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"Rob was brilliant. He kept me fully updated and helped me secure the role I was looking for. Aaron Wallis is now the preferred recruitment agency for our business needs."

Samir Dungersi, Candidate

Using Social Media in your sales strategy

Yes, social media can be used a career tool and social communication utility, however it has become a particularly useful platform for enabling sales professionals to develop their reputation as well as earn trust for their brand, service or product. As a professional in your field you are able, through your network, to position yourself as an expert or ‘thought leader’ in your field whilst continually adding value to targeted prospects in your industry.

If you have a basic idea of how and why social media can benefit you it is likely that you are already looking for practical advice about what each of the social media tools can do for you specifically. This article takes you through the ‘BIG 3’ of the social media world – LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter and gives you information about what is possible and what you could be doing on each of the sites to ensure you’re making the most out of the resources available to you.

LinkedIn

At present most would argue and we would agree that LinkedIn is the best social media tool out there for business professionals looking to ultimately increase sales. This is largely because it is possible and easier to measure the direct correlation between sales and hours spent on LinkedIn than the correlation between sales and activity on other social media sites. LinkedIn provides us with a vast array of contacts which are directly relevant to you and your industry and allows you to develop relationships through this network which give you ‘permission’ to approach prospects (or ‘connections’) and develop any relationships made through a variety of tools.

Throughout your network you can:

  • Manage your personal details
  • Locate relevant prospects and initiate contact- gaining direct access to decision makers
  • Discover business opportunities and be discovered
  • Gain industry specific information from discussions with similar contemporaries in private group settings
  • Post details of your product or service
  • Position yourself as an expert

Top tips for using LinkedIn for business

Spend at least 20 minutes a day searching for contacts in your industry

Join groups- but remember the old saying “go where the fish are.” This means that it is more worthwhile to join groups that have potential prospects as members rather than groups in which there are a bunch of other people looking for the same prospects as you- that said, don’t rule out the possibility of linking up with people in your industry for the benefit of creating a ‘strategic alliance’ if you believe your company may benefit in doing so.

Write recommendations for people- they will often return the favour and respond with a recommendation- these are invaluable for a sales person where trust is often a big concern for someone buying a product or service. Don’t be afraid to ask for recommendations either- if you don’t ask you don’t get and this is certainly true in this instance. Don’t forget the value of recommendations for use when you do decide to move on from your current position as these will act as fantastic references for potential employers looking to recruit sales professionals. You can also gain great sales advice and career tips from fellow professionals in your network.

LinkedIn provides you with the opportunity to get to know your prospects- their challenges, trends they see, how they’re approaching industry challenges, how the economy or season is affecting them

Post informative updates to your page and start to position yourself as a thought leader in your industry (this can tie in nicely with your blogging and other social media endeavours).

Reconnect with people you thought you’d never see or speak to again- one of the great benefits of using LinkedIn for business is that it gives you the ability to ‘take your clients with you’ legitimately, without any contractual conditions which are often set out in your agreement with your previous employer.

LinkedIn has a useful ‘poll’ function which allows you to post a question on any subject you like and it will poll your network and the greater LinkedIn community for answers- if you pay attention to who is contributing on what you may find yourself in contact with potential partners.

Facebook

Facebook is probably the most talked about social media web service/platform right now, however it is also one of the most misunderstood. Many business professionals are already finding Facebook an essential addition to their web working tool box and the reason is because Facebook social networking experience can be precisely what you make of it. It doesn’t matter that thousands of teenagers use it to catch up with their school friends and arrange parties and share photos. It is what you make it- think of it as a professional tool. You decide what you want it to do for you.

There are a number of ways you can make it work for you:

Create awareness about your service or product- this is one of the first steps towards creating real sales activity in your Facebook endeavours and can be carried out a number of ways; 1. Use targeted adverts 2. Spread information virally- make sure you have great content and then make sure everyone knows about it! Make the content good enough that people want to share it!

