Here’s Why Social Media Is Not a Time Suck for Sales

By Alice Heiman

You probably think you don’t have an hour every day for social media. You may see time on social media as a time suck.

Instead, I encourage you to think about it as a necessary business activity. Staying active on social media is an ideal way to learn about the people and brands you need to know.

For now, I know you can start with 15 minutes a day. Here are a few things you can do in just 15 minutes. Choose one or two of these things to do daily.

  • Post an activity: Share an upcoming event, a quote, a photo, or a link to an article. The content can be from your company, one of your clients, or industry related.

  • Click like, comment, or share: Look through the activity feed and see what others are up to and click like, comment, or share. Have your list of customers and prospects handy and be sure to check what their companies have posted. See what individuals you follow have posted so you can interact. You can probably do 20or so a day. This works on every platform. Some have a like feature; some have a heart. It’s just a quick way to keep in touch.

  • Check LinkedIn and Facebook groups: If you are in groups with your customers and prospects, check those groups to see what activity is important. Find people to connect with there. Share an interesting article, video, or idea.

  • Check messages: Respond to messages from customers and prospects and leave the rest for another day if you run out of time. If they are spammy sales messages, delete them and maybe disconnect from that person.

  • Accept invites: Look to see who wants to connect – and research them before you reject. If you don’t know the person, read their profile, see what they post, and check their Website. If they could be a prospect or referral source, accept the connection. Then send them a message to get a conversation started. Connect only to people with whom you are willing to develop a business relationship; otherwise, there is no point. (There are some who will disagree with me on this.) It’s quality, not quantity, that matters.

  • Send connection requests or follow: Be sure you are connected to or following your coworkers, former coworkers, clients, colleagues, and classmates. If you meet people at events, find them online and follow or connect with them.

  • Send a private message: Find key people with whom you want to interact and send them a quick note, a link to an article, or an event they will find interesting. You can do this on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Snapchat. The private message is for people with whom you are already connected.

Those are some things you can do in 15 minutes – and all of them are easy to do from a mobile device.

We all have the same 24 hours to prioritize, plan, schedule, and get the important things done. In person, at a networking event, I can only effectively connect and have conversations with about five new people. In an hour on the phone, I might be able to have a meaningful conversation with two to four people. For me, networking online can be so much more efficient and just as effective. That’s where LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat work best. In one hour, I can connect with at least 20 people in a variety of ways.

A version of this post originally appeared on Alice Heiman’s blog as “How an Hour a Day on Social Media Can Grow Your Sales.”

Alice Heiman is founder and CSO at Alice Heiman, LLC. Alice works with business owners to get consistent and sustainable sales growth – and has been helping companies increase sales for more than 20 years. She regularly emcees the Sales 3.0 Conference and is a certified Peak Performance Mindset trainer. Join her at the Sales 3.0 Conference in San Francisco on March 12-13.

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