Why You Need To Stop Treating Social Media Like A Sales Opportunity

One of the most frustrating parts of digital marketing is figuring out how to use social media to get new clients. What seems like endless effort and confusion doesn’t turn in to new clients the same way print media or television commercials did 20 years ago.

The market and medium have changed. Now, to see a result, you’ve got to change your methods.

It’s Normal To Struggle With Social Media

Look, most entrepreneurs don’t think like their friends. We don’t find the same things interesting. The day-to-day news and topics of interest don’t always make for great subjects to comment on either. Sometimes what’s interesting doesn’t do your product, service, or company justice.

As a result, finding interesting things to post that also relate to your company becomes difficult. After all, what interests you doesn’t always interest those around you. We usually resort to asking for the sell and eventually, when that doesn’t work after a month or so, give up.

Social Media Works Best Slowly

The biggest thing standing in the average entrepreneur’s way on social media is the speed of results. We’re looking for a fast return on every one of our efforts, mostly because it feels like we don’t have time for slow returns.

That’s not how social works, though. Building communities, having conversations, and telling stories all take time. Those time-consuming activities are what drive a real return from social. The fast-paced “asks” of the past get you nowhere.

Social Media Has Changed The Market

The internet has changed the way people consume information. Social media has created an environment where people get to choose what they consume and block out what they don’t like. Because attention is the main product that social networks sell, they respond to what gets people to pay more of it.

The kicker? People hate to be sold and will ignore you when that’s all you do. If you focus on selling instead of conversation, the social networks are going to drop your content into obscurity. That means your content – your time-consuming effort – will be a waste.

Here are some things you can do instead.

Share Office Shenanigans

People love to know that the companies they work with and buy from are human. Share posts, pictures, and video of some of the stuff that happens around your workplace. Funny, exciting, intense, or sentimental content gets eaten up by social media users. Your customers connect with you best that way.

Ask Response-Provoking Questions

If you want to increase your social media reach, getting interaction is the best bet. Ask great questions that people want to respond to. Get your followers to share funny stories about your product, about the pain points your service addresses, or about your company. This is the stuff that people want to talk about, and getting them to talk via your content is good for your marketing.

Tell A Joke Or Two

Humor spreads like wildfire. Share an anecdote, meme, or “dad joke” to get your audience laughing. If you can do that effectively, they’ll share it. After all, a little humor goes a long way to making people feel good about your company.

You Still Get To Sell

Your social media efforts still need to result in sales. Make sure you mix things up with conversation starting and community building content so people start paying attention, but don’t hesitate to take advantage of that attention to make the sale.

Watch the numbers and learn when people are looking. That’s when you should ask for the sale. Once you get good at it, you’ll see the return. But be patient. Social media takes time.

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About the author:

Michael McNew
Web developer, marketing innovator, technology enthusiast, and founder of Visceral Concepts, Michael McNew has developed a passion for delivering value to small business, turning his creativity towards image and reputation building for small business owners.