Time-tested LinkedIn Prospecting Techniques to Land Clients

Time-tested LinkedIn Prospecting Techniques to Land Clients

Have you ever considered LinkedIn as a lead generation tool, to find and attract more prospects and clients?

Or perhaps you have little problem in connecting with new prospects, but you struggle with moving your connection to a sales conversation?

To generate more leads and prospects on LinkedIn, you need to move a person from being an unknown connection to someone who trusts you and is prepared to have an offline conversation with you.

Over the years I have developed a LinkedIn lead generation (social selling) framework called The LINK Method™, which helps business owners, professionals service providers, marketers and sales reps to move from merely collecting connections online, to building relationships and moving them offline.

In this method, which I share in my #1 international bestselling book, LinkedIn Unlocked, in my online course and during my live  LinkedIn Implementation Labs, I employ many of the fundamental concepts shared by Dr. Robert Cialdini from his proven system, Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion. The six steps he shares in his book include:

  1. Reciprocity
  2. Authority
  3. Scarcity
  4. Liking
  5. Consistency
  6. Social Proof

Because these six steps to persuasion are so vital for LinkedIn prospecting, I am going to break each one down for you in detail.

Use LinkedIn for Prospecting to Land More Clients

Before we dive into my breakdown of how to use LinkedIn for prospecting, you might find it helpful to listen to Dr. Robert Cialdini explain these techniques in his own words:

1. Scarcity

Scarcity provides that same satisfaction that you get after you’ve acquired something that had not otherwise been acquirable. It’s similar to the prestige that makes the title “Limited Edition” such an attractive statement when attached to a product.

Many online deals, including online courses or trainings, are notorious for getting the impulse buy through showing you the short amount of time you have left to purchase the “deal” (think the countdown clocks). I catch myself still falling for that old trick, even with deals that I have seen go up multiple times, solely for fear of missing out (FOMO).

Time-tested LinkedIn Prospecting Techniques to Land Clients

Implement these LinkedIn Prospecting Tips

You can implement this LinkedIn prospecting technique by incorporating any exclusive or limited time resources or content that you are offering, such as free checklists, quizzes, reports, webinars, white papers, demos or other helpful content, in your LinkedIn lead generation messages.

Additionally, while I have shared many reasons why being a LION (LinkedIn Open Networker) is NOT in your best interest, this is just one more. People like the idea of being part of your hand-picked, exclusive network, rather than someone who will connect with just anyone.

2. Reciprocity

Anyone who knows me knows that I am a firm believer in the Law of Reciprocity. Nothing makes a stronger and more genuine impression on someone than when you give selflessly, generously and (most importantly) without the expectation of receiving anything in return. However what you give more often than not comes back to you.

It’s not just about helping people but also giving them a reason to feel good about helping you.

Time-tested LinkedIn Prospecting Techniques to Land Clients

Implement these LinkedIn Prospecting Tips

People will feel more obliged to accept your connection request, reply to your message, refer you, or move the conversation offline if you have first shared valuable information with them.

Here are a couple of ways to strengthen the Law of Reciprocity in your favor on LinkedIn:

  1. Send helpful content (that you have no personal gain in), to a LinkedIn connection or hot prospect, just because you are sure it would be of value to them. Make sure anything you share will be of specific benefit to them personally and take the time to write why you thought they might find that particular piece of content of interest. They will appreciate the gesture, even more, knowing that you are not acting selfishly.
  2. Connect your LinkedIn connections who would benefit from an introduction with each other, if you feel that they would both benefit from it. In doing so many will think of you when they come across someone who needs what you offer.

3. Consistency

People don’t just invest their money into quality products/services, they also look for people who have demonstrated a consistent reputation for quality.

You can take advantage of this LinkedIn prospecting practice by consistently and reliably showing people that you are knowledgeable, credible and care about their them and their success.

Understand that random, occasional actions will not have the same impact as those which are planned out in advance, carried out on a consistent basis and that people can trust will continue.

People can sense when you are being insincere and dishonest. Remember, once trust is broken, it’s almost impossible to earn back. The biggest payoff for being consistent and for sticking to ethical marketing, or as I like to call it, trust-based marketing, is that people do business with those they know, like and trust.

Implement these LinkedIn Prospecting Tips

Help your connections and prospects to get to know, like and trust you by:

  • Posting a status update daily, with content that is valuable to your prospects (created or curated).
  • Publish articles (weekly, bi-weekly, monthly) on LinkedIn Publisher, to establish your authority on your topic.
  • Reach out to your hot prospects regularly to share content that will be of value to them (created or curated).
  • Reply to LinkedIn messages and InMails every day.
  • Respond to the comments people leave on your posts (don’t forget to be social on social media).

It’s also important to be consistent with engaging with those that have previously liked, commented on, or shared your articles or status updates, they are generally more open to accepting a request from you, especially if you remind them of that previous interaction.

4. Authority

Being consistent about posting high-quality content on LinkedIn is great, but how does one establish true authority on their topic in a way that attracts business?

