Social media can provide your business with tremendous potential in terms of marketing, but in order to make the most of that potential, you need to know how to capture prospects. Gone are the days when you simply picked up the telephone and called strangers at random. In the last few years, social media has grown by leaps and bounds and has quickly replaced cold calling. According toBusiness Insider, Facebook has more than one billion monthly active users, while Twitter reports more than 230 million users actively use Twitter on a monthly basis.
Despite the growth of social media, many companies still struggle with getting a handle on how they can utilize their social media platforms for prospecting and impacting their business.
Social media is often touted as a great tool for selling, but it is actually rather ineffective for providing immediate sales. While social media is not a solid driver of sales, it is an excellent medium for prospecting. In the typical sales cycle, the beginning is focused on prospecting, which is followed by increased awareness, the development of trust, and finally a purchase. Traditionally, prospecting has served at the most important element of selling.
Sadly, many small businesses make the critical error of simply hoping that prospects will find them. Social mediaprovides the opportunity to cast a wider net and cultivate qualified prospects. Although there are numerous reasons for being active in social media, the opportunity to build new business is certainly at the top of the list.
Yet, many businesses remain hesitant to reach out and take hold of the power of social media for improving their prospects. Among the top reasons for the failure of businesses to utilize social media for prospecting include:
- It is difficult to use social media for prospecting ethically
- Searching for data through social media is more complex than other methods
- It is too difficult to quality prospects using social media