Hopefully I’m not the only one who’s at a loss about how to have an engaging, authentic, non-selling, non-interrupting conversation with someone that ultimately leads to a sale and therefore justifies the expenditure?

That’s what comes from spending an hour reading too many social media blogs. It’s Catch 22 – must engage but can’t talk business. I say, what’s the point?

At yBC we think your business is intrinsically interesting – to people who have a need for your product or service. In other words, it’s ok to talk business – as long as you understand the stage of the buying cycle a person is at and tailor the content to engage them at that stage of their journey.

Today people start their buying process with online research – not on company websites but social media. Evidence shows blogs and professional forums are influential in shaping buyer preferences early in the sales cycle, and that’s why we see B2B companies shifting budget into social media – particularly for thought leadership and lead generation.

Sales has always been a process of courtship, today the courting needs to initiated and developed in public if you are to have any hope of bringing the prospect back to your place to complete the process.

Business–related content on social media is key to securing the initial attraction, and negotiating the all-important getting-to-know-and-trust you stage that today’s Google-happy prospects go through before they engage in the sales process with your organisation.

Creating and disseminate content that’s business relevant and engaging may not win you awards for creativity or get millions of views on YouTube. But seeded into the right communities it will resonate with the people who matter – those who have a genuine need for your product or service who are keen to identify the right vendor, so they can find out more about them.

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