LinkedIn’s definition of LinkedIn’s Social Selling Index (SSI) is a measure that ranks a company or individuals’ utilization of LinkedIn as a social selling tool. Based on four variables your SSI score is being calculated
- Data about your professional brand
- Data about your use of LinkedIn to find prospects
- Data about your engagement on LinkedIn
- Data about your relationships
Before I proceed with how to boost your Social Selling Index, it’s important to understand. What’s social selling and why it’s so important ?
Social selling is leveraging your social network to find the right prospects, build trusted relationships, and ultimately, achieve your sales goals / KPI.
Why is it so important ?
Days of Cold Calling are over. Buyers are more aware of you and your products than ever before, Thanks to various social media channels. It’s utterly important to know the need of your buyer, know what problem(s) your buyer is facing and learn about his/her interest. As a sales person you need to step up to Industry 4.0 level, where information is readily available.
And that’s where social selling can help B2B buyers.
This sales technique enables better sales lead generation. You can learn about your buyers need, problems and solutions he/she is looking for. It eliminates the need for awkward cold calling. When you make your first call to your prospective customer, you directly provide answers to his/her problem. Which enables you to create stronger impression and helps you to build and maintaining relationships is easier within the network. According to LinkedIn Research Center, you are 51% more likely to hit quota if your SSI score is good.
Check your Social Selling Index here: https://www.linkedin.com/sales/ssi
So, now that I got your attention, here’s how to improve your Social Selling Index (SSI) Score:
- Complete your profile: Before approaching any future customer, you must complete your profile 100% and make sure you have a professional representable profile picture.
- Add Rich Multimedia: use the rich content on your profile such as your company website, presentations, and videos etc related to your function.
- Give & Get Endorsed: Request your existing customers, colleagues to endorse you. Endorsed others, request for recommendation.
- Stay hungry and proactive: Search and find your prospective customers via LinkedIn or LinkedIn Sales Navigator tool. Don’t just send out random request. Always add personal touch why do you want to connect to that person.
- Use Filters: Use the detailed filter criteria’s of LinkedIn Sales Navigator to find the right clients. With recent updates of LinkedIn Sales Navigator, it automatically organizes the search results based on the decision maker. It’s always learning and improving.
- Regular Follow up: Stay on top of their mind. You are not the only one who is contacting them for business. So you should regularly check-up and engage with your clients.
- Daily Engagement: Spend just 15 mins per day to like and comment shared by your prospective customers.
- Share Contents: Share relevant contents, research, articles which are industry related and can add value to your peers and future customers. Establish yourself as an expert.
- Join Groups: Join groups related to your industry and actively engage in niche discussion. By sharing your view and expert opinion you can open doors to business which you have not even thought of.
- Use InMail: You can contact ANYONE in LinkedIn platform by using credible InMail service of LinkedIn and LinkedIn Sales Navigator. Reach out to your prospective customers and engage in genuine discussion.
- Grow your network: to start with, connect with your ex-colleagues, current colleagues. And if you want to connect with prospective customers, make sure you add a genuine message / introduction stating why you want to add him/her in your professional network. Use Team Link / Mutual connections to introduce you to your prospective customer. A warm introduction will take you a long way.
- Target the decision makers: Your time is valuable. So, focus on connecting with people who will make the decisions at the end of the day. In the B2B scenario, there’s up to 12 people sometime involved, before you get your golden RFQ. So, use the LinkedIn Sales Navigator to narrow down to the persons who make the final decision.
If you are new in LinkedIn and the concept of Social selling. Then, you need to spend at least 1-2 hrs just one day in the beginning to set your profile right. After that, if you regularly spend 15~20 mins daily, and follow the above tips, in no time your SSI score will boost up in no time.
Feel free to add your comments / view / your opinion, if you have better practice or examples for boosting your social selling index.