What is social selling?

Social selling is a marketing and sales practice that leverages social media platforms to build meaningful customer relationships.

Apr 13, 2024

Social selling is an established strategy that leverages social media platforms to build meaningful customer relationships. This method isn't just a trend; it’s a transformative shift in sales practices. For marketers and growth teams, mastering social selling is crucial for staying competitive.

Fun fact: 78% of social sellers outperform peers who don’t use social media, and companies utilizing social selling see a 45% increase in sales opportunities​.

  • Leverages social media: Utilizes platforms like LinkedIn, Twitter, and Reddit to connect with and nurture leads.

  • Builds more natural relationships: Focuses on building trust and credibility through authentic interactions.

  • Drives sales: Converts these relationships into sales by providing consistent value and insights.

The basics

Social selling leverages social media platforms to identify, connect with, and nurture potential customers. Unlike traditional sales methods, social selling focuses on creating relationships and providing value before pitching a product or service. This approach allows salespeople to engage with prospects where they are already active: on social media.

By sharing relevant content and engaging in meaningful conversations, sales and marketing professionals can build trust and establish themselves as industry experts.

Fun fact: 62% of B2B buyers respond positively to salespeople who share relevant insights and opportunities​.

The main benefits of social selling

  1. Enhanced lead generation

Social media allows marketers to identify and engage with prospects early in their buyer journey. Data from LinkedIn shows that companies using social selling see a 45% increase in opportunities​.

  1. Improved customer relationships

By interacting with potential customers on social media, businesses can build stronger relationships. Social sellers are 51% more likely to achieve their sales quotas​.

Fun fact: 31% of sales reps using social selling report closing deals worth over $500,000 without a single in-person meeting.

  1. Increased credibility

Sharing industry insights and valuable content helps establish trust. 31% of B2B professionals believe they have built stronger relationships with clients through social selling. Additionally, more than 50% of revenue for several major industries was generated through social selling in recent years, emphasizing the importance of trust and credibility in driving sales.

Implementing social selling strategies

  1. Optimize social profiles

Ensure that social media profiles are up-to-date and reflective of the brand. This creates a strong first impression.

  1. Engage authentically

Engage with content from prospects and industry leaders by liking, commenting, and sharing. Authentic interactions build rapport prior to beginning a sales conversation.

  1. Share valuable content

Consistently share content that provides value to your audience. This positions you as a thought leader and keeps your brand top-of-mind.

Measuring social selling success

To measure the success of social selling efforts, LinkedIn's Social Selling Index (SSI) is a useful tool. It scores activities on a scale from 0 to 100 based on four pillars: creating a professional brand, finding the right people, engaging with insights, and building relationships. Higher SSI scores correlate with better sales performance.

In addition to the SSI, other types of industry and internal benchmarking metrics are helpful in evaluating the efficiency of current social selling strategies. Research suggests that across industries, sales professionals who use social selling tools are 51% more likely to achieve their sales quotas. Furthermore, these professionals report a 35% increase in the average deal size when using social selling tools.


The data is clear: social selling not only boosts sales performance but also helps in closing significant deals without the need for traditional face-to-face meetings.

Key takeaways:

  • Social selling leverages the power of social media to connect and engage with prospects.

  • It enhances lead generation and helps build stronger customer relationships.

  • Successful social selling strategies result in higher sales quotas and increased revenue growth.