Many see LinkedIn as a sales prospecting tool, but what is sales prospecting anyway … it’s marketing. Use LinkedIn the way it was designed to work.
1. Be There
The first step in the process is to have a presence on LinkedIn. Company pages are fine but LinkedIn groups are the best places to get leads because you can create groups by topic or vertical and engage people. Monitoring activity allows you to see how interested people are in you and your company.
2. Raise Awareness
Implement the perpetual promotion machine, in which you re-market, re-message, and then re-target. By doing this, you reach people everywhere, appear bigger and more important, get people coming back to your content, remain number one in your potential customers’ minds and get the most of your dollars spent. LinkedIn can help by providing relevant content to an interested audience.
3. Market for Leads
Content is a great way to market for leads. There are a number of things that increase sharing among content and engage those who may end up being leads.
4. Leverage Employees
Your employees can be a great brand army. Get them on LinkedIn, actively grow their networks, and ask them to share news and content to their LinkedIn feeds. Your employees are visible, and can spend time in your groups to help foster relationships at all stages of the funnel. In particular, this is great for grabbing attention at the top of the funnel.
5. Prospect for Leads
Find new prospects with the Advanced People search in LinkedIn. LinkedIn can help you get in the door, and the advanced search functionality allows you to search for granular groups of people such as CEOs at companies with more than 5,000 employees, or people who work in a specific industry with a certain job title, among a number of other search functionalities.
6. Nurture Leads
LinkedIn groups show you interacting and helping and having a positive impact on an established social community. LinkedIn positions you to be viewed as a viable choice. Contact leads via InMail. LinkedIn helps you take a cold call and make it a hot lead. But remember don’t act like a used car salesman, but instead to be authentic.
LinkedIn advertising is still an evolving product and it is mostly used by B2B companies, targeting job titles, companies, industries and LinkedIn groups. Some of the major metrics, according to his presentation, are more costly on LinkedIn versus Facebook and Google AdWords, but it is still quite affordable. It costs just seventy-five cents to reach 1,000 people advertising on LinkedIn. LinkedIn advertising allows you to narrow your targets on a platform where many of your prospects are spending time and, perhaps most importantly, keeping their profiles up-to-date.
(This post is based on a webinar held by Brian Carter of Social Media Examiner.)