How to Reel in Top Prospects on LinkedIn

Before you start fishing for leads, you need to make sure your LinkedIn “fishing hole” is set up correctly. Follow these steps to ensure success!

LinkedIn Groups = Your Fishing Pond

One of the easiest ways to build a rock solid, reliable sales funnel on LinkedIn is by creating you own professional group.

Think of it like your own personal fishing pond, one that you stock ahead of time with all of your best prospects. In that type of situation, you can’t lose. You catch a fish every time you put your pole in, right?

Here’s how it works.

Your Group Title = Value + Benefit

Before you even think about jumping into the water, you need to make sure you name your Group properly.

This point is critical: Do not name your Group after yourself or your company. Instead, create what I call a “client-facing” title. It should relay the value and benefit someone will get if they join your Group.

For example, when I wanted to sell my marketing services to a niche audience of debt collection agency executives, I named my LinkedIn Group “Debt Collection Marketing Tips: More Clients. More Revenue.”

Two of the biggest reasons people join LinkedIn Groups are (1) To get industry-specific insights, advice and tips that help them achieve their professional goals and (2) To network with others within their industry or profession.

Make sure you provide both of those incentives right away with your Group, starting with the title and following with the Group description and posts.

So, instead of blasting out sales offers or pitching your business, instead think of yourself like the host of a huge cocktail party.

Introduce your new guests to each other. Encourage everyone who joins the Group to share a bit about who he or she is, what his or her goals are and the biggest problems or challenges are standing in his or her way right now. Let people get comfortable, have some fun and talk about their favorite topic – themselves!

Back up that basic networking with some legitimate, helpful and actionable tips that you create and share within the Group. Invite discussion and comments. Call attention to others who participate and make a big deal about it.

This is critical, because the more engagement your Group has, the more likely others are to discover it and join the action.

Also, if you can share your insight and expertise and provide actual value to others without attaching an instant sales pitch, you’ll earn the time, attention and trust you need to pitch those prospects later on.

That doesn’t mean you can’t be strategic with the content or topics you share, however. For example, one of my favorite methods inside my LinkedIn Group is to “reverse-engineer” a specific product or service I sell and turn it into a discussion or post.

Watch this video for a quick example of how it works:

Final Thoughts

When it comes to the Group settings, you’ll want to have it as “request to join.” That means you get to personally approve everyone applies to be in your Group. This allows you to weed out any competitors or non-relevant people who try to join.

The same is true with Group comments and submitted posts. You need to approve everything (at least early on) to make sure people aren’t spamming your audience with blatant sales pitches or off-topic discussions.

You will also need to work hard – at least in the beginning – to invite people to join your new Group. You have to build the foundation up brick-by-brick. There are no shortcuts. But the good news is this – once you hit a “tipping point” of a few hundred members, your Group will start organically attracting and funneling leads into it. You’ll still get to control and get to approve each person who joins, but they will be coming to you.

There are some ways to jump-start the process, including shooting out blast emails or LinkedIn messages to dozens of people at once inviting them to join your new Group. You can also invite people via other social media channels, your main website, etc.

Like anything, however, a personalized, 1-on-1 message to a prospect inviting him or her to join the Group, along with explaining the immediate value/benefit they’ll receive upon joining is always your best bet.

In addition to building a fishing pond filled with the exact prospects you want to sell to, you also have the option every week to blast message everyone inside your LinkedIn Group with any type of announcement, offer or post you want. It’s a great way to build your own email marketing campaigns right inside of LinkedIn.

So if you haven’t already, get going right now and start your own Group, and let the fishing begin!

About the Author

Since 2012, #1 Bestselling LinkedIn Author and Trainer John Nemo has helped hundreds of professionals in more than 35 different industries generate nonstop sales leads, clients and revenue using LInkedIn.

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