Don't throw spaghetti on the wall! Learn how to do cold outreach on LinkedIn like a pro with our in-depth guide. Check out the examples and best practices to boost your sales.
LinkedIn is a goldmine for lead generation!
Since more than 900 million professionals worldwide hang out there, there’s a high chance you’ll find your target customer or prospect on the platform.
But here’s the catch—finding leads isn’t as strenuous as converting them!
If not approached right, your lead can ghost or block you on the platform, making cold outreach even more difficult.
This guide walks you through the right way of reaching out and pitching to your leads on LinkedIn. You’ll learn to form meaningful connections with them before pitching while reducing the awkwardness.
Cold outreach can be terribly painful at times. You may follow the right approach and still hear crickets.
While your approach might be right, if you’re not meeting your lead at their choice of platform, you’re still shooting arrows in the dark!
This is why omnichannel outreach is the best way to go about cold outreach, and LinkedIn is a significant part of it. When combining LinkedIn outreach with cold emailing, you’re never letting yourself out of your lead’s sight, making it more convenient for them to stay in touch with you.
For example, if you’ve sent a cold email to a lead today, you can send them a connection request with a personalized note as the next step. This way, if they’re more active on their LinkedIn than their emails, you’d never miss out on an opportunity to convert them.
Moreover, LinkedIn cold outreach is much more cost-effective than other means of sales outreach, which makes it an excellent platform for building profitable relationships.
There are two ways to start a private conversation with your leads on Linkedin:
You can only send LinkedIn messages to people you’re already connected with. To send a message to anyone other than your 1st-degree connections, include a note with your connection request.
This way, the lead will get a context about:
Inmail, on the other hand, is a premium feature only available with the paid tier of LinkedIn. They can have higher open rates (57.5%) than emails.
The best thing about Inmails is that you can send them directly to your lead without connecting with them first.
Both are effective ways of reaching your prospects. Use Inmails if you want to reach your leads without sending them a connection request and track the effectiveness of your LinkedIn messages.
Use regular LinkedIn messages if you don’t have a budget to spend on the premium package. Besides, connecting with a lead with a personalized note has one huge benefit—you can add your leads to your network, nurture them with your LinkedIn content, and stay closely in touch with them.
LinkedIn cold messaging isn’t as simple as typing in the message and clicking ‘send.’ It cannot be a generic ‘copy-paste’ template you send to multiple leads at a time—believe us, LinkedIn users already got sick of those!
You need to put in some groundwork to understand the lead you’re contacting and find the right angle to pitch.
You need to understand your target market and their needs well and, more importantly, have an impressive presence on LinkedIn.
Follow these 5 steps to prep for LinkedIn cold outreach:
The first thing a lead is very likely to do after receiving an Inmail or a connection request—they check out the sender’s profile. They see who this person is, the kind of work they do, the companies they’ve worked with, etc.
Make sure to optimize your LinkedIn profile in these areas:
You must understand your target market well and have a clear customer persona in mind. Make a list of 1st-level, 2nd-level, and 3rd-level connections that fit your customer persona profile and qualify as a lead.
Study your leads for a while:
Even when doing cold outreach, it’s always a good idea to warm up to a person and at least let them know you exist. This helps the person build trust in you and consider your proposition.
You can follow this approach (as shown in the image), starting by engaging with their posts for a few days. And by engaging, we mean liking their posts and leaving valuable or insightful comments. The idea is to get noticed by your lead for your comment and stay in their sight until you make the first move, i.e., outreach (or connection request).
This way, your cold outreach will not be so cold, and it’ll help reduce all the awkwardness of pitching someone you haven’t spoken to before.
The more extensive your network is, the better your chances of impressing your lead. Why?
When people visit your profile either after your first outreach or after you’ve engaged with their post, they also see the kind of network you’ve managed to build. They look for any mutual connections you both have or the kind of people who engage with your posts, have endorsed your skills, or left you a recommendation.
It’s a LinkedIn best practice to keep strengthening your network as you go, even when you’re not specifically doing cold outreach. After all, your network is indeed your net worth!
Once you’ve done your homework, i.e., researching the lead and have followed all the prerequisites, writing the cold outreach message becomes a cakewalk.
Including connection notes is considered a good practice to start relationships on a positive note.
For starters, it helps the lead know you care enough to research them and send a personalized note. Moreover, it enables you to stand out among other connection requests they might have received.
You can use a variety of conversation starters to break the ice in your connection note:
Inmails are an effective way of reaching your leads without worrying about connecting with them first. They appear on the regular message box of LinkedIn along with regular messages, and the recipient is always notified wherever they receive an Inmail.
Here are some things to keep in mind while sending Inmails:
This a great example of a sales Inmail message you can send after you’ve connected with someone on LinkedIn.
LinkedIn cold outreach doesn’t have to be cold, provided you’re following the right protocols and sticking with them.
If you think about it, it’s all just a matter of forming human connections on a platform managed and run by humans—use the ‘conversation starter-problem-solution’ approach while bringing your personality to the message, and you’re gold!
And remember, never do outreach with the aim of selling! Do it to provide immense value and build strong relationships.