What if you had the biggest chance to generate leads and you completely blew it?
Sales professionals are always looking for more leads. And when done right, LinkedIn may be the single best way to generate those leads.
Unfortunately, too many salespeople go into this without the right LinkedIn lead generation strategies. At best, this wastes your time and money. At worst, it may actually be driving people away rather than generating the leads you need.
To help you use LinkedIn the right way, we put together this comprehensive guide. Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about getting started!
Why You Need LinkedIn Lead Generation Strategies
Our guide is all about doing a deep dive into the best LinkedIn lead generation strategies you need to start using (beyond simply taking out ads). But why are these strategies so important in the first place?
It’s because LinkedIn is more than just your online presence. For many potential leads, LinkedIn will be the first way that they interact with you or your company. And as with any other company interaction, making a good first impression is of absolute importance.
And this is where LinkedIn becomes a real double-edged sword. The platform offers many different ways for you to reach people and generate the leads that you need to generate. But that means LinkedIn is complex and has many moving parts, so it’s very easy to either overlook some features you could be using or to end up not making the best use out of some of the best features.
On top of that, other guides about how to generate leads usually offer generic advice. Countless “guides” out there simply tell you to spruce up your profile picture or work on better understanding your audience. But this advice is generic and shallow, and it doesn’t really move the needle on proper lead generation.
That’s where we come in. Below, our guide will dive into the best ways for you to start generating leads on LinkedIn. As an added bonus, we’re also going to review some of the link generation mistakes you need to avoid.
Rework Your Company Page
What do you think about when you think about LinkedIn lead generation strategies? Most people think about posting different kinds of content and networking with different groups and people. While these are effective strategies, and we’ll be taking a closer look at both of them, you need to start with something a bit more fundamental: your company page.
When done right, your LinkedIn company page is an inbound generation strategy of its very own. That’s because countless prospective leads are going to click on your profile over the years. This will be their first point of contact with you, and it will either increase or decrease their interest.
Before you even focus on the rest of your content, you need to choose a dynamic and engaging header image. Some users and companies prefer to use a really catchy tagline to grab a lead’s attention. Others lead with an eye-catching image that is sure to turn heads.
Next, it’s time to give your description a much-needed renovation. Most organizations fill this with info about the company history, like when they first started and how big the company is. There is just one problem: that’s not the kind of thing that persuades a prospective lead that you can solve their current problems.
Instead, you need to work backward from leads’ prospective pain points. Think about what they are struggling with and use the description to emphasize specific ways that you can solve problems. It wouldn’t hurt to add a number, such as how many customers you have helped over the years or how many different services you offer.
In addition, it’s important to provide regular updates on this page. We’re going to look more at your content later in this guide, but for now, just know that regular updates help to keep prospective leads engaged.
Finally, consider making a showcase page on LinkedIn. Use the larger showcase space to create a bigger and even more eye-catching header image. Keep the page name both short and relatable, and make sure all content on this page is optimized for converting leads.
The Right Content At The Right Time
Speaking of content, it should be at the heart of any lead generation strategy on LinkedIn and beyond. The right content helps to establish you as an expert that leads can trust. But the wrong content is likely to send them running into the arms of your competition.
First, let’s talk about how often you should publish content. Public too little and prospective leads may never discover your services. But publish too much and it may drive leads away because they feel smothered by your content.
The “sweet spot” usually involves publishing content twice a week. This content should cater to the needs and pain points of your key demographic. And to make the most of your content, consider using LinkedIn Pulse.
Pulse posts help your content reach beyond your immediate LinkedIn circle. And these posts are also visible via Google searches, meaning that using the right keywords can bring people in from outside the LinkedIn platform. And Pulse also offers you some pretty sophisticated ways to target audiences that are likelier to enjoy your content.
How else can you make your content effective? First, consider when people are likely to be up and searching for solutions. You may get a great idea for the perfect post at 2:00 AM, but if you post it that early in the morning, the ones who need to see the post may sleep right through it.
Next, remember that “content” includes more than long articles. Participating in conversations and other LinkedIn activities is just one more way you ensure that others discover your brand. But be on your best behavior: it’s easy to drive people away with the wrong online interactions.
Finally, don’t ignore the kinds of SEO practices that you use on both your website and social media. That means using the right keywords and hashtags to get leads’ attention.
