Do you use Hootsuite as your social media dashboard? Did you know they have a huge Resource center on their site? I use their dashboad, but I had no idea about the Resource center, and it is filled with great content (you can find it here).
One of those great pieces of content is a Hootsuite University webinar with Gord Hotchkiss, Chief Strategy Officer of Mediative, and author of The BuyerSphere Project. His webinar included some advanced B2B social selling tips, which might sound like a snooze, but it was actually really fascinating and focused on using psychology to get people to buy.
Here’s what I learned:
B2B decision-making is about mitigating risk
When people make decisions, they are balancing risk and reward – this is basic human nature. B2B purchases are all about mitigating risk and understanding risk from a number of different angles. This completely changes the way the buying process works.
Plus, these purchases are usually required. It’s the difference between buying a Tesla (desired and super exciting!) and buying a customer relationship management tool (required and not that thrilling). Your goal is to point out how the required, not-exciting purchase will be a smart, low-risk purchase.
Understand the community on social media
Step back and look at your target market on social media, because you need to understand what you’re working with first before you engage them on social media and leverage that engagement into sales.
Is there ongoing engagement and organic community behavior already happening? If there is, you simply need to join the conversation. If not, then you have to work to start the conversation.
Create content based on their use of social media
When prospects start to become interested in your products or services, you want to be there. If there is no community, you’ll want to have case studies, testimonials, information on industry-specific applications, FAQs, and an active forum ready for them to find.
If there is a community, focus on providing thought leadership via videos, demos, and blog posts. Join community forums and discussion boards.
Either way, talk about risk in terms of price, reliability, safety, and usability/convenience, because those will factor into their decision.
Plant the content where they’ll find it
Look at your buyer personas to understand who is looking, what they will be looking for, why they are looking, where they will go, and when they will look. Then determine the likely intersection points – search engine? Twitter? Look at your visibility in those areas, and then follow the conversion path from those spots.
Do this, and you will help people self-qualify themselves – they will download resources and interact on social media – and then they will lead themselves down the path to a purchase.