Without question, the best way to build your authority on your topic is by creating and sharing quality content that provides high value on issues that are of interest to your ideal clients.

Remember, people are more likely to comply to requests from those that they perceive as an expert or authority.

The most common reason businesses fail with their content marketing efforts is because they make the mistake of thinking that they need to focus on promoting themselves and their products or services in their content.

It is precisely the opposite with content marketing.

In fact, your content will perform much more successfully if you put the focus on helping your ideal clients solve their challenges, rather than trying to showcase your expertise through the promoting of your products or services.

My team and I spend hours each week providing quality free content on how to generate more leads using LinkedIn, social selling best practices and how to use content marketing to increase engagement and build relationships.

Now a large percentage of the people that read my content will never spend a dollar on the books, courses, live workshops or other services that I offer.

And that is perfectly okay because the do-it-yourself types either lack the funds to pay for my services or like the challenge of doing it themselves and would never have purchased anyway. But these people know I am an authority on my topic, are very appreciative of the resources I have provided, and are happy to share that knowledge with their network. A network which might include my ideal clients – those who either lack the time or the desire to do what I do and will gladly pay me for my expert services.

Time-tested LinkedIn Prospecting Techniques to Land Clients

Implement these LinkedIn Prospecting Tips

By sharing your best, up-to-date knowledge with your readers, you gain the benefits of:

  1. Undeniable authority and positioning as an expert in your industry
  2. Credibility through the people who share and engage with your content
  3. A steady stream of leads of people who know you are an authority and are happy to pay for your products or services.

5. Social Proof

The desire to find social proof is an automatic psychological reflex that we all have. People tend to base their decisions on the reviews and decisions of their peers. Nobody wants to be the guinea pig.

For example, how often do you look for reviews before buying a book on Amazon or going to watch the latest movie?

So, when a person doesn’t know what the proper behavior for a particular situation is, they will look to others to imitate what others are doing to guide their actions. In simpler terms, social proof helps us make decisions when we are uncertain, based on the experiences and choices others make or have made in the past.

It’s nice to be able to gain wisdom through the second-hand experiences of those we trust. That’s why reviews, testimonials, and endorsements have been so influential for businesses.

Time-tested LinkedIn Prospecting Techniques to Land Clients

Implement these LinkedIn Prospecting Tips

Social proof becomes even more effective on LinkedIn when people can relate professionally or are in a similar situation to the people who took action before them.

For example, social proof can be a significant factor when a potential connection is considering whether or not to accept your connection request.

If they see that you have many connections which are similar to them, this level of proof can make them more inclined to accept your connection request.

Additionally, if your profile has many LinkedIn Recommendations and Endorsements on it and regular activity visible (again, particularly if a potential connection can relate), this can make that prospect much more likely to want to accept your invitation.

6. Liking

Have you ever not bought something just because you didn’t like the company (or their politics)?

It is a well-known phenomenon that people buy from people they know, LIKE and trust.

Unless you have become a monopoly in your industry, people need to like you before they consider doing business with you.

Time-tested LinkedIn Prospecting Techniques to Land Clients

Implement these LinkedIn Prospecting Tips

One of the best ways to become more likable to your ideal clients on LinkedIn is also one of the simplest: transparency and authenticity. You can’t build relationships and get more clients without letting people know a little bit about who you are what and what you stand for. What’s even more important is how you make people feel.

Recently I had someone comment very aggressively on one of my posts, he very much disagreed with what I posted. Several hundred people engaged with that post, he was the only one that disagreed. Several people privately mentioned me to tell me how rude they thought he was and how well they feel that I responded. What he doesn’t realize is that it’s not only the people engaging with that post that could see his comments, it was his entire network. That is going to work against him in the “liking” department.

When your ideal clients can relate to you, they are more likely to trust that you understand their problems well enough to help them solve it.

This means you need to be clear on who you are, what you stand for, and why you do what you do so that you can share this in a clear and concise way with your ideal clients.

The Value of Proximity

There is an additional strategy that you can make use of, which is proximity.

Sharing similar proximity to people can play a helpful role with your LinkedIn prospecting as they are more likely to connect, respond or comply with your request if you are either physically close to them or close to their network.

You can make use of this strategy by mentioning that you are located in the same location or connected to the same people, in any connection requests or messages.

The Internet and social media have made it a lot easier to do business globally, my clients are located all around the world BUT don’t ever forget to focus on your local region. There’s nothing better than getting the opportunity to meet people face to face. And unless you live in a tiny region, there’s plenty of business for you right in your own backyard.

Power Up Your LinkedIn Prospecting

Regardless of whether your ultimate goal is to increase visibility, generate more leads, or get more sales, these highly effective factors in the psychology of persuasion can help you achieve greater success with your LinkedIn prospecting.

And if LinkedIn prospecting is top-of-mind for you, I invite you to get my free guide LinkedIn Lead Generation Machine. If you’re not generating 30 – 50 new high-quality leads each month using LinkedIn, you’ll want to get your hands on it. Click here to download it now.

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