We’ve scoured the web for the most current and relevant sales studies in order to bring you real-time, actionable insights. This is The Sales Snapshot.

seller_searching_ipad_resizedSocial Media is a powerful tool for sales teams who leverage it as a way to demonstrate their value and differentiation. For today’s Sales Snapshot we pulled together three compelling pieces of content that demonstrate its importance in the sales process.

1.  The Big Spenders Are On Social Media (And They’re Looking To Buy)

IDC recently released a white paper called, “Social Buying Meets Social Selling: How Trusted Networks Improve the Purchase Experience.”

The primary takeaway from this paper is that creating a trusted network on social media (through thought leadership and personal connections) establishes a first layer of trust between you and potential buyers. According to the white paper, these potential buyers are significantly valuable prospects. Here’s some of the eresearch highlights:

  • 75% of B2B buyers and 84% of C-level/vice president executives surveyed use social media to make purchasing decisions.
  • Online professional networks are the number 1 information preference of buyers in the final stage of the purchase process.
  • Social buying correlates with buying influence. The average B2B buyer who uses social media for buying support is a more senior level executive, has a bigger budget, makes more frequent purchases, and has a greater span of buying control than a buyer who does not use social media.
  • B2B buyers find that the greatest benefit of social media is gaining greater confidence in and comfort with their decisions.

2. Social Sellers Create More Opportunities and Close More Deals

LinkedIn conducted a study hoping to get a look into the most inspired sales professionals in the world. They compiled the results of the survey into a newly-released infographic.

According to LinkedIn’s survey::

  • Social sellers create 45% more opportunities per quarter than those who don’t sell socially.
  • Social sellers are 51% more likely to hit quota than social selling laggards.

3. Social Media Is An Extension of Classic Sales Relationships

Social media’s strength for businesses has always been in its ability to scale personal interactions. HubSpot’s new eBook, “How Sales Can Use Social Media To Close More Deals,” demonstrates the importance of adopting a social media strategy with the sales team.

Social media can give sales reps that are hungry for touch-points with their prospects and leads a way to connect and further the relationship without much added financial cost. According to the eBook, salespeople can increase their sales efficiency with social media in four ways:

1. Build credibility

When sales representatives take to social media to elevate themselves as authorities in their specific field, they garner more interest and more trust from their prospects.

2. Find people in the moment they’re looking 

By monitoring social media tools, salespeople can find and engage with prospects who are looking for solutions to their problems in real time.

3. Inform sales calls

By doing a little pre-call research on social media, sellers can learn a lot about a prospect or lead. Sales reps who follow leads on twitter and make connections on Linkedin can gain valuable information that can fuel an effective sales call.

4. Align marketing and sales around social media 

A quote from the eBook states, “Marketing is the matchmaker, but sales needs to do the dating.” When marketing and sales are aligned around a common social media strategy, they have the ability to double the effectiveness of their efforts, while increasing the likelihood of success across both departments.