LinkedIn: A Goldmine for Prospecting
Now that you know how to build a LinkedIn profile that positions you as a hero (aka Trusted Advisor rather than commoditized transactional salesperson), it’s time to develop your LinkedIn prospecting process.
Many agents and brokers treat LinkedIn like a networking event - walking up to everyone they see and instantly selling their products and services. After all, they know that LinkedIn is the #1 go-to channel to distribute content, network, and generate leads. But guess what? This does not work!
Let’s look at an example of the wrong approach:
Marie: Hi, Prospect Name. I see you are in the same industry I specialize in. Would love to connect!
Next day, Marie: Hi, Prospect Name. I’m reaching out to you because I thought you’d be a good fit for my products/services.
Later, Prospect: No, thank you.
Next day, Marie: If I may ask, what is your reason for refusing to talk with me?
Prospect, annoyed: Remove me from your prospecting list.
What went wrong?
Marie failed to understand that building a relationship is what matters – and that’s where most people mess up. Like prospecting for gold, this takes time.
Marie used her same, old, spammy outreach template in her connection request and follow-up. And she started selling to her prospect in the very first follow-up message.
A better approach would be:
- Genuine – read about your prospect before asking to connect. Show that you care.
- Personalized beyond a name – bring up something personal and meaningful that you appreciate about them, e.g., information you read in their latest LinkedIn post or article.
- Valuable – share a free piece of content or relevant industry trends that is actually helpful to them. Make it easy – don’t make them jump through opt-in hoops to get it.
Build a Relationship before Reaching Out
While you are looking for prospects, it’s important to relate to your target audience by creating content. This establishes you as an authority expert in your niche.
Why? Because the first thing people do when they receive a LinkedIn connection request from someone they don’t know is to check the profile and look for reasons to connect.
To avoid this trap, you can:
- Post your own content
- Share relevant industry trends and content
- Post videos and presentations
- Join and get involved in LinkedIn groups.
Then when you find a prospect, use the following as conversation starters:
- Which LinkedIn influencers they follow
- Which LinkedIn groups they’re active in
- What kind of content they create and engage with
- What their pain points and goals are, and what benefits they are looking for
Bottom line, people are tired of being targeted with the same old, salesy outreach templates. Try to connect with people you have mutual connections or shared interests with. Then send them personalized, custom, and engaging private messages that don’t sound like sales spam.
By using these best practices in your prospecting and outreach, you will be well on your way to generating high-quality leads from your own LinkedIn goldmine.