Recent enhancements to LinkedIn’s social network should be leveraged to generate leads. The new LinkedIn user profile offering is one of many recent enhancements. Engaging with these enhancements will drive Demand Generation. Sales teams know that social selling on LinkedIn will help make their number. The Marketing team can help support sales rep social sellers by growing their own networks. This gets your sales reps more connected to potential prospects through LinkedIn's TeamLink. It also gets your company content in front of more prospects via activity streams.
In a time strapped environment, what are the “Must do’s” for Marketing teams? How much time should your team members invest? I’ll answer this with the top 5 LinkedIn must do’s for individuals on marketing teams. I have included a detailed checklist for download here. It includes several additional items for those with more time.
Must do #1:
Build a complete profile. This is obvious but you want to engrain it with your team. Follow LinkedIn’s automated guidance in the blue box. It will make sure that you include a complete background and detailed qualifications. Write this in a way that speaks to your prospective buyers. Don’t use insider jargon that only your team would know. Include what value your expertise brings to prospective buyers. Include your top values in your headline and summary. Use a professional picture that makes you approachable. And last but not least, customize your public profile url to make you findable. My checklist here goes in greater detail on building a complete profile.
Must do #2:
Build Your Network & Increase Visibility. Create a daily or weekly re-occurring calendar meeting to block off time in your day. Call it “LinkedIn Time”. I recommend at least 30 minutes twice a week. Use this time to remind yourself to invite new connections. New connections will gain you access to more prospects & gain trust in your network. If you are meeting someone in person or virtual, invite them to connect prior to or within 72 hours after engagement. Make sure you personalize the invite rather than using the default invite message.
Follow your dream prospect company pages. Promote company news to make connections within the company.
Additionally, always take quick peak at the “People you may know” module. This module is usually on the right side of the LinkedIn screen. There is an algorithm running this that predicts connections you may want. The more you connect with, the more visible you are in others networks. Visibility is the key to gaining trust and getting found. The more connected you are to prospective buyers, the higher the trust. If you completed your profile education and employers, the more visible you are in those networks as well.
Must do #3:
Read Your Stream & Contribute. When you first login to LinkedIn, you start out with viewing your network news stream. These streams are important to making an impression in your network. Spend a good 10-15 minutes out of your “LinkedIn Time” reading the latest streams and contributing. Contribute by ‘liking’, sharing or commenting others updates to the stream.
Monitor streams for big events such as job changes, company acquisitions, and new launches. Those are opportunities for you to interact and be seen in the network. These simple contributions will build up your trust, expertise and build recall in your networks top of mind. If your own company has a blog, syndicate that content to your stream.
Must do #4:
Get Endorsed For Skills. The new endorsement feature is more powerful than Klout. With just one click, you or your connections can be endorsed for a skill to gain credibility. The more endorsements you gain, the higher the credibility. Leverage your network to build your endorsements as well as building them for your peers.
Must do #5:
Join & Contribute in Groups. Groups have been around forever and many articles are written on how to leverage them. The concept is simple. Know the groups that your ideal prospects and buyers hang out in. Join those groups, monitor, share your content and contribute to the discussions in those groups. No one will know you exist unless you participate enough to be known.
There are dozens of things you can do on LinkedIn to drive lead generation. SBI has helped best in class sales teams build top notch social selling processes. Support your social sellers by growing the marketing team’s network. This will get your sales reps more connected to potential prospects. If your team is strapped for time, focus on these top 5 must do’s. Download the complete LinkedIn checklist here to distribute to your team members.
Want to know how the best social sell? Watch the Social Selling Case Study webinar featuring Brian Frank, Head of Global Sales Operations at LinkedIn. Learn how LinkedIn uses LinkedIn to prospect. Get access to field tested recommendations on implementing social selling. Watch the webinar here.