Why are sales people spending so much time on LinkedIn? If you're asking that question, you might not know all the "under the radar" tools that can make you more productive for lead generation and prospecting. These Social Selling tips are not obvious, and their relative obscurity allows the people who use them to go farther and faster than you. That ends today. Log on and strap yourself in, because there are no brakes once the leads start rolling in:
1. Go straight to the inside story
Knowing less than your prospect is the surest way to get ignored or disconnected. A new feature that few people even know about is the Influencer search. In the search bar, put in a term that your prospect has mentioned and choose 'Posts' from the drop down menu. This shows you who the top industry influencers are for that topic and what they are saying about it. More knowledge = less time = more closes.
2. Conserve your InMails
'Sales Navigator Basic' gives you somewhere between five to eight InMail messages per month. If you want more, you'll have to pay. To conserve your credits, message prospects from inside your groups list. Go to a group that you are in and click the Members button. You will see a brief profile of the prospect, and you can message that person directly for free.
3. Be more attractive
The end goal of Social Selling is to be considered a trusted resource that customers want to tell their friends about. If your current customers can brag to your prospects that they know you, you've done your job. Make your profile a destination. Go beyond keywords and spice up your profile with embedded video and slideshares. It's much cooler when leads chase you for a change.
4. Scan for buying signals
One change that typically leads to new buying behaviors is a change of jobs. The new structure can affect people up and down the corporate ladder, as the person with shifting responsibilities affects everyone around him or her - especially in smaller companies. Go to your 'Connections' tab and click 'Keep in Touch' to see what has changed for your colleagues, including who has moved and where they have gone.
5. Call on the team
You may not know it, but you have a secret salesforce at your fingertips. If you're signed up for Sales Navigator B2B, you can draw on the connections and extended network of other employees in your company for warm introductions to new prospects. They should want to help, because everyone in your company benefits from better sales figures.
6. Reward curiosity
When prospects come looking for you, you've overcome the biggest hurdle there is. Check your LinkedIn homepage every day to see who has been viewing your profile recently. Stay in contact with these people, especially those whom you don't recognize. Strike while the iron is hot, and don't let these golden introduction opportunities slip away.
7. Deepen your relationships
Social Selling is about being where the customer needs you to be. Even if you've met someone through LinkedIn, that may not be their preferred communications channel. Expand your touchpoints to prospects who could mean a great deal to your business by exporting your contact info to your email marketing or CRM system. Go to 'Connections,' 'Keep in Touch' and click the 'Gear' icon for 'Advanced Settings.' 'Export LinkedIn Connections' lets you pull this information into an Outlook file, a Yahoo Mail file or just a regular vCard.
How to Feed Your Need for Speed
Social Selling is not a one-and-done fix. It takes ongoing learning and a commitment from sales management. Learn all about what your sales team need to keep working at peak efficiency, and attain supersonic results that break the quota barrier.