Branded orange image featuring Libby Langley with text that reads 'The best way to get customers from social media without being too salesy'

I’m here to talk to you today about the best way for you to get more customers from social media without being salesy.

I’m looking forward to talking about this topic because it’s something I get asked about quite a lot. It’s a good one to reframe for you to in your onward journey and in your use of social media.

Loads of us struggle with the concept of getting customers from social media and feel like we need to sell, sell, sell all the time. I don’t know about you, but it doesn’t make me anything other than horribly uncomfortable, the very thought of doing that. I’m not one of the world’s most natural sales people, and I don’t like it. I once did a stint of selling alarms while I was doing my A-levels in the summer holidays door to door. Quite frankly it was absolutely awful.

I’m also very uncomfortable with the concept of selling. Do you feel that you need to do right? You want to get more customers, so you need to sell to them. It’s this horrible, perpetual cycle, isn’t it?

I want to talk to you today about how you can create a social media channel that makes people really want to buy from you. To create somewhere they want to talk about your products with you so they can get in on the action and get a piece of that.

I’m going to tell you, a story. It’s about Dirty Dancing. Do you remember the film? I still love that film. I don’t know how many times I’ve seen it actually over the years. Well, at least double figures.

I don’t think it’s triple figures that would be obsessive, but certainly double figures – I do absolutely love it. Can you believe that my husband has never seen it? I need to rectify that at some point. When most people think about Dirty Dancing, they think about the lift right at the end. Have you ever tried it? If you have, all kudos to you.

That isn’t actually my favourite part of the film, that lift at the end. I really like the part where they try and fail to do the lift and get really frustrated and they charge off and they go to the to the lake, and practise all these moves. You can just tell when they’re in the water that there’s this kind of sizzle between them. You can tell by the music that this is big news.

There’s something important happening now. You really want them to succeed and you want them to get together and you want them to live happily ever after. We sit there watching and cheering, waiting, really wanted all this to work. We’re really rooting for them and we’re invested in this story. When it does happen, we’re so delighted that it happened. It’s great.

The reason I’m talking about this today is that there are a lot of elements of that scene that we can use in our social media marketing, believe it or not. Before we try and sell, we try to build tons of anticipation so that our audience, our followers are invested and are getting involved on the side lines, just like we’re doing with Jonny and Baby in Dirty Dancing.

When we think about that water lift scene in Dirty Dancing, there’s a lot of anticipation. There’s a lot of production around it. That’s what your content on social media should be doing and creating too well before you talk about any of your products and services. Think about Baby. Earlier on in the film, where she carries a watermelon she would never then in that state have been chosen then in her cardi with her watermelon to fill Penny’s shoes later on in the in the show. But when Penny was for medical reasons, was unable to continue with it if she’d been carrying a watermelon and then just immediately plucked out to do the show and the complicated dance, it wouldn’t have been a realistic film.

It would have been like, whoa, what happened here? This makes no sense to me. Where would be the story with that? Where would be the anticipation? How would you be rooting for her if she just rocked up with a watermelon and then ended up immediately on the stage? There is quite a lot missing there. Can you see how if you are doing the same thing with your social media, you’re missing creating an opportunity for people to get invested in the story of your business that you’re telling and to create the participation in this so people are cheering from the sidelines and wanting to buy whatever it is that you do. They’re wanting to get carried away with the story. The thing is, that’s what a lot of people are doing with selling on social media – they’re going straight from watermelon to lift. There’s a whole load of work that needs to happen in between those things to build the right emotion and demand and anticipation.

The storytelling would be missing if you went straight from watermelons to lift. If you’re doing that on your social media, that’s why you’re left feeling deflated with no sales, because if you’re selling a watermelon station, it ain’t going to work. How do you feel when I tell you to slow down and build this anticipation? Does it feel counterintuitive to you?

I bet it probably does. Are you an all or nothing state I must sell or I’m not going to use social media?

The thing is, we put so much pressure on ourselves to sell and beat ourselves up if each post that we share doesn’t result in a sale.

I just don’t want this to kind of happen to you. You deserve better than that.

If you slow down your posts and play the long game by telling stories and building anticipation, that will be the best mind shift that you can possibly make. If you put all this pressure on yourself that if your next post doesn’t result in a sale, then you’re giving up. Guess what? It won’t result in a sale because quite frankly, you’re trying too hard. You’re desperate. It comes across as desperate.

