78% of salespeople engaged in social selling outsell their peers who aren’t (Forbes). So, if you haven’t begun harnessing the power of LinkedIn as a sales tool, now is most certainly the time!
With 81% of buyers more likely to engage with a strong, professional brand and 84% of C-Level buyers using social media for purchasing, it’s time to leverage LinkedIn for sales success.
So, here are three things you could do today to start kicking goals with LinkedIn?
1. Nail your customer-centric profile
Your LinkedIn profile showcases your personal brand, and guess what, digital-first impressions count! Don’t stress, though, if your profile doesn’t currently cut the mustard, it’s a reasonably easy fix, and we’re happy to share some pointers.
Firstly, check you’ve nailed the basics; a glorious photo of yours truly (avoid the ten wine-deep selfie you took on Friday night) and make sure it’s visible to the public, as non-visible pics mean 9 times out of 10, your profile will be overlooked!
Your headline is prime real estate. For senior roles, e.g. VP or CEO, typically, a job title approach is taken on LinkedIn for sales professionals; it can be more impactful to make it customer-centric. Who do you serve, and how do you help them?
When you’re speaking about your skills and experience, is it sales-centric i.e. I hit the 100% club or customer-centric? I helped customers reduce their costs by 20% / achieve X outcome.
We’ll be dishing out profile essentials in our lunch and learn, Mastering LinkedIn as a sales tool for B2B businesses. More details on that one later on!
SR TIP: Do a mini profile blitz and check yours is up to scratch. Is it the first (digital) impression the one you want to make?
2. Building your network
Building your following on LinkedIn is slightly more strategic than on other socials. It’s not a popularity contest, so scrap striving for the biggest following; it’s about gaining quality connections over quantity, especially when prospecting.
Only 3% of your target market are ready to buy at any given time, so finding ways to nurture your prospects and stay front of mind is critical. LinkedIn is the perfect way to educate and nurture prospects.
The starting point is simple but overlooked, have you connected with all your existing clients and prospects on LinkedIn?
When expanding your network, always keep in mind the profile of your ideal client and search using those perimeters, e.g. location, company size, industry, role etc.
Consider what LinkedIn groups your prospect might be a part of, can you join and be part of the conversation?
If you’re serious about prospecting, check out Sales Navigator. You’ll be able to target the right prospects, get access to key insights and engage with them via personalised outreach.
SR TIP: Top tip, never get married on a first date. In sales, this means never leading with a sales pitch about your product/service. Make it all about your prospects and date before you get married! Consider what nurture touch points you can use, e.g. invite to an event, share a blog, share a whitepaper. Don’t go in for the kill!
3. Engage and OUT-CONTRIBUTE
A digital-first sales approach has become a top priority for many organisations, which means that content is well and truly still king!
Did you know that 41% of B2B Buyers will consume more than 5 pieces of an organisation’s content before engaging with a salesperson?
So, now is the time to get comfortable with creating, sharing and engaging with content that speaks to your customer’s pain points and meets them where they are on their journey. Don’t worry; you don’t have to go gangbusters from the get-go; start small and build the habit.
When sharing with your network, use the 80/20 rule: 80% of the content you share should be valuable to your network, and the remaining 20% can be your selling proposition.
SR TIP: As our good friend Julie Masters says, strive to out-contribute. This can be by sharing a post from your company page and adding your own 2 cents to it, sharing an industry report, or sharing takeaways from an event you attended.