LinkedIn is a great tool for selling and prospecting, but most salespeople are using it wrong. They’re treating it it’s a phone call or an email and spamming people.
We’ve all gotten them (and many of you have sent them). I’m talking about the LinkedIn connect requests that are then instantly followed by some lame pitch or request for your time to push some irrelevant ware on us.
They’re obnoxious, and at the end of they day, they’re ineffective.
There is a better way and a more effective way of prospecting without driving your leads crazy. (PS, if you really want to dive deep on this topic, check out Dan Gingiss’ take on the 11 Annoying Habits Of Salespeople That Damage The Experience For Prospects. He’ll have you cringing at your bad habits.)
Getting ready to prospect
Start by creating a list of all the problems your product or solution solves, both business and technical. Make them substantive and real. For example: If you sell an enterprise video editing software, list all the problems editors, production companies, editing companies, movie houses etc. faced with current or outmoded editing software. Be specific and robust. Make the list as substantive as possible. Don’t list small, inconsequential issues; address significant, measurable problems.
Once you’ve created your list, outline the impact on the organization/company when those problems exist. How is a company affected by those problems?
Now, write a LinkedIn post or do a LinkedIn video on one of the problems. You should address why it’s a problem editors need to pay attention to, the impact of the problem, and ways to fix the problem.
Do this for 12 weeks, or 90 days.
That’s right, go to your list once a week and create a new LinkedIn post or video. Do it weekly for 12 weeks.
Then, every time someone likes the post or video, go to their profile and click connect. Thank them for liking the video. Go to every comment and comment back. Then, go to the commenter’s profile and connect with them.
Do this every day for 90 days.
Paying attention to the results
How many people do you think will like your posts?
How many people do you think will comment?
How many of those people do you think will be your target market?
Pay attention, and see who is commenting on more than just one article. Pay attention to their title. Are any of the people who are commenting or liking in your target market?
If they are, reach out and ask if they are struggling with any of the problems you’ve written about and if you can get them any more information on the issue. Ask them if they are having any other types of problems they’d like you to address.
The key is to engage with their interest and around their timing. Rather than interrupting your prospects and irritating them with cold, uncomfortable Inmails and connect requests, let them find you using valuable, relevant content. Get your 15 minutes in small chunks on their timeline.
LinkedIn is too robust a platform to use it like phone or email. There is no need to do cold outreach when prospecting on LinkedIn. It’s perfectly suited to drive engagement and connection if you do it right.
Stop the LinkedIn cold outreach. Create a list of the problems your product or solution solves, start talking and writing about those problems, and let your prospects come to you.
P.S.- for more tips on how to become the badass sales person you’re meant to be, check out our Gap Selling book right here on Amazon.