A successful LinkedIn sales strategy is a process, not a project

Make your LinkedIn sales strategy a process, not a project

  • By Jeff Molander

linkedin sales strategy

Time to read: 2.5 minutes. There’s a lot of mis-information online about HOW an effective LinkedIn sales strategy works. Mis-guided LinkedIn gurus claim success depends on a good looking, complete profile and posting frequent blog updates in Groups and company pages. But that’s just busy work. Successful social sellers use a process. Here is that process, step-by-step, so you can create a LinkedIn sales strategy or LinkedIn content strategy that works.

The process in a nutshell

Here is the process. Be advised, you’ve probably not heard of this LinkedIn content strategy before!

  1. Increase customers’ success rates
    (solve vexing problems, answer burning questions to prove your worth engaging with)
  2. Create irresistible curiosity
    (give customers reason to crave more solutions, answers; make them hungry for more discussion with you)
  3. Invite customers to decline your offer
    (get more response by affirming prospects’ right to say ‘no thanks’)

If you’d like to skip the details of each step below take my free LinkedIn training and get started on learning the process now.

Step #1: Increase customers’ success rates

Struggling to get response and leads on LinkedIn? You’re probably focusing on the message—rather than structuring your words to:

  1. increase the success rate of prospects and
  2. trigger response.

Ask yourself, “am I publishing content on LinkedIn to look like an expert thought leader, gain attention and influence prospects?”

Of so, it’s ok. I did too. Mostly because “the experts” have told us these are the goals. But they’re not. Being seen as a thought leader is the reward—not the foundation of a LinkedIn sales strategy.

Successful social sellers have a different goal for content they’re placing on LinkedIn. They don’t see content as a project. They see it as a process.

Successful sellers publish content on LinkedIn to prove themselves. So be sure you place blogs, videos, white papers, ebooks, tips-and-tricks and other shortcuts on LinkedIn in ways that increase the success rate of customers in exchange for a lead.

This better way-of-thinking will help you structure everything you publish to solve problems, give-away samples of unique experiences and (in return) get more response and capture more leads.

Here’s what I mean. Start applying the content you’re placing on LinkedIn in ways that ‘move the needle’ for prospects—in ways that prove to prospects you’re worth responding to. This is how to effectively use LinkedIn Groups for lead generation.

Step #2: Create irresistible curiosity

Getting responded to is as easy as creating a craving for more of something you know customers are already hungry for.

Here’s what I mean…

  1. Can you solve a problem?
  2. Can you give buyers a life-altering experience or bring them closer to reaching a goal?
  3. Can you steer them clear of a risk they’re taking but don’t even know about?

Don’t think only in terms of what you’re selling—consider ANYTHING your prospects need help with.

Think of one thing right now.

  • A skill you could teach them;
  • a hidden risk they should avoid;
  • a way to avoid getting ripped-off by someone selling your same product
  • a short-cut or a better way to get what they want.

Jot it down right now. Now, picture yourself on LinkedIn letting a prospect know you’ve got a sample of it waiting for them.

All they need to do is get hungry enough for it to respond. So, politely tease them a little. Dangle a carrot. Tell them you have what I call a “knowledge nugget.” A bit of content that fulfills the curiosity you just built up.

These “knowledge nuggets” are video tutorials, ebooks, checklists … content. This is what’s at the heart of an effective LinkedIn content strategy.

Let’s say you’re writing your Profile, an email (or InMail) message or publishing comments in a LinkedIn Group.  The object is to encourage prospects to think, “I wonder what, exactly, he/she means by that … this sounds really important for me to fully understand.” Or, “How can I get access to more of that kind of enlightened thinking!”

Of course, you’ve got to credible too, not just provocative. You’ve got to be respectable yet mysterious.

So say just enough about your remedy to provoke curiosity in your prospect. Success is driven less by what you have to say and more about how and when you say it (to provoke response using hunger, curiosity).

Step 3: Make a call-to-action that affirms choice

The last step of your LinkedIn sales strategy involves making simple calls-to-action. This gives your prospects a place to put all that pent up hunger for your “knowledge nugget.” Plus, you can increase conversion-to-leads rate by making the offer at the right time, in the right tone.

As you continue to reveal more-and-more there will come a point where it feels natural to offer prospects a short-cut. Timing is crucial. It takes practice. This “natural point” will give prospects access to a bunch of the answers they are now craving. All in one place—one tutorial, ebook, “Crash Course in ____” or “Ultimate Guide to ____.”

This is where you link to an elegant, focused opt-in lead form page on your website. I recommend doing this once and absolutely no more than twice within a given LinkedIn Group discussion. But on your profile there are numerous places where you can be very direct. For example, notice how I use the Publication section of my profile to provoke sign-ups to my paid and free products.

(bye the way, if you’d like to get started making your Profile exploit this kind of technique check out my LinkedIn Sales Training course!)

WARNING: Don’t be crass in Groups, but do be direct. You’ve worked hard to get here. All that is needed is a clear, text-based call to action that is:

  • casual in tone (are not pushy) and suggestive (“this might help you if you are serious about _____”)
  • in context with how the discussion is flowing
  • promises free, step-by-step instructions, a way to learn a new skill, avoid a risk, make a decision etc.

Want to get started learning how to do these 3 steps? Take my free LinkedIn training and get started on learning the process now. I’ll also send you quick InMail prospecting tips, LinkedIn content strategy tips and more.

Bonus tip: Invite “the no”

Here’s a trick I find to be very effective: Tell prospects that the decision is theirs when making your call-to-action.

Present the call-to-action confidently. Let prospects know you’re doing this because it will help them … BUT … be sure to reaffirm your prospects’ freedom to choose.

Doing this indirectly says to them: “I am not threatening your right to say no. You have free choice.”

Want exceptional lead generation results from LinkedIn? Turn your project into a process. That’s the only way to build an effective LinkedIn sales strategy or LinkedIn content strategy.

Most sales people experience ordinary results (lousy) on LinkedIn because they don’t know about an exceptional approach. This one. Let me know how it works for you!

Photo credit: Alibut.

About Jeff Molander

Jeff Molander is the authority on starting conversations with busy people. As founder of Communications Edge Inc. he teaches a proven, effective communications technique to spark buyers curiosity in sales outreach & marketing messages. He's a sought-after sales communications trainer to individual reps, teams of sellers and small businesses owners across the globe. He's an accomplished entrepreneur, having co-founded the Google Affiliate Network and what is today the Performics division of Publicis Groupe.Jeff served as adjunct digital marketing faculty at Loyola University’s school of business. His book, Off The Hook Marketing: How to Make Social Media Sell for You, is first to offer businesses a clear, practical way to create leads and sales with technology platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube and blogs.

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