Take advantage of what you already have- Many people don’t take advantage of their own websites- especially if you are already generating a lot of traffic to your website it is important to take advantage of this and point people to your Facebook page (this can also be applied to Linkedin and Twitter of course). Don’t be afraid that by directing people away from your site they’ll never come back- so long as you have strategies to direct them back to your website again, you’ll be fine!

Educate your visitors- Who are you? what do you sell? Try to humanise your business and yourself as much as possible- people relate best to people and not to too much ‘industry speak.’ Your potential customers want to know that you are a real person- try to communicate as a real person and not as a corporate robot. Ensure they know you are selling something and what that something is. This can be done either in the ‘info’ tab or anywhere your visitors can gain access to it easily. Give your visitors to your profile reasons to become a fan- add value to their lives by providing really useful information that is hard to find elsewhere.

Engage with your visitors and fans. This can range from ‘liking’ someone’s update to commenting on their updates or other activities. What you really want to be able to do is create a dialogue with a prospect (or other) that the public can see and that will provide you with an opportunity to assert yourself as an expert as well as give (subtle!) plugs for your service or product. Direct advertising about your product or service is not advisable as this has proven to be much less beneficial than the relationship building exercises. Engagement is vital on Facebook and whilst it is difficult to measure ROI in terms of time (and therefore money) spent it will provide an excellent platform to base the sales of your product or service upon.

Although measuring engagement on Facebook can be a slightly tedious task, measuring the action taken by your fans shouldn’t be. So long as you have carried out the above steps properly you should find that the amount of people who value your page is rising. However there is no point in carrying out all of the above if you don’t have some kind of data capture requests that enable the prospect to make a purchase, join a site or any other form of measurable action. Most people are not ready to buy when they join a fan page and it is up to you to give them regular opportunities to do so. Once you have got your prospects to respond to a call to action (sign up to a newsletter, visit your website etc) it is vital that you continue to engage them as part of your relationship marketing strategy on Facebook.

You’ve already subtly introduced calls to action and now that some users have taken those calls to action, you need to engage them. We are in the business of building relationships and Facebook provides an optimal environment for doing just that.

The Facebook Sales process is an elongated one which entails engaging the user throughout the entire sales process (starting with their PR-purchase experience). Ultimately each business needs to determine what the best strategy is for them based on the resources available but the Facebook sales process will help you to generate valuable customer relationships, not just one-time customers.

Twitter

Twitter, although a much simpler to use tool than Facebook, it does cause dilemmas in business and sales professionals who don’t quite know how to get the best out of the tool for their business. Very much like the other social networking facilities Twitter is better used as a Marketing or PR tool where your company can Tweet about corporate accomplishments and send out links to your corporate web pages and other relevant or linked sites.

As a Twitter user you have 140 characters to answer the question, “What are you doing?” You can “follow” other Twitter users, which causes their updates to appear on your home page and in turn, they can follow you, a form of permission-based marketing. You can also direct message them, but always in 140 characters or less.

One of the key things to remember with Twitter is that in using it you are aiming to build brand recognition and reputation and there are right ways and wrong ways to go about doing this; Avoid self-serving and self-promotional tweets- these are more likely to hinder your image than assist with any sales or marketing efforts. Instead try to humanise your Twitter profile- people want to know they are dealing with people.

If you are tweeting positive messages (and this can include your whole organisation) you can create a real positive feel to your company if relevant; This can include tweets about developments in your industry, new products or other interesting facts that engage the audience.

Twitter provides us with the ability to engage potential customers and get their attention and as a business we are able to gain exposure for a blog/site and gain potential readers. In doing so we are able to build networks with transparency and trust which is ultimately what will increase your sales.

The interactive and real-time nature of Twitter for business means you are able to market work, products, services, etc, answer questions and ask questions and learn new things from other industry professionals at any time of the day and get responses fast. It is effectively a conference connector and will allow you to seek out industry colleagues for assistance with special projects You can  get technical tips and resources (mini blog post) and is a useful real time online place to meet and talk with others in order to be building relationships.

Twitter also allows you to learn more about social media itself and if you choose to seek it out you can find up to the minute details on new advances in Twitter for business.