Networking Done Right
Previously, we discussed the need for you to get involved in conversations and other online activities to grow your leads. This is all part of your LinkedIn networking efforts. And as with any other lead-generation strategy, it’s important to get everything “just right” with your networking efforts.
Start by finding groups and other online communities within your business niche. This doesn’t necessarily mean sales-centric groups (though that can be useful, too). Instead, try to join some of the very same digital communities that your leads are likely to be part of.
Take the time to review any rules the community has and take some time to learn the lay of the land. After that, try to get involved in some of the spirited online discussions. And don’t be afraid to make your own posts.
Keep in mind that your main goals here include building relationships (especially with prospective leads) and demonstrating your expertise. By the time someone in the group decides they need your services, it will be in large part because they feel they know you and can trust you.
While you are likely very busy, we recommend checking in and engaging with your different groups at least once a day. It’s good to do this during either business hours or the early evening: once again, posting things way too late or way too early is a great way to make sure very few people see it.
Finally, and this probably goes without saying, but remember that your goal in these online interactions is not to “win” some kind of debate or argument. You are trying to create a positive impression. At the end of the day, you will always be your own biggest brand ambassador, and it’s important to treat every interaction accordingly.
Use Automation Tools
Towards the beginning of our guide, we discussed how LinkedIn was a double-edged sword for generating leads. On one hand, there are so many different ways it can help you generate leads that it would be irresponsible to not use it. At the same time, it can be difficult to master these complex options. And even after you master them, many aspects of LinkedIn lead generation are way too time-consuming for you to do one at a time.
The solution is to make things simpler even while you save yourself time. And to do that, you need to invest in the right LinkedIn automation tool.
What can the right tool do for you? First, it lets you automate things like LinkedIn invites, which can potentially save you many hours each day. Second, it helps you automate things like your LinkedIn mail messages (since these have an open rate of 31%, it is worth your time to automate them as much as you can).
Third, and finally, there are so many customization options that make automation perfect for generating leads. This includes sending custom follow-up messages, sending personalized messages to prospects, and even managing your inbox.
Every sales professional eventually learns that no phrase is truer than “time is money.” And the single best thing you can do to get more leads via LinkedIn is to automate as much as you can, saving hours that you can spend focusing on growing your business.
LinkedIn “Strategies” To Avoid
That finishes up our list of LinkedIn strategies to help you generate leads. Now, we wanted to focus briefly on something else: some of the “strategies” that are likelier to sink your business than help it grow.
One example of this is having either no CTA or a CTA that isn’t very clear. Some sales professionals are hesitant to emphasize the CTA because it disrupts their relationship-building efforts with prospective leads. But once you have nurtured that relationship long enough, it’s important to have a clear CTA that tells leads exactly what you want them to do.
Speaking of nurturing leads, it’s important to follow up on your LinkedIn interactions, including replying to messages leads send you in a timely manner. Some sales pros worry about sending a reply at the wrong time or about sending the wrong message and driving a lead away. But with reliable automation tools, you can craft the perfect follow-up messages and have them sent to prospects as soon as they contact you.
Another rookie mistake is not investing the time and money into some of LinkedIn’s other features, including signing up for LinkedIn Premium and using tools such as the Sales Navigator. It’s easy to focus on saving money, so you may worry about paying for something like LinkedIn Premium (especially if you are a small business or a startup). However, LinkedIn Premium offers additional ways to generate leads, and by doing so, it can more than pay for itself.
The final thing you need to avoid, ironically enough, is selling yourself too aggressively. Sure, you may be a sales professional, and you may be using LinkedIn to ultimately make more sales. But if you focus too much on this, especially when interacting with leads online, they may turn you away the same way they’d walk away from an annoying salesman in real life.
Remember: to everything a time and place. Try to focus more on nurturing relationships and generating useful and relevant content. You will ultimately generate more leads by demonstrating your value in this way than simply jumping right to the hard sell.
Find the Right Automation Tool Today
Now you know the best LinkedIn lead generation strategies, including the importance of automation. But do you know where you can find the best automation tool?
Here at Salesflow, we specialize in helping you generate more leads on LinkedIn with our automation tool. To discover how we can take your lead game to the next level, come request a demo today!