Hey Salespeople. Want to smash your targets? Get on Twitter!

A recent study of B2B sales professionals uncovered some interesting insights on the use and influence of social media for sales teams. 

The research has revealed Twitter as the most important social selling channel for B2B sales professionals. 

The number one social site used within the sales process for 2014? Twitter!

Socially savvy reps were 6.7 times more likely to exceed quota than were salespeople with rudimentary or no social media skills.
74% of the sales professionals who beat their quota by 10% or more described themselves as “highly effective” or “better-than-most” social media users.

More sales people are using Twitter to reach and connect with prospects than ever before. What's interesting is the relationship usually starts on Twitter before it moves to LinkedIn.

I use Twitter to not only research, but to connect. If I believe the content being shared by someone is relevant to me or my networks, I will comment, retweet or favorite. I could also share (via Twitter, LinkedIn, or email) a relevant supporting article or blog post etc.  I also use Twitter to participate in virtual events by following a hashtag like #CustServ. It’s all about connecting with communities of common interest.

Twitter is a brilliant platform for understanding the pulse of an industry, sector or particular vertical. You can learn a lot, very quickly by listening to conversations under specific hashtags. Who are the thought leaders? Who are the frequent participants? Who is making a lot of unsubstantiated noise? What are the issues in the vertical? Then you can take that information to LinkedIn to dig deeper.

Put simply this is because Twitter is way easier to use and search for information then Linkedin is at the moment.  The hashtag is a powerful and easy way to find out what people are talking about.  And you can follow people directly on Twitter without asking for permission.

Due to the real time, collaborative nature of Twitter a salesperson can effectively share an idea or engage with a prospect over a series of lightweight interactions.  When the conversation goes well, it typically moves to Linkedin – which represents a much larger personal commitment.