There are a number of key steps you will find will become part of your Twitter plan. These include (but are not limited to):

  • Base level step- Create a professional Twitter account.

  • Complete your Twitter profile and ensure it has your company’s URL in it. Include a picture of yourself as this tends to work better than a company logo as people like to know they are dealing with real people.

  • Build a base of followers- This can be done by including a ‘Follow Me’ symbol on your website, forums, signature etc. Ensure you invite people to follow you on Twitter every time you post a blog on there. 

  • Provide information about your business- It sounds obvious but it is essential that you provide enough detail about what your company does and what products or services it has on an ongoing basis. Advertising directly on posts you make can put people off and may lose you a few followers but in posts that you do make ensure people are able to access information about your business if relevant to your post. For example if your company sells mobile phones you may wish to include articles/blogs on ‘choosing the right phone for you.’

  • Ensure you maintain a balance between your followers and following ratio- Your followers won’t follow you for very long if you don’t follow them so make sure you reciprocate. The best way to do this is to add followers gradually instead of adding 100-200 at a time.

  • Offer unique deals to your followers- A fantastic way to use Twitter for Business is to offer discounts to followers as part of your business marketing campaign. Use a brief message describing the offer.

  • Encourage feedback from your Twitter followers- Encourage followers to comment on issues that are important to your company. Don’t worry about negative feedback as it is inevitable in every business that there will be some negative feedback for a particular product or service. Ensure however that you  thank people for their feedback. Engaging with followers is vital to generate interest in you and your product.

As a progressive business and sales professional looking to advance your career it is likely that social media will be a valuable, and potentially unavoidable part of your day to day and long term business efforts, therefore staying in the loop about advancements in the social media world will help you to have peace of mind that you will are doing what you should be.

Aaron Wallis Sales Recruitment like to keep their candidates and clients up to date on all issues relating to the industry. We provide a substantial amount of free information in the Tools section of our website that could be useful for you or your business.

Please feel free to take a look. If you need any further advice as an employer or a candidate on this or any other relevant issues, please feel free to visit our website or contact us directly on 01908 061400.

Published: 26th March 2021

Date published: 26th Feb 2024

Rob Scott, Aaron Wallis Sales Recruitment, Author Photo

About the author

Rob Scott

Rob is the Managing Director of Aaron Wallis Sales Recruitment, a national recruitment agency specialising in sourcing sales and marketing staff for businesses across a broad range of commercial sectors. Before setting up Aaron Wallis, Rob spent ten years at a specialist Sales and Marketing recruitment division of a £0.5BN recruitment group, leaving in 2007 as Marketing & Sales Director to establish Aaron Wallis.
 
With over 24 years of experience in sales recruitment, Rob is a History graduate with an MBA (Merit) and a PgCert in Management Practice.  In 2007, 2009 and 2013 Rob conducted the most extensive surveys of sales professionals in the UK and is a trusted authority in the sales industry. From guiding employers through the recruitment process to helping candidates find their dream job, Rob's advice has been quoted in leading publications such as Business Insider and The Independent, as well as OnRec, which host The Online Recruitment Awards every year.

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I have used Aaron Wallis to fill a number of our Sales Development Manager roles and I have found them to provide a very professional service. I will use their services again in future recruitment campaigns.

HR Business Partner, Greene King

Sophie did a great job at understanding our business and our needs, she is extremely professional and we hugely benefitted from her experience and expertise.

HR Manager, The Data Privacy Group Ltd

I could not suggest anything I would like you to do better. The service you provided materially exceeded my expectations. I would especially like to commend Simon Bonner; he is easily the best recruitment consultant I have ever dealt with. I particularly valued his advice and guidance throughout the recruitment process. 

UK Sales Manager, BTS Holdings Limited 

Thanks for all your help during the recruitment process. I have been extremely impressed with Aaron Wallis especially when compared to other agencies we have dealt with. I really felt you grasped the type of person we required and found strong candidates.

UK Sales Manager, Nexcom

I have always found Rob to be very knowledgeable about our industry sector, and it is refreshing to see after all of these years that Rob continues to quickly and accurately understand my requirements.

