225 million members. 200 countries. 10 years. LinkedIn has come a long way since its birth back in May 2003. But as a whole, is LinkedIn really that good for sales?
Social selling is quickly taking over and beginning to dominate the sales arena. The traditional methods of cold call and emailing simply don’t work. Relationships are the foundation of selling and LinkedIn is the professional social network that will help you to take advantage of being social.
Trading in people
Contacts are the currency of LinkedIn and connections breed connections. Your first, second and third degree connections open up a whole host of opportunities and contacts. It makes prospecting that little bit easier and the cold call will become a thing of the past. You can generate leads, qualify them out and build your own calling hit list. As a sales person, owning your lead generation puts you at a huge advantage. You will be closer to your prospects and can follow them through the sales cycle from day 1.
Good friends with Mr Jones over at ABC Enterprises? Well, he is a good friend of Mr White’s over at DEF Inc, one of the prospects you have been trying to get on the phone. Social selling means introductions. Introductions mean leapfrogging the gatekeeper. Which in turn (ideally) will mean a shorter sales cycle. LinkedIn will tell you who you know and more importantly who they know. A perfectly worded email or personal call asking for an introduction to your prospect and you will have your foot in the door. Well, you’ll have both feet through the door and into their office.
LinkedIn is a hive of opportunities just waiting to be found. Jump onto the Advanced Search and you can search for prospects by location, relationship, industry, past company, location, job title, seniority, company size…the lot.
LinkedIn doesn’t stop there though. The majority of the companies you are targeting will have what LinkedIn like to call a company page. Similar to a Facebook page, you can follow companies for regular updates, when people join, when they leave, any announcements that are made and much more. Any changes can present you will a good reason to get in touch. Just clicking the ‘Follow’ button and you will be able to stay up to date with any developments and spot any fresh selling opportunities.
Head over to our LinkedIn page, hit follow and say hi!