Many things might have changed over the years, but the one thing that has stayed the same is the sales funnel. At its core, the sales funnel is a simple visualization of the steps required to sell your product or service. When businesses apply this model to their business, they are able to have a visual representation that shows them where they are succeeding and where they are failing to gain convert leads into consumers. While the steps of the sales funnel have fundamentally stayed the same, the introduction of social media has changed the interaction between businesses and consumers, thus slightly altering some aspects of the sales funnel.
In the past, marketing and advertising had been a one way street. Businesses would advertise their product through the television or magazine and people would run out and buy it. Today, people no longer put their trust in ads. In fact, only 47 percent trust traditional ads. The vast majority of consumers now put their trust in personal recommendations from their family and friends. This is why many businesses are now turning to social media as the main way to lead prospects through their sales funnel. So how can you use social media to affect your sales funnel?
- Choose a network - There are dozens of social platforms out there and it might not make much sense to be on all of them. Instead choose the one that works best for your company. Ask yourself who your audience is and if your product or service would make sense on the network. Narrow it down to two or three so you can focus all of your attention on staying active on your profiles.
- Create quality content - Social media is likely the first contact prospective customers will have with your brand. If you want to grab their attention you need to unique content that either entertains or provides information. You should never use social media as only a promotional tool. That's a good way to turn away customers.
- Engage customers - Consumers today want to have a personal connection with brands. If people start commenting on your updates, respond. Engage with consumers by adding value to a conversation.
The infographic below can provide more insight into how other brands are leveraging social media to convert more leads through their sales funnel. Whether you are selling a product or your personal brand, social media is an excellent way to gain exposure and build brand loyalty.
Infographic by tollfreeforwarding.com in partnership with Gryffin Media
Ivan Serrano is a social media and business journalist living comfortably in Northern California.