HR and General Manager, THK

Giles is highly professional and was a pleasure to work with. He achieves excellent results through his personable skills and tenacity. I have no hesitation in recommending Giles to anyone who considers employing his services.

Commercial Director, G4S Government & Outsourcing Solutions

Very professional service and will certainly be in contact for future recruitment.

Director, Blakedown Sport & Play Ltd

Really good service. Just the right amount of contact and easy to deal with.

HR Manager, Zircon Software Ltd

Generally good standard of candidates. Especially liked the personality profile. Overall good value for money and will certainly use you again.

Managing Director, Medicash

Rob is a true recruitment professional that goes the extra mile that I have never experienced from any other recruitment agency before. If you need sales people call Rob or someone in his team, as they really are experts in sales recruitment.

Sales Director, Inside Business

Giles Phillips is a rare find in the minefield of sales recruitment; an honest and thoughtful recruiter who considers the needs of both the client AND the candidate to create perfect role matches. I look forward to working with him again in the future.

Marketing Director, City of London Police

I found Aaron Wallis to be very professional and efficient, taking time to understand the role and the type of candidate we were looking for. The candidates they put forward met our criteria and were of a high standard. The service they provided was exemplary and I would have no hesitation in recommending them, and will certainly consider using them again in the future.

HR Assistant, Fischer Connectors Ltd

Aaron Wallis has continuously provided us with suitable candidates that have been proactively sourced. Having used countless recruitment companies, Aaron Wallis are the only company that I can count on to deliver.

Managing Director, JARK Healthcare Recruitment

In an industry where people over promise and under deliver, Rob and his teams have consistently provided a high-quality service. It is great to deal with someone that has an excellent understanding of UK industry, and a passion for sales.

Sales Manager, TR Fasteners

Since joining DSGi, Rob has been a supplier of permanent staff and has performed to an extremely high standard, successfully filling 98% of roles he has worked on. If anyone is looking for a good sales and marketing based consultancy with an informal yet professional approach, I would recommend Rob.

Senior Recruitment Consultant, DSG International

We were impressed not only by the quality of candidates you found for us but also the level of information, preparation and qualification you put into the process. You continually kept us informed of each person’s feelings about the process, which is very important but often overlooked. I am looking forward to working with your company again in the future.

Commercial Director, Incentive Facilities Management

George is a rare find in the world of recruitment - communicative without being pushy or over-bearing. He listens and understands what the customer needs as gets to know the business to ensure he provides fully competent candidates who fit.

HR Manager, Big Dug

I just wanted to thank you for your help with our recruitment process which went very smoothly and has – we hope – found us just the person for the job!

Managing Director, Citrefine International Ltd

George came recommended by a colleague and has been a pleasure to work with. He was great at updating us on his progress and ensured a great experience for both client and candidate.

HR Manager, Annapurna Recruitment Ltd

Understood the type of person we were looking for and good follow ups - not too frequent.

Managing Director, bigHead Bonding Fasteners Ltd

I can't fault Sam or AW! Sam was a pleasure to work with and provided great support from the start. Sam always provided me with timely updates when required and provided outstanding candidates!

Director, Waste Managed Ltd

I really liked the YouTube presentations which made the service seem both simple and accessible. The company came to see me, and my management team, at short notice to present their service and I liked the support and advice that I received about maximising the results from the applicant.

Managing Director, Leisuresec plc

We appointed Aaron Wallis in February and the successful candidate, out of the six which Aaron Wallis introduced, was able to join Alphametrics before the end of April. The whole process took less than three months. I would recommend Aaron Wallis' services to others without hesitation.

Chief Financial Officer, Alphametrics

As always we were extremely impressed with Rob's understanding of the role and our specific needs.

Managing Director, Speck & Burke

George is a joy to work with, and I'd recommend him to anyone seeking that unicorn hire - he found me mine, and I'm delighted!

