Marketing Automation: Six Steps to Convert Social Chatter into Actionable Leads

It’s All About Engaging with Your Followers

Social media can funnel qualified leads to your business. However, you must know how to automate the tedious process, so you can get more done in less time.

The truth is that you work hard to build and grow your social media fan base. Unfortunately, you don’t have control over your social account. You could wake up one morning and find your Facebook page blocked for reasons best known to Facebook alone.

When that happens, most businesses and marketer will quickly create a new page and start all over again. Inasmuch as that’s a great skill, I bet it’s even more important to convert social chatters and fans into leads for your business.

More so, if you’re serious about social media marketing, studies show that the average cost of a social media campaign falls anywhere from $1,000 to $20,000.

That’s a lot of investment for small businesses. What are you going to do to maximize your ROI? According to BrandWatch, 3 out of 4 marketing executives are unable to calculate social media ROI.

calculate roi social media

Generating leads from your social media campaigns and closing deals to generate revenue is the best way to measure true success on social media.

But if you don’t know how to go about it, here are 6 simple steps you can implement right away:

Step #1: Decide up front which social chatters you want

Once, a social media consultant, Peter Shankman, tweeted a shoutout about how Morton’s Steak would be just the right ending to his flight arriving in Newark. He was greeted at the airport by a man in a tuxedo sent by Morton’s to deliver a complete steak dinner.

gain new customers by engaging in social chatters

This is an example of how businesses can gain new customers and satisfy current ones by engaging with social chatters (fancy term for “social users”).

This is possible because about 75% of American families are on social media. And they want to engage in a conversation on social media.

Social chatters are just waiting to become your customers. But you have to show them “what’s in it for them!”

According to a survey by DemandWave, 55% of businesses believe social media is one of their best lead generation channels, but to what end?

social media best lead generation channel

Remember that not all social media users are created equal. There are those who don’t care about your brand, and it shows because they don’t even engage by way of Likes, retweets, comments, etc.

However, there’s another group of social chatters that engage with your brand on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and other social networks. They write useful comments on topics or issues that pique their minds.

Stick to the later type of social chatters. Studies show that this group of social media users is spending 1 out of every 6 online minutes interacting with social issues.

By collecting useful data through social media listening, Pizza Hut Canada, the world’s largest seller of pizza pies targeted their campaign on a select group of social chatters who asked a question about French fries on Pizza.

increase brand awareness and boost ROI social media

As a result, Pizza Hut was able to pick up on it, engage with them and let them know about their poutine pizza. This approach increased brand awareness and boosted ROI.

Don’t ignore a social chatter (i.e., social user), as they could help your business in several ways, such as promoting your cause or appreciating your efforts. This can inspire you to do more.

Step #2: Create a high-converting sales funnel to convert social leads

After investing your resources into a social media strategy that brings leads for your business, what next? Your leads have to be able to slide from the top of your sales funnel to the bottom without a hitch. Else, your social media investment will be a waste.

One key to making your sales funnel as effective as possible is to convert your leads when they are sales-ready, and not before.

It’s worthy to note that up to 73% of your B2B leads are not ready to buy yet. You can gauge when your lead is ready to take a buying action, especially through their interactions on your social media pages.

social media sales funnel to convert leads

To get the best out of your sales funnel, it’s important to make your social media page the top of your funnel.

For example, when a user likes your Facebook page, you can deem that as the “awareness stage” and from there, you’re expected to work your way down the funnel by identifying loopholes in the funnel, offering enormous value with your content, and helping users trust your brand better.

Social media offers a lot of potentials to businesses, regardless of the model or industry. Annmarie Gianni, a Skin Care Professional landed 20,258 leads from social media with a solid sales funnel and realized $200,000 in sales in just 2 months.

annemarie gianni skin care social media campaign

Step #3: Draw social user’s attention and incentivize them

Rewards build interactions with customers. It attracts attention. In fact, 54% of consumers would consider increasing their transactions with a business for a loyalty reward, and 46% said that they already have.

Social media offers the best opportunities to incentivize people who follow or Like your page with discounts.

You can improve on this and host a contest where your social media prospects play against one another. But this can even get better.

For example, a game that requires your customers to produce content (e.g., videos, memes) that relates to your product usage, you will not only draw the attention of potential leads — you will also create massive brand awareness.

What better social proof can you possibly ask for?

A while ago, Microsoft created a competition that required users to create ‘an entertaining and engaging 60 to 90-second film that shows how a Windows 7 PC is at the core of a student’s life.’

offer games rewards contests social media

The reward for the winner was a prize money of $8,000, a trip for two to the Cannes Film Festival, and a meeting with Social Network star Jesse Eisenberg.

Even if your small business can’t afford these big rewards, you can provide enough incentive for them to participate in producing user content and brand awareness for your company.

Step #4: Understand social media leads are soft leads, not hard leads

When you consider that 73% of your leads are not ready to buy, it goes to show that on social media, users are not out primarily to buy a product or invest in any program financially.

They simply want to “socialize” and have fun doing it.

socialize with social chatters and followers

But as a marketer, you can’t achieve our goals by merely socializing with social chatters and followers. Hence, we need a better approach that will enable us to move these “soft leads” and warm them up for sales.

On social media (e.g., Facebook page), you provide valuable content that answers common questions and helps users make informed decisions.

Use helpful and interesting content to eliminate common objections in the sales process and provide opportunities to convert your leads into customers.

According to IBM, a lead developed via social media is 7X more likely to close.

So how do you identify a hard lead?

Simple: By monitoring their interactions on your social media page. Look closely and you’ll be able to detect when they want to know more about your product. Also, when these social chatters/prospects sign up for a product demo or to attend a product-based webinar.

Step #5: Provide conversion opportunities via social media

Nowadays, the Internet has made things easier. Your potential buyers don’t want to go through the stress of browsing your website endlessly before they purchase your product.

Any complexity here could discourage a buyer. And that’s why you must make your sales process as easy as possible for your leads. Before they leave your social media page, they must be able to get all the information they’ll need to purchase your product.

Clearly place your website address on your social media page and even the links to your landing and sales pages if possible. That’s exactly how Michael Hyatt, author of Your Best Year Ever sells his book on his Facebook page.

make the perfect cover photo facebook fanpage

The Creme Brulee Man is a Food Truck in the U.S. that keeps people up-to-date about its next location via Twitter.

It has gained over 12,000 followers on Twitter and we can agree that this business converts almost 73% of its customers through social media interactions.

Step #6: Create high-quality content tailored to certain groups on social media

Are you trying to please everyone on your social media page? Of course, trying to please everyone may yield more interactions on your page but it will not end well.

Why? Because that’s not how social media marketing works.

Here’s the harsh truth:

You have an ideal customer profile. Stop targeting everyone!

You must create high-quality content to meet the needs of these people and attract them to connect and buy from your brand. Although this might yield less interaction — it will result in a better engagement that will grow your business.

When Body Wash brand for men, Old Spice, engaged in a social media campaign which included sending personalized video messages to social media fans and celebrities, it led to a 55% increase in sales 3 months after the heat of the campaign and 107% in the final month.

choose specific target for social media marketing


There you have it. In the end, it all boils down to build a social media presence and creating an enabling community where social users can interact with like-minded peoples, share their opinions, and be a part of your cause.

This will, in turn, build trust between you and your social media audience.

A Bain & Company report revealed that customers who engage with companies over social media spend 20-40% more with those companies.

By leveraging marketing automation tools and best practices, you can streamline the entire process of building a social media community (e.g., on Facebook page), engaging with them, and turning them into actionable leads that will have a positive impact on your business on the long run.