Nora Sutcliffe, Senior Account Director, LinkedIn | Tips For LinkedIn Success – Sales Confidence

Hi everyone my name is Nora I’m a senior account executive at LinkedIn. So I’ve been in the business for about four years and recently changed into our advertising business, but spent the first three and a half years selling to sales leaders, so selling them sales navigator, helping them transform their organisations and getting sales VPS to really think about how their sales teams are actually prospecting. So getting them to change, kind of stop calling and leverage LinkedIn and your warm introductions to build a pipeline.

So today I’m going to talk to you about four different aspects of how you can use LinkedIn to take hopefully some tactical tips that you can use every day in your roles. I’d love to see a show of hands really, how many of you are on LinkedIn and using LinkedIn to build your pipeline? Everyone, great! So I know this is quite basic, but it really is the bedrock of everything you do on LinkedIn. So if the profile optimised and doesn’t speak to your clients and prospects, everything else you do on LinkedIn is not going to be successful. So a photo foes without saying, you don’t need a professional photographer, all you need is a white background, some good lighting and an iPhone, and you’re good to go. But then the next bit is really like how can you very quickly tell your customer or your prospect what value deliver to them. So my job title is account director, anyone outside a LinkedIn means nothing to them, so on the end of my job title I tagged what I do so for me it’s helping tech marketers find decision-makers on LinkedIn, so that’s the first thing you’ve got to do, because if you send them an inmail you send an email they are probably gonna look you up on LinkedIn, so they find out very quickly what value you deliver to them, they’re more likely to keep scrolling and keep reading what you do. 

Ollie touched upon plaque that we know that buyers can find all the information on your products and services on you online and give it them your profile first, so in your summary talk a bit about what you do your professional journey, and then talk about what you do today, so again it’s reinforce the value you can deliver to them, and then if your salesperson you want to find it, you want to make it, very easy contact you so I took email or your phone number or whatever you’re comfortable sharing. The last go out on profile is gone are the days that should be written for recruiters, so I’m sure there’s a lot of superstar sales people here who’ve had some great accomplishments, don’t put that at first, the CIO or CMO is not going to be impressed with that, but obviously that is important so we have a section at the bottom your profile where you can put honour and awards.

So that’s profile, but the second bit is once that’s all set you can start looking for people, so we’ve got 610 billion members and counting on LinkedIn, not only that is the membership growing, but members are more engaged in that ever been before and just our recent earnings call, we talked about the number of sessions on LinkedIn is the highest it’s ever been, so people are not just coming to LinkedIn to find jobs anymore, they’re coming to be better informed on products and services, they’re coming to be better at their jobs and then they are coming to find jobs as well. So if you’re looking for the buying committee of those deals in your pipeline those people are gonna be on LinkedIn and they’re gonna be engaged which is good news for you because it means they’re more likely to respond to your inmail, respond with connection request if you tailor it correctly. 

Also but searching for people on LinkedIn you’re gonna be able to see who knows who in your network, there’s nowhere else you can find that, so if you look for a decision-maker and it shows you a warm introduction, my recommendation to you is ask that person for a warm introduction. The worst they can say is no, I met then once at this Sales Confidence conference, but the likelihood is if you know them and they’re happy to introduce them, they’ll do it. And the other thing I recommend on that is you probably are already but connect with all senior leaders in your business, they tend to have the richest networks and the most senior networks, so if you’re connected to them and you ever run a search on LinkedIn and that decision maker’s, in their network it will flag them for you. And senior leaders obviously that the SVP of sales, the CMO, they’re highly likely to want to help you, because hopefully you’re working towards a shared goal.

The next bit is around engaging with content and sharing your own content, so again we’ve touched on this, but we know that decision-makers want to find all the information before they even talk to you or respond to your email. So make sure you’re positioning yourself as a trusted advisor so touch on what Ollie said about working with marketing, use the collateral that they’re providing and share it to your networks, because once you are connected those decision-makers they’re not only gonna see that not only are you trying to pester them for meeting or chase then on that deal, but actually you know what you’re talking about, and you can be a true pilot to them and understand how their business works. 

On the flip side to that, is that if those decision-makers aren’t in engage with their content. You know as salespeople we call our prospects, we email them, we inmail them, even if they’re sharing something on LinkedIn they’re not sharing it to just kind of lay there, they’ll be glad if someone’s engaged in their content, where there’s a like or a comment. I mean personally for me I’ve had many instances one in particular where a client of mine – so I was in an account management role before this one – he just kind of went dark on me like they do, and he shared some award that they won, a team award or some PR or something, and I just commented congratulations, what I really wanted was a meeting. But later on that day, I got an in mail from him saying sorry been really busy, let’s have that meeting. I know that’s pretty basic but sometimes you’re trying to reinvigorate deals or we reinvigorate conversations that you’re having, there’s more creative ways you can do it a LinkedIn’s the place you can do that.

The final bit is around that the buying committee, so if we think about the number of people involved in any buying decision, we know that senior leaders or general business decision-makers do not make decisions on their own. I can’t remember the last time I in the last five or six years, for 13 years I’ve been working in sales, that I have make a decision on their own and we know today that it’s more complex and more evolving than it’s ever been. And so LinkedIn is a great place identify who else the decision-maker might be working with obviously tools like self navigator can help you identify that through algorithms and their features there, but just by looking on your prospects, connecting with them, seeing who’s in their networks, it’s going to give you a lot of intelligence on who else they’re working with and who to connect with and build a relationship with. You know, it’s not always the C-level executive, you’ve got the influencers, the champions, you’ve also got your blockers, and they’re the people that are probably hardest to find sometimes and the hardest to convince. 

Just to summarise, get your profile right, look at the people in your business, often the leaders in your business might have had some help with their profile so you can look at that, you can look at some of the LinkedIn profiles of people that work on LinkedIn, we tend to have some best practice there, and leverage your networks for warm introductions. 

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