How social media can help warm up cold leads

Yesterday I wrote a piece on cold calling, and today I thought I’d carry on that theme.

I always bang on about how social media is a great way to expand your audience and generally raise brand awareness, but it can be a huge help when it comes to warming up cold leads.

Let’s say you’ve done your research and you have a list of prospects you want to contact.  Yes, you could just drop them an email, or pick up the phone to schedule an appointment, but we all know the chances of you getting anywhere with that are quite remote.  Someone that doesn’t know you, and hasn’t had any contact from you in the past, isn’t going to jump at the prospect of working with you.

It can be hard to know how to make contact with someone you don’t actually know, but the reality is with social media you can reach out to countless people around the globe. Yet, for some reason, so few people actually bother.

If you look at your list there’s a good chance every company on there is going to have at least one social media channel.  It might be Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube or Pinterest to name but a few.  If you’re serious about reaching out and starting a two-way relationship, then you need to start following them.

Not only that, you should actively interact with them.  Now, I don’t mean you should RT everything they post, that’s entering in to creepy stalker territory, but do get involved where it makes sense to.  Tag them in posts you think would be relevant to them, engage in conversation.  DM them when it’s appropriate to do so to introduce yourself, and perhaps your business and services.

If the company is on LinkedIn, follow them and share some of their updates.  You can also find out who some of the employees are at the business, which may make it easier for you to make contact and get a positive outcome further down the line.  Where possible make contact with these people.  You can always lead with “I’ve been following your business on Twitter for some time and would like to find out more about what you offer”.

I always say social networking is not simply about collecting names.  It doesn’t matter who you know if you don’t genuinely know them, and can’t reach out to them when you need something.  You need to take the time to nurture these relationships, and honestly it will pay off in the end.

 

4 ways to separate your professional contacts from your Facebook friends

Even if you don’t really engage much with social media, the chances are you have a Facebook profile.  No matter what your employment status, there is likely to come a time when you get a friend request from a professional contact.

It could be an employer, co-worker, client or fellow networker.

In this day and age when everyone seems to take these friendships so seriously, it can be difficult to know how to handle professional relationships online.

Facebook is a relaxed social network, and as such is very different to something like LinkedIn.  You’ll no doubt share photos of your family and friends, as well as post your own opinions and have the occasional moan. At times that’s likely to be in conflict with your personal brand.

How then do you manage the crossover between public and professional life, and your unreserved no-holds barred private one?  Thankfully, there are four options you can choose from.

# 1 – Restricted list

Within the privacy settings you have the option to add people to a restricted list.  This list ensures that they won’t see posts that you only share with friends. However, they will be able to see your public posts, and will likely see anything you post to a mutual friends’ timeline, or posts that you have been tagged in by others.

The best thing about this is it’s easy to use and manage, and people won’t know they’ve been added to the list and Facebook doesn’t notify them. Essentially they become followers, but aren’t aware of any changes.

To use this, click on your drop down arrow in the top right of your page, select SETTINGS, and then BLOCKING from the menu on the left.

All you need to is select specific friends you would like to add to the list, and you’re done.

When you then post something, you can select the specific audience for each post such as public or friends.

# 2 – Create an alias

Another option is to create an alternative account, and use this for either your family and friends, or professional contacts.

That way you can essentially have two very distinct audiences you can post relevant content to.

Technically this is against Facebook rules, and your profile could be shut down if they stumble across it or someone reports you.

# 3 – Accept you have professional contacts

In an ideal world your professional contacts would follow your Facebook business page and therefore wouldn’t have any need to be friends with you on their too. However, some people start off adding their contacts, only later to realise there may be an issue.

You could request that all your professional contacts like your page, and slowly migrate them over to that instead. Though, there will always be some people that don’t do this and you may end up losing them all together.

Alternatively, you could decide to use Facebook in a more professional manner, and refrain from posting anything that might appear negative for your personal or business brand.

You might even go old school and share private and personal information with friends and family in a more private and personal forum. Such as face to face. Or the phone.

# 4 – Don’t add professional contacts

In order to remove any issues about what is or isn’t appropriate content in a business context you might want to consider not adding your professional contacts in the first place.

What you do and don’t post, and who you share it with is always going to be your decision – and there is no right or wrong answer. Only you can decide what feels appropriate to you.

Personally, this is the route I prefer to go down as it makes the most sense for me.  I don’t want to censor my content for friends and family just in case a client might see it – so I don’t add clients.

If I get a friend request from a professional contact I advise them of my personal policy, and direct them to like my business page and add me on LinkedIn if they haven’t already. These are two fantastic ways to connect on social media, and ensure everything remains 100% professional and on brand.

 

 

5 ways Facebook Live can Liven up your marketing

Our intrepid leader Lu is a bit of a fan of content.  Fuel her with coffee and she’ll write thousands of words a day. However, content isn’t always the best way to get your message across.  No matter how well it’s written, people don’t always want to sit and actually read through what you’ve taken the time to write.

Which is where video comes in.

We are an inherently curious species (cats have nothing on humans), which means when a video pops up on our timeline or newsfeed, we’re going to click on it.  The same isn’t always true, even of a blog with a fantastic headline.

Admittedly, not everyone wants to video themselves, and 99.9% of us hate seeing anything played back that we’ve appeared in, but it really is a great way to get a message across, and can spice up an otherwise text heavy social media approach.

Live video, even more so, is a top way to get people to actually engage with your brand and page.

Here are our top five ways to make the most of live video on Facebook.

1 – Use it address blog comments

So, you’ve written a great blog and it’s got people talking, engaging, commenting and asking questions.

Rather than simply replying to each individual message you could instead respond via video.  Take a moment to recap your original content, then go through a few of the comments you’ve received.

If you’ve had a few good comments, and maybe someone has a different view to the one you’ve expressed it might even be worth inviting that person to join you on a live interview.

2 – Do a behind the scenes sneaky-peak of your business

We hear it over and over again but people buy people.  That’s why showing a behind the scenes look of your business is a great way to get buy-in.

Perhaps it’s a staff member’s birthday, or you have a special event?  Stream it live so people can still feel involved, even if they can’t physically be with you.

You might even want to address a business process that helps you to run more efficiently, or a trick you’ve picked up along the way that could be of benefit to someone else.

3 – Promote your event

Once you have all the details worked out, take to Facebook Live to announce your upcoming event. It could be a seminar, webinar, training session, launch party or some other celebration – whatever it is, get it out there via video.

You’ll automatically create a buzz because the people that have tuned in to your broadcast will be the first to find out all about it.

The key with this sort of announcement though is to make sure you have an easy to remember URL for people to remember, so they can go to find out more or sign up.  Also, don’t forget to copy the link in to the comments for those that couldn’t remember!

4 – Answer FAQs

You can create a script and pre-select FAQs that you want to answer. You know your business, and your customers best, so you know what some of the sticking points might be during the buying journey, and you can easily address them via video.

You might even want to run a Q&A session instead, inviting people to comment with their own questions that you can answer there and then.  This really does improve engagement, and can provide fantastic customer service.

5 – Tease new products

If you’re launching a new product that isn’t yet available on your website, you can use live video to showcase it, and tease your audience.

Explain the new product, it’s features and how it can benefit them. What problem does it solve, or why would it make their life better?  If it’s not already available, one of the best things you can do to actually increase sales as a direct result of the video is to offer a pre-order link.  Perhaps even with a discount.

This way you can also track what sales are directly attributed to your video.

 

 

We hope that’s helped, but if you have any questions, don’t forget to give us a call on 0161 883 2024 and we’ll be happy to help.