LinkedIn: Lead Generation Secrets
Are you excited about bypass gatekeepers and connect you directly with the decision maker with LinkedIn?
LinkedIn is #1 network to growing number of professionals, currently sitting at 500 million users as of April this year. LinkedIn used correctly can be a fantastic platform to expand your professional network and as a lead generation tool.
I hate cold calling because I don’t like rejection but LinkedIn makes it possible to connect with decision makers so much easier.
The great beauty about LinkedIn is it H2H (Human to Human), which helps make the process a little more personal and realistic.
Linkedin is a great lead generation tool, and today I’ll discuss three LinkedIn secrets:
- Use the Right Tools
- Be Specific
- Build ‘Human’ Relationships
But first, let’s take stock of the challenges that you will face when trying to create a lead generation process through LinkedIn.
Membership and active participation are two different things. Many use LinkedIn for career purposes opposed to business networking to supplement their business or network. These are inactive members who created a LinkedIn profile because they were told they had to.
For lead generation and building relationships online there are great opportunities on LinkedIn, but be prepared to sort the wheat from the chaff.
LinkedIn is free but using it for lead generation is not
LinkedIn’s advertising platform boasts a high cost per click relative to Google AdWords on sponsored posts and advertisements but offers you the ability to finely target members of businesses who typically sit outside of your regular advertising reach.
Lead generation can be accomplished with a free profile, but you will be highly limited by the scalability of this exercise which can quickly become frustrating. This brings us to the first Lead Generation Secret – using the right tools.
Use the Right Tools
LinkedIn membership plans and access are structured so that someone looking to use LinkedIn for lead generation is required to augment their free profile with a more expensive plan. Sales Navigator requires a premium member subscription and is the primary tool for lead generation we’ll explore here.
There are three levels of Sales Navigator – Professional, Team, and Enterprise. We found that for a lead generation process to be managed by a business owner, the Professional level costing $77/month usually suffices with features including;
- Who’s viewed your profile
- Extended LinkedIn network access
- Advanced lead and company search
- Lead and account recommendations
- Job change alerts
- Notes and tags
You can use Sales Navigator to find and engage with your target market on LinkedIn in an effective, organised, and scalable fashion. There are many filters available to you when using a free profile such as;
- Connection Status
- Current Company
- Past Company
- Profile Language
The free filters are designed to let you find people, companies, or groups that you already know which can be limiting when you’re trying to find new prospects. Sales Navigator’s ‘Lead Builder’ tool boasts these filters with greater precision and other filters including:
- Company Headcount
- Seniority Level
- Years of experience
- Years in current position
- Company type
Hint: Within Sales Navigator, you can segment which saved leads have been active within the past 30 days. Start with these prospects for a better strike rate.
Before you start searching for prospects, it’s important to define who your target market is – this can be a valuable exercise in and of itself.
Being targeted in your marketing efforts is best practice, and it holds true for LinkedIn marketing. By clearly defining who you’re talking to, your messaging will be specific, allowing you to target particular pain points and challenges that those in your target industry suffer from. You can leverage one well-thought-out message across your leads to make your LinkedIn lead generation campaign scalable.
Use either the free filters or those available in sales navigator to create a pool of leads to fit your target profile. Look through their profiles and note what other titles or experience they detail, as this may give you more clues about how best to communicate with them.
It’s important to have a plan or a script of what resources you’re going to send to your targeted leads before you start connecting. Your initial outreach message should be personalised and concisely outline who you are and why you’re getting in touch – most people use LinkedIn on their mobiles and don’t have time to read through a paragraph.
Build ‘Human’ Relationships
The most valuable professionals you’ll connect with are the ones who have spent the time to fill out their profile entirely; this means they place value on communication through LinkedIn and are more likely to take advantage of the opportunity to connect and communicate with others. Make sure you’re one of them and take the chance to build authority by way of your public profile.
Deliver more value in advance by always being focused on communicating and listening to the lead rather than trying to pitch to them. They have been pitched to a hundred times by bots and companies who pay to force themselves into their inboxes – don’t be one of those.
Part of delivering value in advance and remaining focused on your lead is to look at using permission marketing. Don’t force your content upon them – ask them if they’d be interested to read something of value specific to their issue. Few knowledge-thirsty business leaders can say no to new valuable material that will help them overcome their challenges.
Good and great business partnerships are based on human relationships. Your call to action, therefore (the action you want your leads to take), must be congruent with the messages you have been sending.
Make sure your actions on LinkedIn feed into your normal sales process and understand that business owners and managers like you have little free time, so make it worth their while.
Creating a professional personal brand, conveying relevant and useful information to your leads in a scalable way, and using the right tool can kickstart your LinkedIn Lead Generation campaign.