There’s no authenticity when you’re being desperate like that. You lose you, which is never something that you want to do. The one thing I want you to take away from this little video today is that each post on your social media is just part of a bigger picture, one scene in the movie, for example. If you continue to be consistent with your social media content and refine what is working for you, what gets you the most comments, what gets you the most engagement, and then refine, repeat, refine, repeat, refine, repeat, you’re just going to take loads of pressure off yourself.

If you think about the whole movie, the whole film of Dirty Dancing and not just Baby and the watermelon, as a standalone thing, it just doesn’t make any sense out of context. It’s just the strangest thing. Obviously, if you haven’t seen Dirty Dancing, you have no idea what I’m talking about, therefore, proving my point. You don’t need to put so much pressure on yourself with each individual post because your goal is telling this much longer story to build anticipation.

Oh my word in the end you’re going to do the lift on stage for real, which is code for getting customers from your social media. Do you see the analogy, you can see how the process works? The number one mistake that people make on their social media is that they don’t create the right kind of content that nurtures people through into buying mode. You need to warm people up because if you just post, oh, the doors to my sale are open, people will look at you really confused and think, I don’t even know what you sell yet.

Who are you? What is it that you do? If you share content that touches on people’s pain points as opposed to things that you provide solutions for and fill their knowledge gaps, that’s what builds the anticipation.  Then you can sit back and watch the sales come in because you’ve done all the hard work by telling this longer story of your business and building this this kind of this anticipation opportunity – the sales. That’s the stage lift right in the movie.

If you forget about all the build-up, all the two hours that you’ve watched before that stage and all the anticipation that you need to build in order to get to that stage.

I want to talk to you about is how to effectively grow your customer base. You need to stop thinking about your social media as a kind of smash and grab opportunity. You want to be consistent with your content and take people on a slow journey, not smash and grab, then fail, then smash and grab again. That’s just exhausting. It’s soul destroying and it can really damage your reputation if you just keep doing that.

Do you feel like you’re perpetually trying to master the Dirty Dancing lift over and over again without actually putting the foundations in, without starting with carrying a watermelon and going to the water scene and all the sexy bits? If you keep trying that lift, crashing and burning. You’ve broken your back, you’ve broken your arm and you still keep trying to do it, even though it’s not working. You need to change what you do it.

You don’t want to spam your social media followers with sales posts all the time. It’s ugly. Nobody wants it. It would kill everything that you’ve been working so hard to build.

You don’t want your sales pitch plastered everywhere that would be like playing the final scene of a film just over and over again. The reason that this is a mistake is because you can’t measure the effectiveness of your social media content.

If you’re always just doing close, close, close, sell, sell, sell, you can’t measure the effectiveness of what’s happening because it either sells or it doesn’t. You’re not looking at the nuances that come with social media. You’re not looking at your insights and building the bigger picture, and you won’t be able to see what’s worked and what hasn’t so you won’t know what you need to tweak and refine when it comes to your content.

If you’re just smashing and grabbing sales content you see what’s going on. If you want your social media content to grow your business and generate more customers, then you need to stop selling. Yes, it sounds counterintuitive, but what you’re going to do instead is to get strategic.

Let me give you a scenario. Imagine you have 100 followers and you’re starting out. Fine. Think about if you shared anticipation, building content over a period of time and then two people buy from you. Hello! As you continue to follow the strategy next time, because it’s organically grown, you’re going to sell four products or services. Why? Because your followers grow as you’re sharing the right kind of content and you’re tracking and monitoring all the way through to see how it works for you by the data. How is it working for you? You’re tweaking and refining – being strategic in building anticipation.

See what a difference it makes. See what different direction it takes you in.

I really hope that this has helped you today. What I’ve covered is how to create a social media channel where your followers actually want to buy from you. Why slowing down is going to help you speed up the growth of your business and the one thing that you need to do before you even think about selling anything.

In summary, do less watermelon carrying as a solo event and do more building towards the big lift.

If you found this useful, it is just the tip of the iceberg! If you’re serious about using social media to grow your business, then click here to download my free small business blueprint for social media success.


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