Is LinkedIn Becoming the New ‘Cold Email?’
I recently was speaking with a connection of mine about his LinkedIn pain points. This connection is a sales professional and one of his major roadblocks is connecting with decision makers via LinkedIn. He has had very little success with ‘cold’ InMails and also has received feedback that these prospects don’t ‘like being ‘pitched’ on LinkedIn.’ A few years ago, an InMail was a far more effective means of communication as the InMail to email ratio was extremely low (meaning the amount of InMails you received compared to emails was far less and prospects would be more likely to respond.)
Well for better or for worse, the business world has finally caught on to the powers of LinkedIn and the competition and saturation is higher than ever.
You could almost say that LinkedIn messaging is becoming the reviled ‘cold email 2.0’ Yes you know – the red headed step child – the finger/brain wasting jargon you dump onto the screen and send into a deep dark hole, never to be seen again…
So is it all hopeless…?
Well that depends on your outlook. LinkedIn is like a fishing rod; a tool that can potentially provide food for life, but without knowing how to fish (and having some bait) you will more than likely starve in days. (Apologies for the rather grim metaphor 😉
But joking aside, LinkedIn is the MOST powerful tool in your social selling toolbox – it’s a wonderful and powerful prospecting and connecting engine that used appropriately will keep food on your table for years to come.
So what do we do now…?
We’ve got to start looking at LinkedIn as the ‘long con.’ The face of selling has changed dramatically – buyers are savvier, more informed and more knowledgeable than ever and simply ‘pitching’ is a waste for both parties. It may take longer to connect, but the prospect will be toasty warm by the time you do.
The primary strategy is to get in their ear – be the bug – get on their radar and prove to them that YOU are the one who can provide value, insight and education – that YOU are doing things differently and can be that change.
A properly optimized profile should be your first step (you can read up how to do so my clicking this link –
Attracting prospects by coaxing them in, instead of shoving them in, can be accomplished by a profile that speaks directly to your buyer – essentially acting as your personal sales page. And then it’s all about adding value – join groups, start your own group, like, share, comment and BE ACTIVE. Write LinkedIn posts, create content – quotes, infographics, blogs (and always keep your prospects in mind when you do.)
This also doesn’t end with LinkedIn, there’s Twitter (the 2nd best B2B tool next to LinkedIn,) Facebook and Google+, among other channels.
Sales Professionals have to be both savvy sellers and their own marketing machine. If you can develop a daily ritual – you’ll see an increase in warm introductions and increased sales.
In short, the possibilities are greater than ever, provided we can change our tune. The social channels available are an information pushing delivery system in real time, therefore the opportunities are vast and plentiful.
Social Selling is the number one way to generate business in 2016 and understanding how to implement a program is both vital and crucial for onward success.