How to gain sales with a focused engagement strategy
Growing sales leads utilizing LinkedIn is more than inviting a lot of people to connect, followed by a promotional sales message. The top sales people using LinkedIn know long-term success is about mastering a LinkedIn engagement strategy.
Why Sales Messages Alone Don’t Work on LinkedIn
Most people don’t like to be sold to, we want to be courted first. You’ve all heard the dating analogy before about getting to know someone before asking for more, so think about how you approach people on LinkedIn because first impressions matter. Simply said, build warm relationships with people you want to stay top of mind with and nurture the relationships along.
LinkedIn as a networking tool is a goldmine in terms of meeting people, it also allows you to increase your visibility and your credibility simply by engaging with others on the platform. So, the bottom line, take time to build a network and not a database!
LinkedIn Rewards Those Who Engage Others
The key to success in gaining more exposure or visibility is being more active. LinkedIn’s goal is to keep people talking on their platform. What does that mean? It means engaging in discussions, not just hitting the thumbs up button under a post. I mean real conversations where you are engaging in a virtual dialogue with others on the platform.
You Can Train the LinkedIn Algorithm to Work for You
LinkedIn is a machine and works on data or machine learning. YES, you can influence the algorithm by your actions or teaching it what you want to see. For example,if you only see the same people in your newsfeed, it’s because it’s a combination of your actions and of course theirs. If you comment and ‘Like’ the same people’s posts over and over, you keep seeing the same people over and over.
First, let’s make sure you know how to navigate the home page or also referred to as the newsfeed.
Desktop and Mobile Function Differently
Below is an image of the Home or newsfeed viewing from desktop. You have the ability to sort what you want to see in the newsfeed from TOP posts which are what LinkedIn deems the most interesting I’m sure based on the person who posted, and the engagement level. When you click on RECENT you see what has been posted chronologically.
Home page newsfeed from mobile
When you click on the home tab within the LinkedIn mobile app, you do not have the ability to sort top and recent.
You can however, immediately start retraining LinkedIn to show you posts you want to see or post you want to hide.
By clicking the three dots in the upper right corner of any post you can take any of the following actions:
– Share the post
– Hide the post from your newsfeed
– Unfollow the person who made the post
– Report the post if it is offensive
– Improve your newsfeed – gives you options of following other influential people
Influence the Algorithm
If someone does write a post on a certain subject and you comment, then the algorithm starts learning what you want to comment on. If you don’t respond to posts, the algorithm will stop showing people’s posts. So, in terms of staying top of mind with specific people and companies, be sure you are commenting on a regular basis.
LinkedIn only shows you posts from people you follow or are connected to and it does not show information from all your connections, it seems to only be those people you engage with.
You can also influence the algorithm by viewing profiles and they view you back, it recognizes an interest factor from you.
Messaging and in-mail – if you don’t reply,your lack of actions can also affect the algorithm.
1. Find content that is worth getting in the conversation
2. Search key words in search bar, click on content from top bar – important topics that your prospects are interested in. You will find posts and articles, look for ways to get into a conversation. Don’t be afraid to start a conversation, but also
Search hashtags, #marketing – gives you a content result. But many people don’t use hashtags in their posts so it eliminates a lot of posts
Start to ‘Follow’ people who you join in conversation with, this way when they post, their content shows up in your newsfeed
Clean up your newsfeed: unfollow people’s content who you don’t want to see anymore. Anytime you unfollow, the algorithm is being trained by your actions and what you don’t want to see and what you do want to see.
You are in control to either hide the post or unfollow the person if you no longer want this type of content in your home page. Simply click the three dots on the upper right corner to pull down the menu of options.
3. Post your own content on interesting topics and ask questions which engages people in conversation. It’s not enough to drop an article headline with a link. Ask yourself, what’s the key idea of the article and why should others read it – that should be what you want to share.
4. If you want the ‘right’ people to see your posts, you can @mention people – they may be notified dependent on how active someone is. Don’t rely on everyone getting notified.
Mix up your content posting text-only questions or commentary, images with relevant quotes, photos relevant to what you want others to know, videos are hot and is such a great way to teach and inspire. Posting a blog post has lost some exposure from LinkedIn’s algorithm as they don’t reward links taking people off the site. With that said, just know you won’t get as much exposure but you may get it in front of the right people if you have cleaned up your newsfeed. In addition, you can message a link to your article directly to a connection.
Pay Attention to Your Profile Insights
If your LinkedIn profile has been optimized for the right keywords your search appearances will provide insights as to who is searching for you along with what they are searching for.
You can be successful in gaining more customers utilizing LinkedIn when you become more engaged with your network. The success is dependent on your own actions as illustrated in this article. Be sure you are focused on asking what do my ideal customers need, what are they most interested in and that is what you engage with.
Learn how to develop an effective content strategy with JoAnne Funch, Linked In For Business.