Social Media has given sales professionals unprecedented opportunities to connect with potential clients. But to covert these contacts to actual commissions, there’s no substitute for the time-tested skills of the master sales professional. Sales is a contact sport and this contact must take place live. The right combination of online marketing and closing the deal through personal contact will give the savvy salesperson a definitive edge in a challenging marketplace.
To start, log into Face Book, Twitter, and LinkedIn and make sure your profiles are professional and effective. Post a nice picture and your contact information. Let everyone know exactly what you offer and why you’re better than the rest. Just like in person, you want to make a good first impression, so don’t put anything online you wouldn’t want the whole world to see.
Make sure you’re not a secret agent by letting the built-in systems import your contact information. Use the search options to find people you want to Friend, Follow, and Link To—This is your chance to amass as many contacts as you can, so put some effort into it and don’t be bashful.
Social Media is interactive, so check out what your contacts are doing and Like, Share, Comment, and Retweet their messages. Say something encouraging and thoughtful. This will get them interested in you and will motivate them to recommend you to their people—this is how you build your network exponentially.
A word of caution: Spend at least a few weeks building your relations before bombarding them with sales pitches. You want to establish yourself as a trusted friend and professional first and interested clients will come to you.
The good news on telephoning is that technology has made the task even easier with smart phones, voice activated dialing, apps, etc. so there are no excuses. You can text your contacts, but make sure at the end of the day, you get voice to voice when you’re trying to generate referrals and business.
The next critical part of using social media to put more money in your pocket is converting online inquiries into phone conversations and then, face-to-face appointments. In the Internet age it’s tempting to just e-mail someone back with all the details and hope they are interested enough to get back to you. That’s not being a master salesperson.
If you have their phone number, call them! If you don’t, the secret is to send them just enough sizzle about the home so they need to call you to find out more. In the old days, too many sales were lost over the phone. Nowadays, don’t lose the deal over the Internet by giving away too much—If you e-mail them everything they need to know, what do they need you for?
Your goal is to get face-to-face as soon as you can and the best way to do that is CITO (Come Into the Office). This starts a process to see if you have a looker or a buyer and if your lead is actually able to buy the house they contacted you about. If they are unwilling to CITO, that’s a red flag from the get go and you have to ask more questions to see if they are even worth your time and expertise.
Remember, time is money and you need to find out quickly if your Internet lead is for real. The phone will tell you if you have a qualified buyer or if its time to move on.
Keep in mind that many times, the property that first attracted the lead, is usually not the one they end up buying. That’s why it’s so important to convert your online relationship to a personal relationship—Get face-to-face with qualified buyers and you will make a sale.
Everyday, sale professionals are bombarded with the latest technology and programs to do this or that. It’s easy to become distracted or get off track trying to find an easier way. You already have everything you need right before you. Establish an online presence through Face Book and Twitter and register with LinkedIn. Use social media to build relationships and then make sure you convert them into future business through direct, personal contact.
Finally, like everything else, it’s important to make disciplined use of your time. It’s easy to get caught up in social media and spend more time at it than you should. So make a schedule that you can stick to and as part of that schedule make sure you set goals and block out time to do your social media and go face-to-face—that’s how you’re going to make more money using all the tools at your disposal.
Be sure to visit my Face Book page at The Floyd Wickman Team and make a friend request. I’ll be sure to accept. You can visit my web site at www.floydwickman.com. And don’t forget to follow me on Twitter link up with me on LinkedIn.