Social Selling Requires Authenticity
When you or your staff are creating content, let the readers know that there’s a real human being behind the words. Inject your personality and your passions, your interests and your knowledge into your writing.
Whether you’re creating a blog post or conversation-starter on your website or you’re preparing a Facebook update status or tweet, you can meet all of the goals of your online interaction – empathizing and problem-solving, educating, building relationships and promoting your brand quietly – through numerous content “types.” You might, for example:
- Help visitors through a complex process that you know well. Write a simple step-by-step how-to (how to handle a customer refund in QuickBooks, how to change your furnace filter, how to choose the best blog software for your business, etc.).
- Humanize your company by showing them who works there. Every employee should at some point write a short piece about themselves and their work in first person, so they’re talking to the readers. It’s a good idea to always speak in first person in your online communications if you can, and address the audience directly (When the chain falls off of your bicycle, your first step should be…instead of When a chain falls off of someone’s bike, he or she should first…)
- Identify individuals who can provide information helpful to your readers. If you sell vehicle parts and accessories, ask someone whose products you represent to write a guest blog about efficient use of auto air conditioners, or provide safety tips for do-it-yourself parts installations. You could just have an email or phone conversation and ghostwrite it.
- Mix it up. Don’t make your visitors read paragraph after paragraph of unbroken text. Drop in graphics, videos, subheads, bulleted lists, audio files and “call-outs” (selected text from the piece displayed in a larger font). It’s a short-attention span world, and accommodating it will keep your readers engaged. Some people prefer video to text, so offer them both when you can.
Provide simply-written, lively (minimize the exclamation points, though), meaty content to your visitors and present it in a friendly, courteous, helpful manner, always following up on comments. The crucial relationship-building element of social selling will follow.