generate leads on LinkedIn without advertising

How to Generate Leads on LinkedIn Without Advertising

By | Tuesday, November 19, 2019 | 0 comment

Marketers are always interested in generating more prospective client leads and LinkedIn offers unlimited potential -- as long as you follow a few basic strategies.

Some social media marketers try to get LinkedIn leads without advertising. As a result, they do not get satisfactory results. This happens because of poor strategies.

There is another misconception about social media marketing or social selling -- being based on the notion of equating it to an advertising blitzkrieg or flooding social media platforms with ad campaigns. Moreover, there is no follow-up or any effort to work on the feedback.

Social platforms are not to be blamed for these missed opportunities for making connections. Such scenarios emerge because of how the marketers structure their pitch. Usually, no salesperson goes beyond making a few LinkedIn connections. They might follow it up with an odd mail. It certainly needs much more to drive conversations.

The potential of LinkedIn marketing remains unexplored by many marketers.

Reasons for This Unrecognized Potential of LinkedIn

  • Marketers consider the LinkedIn messages sent to the users’ email addresses cold or lukewarm. They assume that these messages are passive and thus are not interesting.
  • Cold requests or those sent for initiating a connection are ignored or rejected simply as a plain spam mail.
  • It is difficult to measure returns generated by the investments made exclusively to get LinkedIn leads without advertising.

In short, marketers need to improve their social media marketing skills -- doing so can help you increase the number of leads you generate -- and placing them into your marketing funnels and email marketing sequences.

Basic Types of Marketing Phases

  • Exposure phase: The prospective client receives a message about the company’s merchandise and/or services.
  • Curiosity-raising phase: The prospective client tries to explore the proposed products and services. They may also seek to know the benefits offered.
  • Lead generation phase: The prospective client begins the interaction through social media.
  • Lead nurturing phase: The prospective client gets to understand the offer’s benefits that encourage the sale.
  • Conversion phase: The prospective client transforms into a customer.
  • Retention/Loyalty phase: The customer uses the products and/or services. After this, he or she communicates with the company’s salespeople. Thus, the customer may further buy more and become loyal to the brand.
  • Spreading the experience: The customer urges others in the group or network to buy your products or services.

Social media marketers are well aware that LinkedIn is a virtual goldmine. However, designing and executing a successful strategy to get LinkedIn leads without advertising is important. The strategy should be designed in a manner such that it impacts every phase of the marketing process.

Online tools help marketers to measure the impact on each phase. We need to evaluate these results and further re-distribute our focus on every phase.

Facts Proving LinkedIn is a Virtual Goldmine

  • LinkedIn has more than 610 million users. Most importantly, people from industries and businesses are on this platform.
  • The LinkedIn platform’s algorithm is unique. It can focus on specific individuals and groups or commercial interests.
  • A user can get ready-made background data of businesses and industries.
  • LinkedIn’s algorithm seems tailor-made for any marketer to exploit its huge data bank.

Follow the marketing model discussed here by making effective use of LinkedIn features in each phase.

1. Shifting through LinkedIn to identify prospects and leads.

As already discussed, LinkedIn is a virtual goldmine of prospective clients with excellent search features. They might not be using their LinkedIn profiles daily. up till now, there would be many opportunities in the future.

Marketers may start sifting through the connections of their most valued customers. Then make a list of prospects to be targeted. Sometimes this process becomes too time-consuming. Then the marketers assign this to their assistants.

Once done, the marketers can then take the help of their customers in getting referrals. Then the next step should be to contact the short-listed prospects.

LinkedIn’s search mechanism is a valuable tool to get LinkedIn leads without advertising to identify prospects.

2. Building your prospect database.

  • Search for all industries and businesses to find companies of interest to widen marketing opportunities.
  • Use the wide range of keywords related to jobs, job titles and profiles of the intended prospects in LinkedIn search.
  • After that, collect information about prospective contact points. This can be done by sifting through the employees’ list. This might even require one to visit the company.
  • Go through all the shared connections of the prospects. Look for someone known to you, who might help start the introduction.
  • Well, prepare and rehearse your introductory or cold call beforehand. This ensures an increased rate of success. You can also ask for the help of other experts in the field, for instance, a telemarketing company. You can further try learning such skills. For this, let the experts in the field of sales groom you. For high-value prospects, only an experienced individual needs to represent your company.
  • Don’t act in haste. Engage the prospect before making a connection request.

Using the InMail feature is not enough to get a prospect’s attention. It might go straight into the recycle bin. It can also end up as spam.

Give a personal touch to any call or mail for the purpose. Use a natural tone. Put your creativity and optimism into it. The message should seem human-like and not robotic.

3. Use LinkedIn effectively for the lead nurturing phase.

In B2B deals initial patience gives good results. Even if there is no sale in the first meeting, don’t let the trail go dry. Avoid acting like a novice as long gestation cycles are usually the nature of B2B sales.

Partner with LinkedIn to nurture the lead. If your connection request via LinkedIn has been accepted by the prospect you can like or comment on a prospect's activity at appropriate moments. Sharing some original content on any topic of the prospect's interest helps you show expertise and build a report.

Using this strategy, however, requires perfect timing. This will show genuine interest. So the prospect will not feel getting unwanted attention just for sale. The best time for a connection request via LinkedIn is generally after the first meeting.

You can also connect after receiving a reply email. This is for such cases where a meeting has not yet taken place. Once the prospect has interacted with you, it will certainly kindle his/her interest. They will look at your LinkedIn profile after getting your connection request.

Therefore, it is important to have a well-drafted LinkedIn profile. Link it to your business’ sales process. You can introduce your brand by including graphics into LinkedIn. The content you share with the prospect on LinkedIn keeps the contact alive.

Here are some tips to consider:

  • Be consistent and post regularly
  • Be original and focused on your goal
  • Use LinkedIn for such posts
  • Make full use of the LinkedIn hashtags feature
  • Also, if possible create a LinkedIn video

4. Strengthen leads through LinkedIn.

Build on the initial connection with the prospects. This helps to nurture leads and obtain referrals.

Tagging valued prospects via LinkedIn Network.

Tagging in a positive way can help you generate LinkedIn leads without advertising.

Here are a few examples. You can congratulate clients and prospects. Furthermore, you can share a meaningful insight or announce new projects.  You can sincerely tag prospects to increase your connections. However, remember to avoid spamming.

Help LinkedIn to partner with your contacts.

If as a social media marketer you have contacts, engage them via LinkedIn to help its algorithm to up your rank. You can do it mutually our you can even involve other marketers. In addition to this, you can invite people from their network into LinkedIn discussion forums.

Use Sales Navigator effectively.

This feature is available for paid subscribers only but it is worth it. This is because of the unique search capabilities it unlocks for you to get LinkedIn leads without advertising. It might open opportunities for you. Pay attention to any changes in key positions in a company’s profile. This might be a chance to revive a dead sale proposal.

We can conclude by saying the lead generation strategy on LinkedIn is important. However, you should plan it well and execute it properly. Always pay keen attention to such fine details.

If you are looking to do paid advertising on social media, you can refer to this article.

Image: Pixabay

Author Bio

Tusshar Aggarwal

Tusshar Aggarwal is the Founder of Digi Elephant, a marketing agency located in India. He has been helping multiple brands, SMEs and MNCs with their online marketing strategy and execution for more than seven years.

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