I recently sold my SaaS company and we got about half of our clients via LinkedIn. This is not a pitch about using a LinkedIn automation service or hiring someone to send templated messages.
I'll provide you with some tips and tactics on how you can use LinkedIn to your benefit to book meetings, drive traffic to your website, and get clients.
Like most things, the more work you put into it, the better results you'll see.
You may know some of this, some things you may not know are about gaming LinkedIn's algorithm, LinkedIn Pods and how to leverage the Reciprocity Principle.
It's a pain in the ass to post on a regular basis but it's key to building a following. This is hard, I struggled with it for a variety of reasons. Knowing what I know now, I would have dedicated more time to LinkedIn instead of testing other channels because our buyer persona is active on LinkedIn. And I would have created a content calendar and not thought too much about what I posted to ensure I was active most days.
This is the hardest part but even if you're not posting 5 days a week, you can still get leads and clients.
Here's a list of 31 post ideas: https://revpilots.com/31-great-linkedin-post-ideas-to-improve-engagement-with-examples/
Build a personal brand on LinkedIn. It's not complicated. Post about whatever your niche is and what you know well. You should be an expert on something, let the world know. Give away your expertise. And remember, even the basic stuff you know has value.
The 101 knowledge may have wider appeal than the more 401 stuff. Don't overestimate your prospects.
Nobody cares about your business. They care about themselves and only themselves. Once you realize that the person on the other end is self-centered when it comes to sales interactions, and rightfully so, this will help you approach things so you benefit them and rejection will sting less.
Never connect with someone and immediately pitch them. Ever. It’s not effective and it shows you only care about yourself.
LinkedIn cares about "dwell time" on posts in the feed. The longer people spend reading your posts, the more they'll get promoted by LinkedIn. This means writing a post with a hook before the "see more..." button to get people to click "see more..", write the post so it's spaced out line by line, some call this "broetry" but it works, and longer posts usually perform better.
Also, if it makes sense, ask a question or have a CTA at the end of the post to drive engagement. Limit the number of links, max of two links, none is ideal. LinkedIn wants people to stay on LinkedIn, add a link in the comments after you post or edit the post after it's posted and include a link in the body. Limit hashtags to 3-5, I prefer to select hashtags with large followings that my buyer persona would follow.
Posts that you "share" do not perform well so post the original. Video doesn't perform as well as text posts in my experience. Respond to comments and like the comments.
Make your profile a landing page more than a resume. Leverage the featured section with your two best items, ideally short demo videos. Your headline should not be your job title, a formula you can use is I help X with Y by Z, with z being what differentiates you. Get a decent profile pic. Most B2B buyers will check out your profile before buying.
Do giveaways related to your expertise or offering. We built a search engine designed for b2b salespeople. What we did was post on LinkedIn an offer for "free research reports" (using our own product) then our buyer persona would message us asking for a free research report. This was a worthwhile giveaway because we gave away something people would pay for. After we sent the report, they would ask us how we did it, if they could get a demo, sign up, refer us to a decision maker, or simply thank us. Some of the people who thanked us ended up becoming unofficial ambassadors, tagging us in posts and recommending us to other customers. What's something you can give away that's related to a problem you solve?
You will post text statuses that do well. You can turn those into mini guides and use them as giveaways in the future. This can also be turned into blog posts, tweets, etc. And you can re-use LinkedIn posts. In fact, two statuses I posted turned into blog posts which ended up ranking in the top 3 on Google.
www.canva.com is your friend.
You can make a guide that people will value in 5-10 minutes. Do not spend a ton of time making it. The content is more important than the design. The design will be good enough.
I prefer not to write messages when adding people because most people will accept based on your profile, not your message. If you can write a quality, personalized message, go for it. The ROI is not there, in my experience. Add people on a regular basis who fit your buyer persona.
Additionally, write thoughtful comments on posts by people in your industry who have high engagement. You can also "follow" people and engage with their content. This is a good way to build a genuine connection. Add people who engage with your posts.
Despite what they may say, a lot of the "thought leaders" used LinkedIn pods early on to build a following. They did post consistently but they helped each other out or used random pods. To this day, people who get ridiculous engagement are liking and commenting on each other's posts. You can post your status in a few groups/slack chats that are relevant to your space. They often have channels for this.
I wont name names but there are people now who get hundreds, sometimes thousands of likes because they got started this way. Lame content does well. The guy who interviewed the homeless, drug addict who didn't shake their hand during the interview but is now the CEO gets a lot of likes and comments, probably tens of thousands of views. That's good for exposure but not necessarily for your business. Highly engaged niche audiences are more valuable.
The feed is filled with shitty posts and inboxes that are filled with pitch after pitch. NEVER pitch someone after you connect. It's a terrible way to do business. If you want to message someone, personalize it (you'll stand out) or provide them something of value without asking for anything. Play the long term game.
https://business.linkedin.com/sales-solutions/sales-navigator - LinkedIn Sales Navigator is worth it for the search functionality. The LSN messages are worth close to zero. They just don't convert. So I wouldn't recommend buying it if you wanted to send more messages.
Make your profile public so you get a touch point when you view someone's profile. There are tools to automate viewing of profiles that violate linkedin's ToS but can be worth it to drive views back to your profile. People will be curious about who is "StartupSales" when they see I viewed their profile, view my profile, view my featured items, go to my website. LinkedIn was the #1 referral source for our website, btw.
Anyway, that's a lot to take in for a post. Happy to answer any questions and if you sell anything in the B2B space and want to get started using LinkedIn, get started! It's a great platform when used properly. But still a cringefest.