Social Media: The Perfect Testing Ground For New Products?

social media

If you have a new product idea – software or physical – then you should consider using social media as a testing ground. It’s a great way to gauge reaction, and it can help you build an enormous buzz to build up to launch day. In this guide, I’m going to take you through several ways you can use social media to test the water on your new product’s popularity. Read on to find out more.

The basics

First of all, make sure you have a product to talk about. In an ideal world, you will have everything ready to send out or sell straight away. But, prototypes from a plastic injection moulding company or beta software can often be a great pull, too. You also need to concentrate on priming your audience for some big news. People love to be ahead of the game and will take a lot more interest in your product if they believe they are getting insider knowledge or exclusive info.

Teaser shots

Next, use the good old art of photography to share teaser shots with your followers. If you are creating a physical product, it is worth hiring a professional photographer to make your images as striking as possible. They will be able to create moody lighting, and give your photos a lot more impact. For software on online products, a screenshot can work in your favour. Again, just give a little glimpse of what people can expect, without revealing too much. The idea is to build excitement and to keep people coming back for more and sharing your news on their feeds.

Take notes

Make sure you are taking notes of any reactions that your audience is giving you. You might find some interesting ideas that you can apply to your product, or it could even open up a market that you hadn’t considered before.

 

Offer opportunity

Once you have created a little buzz about your product, consider offering your audience the chance to get their hands on it. You can do this via a competition, or a draw where you put the name of everyone that shares your page with others into a hat. It’s a great way to build up even more of an audience and get more eyes on your product.

 

Send out the first batch

Now you have a bunch of people who want to use your product, take down their details and send it to them. As part of the T&Cs, you can ask them to share their thoughts with you on your social media page, or their personal blogs. Again, it’s a great chance for you to spread the word even further. And, given the product is free for the recipient, they are likely to be more positive with their opinions.

 

Use video

You can also create a video about your product – they are popular, and give people a more in-depth look at what you are trying to do. If your video – and product – is good enough, you can almost guarantee it will spread like wildfire.

As you can see, social media is a fantastic tool for testing out the marketability of a new product. Make sure you are using some of these tips – and let me know the results!

Taking Your Company to Another Level

How to do improve your business and make it stand out these days? Well, the best thing to do is try to elevate it to another level. And the only way to do this is to make sure you understand what the business entails, and how to run it perfectly. Take a look at these ideas for how you can take your company to another level. Try to make sure you action these as soon as you possibly can.

Learn the Ropes

We could all stand to learn a bit more about the process of running a business. And that’s why it’s sometimes a good idea to go back and learn the ropes. It’s not that we forget the basics; it’s more that we forget their value. The simple stuff is often overlooked in favour of focusing on the more complicated parts of running a company. But, sometimes the basics are just as important, if not more so. So make sure you take the time to learn or relearn what is required to run a company.

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Go Digital

If you haven’t already made your business digital then God knows what you’ve been doing! The digital landscape is the future of not just business, but the world! So, you have to get your business up and running on a digital platform as much as possible. Make sure you have plenty of computers in your offices. Get social media training and do as much digital marketing as you can. In fact, try to make your business into a fully digital entity as much as possible. You will certainly reap the benefits of doing this.

Working From Home

As the world changes and becomes more digital you need to make your business more flexible. You need to be able to run it at any time of day or night no matter where you are. And the best way to achieve this is to make sure you work from home. That’s not to say that you have to start a home business. You can still have offices, but you should allow working from home. This can turn you into a 24/7 business if necessary, and gives you more time to connect with your clients and customers.

Image By Pixabay

Look After Staff and Clients

The best businesses out there are the ones who look after their own. That means you’ve got to look after your clients, but also, your staff as well. Turn yourself into a company that people are excited to be associated with. Develop a reputation as a great organisation to work for and do business with. The corporate world is so full of companies that are just concerned with chasing money. So think about how much positive attention you can draw by being thoughtful and considerate. People like to be well treated by companies, and they will reward you with loyalty.

All of these approaches will help you to take your company to another level. You want to separate yourself from other businesses and stand out. And all of these tips will help you to make improvements to your brand as much as possible. You always need to look for ways you can elevate and improve the brand in all that you do.

 

How Content Transforms Salespeople [Infographic]

Forget the sleazy salesperson stereotype.

Today’s most successful salespeople act as thought leaders and industry experts, connecting prospects with content. They challenge buyers to be on the cutting-edge of their industries.

But unfortunately, many people still harbor a negative perception of sales reps. So what’s a salesperson to do? Load up on content.

