86% of IT buyers use social media in their purchase decision process (source: IDG Connect)
- 82% of B2B decision makers think sales reps are unprepared (source: SiriusDecisions)
- 78% of salespeople using social media outsell their peers. (source: Social Media and Sales Quota Survey)
- 75% of customers say they use social media as part of the buying process (source: IBM)
- 75% of the sales people said they have not received formal training from their company on how to use social media (source: Social Media and Sales Quota Survey)
- 74% of B2B marketing companies use Twitter to distribute content (source: Content Marketing Institute)
- 72.6% of salespeople using social media outperformed their sales peers (source: Social Media and Sales Quota Survey)
- 61% of US marketers use social media for lead generation (source: IBM)
- 57% of the buying process is done before sales contact (source: Corporate Executive Board)
- 55% of B2B buyers search for information on social media (source: MediaBistro)
- 54% who used social media tracked their social media usage back to at least one closed deal. (source: Social Media and Sales Quota Survey)
- 50.1% of sales people who report using social media state that they spend less than 10% of their selling time using social media (source: Social Media and Sales Quota Survey)
- 50%-70% of the buying process happens before salespeople get involved (source: Forrester)
- 50% of identified sales leads are not ready to buy (source: Gleanster)
- 42% Follow or Like a friend or brand; 79% are motivated to do this in order to learn more about the brand (source: Fleishman-Hillard)
- Over 40% said they’ve closed between two and five deals as a result of social media. (source: Social Media and Sales Quota Survey)
- Social media users were 23% more successful than their non-social media peers. (source: Social Media and Sales Quota Survey)
- Today’s sales process takes 22% longer than 5 years ago (source: SiriusDecisions)
- 15% of non social media users missed quota 15% more often than their sales peers using social media (source: Social Media and Sales Quota Survey)
- More than 10% of the respondents said; “Yes, It directly contributes to my closes.” (source: Social Media and Sales Quota Survey)
- You are almost 5X more likely to schedule a first meeting if you have a personal LinkedIn connection (source: Sales Benchmark Series)
- Marketers spend an average of 4-6 hours a week on social media (source: Social Media Examiner)
- B2B marketers who use Twitter generate 2X as many leads as those that do not (source: Inside View)
If a picture helps explain some of these statistics, below is an infographic from Inside View.
Do these facts about sales people who are Social Selling surprise you? Does your company engage in Social Selling? Do you think your company could be getting better results?