Let’s start by setting aside two preconceived ideas, no social selling strategy is not an approach reserved for B2C and no, it does not come down to sharing the latest news from your company on your social networks! In B2B, Social Selling is all the tools you use to build a personal relationship with your prospects. This approach, of course, exploits the possibilities of social networks and is based on one observation: the more common points between the buyer and the seller, the higher the probability of closing the sale.
An effective Social Selling strategy therefore consists in using social networks to dialogue with your customers and prospects, in order to develop your expertise in your sector of activity. The goal is to bring value to your leads by showing empathy and moving them forward in your sales funnel.
So how do you measure the effectiveness of the Social Selling strategies you put in place? You need to look beyond basic metrics to understand the real impact of your actions. In this article, we will introduce you to the main KPIs to use to measure the performance of your campaigns on social platforms, then we will focus specifically on LinkedIn.
Social Selling Strategy – KPIs common to all platforms
As we mentioned, your content strategy is about building your authority in your industry. The topics you cover should therefore cover the “pain points” of your audience, and show how you can respond to them, without being over-promoted.
It can take different forms:
Measuring engagement comes down to measuring your audience’s interest in your content. This is essential: a campaign with high coverage but low engagement will be the sign of poorly targeted content. As long as your audience is engaged, no matter how small, they will be able to grow organically and generate more leads.
# 1 Clicks
Clicks on links reflect the quality of the headline and image included in your post. Of course, your fans will click on anything you share, but the majority of people (especially new ones) will only click on posts that interest them.
A high number of clicks with few likes and shares shows that your post grabbed their attention but didn’t have the quality it needed to get the audience interested.
High overall engagement with low clicks indicates that you need to work on how you present your content by experimenting with different headlines or visuals.
# 2 Likes
The phrase “likes” gets more attention because people are naturally drawn to popular posts. A high number of likes also signals to most algorithms that that particular content deserves a higher place in search results.
# 3 Shares
Nowadays, “liking” a job is a passive action. Loving is good, and we really want to, but sharing is a conscious decision. When someone shares your post, they give a personal recommendation to their friends, colleagues and family. Therefore, shares are a great indication of the quality of your work.
# 4 Comments
Interesting and relevant content sparks conversation. Even if people leave critical comments, it is better than not having no comments at all. Your goal is to strike up a conversation with your prospects, even a negative reaction is a starting point for building a more personal relationship.
# 5 Brand mentions
Tags or mentions of your brand show that people are interested in you. This KPI really emphasizes your expertise and authority on a specific topic, it shows that you keep your brand awareness top of mind.
# 6 Profile visits
Many people will follow you, but they may only visit your profile once. On the other hand, people who are just starting to understand your business will likely visit your profile. This KPI is not as important as the others because you can’t really measure purchase intention, but it shows a certain interest in your brand.
# 7 Active subscribers or “followers”
An active follower is considered to be someone who has logged in and interacted with your content in the past 30 days; unfortunately, for most brands, the majority of people who “like” or follow your page are unlikely to visit it regularly. You should therefore try to sort through your subscribers.
Doing it manually is complicated but there are tools to make your life easier, such as ManageFlitter on Twitter: it allows you to identify inactive people or fake ones.
LinkedIn specific KPIs
In B2B, LinkedIn is THE platform on which your marketing and sales teams should focus their efforts. More than a tool for building brand awareness, LinkedIn is a powerful way to generate qualified leads.
# 1 The “Social Selling Index”
The LinkedIn SSI score Measures you or your business performance in four key areas, also known as LinkedIn’s SSI pillars. These pillars are:
Building a Professional Brand – LinkedIn looks at key things like having a complete, professional profile that includes a cover photo.
Finding the Right People – Measures your ability to identify the right people for your business.
Exchange Information – This pillar measures engagement, in terms of the number of actions, likes and comments your posts receive.
Build Strong Relationships – This pillar measures your ability to expand your network to reach not only direct prospects, but also those who can introduce you to prospects.
This tool is a global indicator making it possible, for example, to compare the activity of several salespeople on LinkedIn.
# 2 Clicks on your links
The click-through rates on your links are a good way to study the performance of your campaigns on LinkedIn. The content you share with your audience must be relevant and precise to interest your audience. The more your prospects click on the links you share, the more they see you as an expert on the subject! This is therefore an important factor to take into account.
# 3 growing your network
LinkedIn gives you access to a very powerful and highly qualified database. Indeed, the platform allows you to make advanced searches according to many filters: location, demography, company, positions, …
Growing your network is important because it means your activities will have more reach. However, for this to be effective, you must ensure the relevance of these new connections. In this context it is interesting to study for example the sector of activity of your subscribers as below:
By using a turnkey service like Leadin’s automated prospecting on LinkedIn, you will fully exploit the potential of the platform. Indeed, when we set up a campaign, we program connection messages adapted to 2nd and 3rd degree connections.
Using the example of the campaign below, for our client, we launched 3,725 connection requests (to relevant prospects), and obtained 857 new connections, ie an acceptance rate of 23%. Our service allows you to maximize this very important aspect of lead generation on LinkedIn.
# 4 Response rate to your messages
Growing your LinkedIn subscriber base is essential, as these are the people you will then seek to contact. A low response rate to your messages is a sign that you are targeting the wrong people, or that the message you are sending is not relevant.
On the campaign example above, the overall response rate is 33%, which is very high! The key is to build short, empathetic, and engaging message sequences in order to generate interest (even if the feedback is sometimes negative) and start building a personal relationship with your prospects.
# 5 Leads generated
Last but not least, the last KPI and the most important because it allows you to measure the business impact of your campaigns: the number of leads generated!
It is important to keep track of your leads by forwarding them to your sales CRM, to add them to your newsletter mailing list, for example. LinkedIn allows you to start a personal relationship with your prospects, then it is up to you to feed them with content to advance them in your business funnel.