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The Sales Review

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DANGER: if 50% of Your LinkedIn Connections Are Internal

Posted by Jamie Shanks on Jul 26, 2013 7:09:16 AM

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Example of LinkedIN Mobile App on a desktopDo you know what “Selling in a Vacuum” is? This means that your sales message spins and spins around a core group of people, but never really reaches your targeted audience.

If you go into your LinkedIn account and look at your 1st degree connections, how many are internal to your company? How many are co-workers past & present?

If you answer is “a lot” – you’re in trouble of Selling in a Vacuum. All your content shared via LinkedIn & Twitter will spin amongst the converted… your existing colleagues. At first, you might think you’re doing a great job because you’re getting Likes, Comments, Shared, Forwards, Retweets & Mentions from your social activity. Don’t get me wrong, there is still great value as these readers’ connections now have access to your message. Unfortunately, similar to the spinning cyclone in the photo, only fragments of your activities are reaching your target audience.

Your LinkedIn & Twitter accounts aren’t for you, and they aren’t for your co-workers (not unless you sell specifically to your own company). Your Social Selling profile is YOUR PERSONAL MICROSITE! They are your webpages. You need to look at your connections and followers similar to the way you look at Leads & Opportunities in your CRM. Your CRM doesn’t house your internal co-workers’ phone numbers; it’s for outside business development.

HOW CAN I GROW MY LINKEDIN CONNECTIONS TO REACH MY TARGET BUYER?

Secret #1 – Share content to an individual

As you can see from the image below, don’t forget to share content with individual buyers. You don’t need to be their 1st degree connection; all you need is an address. Lauren Winer @ uSamp has booked close to 10 meetings using this strategy! She kick-starts conversations with potential buyers by sharing content that will strike up a thought-provoking conversation.

Article Sharing on LinkedIN

Secret #2 – Connect with any potential buyer that reviews your profile

Every single day, you must be checking your “Viewed your Profile” button on your LinkedIn profile. These buyers have been engaged in your content and will nearly 100% connect with you should you request within 24 hours. Now you have a much greater probability that this buyer will see your content in the future. Should they read your content again and again, take the time to move this buyer to a next step.

LinkedIn Profile

Xavior Miller

Secret #3 – Connect with any potential buyer that reads your shared content

You can see from the image below that 5 people have “Liked” this article. These potential buyers are not all 1st degree connections. Make sure you’re checking your Notifications Flag (at the top right of your LinkedIn Profile) daily for content engagement. Reach out and connect to these 2nd & 3rd degree content readers. They could become a future buyer one day!

Jamie Shanks Mba

The Bottom Line

If you don’t want to be left behind the 8 ball – you really need to start to take action. Check out this blog post for 12 sure-fire ways to find new prospects on LinkedIn.

Sales Acceleration Summit

Jamie Shanks

Jamie Shanks

About the Author

Jamie Shanks is a world-leading Social Selling expert and author of the book, "Social Selling Mastery - Scaling Up Your Sales And Marketing Machine For The Digital Buyer". A true pioneer in the space of digital sales transformation, Jamie Shanks has trained over 10,000's of sales professionals and leaders all around the world.

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