Perfecting a traditional sale is an art that mixes emotional intelligence with the ability to paint vivid pictures in the minds of customers. The days of cold calling, direct email, and door-to-door sales are creeping to a close thanks to the technological advances that the Internet provides. I want to welcome you to the world of social selling and teach you how to close deals on LinkedIn. This is part one of 6 of a social selling guide that provides down to earth advice on succeeding on LinkedIn.
I will provide real world examples along the way allowing you to implement the following strategies on LinkedIn.
- Establish Your Professional Brand
- Find The Right People
- Engage With Insights
- Build Relationships
- Social Selling Strategies
- Social Selling Sales Acceleration Techniques
All right so let’s get started with part one.
7 Ways To Establish Your Professional Brand On LinkedIn
We all know by now LinkedIn is a social network for business professionals but what many of us fail to use LinkedIn effectively to network and close deals. As sales professionals our first impression is everything.
I’m going to show you how to optimize your LinkedIn profile to cater to your target customer and stand out from competitors with these 7 professional brand strategies to succeed on LinkedIn.
Put Keywords In Profile
What do Google and LinkedIn have in common? They both are large search engines. A search engine according to Wikipedia is
A program that searches for and identifies items in a database that correspond to keywords or characters specified by the user, used especially for finding particular sites on the World Wide Web.
LinkedIn is a database of business professionals and you need to include keywords (a word or phrase that’s used to search and retrieve information in a database. In this case LinkedIn) throughout your profile to get you found by potential customers.
In LinkedIn people can perform searches to find business professionals. In order to get found you must have the words in your profile. Let’s say I’m a real estate investor looking to find owners of small and medium size commercial real estate companies in the Washington, D.C. area. Your search would look like this.
LinkedIn gave us 12 results for commercial real estate owners that are my 2nd connection (we have a mutual friend). The word Owner is bold because it’s the keyword. As you see if customers are searching by job titles or industry and you don’t have the keywords in your profile you won’t show up.
So you may be asking where should you put the keywords. It should go throughout your website so that the text is still logical. On my profile the keyword is “digital marketing” because I’m looking for clients who need marketing services.
Crete A Compelling Headline
Consider taking time to determine what your unique value proposition is. Your business has something that makes it stand out from competitors. Here’s a great example of a digital marketer that chose to focus on Facebook marketing which is a specific niche and cater to the specific audience of app developers with his messaging.
Once you determine your brands voice then create a compelling headline like Dave Rogenmoser. His headline is intriguing and leaves readers with a question that requires an action on their part.
Include A Call To Action In Your Summary
Your summary is directly below your headline and header. Within your summary you want to focus on building up your credibility and providing value by showcasing an offer with a call to action (CTA). A CTA is where you ask others to take a specific action. Some common CTA’s include “contact me and download now”. In my header I focus on giving a free limited time offer that’s only for my LinkedIn connections.
It has proven to be very effective and has even led to some sales, which didn’t require prospecting. People simply connect with me and message me. I will warn you that your offer must be enticing enough to be worth someone’s attention.
Here’s a recent message I received (Later in this blog post I will share how you or your marketing department can develop an enticing offer that your LinkedIn connections will love) without any marketing or prospecting on my part.
Ask For Recommendations
When selling you always want to have someone boost you up to increase your credibility. On LinkedIn recommendations are how you build your credibility. You can simply ask past clients that are active on LinkedIn for recommendations.
Joe Pacheco of Pipeliner CRM is a great example of a LinkedIn profile that’s optimized with tons of recommendations… eleven to be exact. It also helps your credibility when recommendations are from employees at well know organizations.
Develop A Lead Magnet
Now that we have gone over some core steps to optimize your LinkedIn profile to present the best representation of your personal brand possible the last strategy is all about setting your personal brand apart from others with a compelling offer to go with the CTA in your summary.
A lead magnet is an offer that compels potential customer to act and give you their contact details.
I recommend creating a 5-10 page PDF around one of your customer’s pain points that you can easily solve. By showing you can provide value in a brief amount of time you will remain at the top of your prospects minds, now you can easily follow up to schedule an introductory call. No need to have a cold call anymore! Your only focusing on building relationships and talking to prospects that express interest in your services or product (consumed your lead magnet) after already providing value.
You can have your marketing team develop the eBook or choose an eBook template from Creative Market, write your content, and have it put together on Fiverr. This would cost less than $50 in total and would be a long-term asset to accelerate your sales process.
Now take the time to implement the following steps. Knowledge without action is worthless. Give yourself a deadline and find a way to keep your self-accountable. Next I will be covering how to utilize the LinkedIn automation tool and find prospects on LinkedIn using secret advance search techniques that I have discovered through my own trial and error.
If you feel you can’t wait and want to learn how to do prospecting on LinkedIn then here’s a webinar by my friend Josh Turner that gives you a one-hour training on optimizing your LinkedIn profile.