This infographic explains how content helps sales teams build relationships that lead to revenue.

Use content to create revenue

Are You Ready For Social Selling?

What is social selling:
Social Selling is the process of finding and connecting potential leads and prospects via social media to increase sales.

The Aberdeen Group define social selling as the utilisation into one of three techniques. These three techniques include Social Collaboration, External Listening and External Participation.

There are many studies available that demonstrate why you need to evolve your traditional methods to involve social media, none more important than this. On average – 60% of the purchasing decision has already been made, prior to a sales person being invited to the discussion.

Someone is educating and providing insight to your clients – is it you or your competition?

You want more? Ok…
Seventy Two percent of sales people who use social media outperform those sellers who are not using social media
Thirty Six percent of companies who have a social selling team are more likely to achieve quota.

To get started on your Social Selling journey – here is a great Infographic to start you off for LinkedIn

Are You Ready For Social Selling

So, are you ready for Social Selling. Why not try these additional resources : 10 Steps for a Rocking Profile

SPEAK UP! I CAN’T HEAR YOU: Insights from a Social Seller by Louis Richardson

I have had the privilege of speaking along side Louis and I have been reading his blog posts for some time now, “Creativity Crisis“. Social media is an untapped power to many sales people, so his latest SlideShare presentation was one I had to share here.

Follow Louis on Twitter.

SPEAK UP! I CAN’T HEAR YOU: Insights from a Social Seller from Louis Richardson

 

How to master the art of LinkedIn rejections by Rob Wilmot

Rob Wilmot 

I often get asked about the etiquette of turning people down on LinkedIn; whether it’s a request for a connection, recommendation or introduction, it’s really important for your reputation that you deal with these situations correctly. In this article I share with you my own personal experience and the questions I’ve been asked along the way.

How to decide if you should accept an invitation to connect or not

Ask yourself:

  1. Do I know them well enough?
  2. Can I trust them? By accepting their invitation to connect you’ll normally be granting them access to view your immediate connections.
  3. Does the addition of this connection strengthen my network?
  4. Will this person know people that I would benefit from an introduction to?

If you’re answering yes to most of the above, then accept. If you have any no’s creeping in then perhaps you shouldn’t.                              

Dealing with the invites that you don’t want to accept

It’s OK to say no and it is actually a lot more polite and gracious than simply ignoring an invite. You should also remember that though it might not be the right time to connect now, things may change in the future. The best rejection I ever got was from someone I invited to connect after we had hooked up on Twitter. It went something like this…

“Hi Rob

I usually only accept invitations to connect from people I have already done business with or by introductions and recommendations from others in my network. However I look forward to reading your Tweets and getting to know you better that way.

Kindest regards

Bill”

I was pleased because Bill took the time to send a response and showed respect for our current relationship on Twitter, which continued to develop to the point where I eventually got an invitation to connect from him.

The point here is that if he had ignored my invitation to connect, it’s highly likely that I would have felt rejected and not continued our conversations on Twitter, and that would have been a big missed opportunity. It’s simple human psychology – we all like to feel valued and none of us like to be ignored.

How to decide if you should give a recommendation or not

People will request recommendations from you. The test here is: would you give them a reference offline for a job or for a tender?

Turning down a request for a recommendation

Don’t be afraid to turn down a request for recommendation, but do it kindly and with a positive attitude. My friend and top blogger Chris Brogan suggested that I use this approach…

“Hi _____

I’m honored you asked for a recommendation. Thanks for thinking of me. Because I haven’t worked enough with you professionally, I fear my recommendation wouldn’t be useful.

Rob”

Honesty really is the best policy, and when I’ve done this I’ve actually had messages back thanking me for taking the time to write. Being up-front like this creates a mutual respect, and strengthens relationships.

How to deal with requests to make an introduction

People will want to get to reach out to a connection of yours by using the LinkedIn introduction tool.  I try to help with introductions as often as possible as it creates trust and gratitude within my connections. But often you might not feel it’s appropriate to make an introduction. The test for this is simple:

Do you know the person asking for the introduction well enough to introduce them to your other connections? Can you vouch for them?

Your first instinct is usually the right one when deciding this.

Declining a request for an introduction

If you don’t feel comfortable making an introduction, for whatever reason, then don’t. Hit the decline button, but always decline politely. For example:

unfortunately, on this occasion, I don’t feel that I’m best placed to help with an introduction…”

Declining an introduction

You’ll no doubt at some point receive an introduction via someone in your immediate connections. The decision to accept is often clean cut, e.g. if someone is offering you a paid engagement or making/offering you a service that you definitely need. But sometimes you will receive an introduction regarding something that is just not a right fit for you.

