What is LinkedIn for you? Your online CV? A contacts database? A network management tool? A social platform? If you're in business or sales... it's lightning in a bottle but most people are oblivious just crawling along in 1st gear. Sales Navigator is the essential tool that everyone should invest in to take his or her success to the next level. LinkedIn themselves see Sales Navigator as a 'system of engagement'.
InMail is still way more effective than email (average of 15-30%+ response rate versus less than 3% for email campaigns. This means Linkedin is also a 'system of communication', especially with the addition of PointDrive, Groups and other capabilities.
LinkedIn is committed to data privacy for members but is always thinking about how to improve the selling process with integration to leading CRM products. Data validationis something that provides great value so they are introducing a flag for 'no longer at company'. This is important because deals that 'go quiet' often do so because someone important has left the buying organization but we don't now that yet.
Role changes are important trigger events for new opportunities as well as flaging current deal risk if a support moves.
Here is a list of other important features that add to the already compelling business case to invest in Sales Navigator:
- Mobile Briefings delivers enhanced mobile features that seek to predict the next best action in preparing for upcoming meetings. This syncs with your calendar and pulls the pictures and relevant data about those with whom you are about to meet... gold!
- Deal Book and 'Buyer Circle' with custom views based on how you manage pipeline and opportunities so that data is pushed back into your CRM! This enables you to proactively identify and visualize key players in both Navigator and your CRM.
- Enhanced saved searches for trigger event notifications! Make no mistake, changes and trigger events are what create the opportunities to engage new prospect with context and relevance. This will dramatically enhance sales productivity for intelligently creating sales pipeline.
- Lists within Navigator that better support sales productivity by quickly being able to scan and review lists of 'leads' (people of interest in accounts or based on role and/or keywords.
- Enhanced 'leads' (people of interest in target accounts) page and 'account' page in Navigator. More intuitive and easier navigation designed to provide additional information that improves sales productivity.
Every seller must figure-out how to deliver more sales within their limited time. Sales productivity and clarity has never been more important maidst all the distractions.
- Integration with Gmail and Outlook email to reduce dependence on InMail as the messaging platform. This is important because InMail has become 'spammy' in the eyes of some potential customers.
- Enhanced APIs enabling integration that shows SSI scores and InMail usage reporting to highlight adoption and usage of Sales Navigator to drive 'top of funnel' pipeline creation activity.
Don't forget to drive and measure use of the phone. 'Social Selling' is a false panacea if it does not include high activity levels with the phone... you've gotta create real human voice interaction as part of the strategy!
- Improved collaboration with content sharing in PointDrive. Highly valuable, especially when using InMail to share content with prospects or customers. PointDrive links can be inserted into InMail, email, websites, social posts, etc. and enable you to track opens and engagement.
- Stronger marketing and sales integration delivering highly effective targeted advertising.
Game-changing CRM integration
The Heighten acquisition by LinkedIn delivers game-changing integration to CRM eliminating double data-entry and ensuring timely accurate information about contacts, their roles, and opportunities within your CRM. The automatic syncing of data for opportunities and customers ensures that the CRM always has the latest contact and role data so that CRM can be your single source of truth. Here are the CRMs that can have near real-time LinkedIn data surfaced dynamically:
Salesforce is currently the strongest CRM with Sales Navigator integration but with Microsoft now owning LinkedIn, Dynamics will join Salesforce as preferred platforms due to their commercial momentum, user-base and strength of R&D investment.
This illustration below is a screenshot from the video that lists Sales Navigator features that have already been shipped.
lastly, SNAP (Sales Navigator Application Platform) is here which allows third-party application providers to integrate and create widgets to create a more seamless user experience.
LinkedIn Sales Navigator is an essential part of modernized selling. I'm the world's biggest advocate and I cover advanced sales navigator techniques here.
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Tony Hughes is ranked as the #1 influencer on professional selling in Asia-Pacific and is a keynote speaker and best selling author. This article was originally published on LinkedIn where you can also follow Tony's award-winning blog. Also, visit Tony's keynote speaker website at www.TonyHughes.com.au or his sales methodology website at http://www.rsvpselling.com/.