5 Steps to Sell on Social Media

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Selling on social media can seem daunting. You may have spent hours trying to build your audience and generate sales, only to come up empty.

The truth is, there are some key mistakes that prevent people from monetizing their social channels.

In this post, I’ll walk you through the five steps to sell on social media successfully. I’ll explain what most people do wrong, and how to flip the script to start driving real revenue. My advice may seem contrary to what other “experts” suggest, but I have the receipts to prove this process works.

So listen up if you want to learn how to turn your Instagram, Facebook, TikTok (or other social platforms) into profit machines!

(Listen to episode #716 of my podcast Build Your Tribe to hear the full audio version)

Step 1: Attract Your Ideal Audience

The first step is getting people to follow you. You need to post content that attracts your ideal customer. That means creating posts that are:

  • Valuable to your niche
  • Aligned with your niche
  • Give a peek into your personality

Remember – your feed content should attract and entertain potential new followers. Once you have them hooked, you can move them down the sales funnel.

Step 2: Help People Get to Know and Like You

Now it’s time to build trust and likability. Think of it this way – if you met someone at a party who only talked about their job, you wouldn’t really get to know them. All they do is pitch you!

That’s a mistake people make on social media too. All they do is talk about their niche, their product, their service. There’s no personality or connection.

Instead, use Stories to build familiarity. Share about your life, interests, beliefs, etc. Allow people to see the real you. Stories are where you deepen relationships with existing followers.

  • Feed = attract strangers
  • Stories = strengthen connections

Chalene Johnson Sell on Social Media quote - attract entertain

Step 3: Prove You’re “Good For It”

This next step is crucial. You need to prove you’re a trusted source of value. A person people can rely on for recommendations and expertise.

For example, think of that friend who always shares the best new products, life hacks, books, gadgets, etc. You trust their opinion because they’ve proven themselves to be “good for it.”

So share content that helps people, with no strings attached. Give honest reviews of products/services. Provide value that isn’t directly linked to what you’re selling. Build authority and trust.

I share daily examples on my Instagram (@ChaleneJohnson). Watch my Stories to see this in action!

Step 4: Explain, Don’t Sell

Here’s where my advice goes against the grain. Most experts say you need to directly sell on social – pitch your offers, post shopping links, run ads.

I disagree.

Selling should happen in private, after you’ve built trust and explained the value of your offer.

So explain enough on Stories or posts so people understand how you can help them. If they’re interested, they’ll raise their hand for more info.

You can invite them to join your email list, schedule a call, attend a webinar, etc. Then you “sell” by explaining your offers in more depth, answering questions, and sharing next steps.

Chalene Johnson Sell on Social Media quote - framework

Step 5: Sell in Private

As I mentioned, the actual sales process should happen off of social platforms. Some options:

  • Email list
  • Messenger
  • DMs
  • Webinars
  • 1:1 calls

This allows you to have more intimate, authentic conversations. Social media tends to cheapen the perception of your business if you sell too aggressively.

Plus, taking sales conversations “private” self-selects for hot leads. People who actively raise their hand are ready to buy from you!

Chalene Johnson Sell on Social Media quote - payoff

Selling on social media is 100% possible when you follow this framework. Attract your dream audience, build familiarity and trust, prove your expertise, explain (don’t pitch), and guide buyers into more private conversations to seal the deal.

It takes patience and consistency, but the payoff is huge. Not only in revenue, but in customer satisfaction too. People want to buy from people they know, like and trust!

Don’t miss these free resources to take your social media further:


Have any other questions? Just leave a comment below.


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