LinkedIn is a powerful tool for sales and marketing professionals, offering an opportunity to connect with potential customers and prospects in a more personal way. As the largest professional network in the world, LinkedIn provides users with direct access to hundreds of thousands of people from all over the globe.
In this article, we will discuss how to leverage LinkedIn for successful sales and marketing leads. We’ll look at what this practice entails, the key steps to setting up a successful campaign, and tips to help you get the most out of your efforts.
Why use LinkedIn for sales and marketing?
LinkedIn is an invaluable resource for sales and marketing professionals, allowing you to reach a large, diverse audience of potential customers and prospects. LinkedIn has the power to build relationships with executives in real-time, so that you can make connections quickly and efficiently. Furthermore, with its extensive database of millions of users, you can target specific industries or groups to grow your network.
Furthermore, LinkedIn offers a range of advanced tools and features which allow you to track engagement, measure performance, and analyze user behavior. This means that you can craft more effective campaigns and deliver real results for your business.
Here are six tips to get started with LinkedIn:
1. Build a strong personal brand
The advantage of LinkedIn unlike cold calls and emails is that the buyer can see and read about you from your profile.
That is why before you lure potential buyers to try your product or services, it’s important to strengthen your personal brand. Your profile should not be about you, but should also demonstrate how you can help a potential client. Here are the elements that make up a complete profile:
- Your headline
- Current roles and company activities
- Endorsements and recommendations
To ensure that most of your connections see your post, use LinkedIn Pulse. This feature enables LinkedIn users to create and publish content as they would do on a blog, thereby generating more visibility and extending your reach within your target audience.
Note that you can build up your story through creative content such as videos, infographics, and presentations. For example, for those in the fitness industry selling squat racks with pull up bars, you could create a video tutorial on how to set up the equipment. For those in the food tech industry, you could create an infographic outlining the top 10 trends in healthy eating.
Using an xAPI export as part of your online learning visual assets, you can also track learner progress and performance, or even see the types of content which are resonating with your audience.
2. Join and participate in groups
Don’t just join any group but those with your ideal interest and skills. Sales representatives tend to ignore groups yet are a great opportunity to engage with your ideal customer without being creepy. While in the group, ask and answer questions to make your name ring among potential customers.
The point here is to offer value either by sharing your expertise on a subject or by sharing content and posts to help group members overcome a particular challenge or problem. Avoid concentrating more on what you do or your company activities.
To join a group, you go to the search function and type your ideal industry and make insightful contributions once the admin approves your request to be part of the group.
3. Write and publish posts on LinkedIn
One advantage of LinkedIn is that people are more receptive to reading long-form content or posts. So, start publishing your articles on LinkedIn.
A study by OkDork shows that longer posts generate more likes, comments, and shares. LinkedIn posts help to generate interest in your profile and portfolio.
Articles not only help to establish an interest in your portfolio but also add to your expertise and make you reachable even on search engines without active prospecting.
For example, let’s say your target audience is solopreneurs and side-hustlers. Look at how you can create valuable content on topics such as making money online. This will help you build credibility in the process.
4. Reach out to those who view your profile
Once your profile has shown up in search and you are also making interactive conversation, you will notice a surge in the number of those viewing your profile.
They may be your ideal customers or not, or fall in between. If they are your ideal customer or even a close match, it is prudent to reach out. Don’t forget to look at their mutual connections, too. The lead viewing your profile may not be your ideal customers, but their mutual connections may fit your ideal customer profile.
5. Leverage InMail messages
Several articles point out that LinkedIn InMail is a true goldmine. However, it can be a tricky tool to use as most marketers forget to customize their emails when making a connection or pitching on the first contact or making it look like an advertising space.
LinkedIn InMail is your second chance to convince a customer to try your products or services.
The key to succeeding with InMail messages is to use it sparingly as InMail requests are limited depending on your subscription level. It’s also imperative to apply the right email etiquette and appear professional to avoid being ghosted by your prospect.
6. Make use of the search function
The LinkedIn search function is a robust tool. It supports both boolean strings and filters when looking for qualified leads. The search function allows you to filter your prospect by location, current, and past companies, industries, language, interests, connections, school, and endorsements.
A premium account offers more features, enabling you to narrow your search results on a lead by years of experience, seniority level, and company size. You can as well create search alerts so that the program sends you digestible search results daily.
