LinkedIn’s Sales Navigator Assists Social Selling
LinkedIn introduced Sales Navigator in San Francisco this week. Sales Navigator is a Premium subscription designed to help corporate salespeople identify and connect with decision makers. It makes perfect sense. LinkedIn has always been a powerful sales prospecting tool for two reasons:
1. LinkedIn is a Killer Database:LinkedIn has 150+ Million names with fresh, user-supplied details. Its Advanced People Search allows salespeople to easily find members that match an ideal customer profile.
2. LinkedIn is Social: The social networking aspect of LinkedIn offers the possibility of discovering a mutual contact to provide an introduction, thereby increasing the chances of making that all-important initial connection.
Many people are surprised to learn that Sales Navigator is one of twelve Premium subscriptions available from LinkedIn. There are three levels (think Good, Better, Best) of four user categories (Salesperson, General Business, Recruiter, and Job Seeker). Sales Navigator is the middle of the Sales category.
Following are six key selling features that Sales Navigator delivers that are not available with the free version of LinkedIn.
- Team Link – A study1 by LinkedIn shows that only 53% of sales professionals have leveraged their coworkers to facilitate introductions to new opportunities. Team Link takes social connectivity beyond the individual user’s Connections to show who in their company is connected with their target prospect, thereby increasing the odds of receiving a warm introduction through the coworker.
- Lead Builder – Lead Builder helps users build a target list of contacts based on criteria such as seniority, title, function, and industry. LinkedIn prioritizes that list by the number of people you know at that company. It is powerful social intelligence applied to the prospecting contact list.
- InMail – Sales Navigator includes LinkedIn InMail, the powerful contact tool that lets users send messages to decision makers even if they’re not in their network. According to a CSO Insights study, on average 8 InMails can generate 1 new sales opportunity.2
- Profile Organizer – Profile Organizer comes with all LinkedIn Premium subscriptions. Users can save and organize profiles, add notes, and track their messages. It is like a mini-CRM and is a great way to “park” profiles of prospects without connecting to them.
- Premium Filters – All Premium subscriptions include these additional fields for the Advanced People Search: Function, Seniority Level, Interested In, Fortune 1000, and my favorite – Company Size (employee count).
- Who’s Viewed Your Profile – This feature helps users understand who’s been looking at their profile recently and how many times they have shown up in search results. It is like a website analysis report for your LinkedIn Profile. I regularly reach out to prospects that have viewed my Profile.
Sales Navigator is new but early results look promising. In a recent survey2 by the sales research firm CSO Insights, 81% of Sales Navigator users said it improved their ability to identify key decision makers. 70% said it would increase their ability to achieve sales goals.
To see a demo of Sales Navigator, register for the May 2 webinar or, if reading this after May 2, catch the recording. Find both at www.thesalesfoundry.com.
- LinkedIn Charter Customer Survey, November 2011
- CSO Insights, “Results of LinkedIn for Salesforce.com Research,” March 2012 http://www.csoinsights.com/