Most professionals do not have a LinkedIn marketing or social-selling strategy, let alone an online sales strategy that’s aligned to revenue objectives. If you want to be a sales and marketing leader you need to create a plan that will activate your LinkedIn connections. Think of LinkedIn as a professional social media network that you can use to connect, engage, drive demand and create lead opportunities.
Yet, strategy is the biggest difference between a sales or marketing team that drives demand and enjoys consistent revenue opportunities and one that just has a presence and lots of connections it does not engage with.
How you thought about these tactics?
- After you make a connection, how do you follow up or build on that connection? Your goal should be to develop them into a lead.
- Do you think about the content you are sharing or posting? The content should position and differentiate yourself.
- What discussions are you creating? Will these discussions or conversations nurture your connection (or prospect) and provide value for to your business relationship? They should.
- Have you thought about how to introduce your company and their content to your connection and move them from LinkedIn to your website?
Here are 5 strategies that sales and marketing leaders need to think about to be engaging on LinkedIn.
- Social Media Presence
First, review your LinkedIn profile. Did you consider your LinkedIn profile as a strategic tool? Your profile shouldn’t be a cover letter and a resume. You should be considering how to position yourselves as an expert in your field. The information on your profile should be interesting to your target connections, market and industries.
To convey your worth, find out what kind of value your prospects are looking for and optimize your LinkedIn profile to provide value to them. Your profile should be piquing interest and starting conversations with key decision-makers that lead to revenue opportunities.
- Thought Leadership
Don’t just use LinkedIn as a publishing platform. It is a good medium to push out content, but the content you are posting should be pulling your prospects in. You need to plan out what type of content you can provide that will convince decision-makers to contact you. The best way is to figure out the pain points that your target connections (and their companies) may be facing and what content you can provide that would position you as a thought leader. The goal is to have your connections take action.
- Targeted Connection Prospecting
Review your LinkedIn connections to see how many of them are “long-shots” or who could provide introductions or recommendations. Your connection prospecting strategy should define who your main and secondary prospects and influencers are, and it should include a plan to get them to respond to your communications. The goal should be to retain their attention, so you can provide value, develop the lead (or referral) and convert the lead into a client.
It’s not about how many connections you make or followers you have on LinkedIn or any other social media platforms. More accurately, it’s about how many people you reach and engage with. Engagement and providing value should be at the forefront of your LinkedIn strategy.
The best way to engage in social media is to create a community. In LinkedIn, you can create actual groups that you manage. Remember buyers are looking for quick access to trusted experts and relevant content that helps them with their business issues. Your custom, niche LinkedIn community is an effective way to give your buyers what they are looking for.
- Lead Generation and Engagement
Most of the prospects you connect with on social media (and LinkedIn) platforms don’t realize what value you could provide or why they need you. It’s best to develop a lead nurturing strategy for move your connections through a defined lead generation process. Nurturing these connections will provide them with value and will encourage them to reach out for additional information.
What you need:
- A strategy to use your content (blogs, social media posts, case studies, whitepapers, third-party research, etc.) to support your business objectives.
- Content that will engage and provide value. Think about the pain points that will address your target audience and connections’ needs.
- A plan for how you will nurture your connections, prospects, leads and clients. How will you move them into your pipeline and get them to engage with you?
By developing an integrated marketing strategy you will be able to create a funnel that will provide value and lead opportunities in the future.