LinkedIn prospecting script
A key to sales and marketing is to have a well-crafted script when you’re interacting with potential customers. A LinkedIn prospecting script should include an introduction that outlines who you are and why you’re reaching out, a value proposition that explains how your product or service can help the customer, and call-to-action that encourages them to take the next step.
Scripts or templates guide you on what to include in your message and avoid forgetting important details when selling online successfully. Apart from that, you may also customize or personalize them to suit different prospects and improve your conversion rates. Here are a few scripts/templates for LinkedIn invitation that you can tweak to your liking.
1. Reaching out to a new lead
Hi [Prospect’s Name]
I hope you are safe and well despite Covd19.
I am looking to extend my contacts with business leaders in your region and came across your profile. I would be delighted to connect.
2. Introducing your company to a lead
Hi [Prospect’s Name],
Would you like expert help to get a career boost? Look no further as the Berlin School of Business and Innovation (BSBI) will ensure you get the attention of global employers!
As well as an outstanding education, we offer free services such as German language lessons, Executive Education courses, and career advice. We’ve also teamed up with a legal firm to get you free visa support!
Although we can’t control the future, we can prepare for it and our education will give you the knowledge to succeed. Check out our undergraduate and postgraduate programs in business, marketing, finance, and more.
Learn More (link)
3. Inviting a lead to an event
Hi [Prospect’s Name],
I would like to invite you to our next XYZ roadshow on November 5th at the (venue).
If you’ve never heard of us, XYZ is a business management software designed to cover all the needs of a company, from CRM to manufacturing!
During the event, we will showcase how businesses have been taking advantage of XYZ to increase sales, cut costs, and improve business efficiency.
You will have the opportunity to network with other local business professionals after the presentation and enjoy some refreshments and snacks. If you and your team would like to join us, feel free to register here.
Let me know if you’re interested and feel free to email me with any questions (email address). You can also book a meeting with me on my calendar here (link). I hope to meet you there!
4. Offering a report
Hi [Prospect’s Name],
I hope you don’t mind me reaching out to you out of the blue. We’ve recently published a new report (link) in partnership with ABC which I thought might be of interest to you.
Our report on (the title of your report) covers transforming connectivity, digital infrastructure, the foundations for 5G, expanding financial inclusion, and readiness for cloud service in the region.
If you are interested in learning more, we will also be covering all the topics within this report at our (venue) event, taking place in May. We hope to see you there!
Access Report (link)
How to warm up a lead on LinkedIn
Warm leads are those contacts who may have expressed some interest in your product or service at one point, but not enough to become a customer. Re-engaging warm leads is an important part of the sales process and can be done on LinkedIn with targeted messages.
Everyone seems to have their own approach for warming up a lead on LinkedIn, however, they all agree on one thing: avoid being ‘salesy’.
Here are the steps you can take in your LinkedIn prospecting endeavors.
Show interest by reaching out
The trick here is to keep things simple, especially with a new connection. Start with a salutation and show your enthusiasm to connect. You can ask them about their work and how you can know more about what they do. Avoid promotional content at all costs.
Stay in Touch as Often as Possible
Making a new connection is pretty tricky, and it can take time. Your first response may have not gotten you to a phone call, so you may have to follow-up with a brief message after a week or two.
You can send your new prospect an article or case study or comment on some of their posts or achievements as a way of staying in touch and adding value.
Let’s say you’re in the health niche and just released a well-researched article on ways to reduce stress that your prospects would benefit from. Share the link to your article with a brief message about how it could help them, and why you think they should check it out. Always lead with value.
Retargeting may involve inviting a lead to your LinkedIn group, webinar, events, or conferences by sending a personalized message explaining why you would be pleased to have them among your attendees.
You could also share new reviews, articles, and other content that your lead would find useful. Even if you’re an affiliate to a product, you can still share content that is related to your lead’s interests. Say you reviewed a woodworking product that you think your lead would find useful. In this case, you can share this content with them to keep the conversation going while also adding value.
The aim is to solidify your position and make your name ring in their mind to open up those doors or take a look at your product.
Share valuable content
Sharing valuable content establishes you as a source of knowledge and the go-to person for current activities going on around the world. The lead may not try your product but will most probably make a connection for future engagement.
LinkedIn is a better solution in sales prospecting compared to other social media platforms and even other sales prospecting tools.
With more people and prospects joining the platform to look for opportunities or make buying decisions, LinkedIn should no longer be an afterthought. Use LinkedIn prospecting tools to organize your contacts, manage your sales funnels, and convert those warm leads.