Director, Education Support

Rob’s knowledge of the recruitment industry and his thoughts and how to make it better for his clients have always been eye opening. I would recommend Rob to anybody who is looking for a professional, knowledgeable and flexible recruitment specialist.

CEO, Friday Ad Online Services

Thank you for your dedicated help during the recruitment process - we came to you after unsuccessfully searching elsewhere, and hired, not one, but two! Quick response times, and a really personal approach, without being pushy.

Managing Director, Accora Ltd

Our candidates say...

George Humphries was a complete professional at every point, from our first phone conversation to his “good luck tomorrow” text on Sunday before I started in my new role.

E. Fry, Candidate

Very good advice and support was given during the course of the interviewing process. Potential job seekers would be well advised to use this company whilst looking for their new career.

R. Speakman, Candidate

When talking with Simon you felt relaxed cared to help you find a position that suited your needs

D. Pinder, Candidate

Perfect from start to finish. Simon deserves a shout out. Best recruiter there is. If you need a job, this guy will get you one. He's like the super man of recruiters. Top man, can't recommend him enough.

M. Crisp, Candidate

Sophie has been fantastic and always so attentive, highly recommend.

T. Ashbourne, Candidate

The most professional recruitment agency I've ever worked with. Robert Scott was extremely proactive and send me a detailed briefing before each interview, ensuring I was well prepared.

D. Bermant, Candidate

The detail put into the preparation for interviews and the detail of the job description was first class. Rob and Simon in particular are amongst the best I've ever dealt with.

K. Peacock, Candidate

I have to say coming across and having dealings with Aaron Wallis proved to be very successful. Being highly experienced did not seem to count for much during my job search bit a conversation with Robert Scott gave me a real confidence boost and enabled to get a position at the age of 63. Great service!!!

D. Burgess, Candidate

Aaron Wallis is an outstanding recruitment agency specialising in high calibre sales positions. I was working directly with Darren Dewrance who went above and beyond my expectations in sourcing me my perfect role. I was kept in regular communication with Darren and he worked extremely hard to secure my dream job. Highly recommended and Thanks Darren for all your expertise and hard work.

R. Sealy, Candidate

I had the absolute pleasure of working with George Humphries on finding a placement best suitable for me.

A. Van Der Mescht, Candidate

I would highly recommend Aaron Wallis Recruitment, Darren was extremely helpful and provided me with plenty of advice and support throughout the whole process.

D. Bretherton, Candidate

Professional and responsive from start to finish. I would highly recommend. Special thanks to Sophie J for her help and support throughout.

N. Leney, Candidate

Friendly, proactive, communicative. Overall a really positive experience.

R. Houston, Candidate

Simon was knowledgeable on his clients history, background and what their requirements were and he worked around time zones, holidays and a pandemic to get the right result.

J. Tooze, Candidate

Excellent service, very professional and friendly, would and have, recommended Aaron Wallis.

E. Heley, Candidate

I have to say using Aaron Wallis Recruitment has been nothing but an absolute pleasure. I've used many agencies over the years as the client and the candidate and its not always been a pleasurable experience!

L. Knowles, Candidate

For anyone looking for work, I can't recommend Aaron Wallis highly enough.

C. Rockliffe, Candidate

I can honestly say that the time and expertise you gave me was way beyond any other recruitment consultant I dealt with. You are a rarity in your industry.

S. Akers, Candidate

Aaron Wallis Sales Recruitment are a very friendly and professional recruitment organisation who listen to your needs, work with you and act on your behalf which sets them apart from many of their competitors who in my experience are willing to throw anything at you. We discussed my history, my preferences and my wishes - one opportunity was introduced. It was perfect. I start at the end of June.

R. Buckley, Candidate

I would highly recommend thank you to Darren for helping me secure my new job role! Excellent service all round!

G. Thompson, Candidate

The staff at Aaron Wallis were fantastic. Throughout the process, they maintained excellent communication and I always knew where I stood.

M. Owusu, Candidate

Very polite and friendly and was very helpful finding me my next new role.

K. Craggs, Candidate

I had a great experience. Helped me every step of the way to get my new job. Sophie was very polite, kind and helpful!

