“Hi Anna, as you’re so interested in fashion, we thought you’d like exclusive access to our new report on apparel trends for 2019.”
That’s a real LinkedIn message I received last week. In case you haven’t noticed yet, my name is not Anna. I also have no interest in fashion. That’s what I call an epic fail.
If you’re going to send a LinkedIn message, you can at least get the person’s name right, and not copy and paste the entire message across multiple accounts (I imagine I’m not the only person on their marketing list that got the “Hi Anna” message).
Whether it was a software malfunction, or just a simple copy-paste error, there is nothing that is going to negatively affect your social selling efforts quite like the blunder above.
LinkedIn is full of spam messages from people you’ve never heard of promoting brands and products that you’ve never shown any interest in, all under the guise of Sponsored InMail.
Don’t be that person, instead follow our tips below on how to send a LinkedIn message so you can optimize your social selling efforts without being spammy.
Introduce yourself first
Do you like receiving cold, unsolicited messages and emails? Thought not. And neither do your customers. We’ve said it many times before, but we can’t stress it enough. It’s much better to work with warm leads than cold ones.
That’s why, if you want to succeed at social selling, you need to connect, introduce yourself, and get to know your customers first.
Why not check out the kind of content they are sharing and the sort of interests they have, and engage with them by commenting on posts that they’ve written or shared? Or visit their profile a few times (without seeming like a stalker) to pique their interest and put your name and company on their radar.
You can also use LinkedIn automation tools to share content with them that you think they might like based on their interests and the type of articles they’ve been liking or commenting on.
If you do that, you’ll be providing value before you’ve even sent a message, they’ll recognize your name when they see it pop up in their inbox, and they will be much more likely to be read and positively respond to any communication you send.
Only contact relevant people
This may sound like an obvious one, but when you’re trying to sell your product, sometimes you can be tempted to take the approach that the more people you contact, the more likely you are to achieve your goal.
The higher the quality and the relevance of your list of people to contact –– and the more time and effort you put into making sure it’s up to scratch –– the more likely you’ll be to have a positive result.
If you don’t believe me consider this stat: 81% of people want brands to understand them better and know when and when not to approach them.
LinkedIn automation tools can help you more quickly take the headache out of putting this list together by allowing you to filter for relevant people by factors such as job, location and industry.
Personalize each message
Personalization is more than just getting the first name right (although that is an important first step!) In fact, only 8% of people would be encouraged to engage with a brand if they addressed them by their first name.
While it may seem like a time-consuming process to personalize each message, it’ll pay off in the long run, as you’ll have a higher rate of success. In fact, 65% of businesses say they would switch brands if their company did not personalize their communications.
It’s especially important to personalize your messages if you don’t know the person well, or if you’ve only recently connected.
Keep Linkedin messages professional
If you’re sending a message to someone you’ve never met or don’t know too well then don’t be overfamiliar. Be polite, professional and courteous, and don’t ask for or share any very personal details or stories.
Also be mindful of any cultural or etiquette differences in the people you are sending messages to.
And definitely don’t use LinkedIn as a dating site (like in the example below).
Respond promptly to Linkedin message replies
If someone replies to one of your LinkedIn messages, don’t leave them hanging. It’s a big no-no of social selling.
Even if you need to get some more information or do some further research before you can answer their question, at least send some kind of reply.
For example, “thanks for your reply. I need to look into your question, but I’ll get back to you as soon as I can” is much better (and less rude) than radio silence. Never ghost your message recipients.
Using LinkedIn automation tools can help you craft better replies by understanding what your prospects are looking for so you know how you can nurture them through the sales pipeline.
Use LinkedIn automation tools
We’ve mentioned it a few times already, but one of the best ways to send a LinkedIn message without being spammy while boosting your social selling efforts, is to use LinkedIn automation tools.
There’s a lot of ways these tools can help you better engage with your prospects through LinkedIn messaging (which is a really effective social selling tool). These include:
- Finding relevant prospects
- Increasing the number of connection requests you send
- Listening to what your customers want and are interested in, and responding appropriately
- Personalizing communications
- Creating better (more interesting and successful) content
- Building up your brand
- Measuring results so you know which areas to focus on to improve
- Getting better customer insight.
The benefits of using LinkedIn automation tools are clear, with salespeople increasing their win rates and deal size by 5% and 35%, respectively.
Using LinkedIn automation tools doesn’t mean that you just rely on software to do the selling for you.
These tools are designed to help you have more authentic conversations with your customers so you can solve their problems and help them get what they need, more quickly and with minimum stress.