Today LinkedIn is one of the most popular social media platforms with more than 660 million users worldwide. This has become a great networking platform where businesses can connect with other professionals, hire new employees, stay up to date with other industry related news and activities and be the ultimate lead generator. From establishing partnerships, making connections, and increasing your brand awareness, to generating new leads, not utilizing LinkedIn in your 2021 digital marketing strategy would be a huge detriment to your business.
With the abundant amount of opportunities that LinkedIn provides for B2B businesses, it can be a bit overwhelming trying to figure out where/how to start gaining new prospects. Producing leads from LinkedIn is not as straightforward as promoting your products and services through regular posts and making connections. It requires a strategic approach in order to get real results which is why we have put together a list of the most important tips to optimize your LinkedIn lead generation strategy.
First and foremost, optimize your company profile.
Completing your company profile and keeping it updated, can make a big difference when it comes to gaining trust and credibility of your customers.According to LinkedIn, completed company pages receive 30% more weekly views. This is why it is important to make sure all of your information is up to date such as your profile and cover photo and that it accurately aligns with your company’s brand. Your company profile is one of the very first things people see when looking at your page so you want to make sure it’s not outdated and provides accurate details about your business.
When completing your company profile make sure your company description is optimized with appropriate keywords. LinkedIn pages often show up in the Google search Results so take advantage of this opportunity to get in front of your customers when they are searching for relevant keywords, by incorporating these key terms in your company description. Using these targeted keywords will help get you in front of more qualified leads. It’s also important to remember that your company description is a great way to introduce yourself to potential customers, so make sure your messaging really speaks to your target audience and highlights your company strengths. Writing a compelling company bio with a tagline in your header, can be an effective way to grab your customer’s attention and obtain interest in your brand.
It’s also helpful to ensure that your company leadership team individual profiles are connected to your company page. Most company executives have strong professional networks that know and trust them already so you should take advantage of these personal connections to invite and follow your company page. This is an easy way to increase your company network/ followers and build your credibility in your industry.
Create Value With Your Content
Half the battle to creating an effective LinkedIn Lead Generation Strategy is providing consistent content. In today’s social media driven age, having a LinkedIn presence can be essential to building your company’s credibility. It is important that your company page posts regularly to engage your potential customers and not fall behind to your competitors. Having a LinkedIn presence and not maintaining it, is worse than not having one at all.
While having a consistent LinkedIn schedule is very important, it is equally important to focus on the content that you are putting out there. Remember LinkedIn is one of the few platforms where you have all of your current and potential customers and clients in one place, so it is important that you generate content that is engaging, educational and ultimately going to persuade your target audience. Utilizing a variety of content such as sharing articles, posting videos and pictures on LinkedIn can all be a great way to attract customers and drive more traffic to your website. It is also important to remember to comment, like and engage with pages or businesses to boost your credibility and build social rapport.
When it comes to LinkedIn marketing, it’s more of a science and less of an art. Meaning winning at LinkedIn Marketing is knowing how to reach your customers at the right time. Time of day and day of the week often play a vital part in the amount and type of people you will reach. Depending on the audience you are trying to reach whether it’s C-level executives, business development directors, or product managers will affect when you will want to post, connect and engage on LinkedIn.
Increase Your Business Network, Build Partner Relationships and Generate Leads Through Sales Navigator
Sales Navigator is the most popular tool for generating leads via LinkedIn as it uses an automated search tool with multiple filters to narrow your target audience and identify potential prospects. With so many businesses on LinkedIn identifying prospects can be a daunting task and lead to wasting time on unqualified leads. Using Sales Navigator, you are able to identify your ideal prospect by utilizing the platform's powerful search capabilities to target your perfect customer to increase your chances of conversions.
Sales Navigator also allows you to gain insights on your targeted audience to develop a deeper understanding of your customers, thus improving your overall sales process.
The best place to start with Sales Navigator is signing up for the 30-day free trial to learn about the platform and start creating your prospect list based on your different customer personas or criteria. If you do not have the time or feel comfortable doing this, Icovy can help get you started and run your campaigns for you.
Creating Customer Personas
Perhaps the most important and beneficial part to Sales Navigator is utilizing their “advanced search tool”. This allows you to connect with your ideal customer based on their specific demographics. In order to utilize this tool properly, you first need to identify who you are trying to reach and this can be done by creating customer personas. Customer personas are theoretical profiles that outline and describe the customer you are trying to reach. While Sales Navigator allows you to narrow your audience from simple to complex depending on what package you pay for, in order to be successful and generate the most results, your basic persona should include these demographics:
- Job title
- Company size
- Connections of other colleagues
- Relevant keywords found in your prospect profiles (as mentioned above)
Keep in mind that you might have more than one client persona depending on your audience. This is why Sales Navigator lets you build prospect lists to filter out differences, and create targeted campaigns with specific messaging that is tailored to your audience to enable you to have a further reach with your customers. It’s also important to note that LinkedIn’s algorithm isn’t perfect, this means you might identify prospects who meet a few of the chosen filters but not all them.
Once you have created your customer personas and prospect lists, you can then begin to craft your targeted outreach campaigns and start connecting with them directly through LinkedIn or start collecting their information for email outreach. When developing your strategic outreach strategy here are few tips to keep in mind:
1. Build relationships through connections. LinkedIn serves as a social networking platform for businesses, professionals, employees, and students to connect with one another and build professional relationships. Focus on building your network through connections and less on making a sale. In order to do this, you must get personal. There are plenty of people acting as salesmen but remember that people don’t want to be bothered with a hundred different sales messages in their inbox every week (we all receive them). Adding personalization to your messages, helps build trust and nurtures your prospective leads till they are ready to make a sale. Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there and extend your reach to other business owners and employees as this will only help expand your industry network, potential capabilities and partnerships. Take advantage of all the opportunities that LinkedIn offers to create connections and develop relationships that will ultimately help you grow your business.
2. Create your connection messages and automated follow-ups beforehand.Having set templates for all of your initial introductory messages and follow-ups can save you time so you’re not scrambling in the moment trying to create the perfect message. Make sure you build out your sequential workflows so you can target the right people and be more effective.
3. Start slow-remember generating leads on LinkedIn is a process and isn’t going to happen with one message. It might not even happen after 5. Start with sending up to 10 connection requests per day and regularly monitor your account. After 2 weeks or so, you can slowly start increasing the requests if you start seeing the results you want. Sending too many messages a day, could flag your account as spam and risk being disabled.
To sum it up, an effective LinkedIn marketing strategy requires both time and careful planning. The key to successful LinkedIn lead generation is keeping your company profile updated, developing a strategic and consistent content schedule, and utilizing Sales Navigator to target your ideal customers to make connections, build relationships and generate new leads.
As of today, LinkedIn is the most trusted social platform that is least saturated, making it easy to get your brand in front of specific and large groups of audiences. With more people spending more time online due to the current pandemic, LinkedIn will continue to grow and be used as an effective marketing, sales and networking tool. If done right, LinkedIn can become your number one lead generator, so it is important to take advantage of this platform in order to maximize your digital marketing strategy for 2021.