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Differences Between Social Selling & Traditional Sales Techniques

Your phone is ringing, I bet you hope it’s a salesperson you’ve never met. About to watch a movie? There’s an ad about windows that comes on first. You’ll love it. 

What, why not? 

Is it because it’s interrupting your plans? 

That’s the difference between social selling and traditional sales techniques. Traditional sales techniques are more random. Thus coming off as an interruption to the prospect. 

You can do social selling either in person or online. But in places that you go looking for conversation and connection. Nearly 70% of sales professionals use social selling tools for lead development.

When you follow someone on social media, it’s because you find them beneficial to you. When you go to social events you are looking to make mutually beneficial connections. Social selling is more commonly welcomed. 

Social Selling is About Connections 


Social selling is all about creating relevant meaningful connections. These connections lead to long-term recurring business. Traditional selling is focused on trying to close a transaction. 

Now, many salespeople rely on both social selling and traditional sales techniques. So, don’t completely rule out the old-school advertisements. Still, there are definitely some clear benefits to social selling that you can’t ignore. 

If you were remodeling your house you would probably talk with people about different aspects of construction. Someone trying to sell to you by social selling would make themselves helpful. They would try to connect with you before they started to sell to you. 

With traditional sales techniques, you aren’t able to learn much about the salesperson. With social selling, you already feel like you know the person before you are thinking about buying. 

People buy from people they like or trust. They are also more likely to talk about someone they like with other people. 

Types of Sales Techniques 


Before we get into the different types of social selling, let’s clarify what we’re referring to when we say traditional sales techniques.

Traditional sales techniques look like: 

  • buy lead lists
  • internal records
  • cold calling 
  • specific sales scripts
  • a cookie-cutter process for each prospect 

Social selling techniques look like:

  • utilizing professional networks
  • utilizing social networks 
  • a focus on individual people
  • relevant conversations 
  • changing your approach based on social insights 

To change your approach from traditional techniques to social selling, you need to work on making yourself useful to other people. Meet people with the intent to help them. Create valuable online resources for people. Make yourself an expert. Make yourself known. The goal is to be someone that people look for. 

With social selling, you’re no longer the random person interrupting someone’s day. You’re putting yourself in places where you’re relevant and valuable to others. Thus creating a mutually beneficial connection. The more genuine you are, the more people will trust you.

Does Social Selling Take Longer Than Traditional Sales Techniques? 


You may think this sounds like it takes a long time. Not necessarily. Getting started building connections and community can feel daunting. However, you will see exponential growth in sales while social selling. 

Traditional sales techniques have you starting over from scratch after every transaction. Social selling gives you connections to build upon. Becoming a part of a community will allow you to pull from that to make sales. So, the initial growth may feel slow. Ultimately, connections breed connections. As you grow your community and reputation, the sales will come with less effort. 

So, while it may seem like building genuine connections takes a long time, it’s worth it. 

Social Selling