LinkedIn is rapidly becoming the new “yellow pages” that sales professionals are referencing in order to create and close sales opportunities. They are able to cross reference names from resources like Insideview and Jigsaw to be better prepared for sales calls, or they pull information directly from LinkedIn using the advanced search feature. Identifying and contacting top decision makers is now easier than ever with targeted group searches and LinkedIn messaging allowing sales operations to run more efficiently.
Like anything else in the business world LinkedIn results are entirely effort based. Creating a LinkedIn profile is only the first of many steps to effectively use social media in sales and marketing. To see tangible results from LinkedIn a minimum of an hour a day needs to be investing in cultivating relationships, joining new groups and posting relevant content in order to establish that you are an authority in your industry. From there, the sales process will be reversed and potential clients will begin to contact you with questions that could turn into sales opportunities.
Companies are realizing huge profits from utilizing LinkedIn despite the fact that LinkedIn was created as a platform for employees to connect and network with one another and not necessarily for businesses as a whole. Adaptable sales professionals have found that the best way to gain business is to network with, instead of market to, people in order to generate new leads.