Wednesday, 9 April 2014

A Few Ways to Engage Your Contacts for Better Sales in 2014

Engagement can be the one thing that stands between a business and significant sales. Some businesses choose to engage their leads and contacts though social media networks, others use personal blogs. However, 2014 is teaching us that it isn’t so much about using a specific tool as it is using a tool that your contacts are likely using themselves. Not sure how to find out what tools they’re using or how to engage them through these tools?  Keep reading to find out.

Use a Social Monitoring Tool to See What They’re Saying
The first step to properly engaging your leads and contacts is to know what it is they want to talk about. Instead of using timely surveys to find out what that is, try using a social monitoring tool like Hootsuite. A social monitoring tool identifies what your leads are saying about your business and your industry. Certain tools come with a social signal feature that alerts you each time one of your leads checks out your site, reads your emails or visits your social media pages. The information leveraged from such a valuable tool can help you to lower your marketing costs by investing in the right lead sources. Of course, this leads to higher quality contacts and increased sales.  In addition, to complement a social monitoring tool, use a CRM with social integration and you can also see where your leads and contacts frequently post.

Use a Social Login Tools to Find Out What They Like
Big businesses (in particular, those in the media industry) use social login apps to increase their sign-ups, and small businesses should also use this. Social logins allow prospects to sign-up for an account or additional information by logging in with one of their social media accounts.  You might notice this tool when navigating a website that requires you to create an account in order to proceed or receive special offers.  The advantages of social logins are time and contact information -- it takes seconds for someone to log in using their social credentials and you can leverage all of their social media information once they sign up. The information you gather using these tools is almost as valuable as interviewing the contact personally. You’ll know their likes, what conversations they have and contact details. This data can help you create better lead nurturing content.

Discover the Wonderful World of WhitePapers
This has been said time and time again, but some businesses just aren’t seeing the engagement and conversion rates that they were promised by using whitepapers. The problem isn’t so much the papers as it is the execution and content. Whitepapers are wonderful marketing tools as they really show that you know your stuff. However, if you send your too many whitepapers back to back, your contact won’t bother reading them and just block them as spam. Also, if you’re not aware of what kind of information your leads need, you might be sending them the wrong content. To avoid either one of these mishaps, use an online small business CRM to keep track of your contacts and leads and all of their interactions with your company. Additionally, you can use the tools listed above to leverage further data about your prospect’s interests. Once you know what it is they want to hear, create a whitepaper that addresses this. Send the whitepaper and wait about 2 weeks before sending another.

Start a Public Conversation
Why wait for your contacts to make the first move when you can actively engage them on social media? Social media platforms such as Linkedin, Facebook and Twitter see millions of posts per day from both business and personal users, making it a potential jackpot for marketers. Not only can you mine for information on these platforms, but you can also converse with them directly. Make sure your social page is friendly by starting conversations pertaining to your industry or promotions. Invite your leads and contacts to join the conversation by including a call to action statement at the end of your posts. Once they do reply or share your post, reach out to them – and most importantly – keep the conversation going by replying back. Other users will see this and view your company as an approachable one.

Growing your SMB doesn't have to be painful.  There is no “secret-science” behind engaging prospects, just a few tools and tips can keep everything flowing smoothly. By following the above advice, you can not only promote better engagement with your prospects, but you’ll also gain new leads and contacts who like the way you do business.

Do you have any tips to engage leads?

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