The best way to find new clients offer them a solution that perfectly fits for their urgent problem. So you need to be on the right time on the right place with the perfect solution.

In practice this is very hard so a way to start is finding the people (not companies) that have a problem to solve for their company.

In practice when you offer a solution (in stead of for example find a solution) the sales proces is as follows:

  1. Make a friend, make a sale
  2. Effectively probe the prospective client to determine needs, wants, problems, and fears
  3. Understand the difference between features & benefits and how to create value by stressing benefits
  4. Closing skills – Effective, but not pushy

Source: Anatomy of a Sale – Successfully Present Your Services

We can describe it as Lead nurturing. Lead nurturing is a process by which leads are tracked and developed into sales-qualified leads. Meaning that they are ready and worthy of a salesperson’s time. Of course, it is critical that you jointly establish the definition of a sales-ready lead with the sales team (source: Lead Nurturing: The New Tech Marketing Frontier).

If you use on LinkedIn for sales, the simplest way is to find people based on their professional profile and approach them. Recruiters are only doing this with the extra step to invite you first and become a “friend”. As soon as you accept the invitation you will get an offer for a new job. Although the recruiter has no idea if you’re looking for a new job and if so what kind of a job (so they have idea about your problem is not clear). Probably it is effective but it is only useful to find very active problems in which you don’t need to much trust (as the recruiter). It is very SPAMMY and in almost no industry possible to use. So there should be better ways.

LinkedIn-Profile-Activity-Feed
Credits picture: linkedin-makeover.com

At first about LinkedIn.
Why View Someone’s LinkedIn Activity Feed?

  • Love their posts.
  • Topics of interest to them via content they share (i.e. as information they post or links to news articles, etc.)
  • Content they like that shared by other users
  • If they changed their profile photo, title, job role, etc.
  • Other LinkedIn members they are connecting with
  • Groups they join and discussions they participate in
  • Who they follow (i.e. company, influencer, channel or publisher)
  • Want to develop a relationship by liking, sharing, or commenting on their posts.

This information can be a big help in building your personal and professional relationships. Many of my customers like to review their connection’s activity feed before a meeting or phone call so they can:

  • Ask them about something they read
  • Suggest books, articles, and other resources their connection may like
  • Ask them about their recent connections and refer them to similar people
  • Congratulate them on a new job. Talk to them about their new responsibilities. This can be a great way to uncover opportunities for new business.
  • Join the same or similar groups to similar connections

Sources: Use LinkedIn Mobile to View Your Connections’ Activity Feeds and How to View Your Connections Recent Activity on LinkedIn.

And now about Lead Nurturing
Now you see what you can do with your contacts of LinkedIn you need to make a selection of your connections and/try to extend the connections and become friends.

If you offer a solution for a certain problem you can select your connections who may have this problem and maybe be able to create a budget to buy your solution.

As they are already your connection you are more or less friend already. If not start becoming better friends first by for example:

  • Want to develop a relationship by liking, sharing, or commenting on their posts etc
  • Congratulate them on a new job. Talk to them about their new responsibilities. This can be a great way to uncover opportunities for new business.

If you would like to extend your connections make a campaign focussed on a certain problem. You can use AdWords, SEO or social media (for example Twitter) to direct potential connections to the landing page. After subscription try to connect them to LinkedIn and become friends (and off course put them on your mail-list).

The 2nd step try to detect when the problem is becoming more urgent. Send an email, detect the reaction and if the reaction is positive then call and close the deal. If not keep on nurturing. Some suggestion you can to monitor and actions to take:

  • Topics of interest to them via content they share (i.e. as information they post or links to news articles, etc.)
  • Content they like that shared by other users
  • If they changed their profile photo, title, job role, etc.
  • Other LinkedIn members they are connecting with
  • Groups they join and discussions they participate in
  • Who they follow (i.e. company, influencer, channel or publisher)
  • Ask them about something they read
  • Suggest books, articles, and other resources their connection may like
  • Ask them about their recent connections and refer them to similar people
  • Join the same or similar groups to similar connections

The overall process of Lead Nurturing becomes:

  1. Define the connections you want to monitor (and become a better friend)
  2. Monitor these connections for activity (as soon as you know more specific what you are looking for then you can monitor within the connections)
  3. Store the monitored activity, check it daily and react with a like or a comment when needed
  4. If you find something interesting then take action so contact the person asap.

Unfortunately it is not so easy anymore to track LinkedIn connections activity without checking every connection separated in LinkedIn itself. The reason is that LinkedIn stopped their RSS feed in 2013. In LinkedIn and in Hootsuite you can get all updates (recent updates) but you can not filter them (as far as I know). So first challenge is to find a way to filter the connections you would like monitor. If you are interested in a tool for monitoring selected LinkedIn connections then please contact me by leaving a comment below.

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