Mario Sundar

LinkedIn's 2nd PR hire. These are my thoughts on products, public relations, and startups.

How to source $180K of business on LinkedIn

Ever so often, I find myself talking to a sales or biz dev person who’s a big fan of LinkedIn. While I’d rather not spend too much time extolling the virtues of a company I work for on this blog, I’d still like to share valuable tips and tricks that will be useful to folks in sales and bizdev – even if it’s about my company.

Here’s a great case study (via Smart Blog on Social Media) on how the Carlton group of hotels sourced new business worth $180K in 90 days. What’s even more useful for you (if you’re in sales) is how they did it:

  • Build a closely held network. Contrary to conventional wisdom, Freesource (the consultancy that helped their client – Carlton group of hotels) recommends only connecting to people you really know and trust. Managing tightly held, individual communities on LinkedIn will maximize the value of the platform and the quality of in-bound/out-bound business opportunities for your representatives.
  • Teach sales representatives how to benefit from search engine optimization. Encourage sales reps and staff to identify with the hotel’s offerings on LinkedIn and align their profiles to meet their goals. Have them incorporate strategic keywords into their job titles, summaries, specialties and job descriptions to benefit from increased Web hits.
  • Learn about your prospects. Use LinkedIn for “social CRM” throughout the entire sales process, Freesource recommends. Active, daily use of LinkedIn will give employees a better understanding of their current and future clients — turning cold calls into warm handshakes, shortening sales cycles and giving you greater share of wallet through stronger relationship management.
  • Create prospecting efficiencies. In-depth knowledge of Boolean strings, LinkedIn’s basic and advanced search capabilities, as well as its newly revamped ”Company Pages” will help a sales team find new, qualified leads faster. Lastly, use tools such as LinkedIn’s SlideShare application to provide virtual property tours so that the profile can bring in leads around the clock.

My $0.02:

Don’t do one-offs. Stay the course on LinkedIn.

We recommend many of these tips to our users (connect with people you know, SEO benefits, prospect management), but I think it’s worth reminding businesses that the key to success on LinkedIn is a consolidated strategy that spans your entire team that will bring you success both in the long term and the mid-term (see above story).

Be creative.

I’d also add, be creative about your usage of LinkedIn. There are a lot of untapped resources as well as new features on our site. A case in point: using our slideshare application to provide virtual property tours. Or, using our newly redesigned Company Pages, both of which can be put to best use in this situation. If you’d like to keep track of the latest product innovation, bookmark this.

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Filed under: Linkedin

6 Responses

  1. I am not an open networker in its strict meaning, but I am not overly selective either. To me, knowing someone from a few shared blog comments around the socialmedia blogs I follow, share ideas on Twitter and such, that’s good enough reason to connect.
    Still wrapping my head around LinkedIn and its “creative” uses so I have to agree with you on that, be creative for sure.

    Like

  2. I am mainly active in some of the groups I am listed in, I “lurked” them for a while so to say, and now I try to engage in discussions there and give my 2 cents on them.
    I don’t abuse the status update and I limit it to once per day, and I keep my profile and business page updated whenever there’s a change.
    That’s what I do so far, of course, as I said, I am still “learning” 😉

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    • Mario Sundar says:

      I think that’s the usual social media adoption curve – “lurkers” who get $0.02 value start contributing. re: status updates it’s good to update when you’ve something valuable to share, else, people lose interest in your personal brand and basically turn it off – Hide.

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  3. Mario,

    Thanks for picking up and sharing this case study – just caught it on my Google Alerts.

    We’re working on getting more of our clients stories out there.

    Thanks again,

    – Patrick

    Like

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