J. Parnham, Candidate

Sophie helped me secure a new role I have been searching for. She took her time to explain clear and concisely all I needed to succeed at the interview stage. Thanks again Sophie!

O. Oladejo, Candidate

George is a fantastic recruitment agent and provides a great service. It was a pleasure I thoroughly recommend George to anyone.

C. Beaugie, Candidate

A great recruitment company to work with. Excellent experience with Aaron Wallis through the entire recruitment process. The team was really professional and extremely helpful. Darren was a pleasure to work with. He was friendly, supportive and gave me great advice. Thank you very much!

A. Bauchet, Candidate

Less than two weeks after joining Aaron Wallis I was offered my new job. I got a £10,000 rise in my basic salary, car allowance, a laptop and many other perks, which will help to further my career. I definitely would not have found my dream job without the help of Aaron Wallis.

C. Hoy, Candidate

The service provided by Aaron Wallis has been just great. I was constantly informed about what was going on with the process interview and the agent has always been supportive and kind to me.

L. Colagrossi, Candidate

Aaron Wallis (and in particular Rob Scott) have been fantastic throughout the recruitment process, and even a few months down the line, still continues to care. Rob clearly cares about each individual and has a wealth of knowledge and expertise, which shows in the work he does. Each candidate is not just a number, and the support received from Aaron Wallis has helped me get a career which I truly enjoy.

M. White, Candidate 

Sophie contacted me about a role explained the details clearly and made sure I was ready for the interview. She kept in touch every step of the way till I started the job. Thank you Sophie for a great experience.

S. Powell, Candidate

George above and beyond to make sure I had everything I need to secure my new role. Outstanding Professional.

A. Kirkland, Candidate

The Recruitment agent I used, Simon, was extremely helpful and really went the extra mile to ensure all of my questions were answered, and that I felt as comfortable and prepared as possible. Very professional company and would definitely recommend to others. Thank you Aaron Wallis!

A. Callaby, Candidate

Fantastic service, helped me find my ideal job quickly and smoothly. Would highly recommend them.

C. Caine, Candidate

Rob was really helpful when I was putting together a presentation for the second stage interview. Overall their communication was great and kept me updated of any progress

J. McGrattan, Candidate

Darren at Aaron Wallis was really encouraging and helpful. He was very responsive and regularly made phone calls to explain the job opportunities available, and guided me through the application process.

A. Brown, Candidate

Fantastic customer service, communication was brilliant, happy polite people to talk to, made everything a lot easier and smoother. Thank you for all your help getting me back in the work force, Keep up the good work :-)

K. Everitt, Candidate

Good swift process with Aaron Wallis, informative regarding the role and the process was moved at a good pace with healthy interaction. Would recommend them to anyone pursuing a change.

S. Bartlett, Candidate

Wanted to say a huge thank you to Simon Bonner who has just helped me secure my new role. He was one of the most professional recruiters I have ever worked with he was supportive really quick at replying and really put me at ease.

J. Marcinkiewicz, Candidate

Excellent experience. Knowledgeable staff and really went the extra mile. Found my ideal position and I couldn't be happier. Special shout out to Sam and George: who made the process smooth and easy for me. Highly recommend.

K. Pearce, Candidate

Managed to get me placed within a week! Really friendly and easy to deal with. Always available for a call and my biggest challenge was I was in work at the time I was looking for my next opportunity (which is stressful) but Sam made that easy.

P. Fitzsimons, Candidate

Sam was by far the most professional and helpful of any individual I've ever dealt with through a recruitment agency. He was supportive and thorough throughout the process. He definitely goes the extra mile for you. A pleasure to deal with. I would highly recommend him. An asset to Aaron Wallis

M. Wyer, Candidate

I had a very good experience with Aaron Wallis. The company itself is offering great content for all things related to the hiring process. I definitely recommend.

J. Ostermeier, Candidate

Wanted to say a huge thank you to Simon Bonner who has just helped me secure my new role. He was one of the most professional recruiters I have ever worked with.

J. Marcinkiewicz, Candidate