If you’ve received an introduction but don’t want what they’re selling or are unable to help, don’t just ignore the introduction. Hit the decline button and write a polite note. For example:

“I’m sorry, but on this occasion, I don’t feel that I’m best placed to help you…”

Declining to make or accept introductions

It’s a respect thing; being courteous is just good manners. If someone asks you to make an introduction and there is a practical reason to decline, do so in a timely manner. If you don’t hit the decline button, you’re locking up one of the introductions from the quota of the person who’s asked for the introduction. Anyone with the free LinkedIn account can only make five introductions per year and so they are a valuable commodity, especially as outstanding introduction requests don’t expire for six months.

It’s over to you…

There is no rule book for managing your LinkedIn connections. As with networking face-to-face, try and treat people as you would wish to be treated yourself; be courteous and polite and people will value you all the more for it.

Add to the conversation – drop a comment below and say hi

Follow Rob on Twitter

Replacing the Cold Call with: ANYTHING!

Gotta make cold calls? Boss making you cold call? Here’s the strategy for making a transition: ALLOCATE YOUR TIME. If you have to make 50 cold calls a week, allocate enough time to connect with 50 existing or lost customers in the same week. And ask your boss to do both WITH YOU. Let him or her see the futility of making cold calls. Ask them to make 50 cold calls. My bet is they can’t or won’t.

via Replacing the Cold Call with: ANYTHING! | Jeffrey Gitomer’s Sales Tips.

This is a fantastic post with some great tips.

Do you have a favourite above or can you add one, stop by and say hello below.

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How to Use Social Media to Find Customers and Generate Leads [Infographic]

Using social media to create conversation, provide value, credibility and trust is only the start. How do you convert those “Likes” into customers?

This infographic,  compiled by Wishpond, shows that 77 percent of business-to consumer (B2C) marketers have acquired customers through Facebook, while business-to-business (B2B) marketers have found more success on LinkedIn — finding it a whopping 277% more effective than Facebook or Twitter.

Lead Gneration on Social Media Ben Martin #wesoe

What platforms do you use? What are your tips for success? Join the discussion below and say hello.

How to fail at social selling in five steps and how to SUCCEED in three #WESOE

How to fail at social selling in five steps

1 Produce content
2 Promote to social media platforms
3 Pray (Pay!) for comments and RT’s
4 Promote some more
5 Be disappointed. Give up.

What if there was a better way. A way that actually gets results.
A way that builds engagement
A way that generates SALES

There is:

Three steps to success using Social Media to sell.
Creating the Social Wrap with three ways to “serve”

1: (OB) SERVE
Before joining the conversation, listen
FIND: your audience, prospects, segment or whatever you call it
LISTEN: to their conversation, their questions and what they talk about.
DISCOVER: what they care about, focus on and want to get done first.

This should be a huge part of what you do first. Simply listen to the conversations that are happening around you. Sign up for LinkedIn groups, check leading blog posts, send out surveys. Do what ever it takes to develop a deep understanding of what motivates your prospects. What do they care about, struggle with and desire. Ask follow up questions to gain clarification and develop an intimate knowledge of what their world looks like.

2: (DE) SERVE
Now and only now, join in the conversation.
DEVELOP: intelligent perspectives, insights and resources
CONTRIBUTE: to the conversation by offering highly valuable insights, data and facts
ENGAGE: in meaningful dialogue with those who care and matter

When you have developed a deep understanding of your prospect you can then join in the conversation. But only then. Do not take to spam messages and ensure you tailor your messages. For example The biggest mistake you can do is use a template LinkedIn message. Personalise.

Produce quality content, that demonstrates value, meets the prospects needs, offers tangible practical actionable advice that meets the prospects needs. Deliver instant value of what it would be like to work with you.

3: (RE) SERVE
Focus on the few, not the many.
FOCUS: on your tribe of peers and followers, connectors and leaders.
FIND: those that deserve your time, follow up and start the journey forward.
FAVOUR: the few who are worth your time, effort and dedication

It is very easy to get hung on on the “how many RT’s did I get today” buzz. Focusing on this craze will help flatter your ego and of course make you feel like you have accomplished something.

But it does not produce results.

So be selective spend your time with those that engage with your content and are likely to be decision makers. Ask questions, promote their content, and above all thank them.

Create the “social wrap” equation:

Observe – Deserve – Reserve