Frequently Asked Queries
Why is LinkedIn such a big deal all of a sudden?
LinkedIn is becoming more popular among serious, ambitious professionals for a couple of reasons. One is that successful people are impatient with the shenanigans they encounter on other platforms – they’re tired of smoothie photos and political rants, of wannabes that “fake it till they make it,” and the rampant data collection violations perpetrated by the platforms themselves. (Cough – Facebook! – Cough)
As the only social media platform designed for B2B users, LinkedIn has some huge advantages for a professional who cares about quality, integrity, and the dignity of actual accomplishment. After all, it’s all right there in a person’s profile, and it’s much, much harder to fake. You can “look under the hood” of someone’s character and career by scrolling down to the “Experience” section and seeing if the bottom half and the top half “add up.”
Let’s take a quick look at LinkedIn statistics to know in 2021 (from Foundation.Co)
- LinkedIn currently has over 740 million members.
- The network has 303 million active monthly users, 40% of which visit the site daily. So that’s about 100 million professionals.
- 90 million senior-level influencers and 63 million decision makers use LinkedIn. And for the most part, they aren’t wasting their time on other social platforms.
- 92% of Fortune 500 companies use LinkedIn.
- 80% of founders, leaders, and C-Level execs say that LinkedIn is their most important B2B platform and their first choice for both researching companies and networking with powerful new friends.
What makes LinkedIn the perfect platform for a B2B social selling strategy?
There is a Gold Rush happening right now on LinkedIn – the opportunity to meet people playing at the very top of their industry is incredible. So many people are getting on LinkedIn, or getting active on LinkedIn after years of inactivity and so few people know how to use it properly and profitably. “I put up a profile in 2008 and I have never really known what to do with it.”
The juiciest rewards will go to those leading-edge adapters who learn how to use personal, relational networking practices to build conversations that convert on LinkedIn. Want to do this “different and better” than 99.9999% of professionals on the platform? Instead of telling your audience how awesome you are, or how brilliant your program/software/service is, just start BEING awesome and brilliant by handing out some useful insights.
Do you know how much we love the people who help us learn stuff we can use, just from checking out their profile? Yes Please!
Now. In order to harness LinkedIn’s true power in building trust with prospects and partners, we must be willing to sign up for a profound mindset shift that goes deeper than just “tactics.” Understanding this philosophy will help you (and your people) begin developing the behaviors necessary for really bold, brave, and badass digital social selling.
What’s the difference between “social selling” and “lead generation”? On Linkedin (or anywhere else)?
If the most important thing to you is connecting with as many people in your industry as humanly possible, then you may be looking for a “get leads” or “lead generation” strategy that’s done for you: the kind with automated or generic requests that fairly quickly adds several thousand connections. We’re not saying that this strategy doesn’t work for some, because it absolutely does.
However, if you are like many of our clients who are selling a high ticket service, you aren’t so keen to have 100 discovery calls scheduled per week to talk to anybody who expresses mild interest. You’re looking to talk with the BEST possible prospects: those with the money, experience, and eagerness to find out more about what you offer.
You’d rather have 10 discovery calls scheduled per week with this type of pre-qualified prospect: someone who wants a more personal and customized approach, who knows that by engaging with you, he/she will get more agile response and a passionate partner who cares about the real ROI.
Can you sum up the modern LinkedIn expert’s ideal mindset and approach?
There’s one thing that hasn’t changed in sales, and that’s the old truth that people buy from people that they know, like, and trust. This is probably always going to be true. What has changed is how we are creating that “know, like, and trust.” We are creating it by “ATE”:
Attract: and Repel! No sense clogging up your day with prospects who won’t ever pay but would to share their existential position on modern culture.
What is “social selling” or “relationship marketing” as defined in 2021?
Also sometimes called “relationship marketing,” social selling is highly personal, and relational rather than transactional. It’s the opposite of automation, the antithesis to manipulative sales techniques. In order to become a vanguard modern social seller, you want to attract, teach, and engage your people online, rather than to advertise and sell in the old way – which can come off as pushy, “salesy,” or just plain boring. (We all want to buy, but strangely enough, none of us really like to be sold).
The irony of the terms is that true social selling is neither “social” (in the sense of traditional social media, one to many) or “selling” (in terms of using traditional sales techniques). Instead, it is personal – one person connecting to one person in way that makes one thing very clear: “I see you as a person; I have taken time to read your profile or content and to find out what’s important to you.”
The intention, purpose, and focus of starting this conversation is always to “offer remarkable value” rather than to “sell.”The ultimate aim of a good social selling is to form authentic connections with individuals online that take these people offline into a phone or video call with you, the expert who wants to provide great value at every stage of this ongoing conversation.
Why are we hearing so much more about social selling all of a sudden? Does it work better than other kinds of selling?
We must change as a seller because we have changed as a buyer – all of us have changed. Up to 90% of the buyer’s journey is now happening online, before they talk to anyone from our organization. Just as we have grown more and more immune to certain sales techniques, so has our buyer. He or she is looking for someone who puts the answers up front instead of behind the sales curtain. We’ve all gotten weary of “click here to download my quiz, to win a seat at my webinar, to learn my mulimillion dollar secret that CEOS around the world are fighting to get!”
This value-first approach can make some of us pretty nervous at first. Raised in the digital dawn era of launching, pitching, and funnels, our first question might be “Yes, sounds great. But does it WORK?” The answer is an overwhelming YES. People who have become numb to sales pages perk up when they encounter an expert who takes the time to get to know them as an individual, without any expectation that they need to buy.
So all I do is just meet people one by one, treat them as individuals, and offer value? Anything else that makes up a good social selling strategy?
That personal “human to human” interaction is indeed the most important part of social selling/relationship marketing. But another key component of a good social selling strategy is providing a very specific type of content for your best audiences.
From the moment they first discover you online, they’ll be impressed with the level of wisdom and practical guidance you’re going to deliver. And this makes a huge difference to your sales, because 74% of people buy from the first expert who offers them true insight.
Stop for a moment and really take this in. Can you feel – really feel – how important that is?
74% of people buy from the FIRST expert who offers them true insight.
World renowned Content Marketing expert Michael Brenner says it this way: “Every website and every post in the world is talking about why either this expert or this company is better, different, unique. What almost nobody does is to put most of their focus on answering their target client or customer’s questions. Companies that do this consistently, with a commitment to providing value, absolutely build the kind of brand that leads to higher revenues, conversions, and ROI.”