In the age of social media, friendships have taken on an entirely different look than years previous. Take a step further and you can easily see that building friendships via digital drives business growth as well.

Bernie’s guest on this episode of Social Business Engine is Jon Ferrara, founder and CEO of Nimble. Jon has a long history of building relationships, building friendships, building companies, and driving business results. He’s the perfect person to talk to about how we can drive business through genuine friendships in the age of social media.

On this episode Jon shares how he engages on social media to connect, engage, educate, inspire, help, and be his authentic self with everyone he encounters. Jon explains how his approach to using social media wins friends, influences people, and wins lots of business too.

Why Salespeople Should Be Using Social Media For Prospecting

Imagine the interactions and engagements that are going on in your industry or niche as a river. There are many conversations, people, and companies that contribute to the activity that makes up the river and the majority of them these days are happening on social media. You don’t want to be among the people sitting on the bank watching everything happen without you. You need to jump into the river and start swimming.

Jon Ferrara says that when salespeople become willing to dive into the river and start swimming – which means authentically engaging, investing time, building relationships, being helpful – they will discover a whole new world of prospects and business that traditional sales models simply can’t access. Listen to hear the practical things Jon does to be fully engaged in the social media river on this episode.

In The Age Of Social Media, One Platform Is Not Enough For Driving Business

For business and professional relationships, LinkedIn is the platform of choice for most professionals. For personal interactions, it’s often Facebook or Instagram that is the go-to social media tool. Jon has discovered that salespeople need to be engaged in all forms of interaction – professional, personal, etc. in order to come across as a “real” person. It’s by showing your personality, and discovering commonalities and building personal trust that people often begin to trust you.

Every relationship takes time, and Jon is willing to put in the time required to walk the relational path with people online. He encourages today’s salespeople to be willing to do the same. Utilize every social media platform you can reasonably keep up with so that you can connect with prospects on many different levels. You can only drive business when people feel comfortable with YOU first.

Service Is The New Selling, So Stop Trying To Get A Lead Right Now

There are many ways salespeople could approach the use of social media for prospecting – and Jon has seen the best and worst practices. Bernie asked him to share some of the worst things he’s seen and he was quick to respond.

First, don’t talk about yourself or your products. Really, don’t. You need to be a presence on social media who is genuinely interested in helping, that’s it. As people notice your helpfulness and expertise, they’ll check you out in ways they feel comfortable with. Many of those people will become prospects, you just need to give it time.

Jon says to keep this in mind: “People don’t buy great products, they buy a better version of themselves.” So pitching your product the first chance you get is never a good play, ESPECIALLY on social media. The people you’re trying to sell need to first see your genuine concern for them – that you WANT them to become that better version of themselves that they are striving for. When they see you are able to help them get there, they will be open to talking with you about the stuff you’re selling.

Outline of This Episode

Resources & People Mentioned