When it comes to social selling, the stats are clear: 75% of B2B buyers are influenced by social media, and 92% of them use it to engage with sales industry thought leaders.
No matter how busy their schedules are, buyers still find the time for LinkedIn. And if you’re in sales, you can use that to your advantage.
However, time is a precious resource. You’re probably advancing multiple prospects through various sales stages at once, so even though LinkedIn gives you the perfect opportunity to reach out, you might not have the time to do it.
That’s why LinkedIn automation is great for social selling. With a variety of tools to choose from, you can completely automate the way you contact and engage with prospects.
And once you set them up, you’re free to do what you do best: sell. Let LinkedIn tools do the rest.
Since there are tools for every stage of the (simplified) 5-step sales process, let’s take a look at the best automation tools you can use for each step.
Step 1 & 2: Lead Generation and Qualification with LinkedIn Automation
Before you can actually sell, you have to find your prospects.
LinkedIn offers a native solution for that – Sales Navigator. You can browse through lists of users in specific industry, roles, locations, and other basic factors.
Back when it was first launched, Sales Navigator was revolutionary. You could finally start using LinkedIn for social selling, and the advanced search allowed for more accurate targeting.
However, if you want to generate sales leads on LinkedIn today, you’ve got more options.
LeadFuze is a great LinkedIn lead generation tool.
While you can use Sales Navigator to generate leads, using LeadFuze will help you qualify them at the same time.
With LeadFuze, you’ll have access to more info about qualifying criteria such as:
- Ad budget (Showing you the budget of your prospect)
- Technology and hiring intent (Capacity)
- Company news (Timing)
In addition to that, LeadFuze will also provide you with double-verified email addresses (so your emails don’t bounce) and frequently used keywords, so you can get in touch with your prospects easily, and tailor your approach to their needs.
For more info on your leads, make sure you take a look at Crystal.
Step 3: Approaching Prospects
Now that you’ve gathered enough information about your prospects and made sure they have the means to buy from you, it’s time to connect with them.
One of LinkedIn’s advantages is that connecting with prospects isn’t as abrupt as cold calls or emails are.
For example, you can view a lead’s profile and wait for them to look at yours before advancing. This is a really good move since you’ll be showing personal interest in leads, and if you’ve made sure your profile relays all the benefits of your solution (and your charming personality), they’ll be intrigued in you, too.
If they don’t give you a look-back, you can just move on to prospects who are interested instead of wasting your time.
After you’ve gotten your look-back, you can send the prospect a request to connect. It’s good to personalize the message and refer to something they’ve posted, or an area of their interest to start building a relationship right away.
Now, this can take a lot of time if you’re doing it manually. Especially if you’ve got sales email sequences, not just LinkedIn messages.
To really use LinkedIn automation for lead generation and outreach, try Orca.
Orca will automatically view your leads’ profiles, and send them requests to connect and messages once they’ve expressed interest in you. If you’ve got an email sequence, Orca will send that, too.
You can jump in when your prospects are ready.
Step 4 & 5: Demonstrate Value and Improve Customer Satisfaction
You can demonstrate the value of your solution in direct contact with your prospects, or you can demonstrate it before.
When it comes to social selling, you should double-down on value guiding the conversation. In fact, value is what should be starting it.
That’s why it’s important to emphasize your knowledge and the benefits of your solution by improving your LinkedIn profile.
You can also share content on industry-relevant news with tools like DrumUp.
It’s a neat tool that gives you all the benefits of content marketing such as customer education, establishing authority and building trust – but you don’t have to do anything yourself.
It mines the web for best content you can curate and share with your prospects. If you want to write posts, you can schedule them through DrumUp.
Demonstrating value works wonders for inbound sales, just like LinkedIn profile visits.
And since social selling is based on relationships, just because you’ve converted a prospect into a customer doesn’t mean you should stop there.
People trust people – especially when it comes to buying. So actively engage your (previous) customers, ask them for endorsements, or even make a LinkedIn group.
There’s one good rule of thumb for LinkedIn: keep the good old conversations going to start new ones.
You can automate the rest.