There are several ways you can use LinkedIn to help you to win business deals, especially larger ones. Here are six I’ve identified and I’d like to share them with you.
6 ways LinkedIn can help close a sale
1. Qualify the opportunity – assessing whether to bid and your bid strategy can be guided by what you find on LinkedIn. You may be able to find out more about the business drivers from LinkedIn, and about potential competitors.
2. Connecting with the decision-making team – if you only have one point of contact into the client you are in a weaker position than if you have multiple contacts. Where knowledge is power this can be very helpful.
3. External Coach – through your network you may be able to identify people who know the organisation and people well. They may be willing to provide their perspective on issues, needs, power, politics etc to help your campaign.
4. Tailored Updates – you might want to put out specific status updates, or even group discussions, emphasising your strengths as a way to impress people in the buying team.
5. Share information with decision-makers – you may find articles on your company page or website that you want to highlight with buyers, and you can do this easily and casually if you are connected on LinkedIn. This is especially useful when selling to larger businesses in the ‘death valley’ period between submitting your formal proposal and the decision being reached.
6. Monitor competitor activity – you may know, or find out, who else is bidding , and then be able to gain competitive intelligence through LinkedIn, so that you can highlight your strengths in areas where competitors may be weaker.
There are few prizes for coming second in sales
This does take some time and effort, but if it makes the difference between coming first and second on a deal that opens a strategic account, on a deal that takes 3-6 months of selling, and is your quota or target for the month or quarter then it’s probably worth a few minutes to check LinkedIn to see what you can do to increase your chances of winning.
Please let me know if LinkedIn has helped you to win a major deal.