Inbound marketing is the rage in B-to-B marketing. But there's no substitute for diligent prospecting: cold calling and cold emailing. No, these techniques are not dead. They work. But only if you have an effective, repeatable process to interrupt and spark conversations with new prospects.
I swear if another person says, “Most of the buying decisions are already made by the time decision-makers meet with sales reps” my head is going to explode. This is true. Got it. But how does a seller get a meeting with decision influencers during the early phase? How can you get invited to discuss buyers’ challenges as they are discovering they need a solution?
Is LinkedIn Sales Navigator worth it for sales prospecting? And how can you measure the investment — and end it if it's not? I've consulted my most trusted resources — and clients — on the answer. Because what we need is an honest answer from people who are interested in growing their business — not just LinkedIn's! Here are the results I've found in guideline format. The consensus seems strong. In 95 percent of cases you may not need a Sales Navigator or Premium level account.
Earning a reply to your initial email is simple. Spark the prospect's curiosity. But what comes next? How do you follow-up effectively once invited to do so? What do you write and how — so potential buyers will reply again?
Should you measure yourself and your team based on LinkedIn's Social Selling Index (SSI)? I say no. Because your and your team's productivity matters more than simply using LinkedIn — which is what the SSI is all about.
There is no bigger buzz-phrase in sales than “social selling.” But what if the core idea behind it was bogus? What if the term was nonsense? What if there is no revolution in how buyers buy — and how we must now approach selling?
Canadian sales professionals are confused and frustrated. Rightfully so. The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission is guiding marketers, while neglecting to help sellers understand and adapt to the law's new consequences.
Your cold email (first-touch message) is most likely too much, too fast. Remember, your goal is NOT to book a meeting when making first contact with a prospect. Using InMail? Standard email? Connecting on LinkedIn first?
Looking to hire a sales trainer for LinkedIn? Beware. Instead, consider hiring a sales prospecting coach who knows if (and when) to apply LinkedIn. Put you/your team's prospecting skills ahead of LinkedIn skill development.
Is InMail worth it? LinkedIn wants you to think so. But is it a good investment for you, in your specific situation? Sometimes yes, other times no. Here's a quick checklist to make a smart assessment that leads to an educated decision. Think twice if you:
You're consistent. Diligent. You spend your hour a day on LinkedIn, Facebook, Google+ or Twitter. And then you get back to something that might actually generate a lead or sale. Like cold-calling. You know, that "dead" strategy that is difficult these days—yet still gets you paid!
What can a regional supplier of HVAC products and services teach you about Facebook? Plenty. I've already explained how Steelmaster Buildings gets leads on its Facebook page using a similar strategy. Today I'll give an update on how Amanda Kinsella, of residential HVAC provider Logan Services, is getting along. She is continuing to generate leads and tracking ROI to the penny on Facebook. Yes, Facebook.