How many of you in the casegoods and cabinetry world have blocked social media sites at your office?
You think your sales staff spends less time cold calling and more time browsing through Facebook? Well they should be!
Rule number one of social media: unblock social media on your office computers, and do it right now.
Social media is the new cold call. You should be concerned about the sales guy who hasn’t figured this out yet. There is no better way to connect with potential clients than on social media. Period.
There are so many people out there who love the idea of doing business over Twitter or connecting on LinkedIn. As Millennials continue to enter the industry the more business social media is going to take over. Don’t worry if you don’t have prospects currently following you on your social media pages, what you do have is one of the biggest referral audiences you can get.
The younger generation is a social media connected generation and these are the future architects, specifiers, designers, and buyers. Want to be in front of them? Then embrace the fact that cold calling is dead and social media is in, and here to stay.
How do you make sales? Well, you have to build rapport before you can even get the prospects attention. How do you build rapport? Friend request a potential customer on Facebook, follow a potential customer on Twitter, and connect with a potential customer on LinkedIn. Let them see that you’re serious about what you’re doing, that you’re a good resource for them, and that you’re easily approachable.
Business social media is not about blasting out posts with sales pitches; it’s about addressing your prospect’s challenges and letting them know that you’re there to help. It’s to let them know that they’ve got at guy in the wood industry. Post things that help your prospect, engage them, and get them to trust you.
Again, let me restate, it’s not about blasting your prospect with sales pitches, it’s about posting helpful information that addresses the challenges they are facing. Face it, as great as it may be, they’re not going to your website. Your prospects are going to Facebook and that’s where you need to be.
Now, once you’ve mastered social media yourself, does your business have a Facebook page? From my observations, the wood industry is one of the last industries to catch on to the business pages in social media. We likely rank right above the swamp logging industry in business social media pages.
Not only will a social media page for your business promote your company, but it will also enhance your personal credibility on your own social media page. You’ll be able to have a link to your page which will increase your reach and draw prospects back to your business page if you’ve engaged them enough on your own.
Your business should also have a blog. A blog is a great way to get information out there and it should be the hub of your entire corporate social media strategy. My company, Advanced Cabinet Systems, has a blog, a Facebook page, a Google Plus page, a LinkedIn page, a Twitter account, a Youtube channel (www.youtube.com/user/ACSin1983)and even a Sawdust Soup page (www.sawdustsoup.com/profile/ACS)!
We’re also working at putting up a Pinterest page, and a Tout page. Personally, I have a facebook account (www.facebook.com/PhilipBowers), a twitter account (www.twitter.com/ryaPhillinme), this blog, and can also be found on LinkedIn. Connect with me!
Phil Bowers is VP Business Development for Advanced Cabinet Systems, based in Marion, Indiana. Advanced Cabinet Systems is a Certified AWI Premium Casework Manufacturer, providing design, engineering, manufacturing, delivery and installation for the healthcare, industrial, retail and educational markets.
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