We’ve been told that selling through social media is a no-no and that at best we should keep it to the 80/20 rule; 80% engagement and 20% sales. Heck, I’ve even said that in the past. Now I’m proposing we rethink the concept of sales altogether and throw the 80/20 rule out the window.
In the early phase of building a social media platform for any brand, personal or business, we focus on likes, follows, friends, fans and subscribers as a metric for measuring whether or not a brand message is hitting an eager audience. That’s still a valid thing to measure and a brand that can’t gather a tribe in a pool of more than a billion social media users simply may not have a marketable idea.
The next phase, after building a following is usually to introduce the offering, listen to the feedback, adjust the offer f necessary and promote to the faithful. If the market research has been accurate and the product or service is of value, the brand gets instant feedback on the viability of their offering in the way of sales. Are people willing to pay you for what you do or make? That’s a pretty definitive answer to “Is my business viable?” If the answer is yes, and that’s of course the goal, the next step is to rinse and repeat. Continue growing the brand following and offering the same product or natural product extensions.
A Like Minded Selling strategy creates growth for both two complementary but unique brands through co-promotion.
This strategy requires a marketing effort that will continually grow the pool of potential customers so the offer doesn’t fatigue the current fan base.
This can be done through advertising, live events, special offers, contests, guest blogging or other marketing activities all designed to bring a new following to your social media properties. This strategy is a good one but should continue to receive a portion of your time and budget.
But to exponentially add rocket fuel to your second growth phase, a brand should “What does my current customer base like, besides my product or service?” Do they care about artists, animals, children, vacations, inspirational quotes, tech events, skiing, books? What are their passions? This information can be invaluable in finding partners, creating offers that feed their interests, identifying advertising outlets, co-creating contests and giveaways, or joint venturing to create offers that are bring two fan bases together for a whole new product.
I recently had a client prospect ask me if she should promote her product to her direct competitors? I think it’s a stronger play to promote your new product to like minded brand’s customers by finding common ground and creating a win-win scenario between your brand and the brand who already attracts some cross over clients.
If you have a product that has a charity aspect, say 10% of every product sold goes to a college fund for artists. Find a brand that showcases handmade crafts and partner to co-promote based on your mutual interest…artists.
If I produce social media training programs for entrepreneurs, I might partner with someone who helps entrepreneurs set up their LLC’s or get their finances in order. My tribe will be interested in that product and their tribe is likely to be interested in mine. We could promote one another, co-create a product together, hold a contest together with a prize that is desirable to entrepreneurs or a number of other options. We’d be creating a “Like Minded” marketing and selling strategy.
Like Minded Selling Questions
- What does my current fan base like?
- What else do they want, need or enjoy that I don’t offer?
- Who else offers that?
- How can I create a bundled offer, package, promotion or service that will introduce my fans to them and their fans to me?
I’d love to hear your success stories or ideas for creating Like Minded Selling success stories.