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October 28, 2014

Social Selling — Love It or Hate It, You Gotta LIKE It

Every time you view a post on social media, you probably contemplate if you should click the Like button or ignore it and move on to the next. You may also have wondered what the fuss is all about. Is there really a benefit to liking a page or a post? Apart from satisfying one’s ego, does anybody really care?

I’ve been a serious student of social media for more than four years and what I’ve found is very few people understand the engagement process behind likes. Should you like every post you read, should you monitor your likes, is there a way to leverage the likes you receive? To help you understand the hidden dynamics behind likes, I’ve provided a simple explanation that will help you get significant results with social selling.

So, here is my acronym for L.I.K.E.S.

LEVERAGE IT
When you Like a post, you gain an introduction to the friends or contacts of whoever made the post. Imagine going to a party. You see a group of people enjoying themselves, introduce yourself and contribute to the conversation. The more you contribute meaningfully, the more group members like you and begin to show an interest.

In a social media context, as you begin to like and comment on others’ posts, you will notice complete strangers beginning to like your posts. This happens because your profile gets linked to the conversation and people begin to take note of you. You get notified when others like you. As you begin to get more likes and shares, you are able to expand your network beyond your immediate connections. The leverage you gain in this way opens opportunities way beyond what you can get from your direct connections.

INTELLIGENCE GATHERING

Even today, when I attend networking events I find people making the same mistake. They focus solely on trying to see who among the group is a likely target for their products and services. They then proceed to do a sales pitch, exchange business cards and hope they can convert at least one or two of the people they met to paying clients.

What’s wrong with that? What people don’t realize is that everyone they meet is connected to at least five others who may need their services. They don’t bother to gather intelligence about who else the members of the networking group know that could be potential clients.

When I log in to my LinkedIn account every day I find out more about the people who like my posts or whose posts I find interesting. Who among their connections is my potential client? Which groups have they joined? Which business pages do they follow?

This way I know whom to invite as a connection and it also keeps me from accepting every invitation to connect.

Gathering intelligence in this way you too can target the right prospects on social media channels instead of playing a guessing game by accepting every invitation to connect… hoping one of them can turn out to be your ideal client.

KNOWLEDGE IS POWER

I use likes and comments on posts to build a knowledge base of topics and ideas I can later use to prepare engaging content in the form of articles, videos and infographics. So when I see a particular topic generate a lot of likes or comments, I keep track of not just the topic but the people who like the topic. Do certain people post with a higher frequency on specific topics?

Apart from providing insights about trending topics and topics of interest, knowledge gathered in this way also provides an indication of what to say and what not to say when posting comments and providing content. After all you don’t want to get bitten by posting comments that may be offensive, do you?

ENGAGING FOR SUCCESS

A lot of us on social media are like stalkers. We read valuable content and only think about how we can implement the knowledge gained for free in our business. What we fail to do is acknowledge the effort made in providing us with valuable information we would otherwise take hours trawling through the Internet to find.

Imagine how you would feel if you provided valuable information to your client or gave away a free sample of your product and didn’t get so much as a “Thank You?” Would you like to have this person as a client?

The least, we can do is acknowledge the author by liking the post. To show greater appreciation, leave a positive comment and share the post with your connections. Ultimately, these engagement processes will lead you to your direct and indirect social selling success.

STRATEGIC APPROACH
As I have always emphasized, to win the social selling game use a strategic approach. Many business owners fail to use a strategic approach to social selling.

Now you know what Likes are all about. I hope the next time you’re on a social media site you will take the time to acknowledge the valuable content others provide. As you all know, what goes around, comes around.


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Logan Nathan is based in Melbourne, Australia is an Internet marketing consultant and trainer. A self-taught expert, Logan Nathan has invested tens of thousands of dollars in online marketing solutions to take his business from the start-up stage to one of Australia's leading online marketing, social media consulting and coaching organizations. To view a free online presentation on how to generate leads using LinkedIn, Logan is offering readers free training titled of his highly acclaimed ‘The 5 Step Formula to Generate LEADS on Demand using LinkedIn’ available for immediate access at http://www.solomoitacademy.com/webinar-12-05-14/generating-leads-using-linkedin

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