Social media platforms have quickly become an irreplaceable part of our lives. In 2020, an estimated number of 3.6 billion people had an account on at least one social media platform. For business, this figure represents the number of prospects they could potentially reach out to. While realistically, the target audience size is much humbler, social media still provides a lot of additional marketing opportunities for them. A whopping 66% of marketers have reported a significant increase in their leads to count after spending as little as six hours per week on social media marketing activities.
Even in such advantageous circumstances, a lot of marketers struggle to meet quotas and generate a sufficient number of leads to help their business prosper; over 80% of marketers would describe their lead generation efforts as only somewhat effective. In fact, according to a recent study, 59% of marketers believe generating high-quality leads is the biggest B2B lead generation challenge they face and the reason why their business growth is stalling. More and more professionals are cottoning on, to focus on improving lead quality rather than quantity.
One way to do that is to rationalize the process. Too often marketers end up missing out on many quality leads because they choose the wrong platform to focus their efforts. As of now, the best place to search for prospects is LinkedIn, a bonafide goldmine of quality leads. It’s 277% more effective for lead generation than other social media networks; over three-quarters of all B2B social media-generated leads are found there.
LinkedIn’s unique value proposition for lead generation
- LinkedIn is a dedicated professional platform, which means professionals use the site for business purposes and are more likely to hold a purchasing mindset when they visit.
- LinkedIn is a collection of the decision-drivers of the business world. Four out of five people on LinkedIn “drive business decisions”, therefore qualifying as high-quality leads ready to be converted into customers.
- LinkedIn is a significantly more cost-effective place to generate inbound leads, as cost per lead is 28% lower than on Google AdWords.
- LinkedIn can be integrated with third-party apps to enrich CRM records with new contacts faster.
If the statistics above inspired you, you’re not the only one. A lot of marketers, your competitors, try to utilize LinkedIn to their advantage. This creates additional competition and lowers the effectiveness of the platform for lead generation. This doesn’t make it impossible to reach out to prospects; just a little bit harder. You need to get creative and look for leads where your competitors aren’t looking.
5 Not-so-Obvious Ways to Generate More Quality Leads on LinkedIn
LinkedIn is far from primitive. It’s a website with diverse functionality that has a lot to be explored and even more to offer. Sometimes, all it takes to gain more leads is to look beyond the obvious places. Here are the top five, most original lead generation techniques on LinkedIn to bring you more quality connections.
Profile Stalking Can Be a Good Thing
We’re all guilty of snooping around other peoples’ social media profiles. Sometimes, it’s just curiosity about what keeps our high-school frienemies busy these days; Sometimes, our interest is more professional and aimed at exploring available purchasing options.
Whenever we’re practicing the professional type of social media prying, we automatically become prospects. From there, it’s a marketer’s responsibility to intercept, reach out, and engage us to meet our needs. There are several ways in which marketers can exploit LinkedIn and use curious users to our advantage.
- Who viewed your profile. LinkedIn is a bit sleazy for exposing people like this. However, for marketers seeking to enrich their lead list, the ‘Who viewed your profile’ tab is a blessing from business God. In sales, whenever someone checks out your business, you can automatically assume they’re at least a little bit interested in what you’ve got to offer. If that’s the case, you’re halfway there. All you need to do is reach out to the prospects that have viewed your profile before they become a lead.
- People also viewed. Another very promising feature is the ‘People also viewed’ tab. It’s initially designed to help users improve their visibility on the platform, but finds more use from marketers reaching out to prospects. The cool thing about it is that People also viewed displays ten potential prospects that are very similar either to yourself or the profile you’re currently visiting. That way, you can find some new faces in your industry and add them to your collection of leads.
This feature gets updated several times a month to maintain a steady flow of fresh faces. For basic members, the number of people who viewed their profile caps at five per month, while premium users have unlimited access to this information.
Check the Automated Lead Recommendations
Your lead generation process doesn’t always have to be proactive. Sometimes, you can sit back and watch new, high-quality leads roll in by themselves. Sounds too good to be true… what’s the catch?
Well, this option is only available to those marketers who have wisely invested in LinkedIn Sales Navigator.
Is LinkedIn Sales Navigator worth it? The short answer is yes. It gives marketers an invaluable opportunity to passively generate leads of the highest quality. Lead Recommendations is a list of LinkedIn users that match your criteria based on your sales preference, your interactions with different profiles, and your search history. The list gets updated regularly, so you never run out of potential prospects to reach out to.
Give It a Search
LinkedIn provides users with a pretty neat search tab to look for potential leads. All you need to do is type in a keyword associated with your search. That’s either an industry-specific keyword or their professional position; LinkedIn will recommend you some options.
However, if you want to get the most out of your search, you should turn to yet another LinkedIn Sales Navigator intrinsic feature — the advanced search tool. It’s much more potent than the standard search engine, allowing users to apply a wide range of different filters to their search to narrow down results to bare specifics. There are both individual-scale (e.g. eads with recent job changes or leads located in a particular place by postal code radius) and company-scale filters (e.g. by fortune or headquarters location you can use).
Socialize in LinkedIn Groups
LinkedIn groups are another hidden gem for lead generation on LinkedIn. The LinkedIn community is well-established and extremely diverse, which means there are likely to be dozens of groups related to your industry or specific business. Professionals of different levels of seniority join these groups to gain industry insight and discuss industry-specific issues with colleagues. All groups are private by default, so you can expect the quality of leads in them to be significantly higher. Most are invested in the conversation and ready to be reached out to. Jackpot!
There are different ways in which you can incorporate LinkedIn groups into your LinkedIn lead generation strategy. You could start a group yourself, which adds a lot of authority and establishes your profile as an industry expert. Only if you’ve got time on your hands; starting from scratch is always a laborious, time-consuming process.
Alternatively, you can start joining existing groups relevant to the industry you operate in. As soon as you start posting threads and communicate with other members of the community in the comments, you’ll enjoy a boost in brand awareness and an increased flow of incoming leads.
I recommend you target both small and large groups to ensure you’re getting maximum lead exposure. Small groups make it easier to get yourself heard, while large ones have unlimited lead generation potential.
Turn to the Graces of Content Marketing
About 88% of B2B marketers exploit content marketing as their primary lead generation tactic; LinkedIn is no exception.
Thanks to the peculiarities of LinkedIn’s publishing platform, content marketing can be considered one of the most effective lead generation methods. Every time you publish a post on LinkedIn, your updates on your entire network’s timelines. It’s a great way to establish industry expertise.
At the same time, it’s a fantastic opportunity to introduce yourself to a broader audience and gain more quality inbound leads. Every time someone likes your posts, an update appears on their connections’ timelines. Good content means likes… and likes mean money!
There’s a reason why LinkedIn is called prospect heaven and lead generation paradise. It gets the job done. Work smarter, not harder. Cut corners with these LinkedIn lead generation tips and get to prospects before competitors do. It’s easier than it sounds!