We recently held a webinar titled “How to Effectively Use LinkedIn as a Sales Prospecting Tool” and you can watch a recording and get the slides here.
Finding Target Prospects
One of the first things that can slow you down with sales prospecting is not knowing who you should call or pursue. This is one of the best things that LinkedIn can help with as it is a deep database of target prospects for you to reach out to if you sell a B2B product.
I would recommend that you start with thinking about what area or region you might want to find prospects, what title and department you can sell into, and make a list of any target companies that you want to pursue. When you use some of these details in a search on LinkedIn, you will end up with a great list of prospects that you can start to pursue.
Options for Reaching Out
Once you find target prospects on LinkedIn, it is time to reach out and you have three options:
Send invitation to become connections: One way to engage with prospects is to send the contact an invitation to connect. I would recommend if you do this, be a little cautious as selling to the prospect right after they accept your invitation to connect.
Send email: You have the option to email the prospect. You can either send an “InMail” through LinkedIn or you can email prospects that you become connections with. You can also find prospects on LinkedIn and find their email in other ways and email them in an external mail system.
Call the prospect: You can always call the prospect that you find on LinkedIn. The best approach would be some mix of emailing and calling.
What to Say
The other big thing that can impact your sales prospecting results are what you say when you speak with or when you send emails to your target prospects. The main thing that we would like you to keep in mind is to try to not sound like a salesperson that is trying to sell something.
Instead of talking about the company that you work for and what you sell, try to shift toward talking about the improvements that you help to deliver and the problems that you help to fix.
Staying Fresh in Mind
Whether you are using LinkedIn for sales prospecting or other tools, you will run into many situations where the prospect says “No”. And a lot of the time “No” really means “No, not right now”.
One of the nice things about LinkedIn is that it provides a way for you to communicate and broadcast content to your connections. If you become connected with target prospects, you can then use the platform to share content that is related to how you help clients. This will help you to stay fresh in mind so that you have a good chance of being remembered when the “No” starts to change to “maybe soon”.