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9 in 10 digital marketers are spending on social media, and 8 in 10 say they have generated leads or sales from their activities, with performance varying by company type and social network, per results from a Webmarketing123 survey. The numbers reverse on the more professionally-oriented LinkedIn, as data from the August “State of Digital Marketing 2012 Report” indicates. Marketing, advertising, communications & public relations trends, statistics, charts, graphs, infographics, presentations, and video that are not published to the e-Strategy Internet Marketing Blog or to eStrategy TV. David Erickson, VP of Online Marketing at Minneapolis Public Relations firm, Karwoski & Courage. Wouldna€™t that be pretty valuable if you had five minutes in between meetings or travel to go to that room, listen to these conversations, and gauge whata€™s being discussed? Numerous executives are likely asking themselves, a€?How do I do this, though, with this crazy-busy schedule of mine?a€? I completely understand this sentiment: I used to have 350 people on my team and, thus, certainly had a hectic schedule. Despite your busy schedule, though, there are techniques you can use to capitalize on this opportunity during your a€?in-between times,a€? like when you are waiting in line for lunch, on the train, in a taxi, or at a board meeting.
Herea€™s a little framework that I use when I think about my social media monitoring strategy as a sales executive. Personally, I have these activities configured so that when they occur, I get an email that alerts me.
While I dona€™t catch all Facebook posts, tweets, and other social network mentions, I usually check out activity related to this bucket each morning so that Ia€™m up to speed on what I deem the a€?biga€? things happening with people and entities that I know and work with. For instance, anytime customers mention our company or a prospect tweets something (anything, really), I want to know about it.
Just as I have feeds set up for mission-critical items I need to know about on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc., I also have feeds set up to hear general chatter about my company and our competitors.
Thata€™s not to say that I wouldna€™t check out a handful of these types of mentions if I have even just a free minute. The good thing about this bucket is that I can go back and read these tweets later in the day and retweet ones that really stand out. Picture your sales pipeline filled with qualified leads – all of whom you know by name and have personally interacted with. Social media tools like Twitter and LinkedIn are great ways for you to find prospects and connect with customers. The biggest challenge with using social media is getting through all the noise to identify the qualified prospects. With a social media dashboard like HootSuite, break your contacts into lists to keep track of all of the contacts in your pipeline. Using HootSuite and Twitter search, you can look for keywords that are relevant to your business. If you manage a specific territory or have a business that is focused on a local geography, you can also filter your search based on coordinates. Social media is the beginning of where you engage with your contacts and get them into your pipeline. The longest-running service in the industry, Ecquire holds top ratings in the Salesforce AppExchange and Google Chrome Web Store.
The first step in the stage of the funnel is getting the attention of your prospective buyers and building awareness so that your company gets recognized.


You then need to make sure your consumers are educated about the benefits and educating your customers on your product or service. At this point you want to make your customer desire your product so that they want to own it.
Using social media, twitter, Facebook, instagram, you tube, more customers now than ever are sharing your information with their friends and family and tying them into your product. With your customers being armed with social media it is imperative that your product lives up to and meets the expectations of your customers.
You have to make sure that whatever your customer has been told about your product it needs to live up to those expectations.
A lot of consumers also use things such as Yelp and other rating type sites to rate their experiences on products and services.
To earn points and badges for participating in the conversation, join Cisco Social Rewards. Opinions expressed here and in any corresponding comments are the personal opinions of the original authors, not of Cisco. Some 39% of B2B marketers report generating leads from Facebook, and 19% report generating sales from the social network, Somewhat predictably, B2C marketers have far higher success with Facebook, with 67% generating leads and 39% generating sales. In that room, many of your customers and prospects were just talking to each other about whata€™s going on in their lives, what they're interested in at the moment, and what they're up to with their businesses. I think every sales executive would agree this would be extremely valuable and beneficial to their work. You can tap into the social media spectrum for five minutes and get a€?ina€? on the various conversations occurring there. To be honest, Ia€™m not always on top of those activities, but Ia€™m making a concerted effort to continually get better at recognizing those mentions, as they can be -- and often are -- vital to understanding current and prospective customersa€™ wants and needs. If thata€™s too much to monitor in addition to the mission-critical activity, then just work on checking mentions of your company on social (and perhaps mentions of your biggest competitors).
Or, if I know a salesperson who is assigned to certain prospects that are tweeting, I can give them a heads up that they should retweet them or respond to their activity.
You are using an outdated browser, we recommend you upgrade your browser for a better and safer experience. By the end of this article, you’ll have learned how to set up a sales funnel that will help turn that scenario into a reality. It allows you move further up the funnel to get in front of them and build trust, value, and credibility before they engage in buying. When you retweet them, message them, or engage in conversations, you move your relationship a little bit closer. For example, if a prospect talks about a problem that they are experiencing, it gives you insight into their needs and puts you in a better position to talk about their problems and your solutions. The other huge opportunity is the ability to reach out to leads who you don’t even know about.
Create a few customized searches that describe your product, your industry, and the problems that you solve. There will also be opportunities to engage people who are still at the top of the funnel and doing research for different solutions or customers who are unhappy with the solutions of your competitors.
But your goal is to move them through the funnel and hopefully to convert them into customers.


The old time sales funnel, consist of business cards, cold calling, and pitching to the customers that are listening. Establishing a good website with information about your product or service is crucial to stay in the funnel of social media and set your company above the competitors. For every customer that has a positive experience and refers people it could very well go the opposite direction too. The downfall is that if your product falls short or something happens, the same network of people will hear the bad information and possibly be turned off from buying your product. One bad review could lead to a lot of problems and a lot of negative publicity to your company. The content is provided for informational purposes only and is not meant to be an endorsement or representation by Cisco or any other party. By contrast, 21% of B2C companies say they have generated leads from LinkedIn, with 9% generating sales. One best practice I like to bring up is social media monitoring, which, to me, is something executives need in order to be wholly effective in their jobs. And while I cana€™t view all of this activity, Ia€™ll try to find a minute here and there to see if there are some worthwhile mentions or posts I should know about. I can even just give my salespeople guidance on how they should approach replying to this kind of activity. When the opportunity comes up, you’ll be able to better focus on their needs, their problems, and their outcomes. Before you turn on the fire hose of social media, you must have a sales funnel that can properly track and manage all the contacts you will interact with. View it as a touchpoint with each contact, building a stronger relationship with existing customers or getting yourself known to leads. With a few simple search queries and hour of maintenance a week, you will have access to an unlimited source of potential leads for your business.
For example, Ecquire is a contact management software that automates data entry into your CRM. People fall in love with things on their social media and promote, and share them with people they know.
People like seeing the product working and successful for others, which makes social media a highly sought after area to gain approval and increase sales.
Imagine having a product that fails to meet expectations and it winds up on YouTube, where thousands of people can see it fail right before their eyes. In this section, we will show you how to use a tool called IFTTT to automate the process of entering leads and contacts into the appropriate lists in your sales funnel. It is a highly beneficial tool when your customers self-market your business using their own personal accounts. By posting you agree to be solely responsible for the content of all information you contribute, link to, or otherwise upload to the Website and release Cisco from any liability related to your use of the Website. You also grant to Cisco a worldwide, perpetual, irrevocable, royalty-free and fully-paid, transferable (including rights to sublicense) right to exercise all copyright, publicity, and moral rights with respect to any original content you provide.



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