Category Archives: Social Selling

How LinkedIn can help sales teams

linkedin-sales-teamsI’m going to start this with a bit of a reality check … call me a wet blanket if you must … but I need to clarify something right from the start. LinkedIn is not going to sell for you. Sorry.

LinkedIn is also not going to remove the need for you to talk to clients and allow you to sit in the office clicking around their site all day and still make target. Sorry again.

What it can do, however, is fundamentally change the way that you identify, listen to, approach and engage with prospects in your market. In the right hands – in your hands – it can quite simply run rings around traditional research and preparation, allowing you to spend more time in front of the right people, with a greater chance they will be willing to listen and work with you.

A short example

A quick story of one small way it can help. A client, where I was running some LinkedIn workshops, reported an experience of one of their sales team. He was going to an exploratory meeting with 3 directors of a potential client – ahead of the meeting, he checked their profiles on LinkedIn, only to discover all three were connected to the owner of a company that was already a client of his.

To cut a long story short, (more…)

Article Categories: Business Development on LinkedIn, Sales Navigator, Social Selling
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Social Selling mini series: What is social selling really?

socialsellingSocial Selling … hhhmmm, it seems that you can hardly open a business magazine at the moment without someone mentioning this current buzzword of the sales fraternity. The trouble is there seems to be a bit of a difference of opinion as to what it’s all about … or perhaps put a different way, everyone seems to have their own opinion of what Social Selling really is and what it can offer.

At one end of the scale, it is the “holy grail” of business development which means you never have to talk to a prospect or customer again … the sales just fall into your lap! At the other end, it’s “pie in the sky rubbish” which will never deliver any real opportunities let alone concrete sales. The truth, as you might imagine, falls somewhere between these two extremes … exactly where will depend on your own outlook on the sales process and your perception of where the application of LinkedIn can add most value as a sales and business development tool.

And don’t think it doesn’t apply to you because you don’t sell … yes, YOU, you know who you are, shaking your head there. Let’s face it, who amongst us doesn’t have at least one foot (or one toe maybe, if you prefer) in the sales arena?

We all do really, much as we might hate to admit it. As Daniel Pink states (more…)

Article Categories: LinkedIn Search, LinkedIn Training, Social Selling
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Never have to cold call with LinkedIn … really?

Never have to cold call on LinkedIn I received a call last week from a lady who was interested in attending one of my public courses. She told me that she was interested in my LinkedIn for Business Success course because she had read on my website that that if she came on my course she would “never have to cold call again”.

I had to inform her that unfortunately she was mistaken as I knew I would never have written that on my website … you see, I hate the hyperbole that all too often gets written, overstating what LinkedIn can deliver.

“So, you’re telling me it isn’t true then?” she asked.

This was the moment when I had to ask myself if I should just stick my salesman’s hat on and go for it … or stick to my principles.

I stuck to my principles.

“No, it’s not true,” I replied. “At least not quite in the way you are looking for.”

It doesn’t feel good to deflate people’s expectations, particularly when they think that they have found the secret to automating their new business development without having to speak to people again. Or perhaps they think that the business can all be conducted on LinkedIn and they won’t need to move (more…)

Article Categories: Business Development on LinkedIn, Social Selling
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What is LinkedIn’s Social Selling Index & how to benefit from it

Social Selling Index SSIWe now have access to an online tool called the Social Selling Index which is designed to give a snapshot of where you are in using LinkedIn as part of your sales – your social sales – activities. The details are displayed on your own page with references to how you rank in comparison to others within the same industry and your perceived peer group.

It is also couched with a number of references to LinkedIn’s Sales Navigator account – this is one of the premium account levels and the stream which is designed to help the sales professional to prospect and develop more business using social channels, and LinkedIn in particular.

What is the Social Selling Index?

The Social Selling Index (SSI) was a metric that LinkedIn introduced for companies at the start of 2014 and then for individuals towards the end of last year, and was available just to those with the upgraded Sales Navigator account. As of this month, this has now been made available to all of LinkedIn’s members.

Your SSI is represented as a score out of 100 with 4 different key areas each marked out of a maximum of 25 – these areas represent and try to measure the four pillars of Social Selling according to LinkedIn (ones that I broadly agree with) which are: (more…)

Article Categories: Businesses using LinkedIn, LinkedIn Training, Social Selling
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