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Can You Leverage LinkedIn for a Multi-Million Dollar Sales Pipeline?

An image of Chitra Singh with the words "Naam toh suna hoga?", meaning "You must have heard of me"

Often, when people ask me how I introduce myself, I respond jokingly with, 'Chitra Singh, naam toh suna hoga?'—a playful reference from a Bollywood film.

It always gets a laugh, and for those who don’t know me, it’s a quick way to break the ice.

But most people already know me as the Sales mentor from LinkedIn!

Building a personal brand and driving sales on LinkedIn isn't just for small-time coaches or those struggling for business. In fact, it can be a game-changer for even the largest enterprises.

The Microsoft Case Study

Microsoft India aimed to influence key decision-makers across the marketing funnel and drive a significant sales pipeline. They needed a strategy that would engage buyers effectively, considering the diverse needs and interests of their target audience.

They implemented a comprehensive Brand-to-Demand strategy on LinkedIn from October 2021 to June 2023. The campaign focused on:

  • Creating thoughtful content with localised imagery.

  • Highlighting customer value within the context of the economic environment.

  • Maintaining consistency and continuity in messaging through always-on engagement.

  • Regular monitoring and optimization of content.

They used a mix of ad formats, including Sponsored Content and Dynamic Ads, to reach and engage their audience effectively.

Results: The campaign achieved outstanding results:

  • Reached 3.8 million individuals and 250,000+ organisations.

  • Acquired 8,000+ new contacts, including 2,400 decision-makers.

  • Achieved a video view-through rate (VTR) 1.5X to 2X above the platform average, and a 25% cost efficiency on contact acquisition.

Microsoft India's strategic collaboration with LinkedIn led to a 25% reduction in cost per lead, deeper penetration within target accounts, and a substantial increase in decision-maker contacts. This success showcases how LinkedIn can be leveraged for significant brand and sales growth in the Indian market

Intrigued? You're in luck. 

Let's dive into my five-part guide to selling on LinkedIn, where I'll share the key strategies and insights to help you harness the full potential of this platform:

1. Understanding the KDMs (Key Decision Makers) in B2B Sales

Did you know that on average, there are 6-10 stakeholders involved in a B2B purchase decision? A deep understanding of the KDMs (Key Decision Makers) can revolutionise your sales strategy. 

Each one of them has different concerns. Identifying, engaging, and tailoring your approach can dramatically increase your chances of closing a deal!

Here Is a 5-Step Plan for Getting it Right! 

1️⃣ Map Out the Key Decision Makers. This usually includes:

🔸 The Initiator. The person who first identifies the need for a new solution.

🔸 The User. Those who will use the product or service.

🔸 The Influencer. Individuals who influence the decision with their knowledge or opinions.

🔸 The Buyer. The person responsible for the final purchase.

🔸 The Approver. The one who gives the final sign-off.

🔸 The Gatekeeper. Those who control access to the decision-makers.

2️⃣ Research and Understand Each KDM’s Roles, Concerns and Priorities: 

🔸 The Initiator may focus on innovation and new solutions.

🔸 The User will be concerned with the ease of use and how it saves them time/effort.

🔸 The Influencer might look at industry trends and best practices.

🔸 The Buyer will focus on cost and budget considerations.

🔸 The Approver is likely concerned with overall impact and ROI.

🔸 The Gatekeeper will want to ensure that the process is efficient and manageable.

3️⃣ Customise your messaging and interactions for each stakeholder:

🔸 Address the Initiator’s desire for new and improved solutions with examples of innovation.

🔸 Showcase how the User’s time will be saved and experience will be enhanced and simplified.

🔸 Provide the Influencer with data, case studies, and industry insights.

🔸 Discuss business impact, ease of implementation and financial benefits with the Buyer.

🔸 Highlight long-term ROI and strategic benefits for the Approver.

🔸 Ensure the Gatekeeper is kept in the loop and feels heard and valued. 

4️⃣ Build consensus by addressing their specific concerns and demonstrating how your solution benefits the entire organisation. 

Use tailored content, presentations, and meetings to ensure all voices are heard and aligned.

5️⃣ Keep the lines of communication open a4nd transparent. Regular updates and follow-ups with each KDM ensure that everyone is informed and any concerns are promptly addressed.

Is mapping multiple customer personas in a B2B Sales confusing and overwhelming you? 

To make this easier, get my FREE ICP template:

2. Leveraging LinkedIn Content to Shorten Sales Cycles

Do you know who you silent salesperson is? 

The one who can make sure your prospects are already convinced of your product's value before your first conversation?

That’s the power of high-quality LinkedIn content.

Did you know that prospects are 75% through their buying journey before they ever reach out to sales? 

By turning LinkedIn into your silent salesperson and providing valuable content, you can significantly shorten the sales cycle.

How do you do it? Here is what worked for me: 

🎯 Create a 'Content Roadmap’. 

Design a series of posts that build upon each other, taking your audience on a journey from awareness to decision. Each piece of content should lead naturally to the next, keeping your prospects engaged and moving forward.

 ⭐️ Example: Start with a post about a common industry pain point, follow up with a success story, then a how-to guide, and finally, a case study showing measurable results.

🎯Start Social Listening. 

Instead of just posting content, actively listen to what your audience is saying in comments, groups, and other forums. Use these insights to tailor your content to address real-time concerns and questions.

 ⭐️ Example: Notice a recurring question about data security in your industry? Create a detailed post addressing this concern with actionable advice and expert insights.

🎯 Host Live Sessions and Workshops.

Go beyond static posts and host LinkedIn Live sessions where you can interact with your audience in real time. Host workshops and give your LinkedIn audience access. 

Then use these sessions to answer questions, share deep dives into specific topics, and showcase live demos of your product or services. 

⭐️ Example: Announce a LinkedIn Live session about "Top 5 Data Management Challenges and How to Overcome Them" and engage with your audience directly.

🎯Leverage User-Generated Content.

Encourage your clients to share their experiences and tag your company in their posts. This not only provides authentic testimonials but also expands your reach through their networks.

 ⭐️ Example: Run a campaign asking clients to share a photo or story about how your product solved a problem for them, offering a small incentive for participation.

🎯 Showcase Case Studies.

Highlight success stories from your existing clients. Demonstrate how your product or service has solved real-world problems and delivered tangible results.

 ⭐️ Example: "Discover how we helped our client reduce operational costs by 30% with our innovative solution. Read the full case study here.”

After three years of trial and error, I’m now consistently getting at least one lead every other day, just by leveraging LinkedIn content strategically and creatively. 

These tips can help you warm up leads, address their pain points, and move them further along the buying journey before your sales team even steps in. 

3. The Power of Personal Branding in B2B Sales

Would You Rather Buy from a Stranger or a Trusted Advisor? 

Let’s say you’re about to make a big purchase decision. 

Who would you trust more? 

A salesperson pushing their product, or a thought leader who has consistently provided valuable insights and solutions?

🤔 The Stats Speak for Themselves 

Over 80% of high-performing sellers excel in social selling.

82% of buyers review at least 5 pieces of content from the winning vendor before deciding.

Here Are Some Insights for Building Your Personal Brand

🌟 Narrative Over Numbers.

Share compelling stories, not just statistics. Your journey and the impact you’ve had on clients create emotional connections, making your insights memorable.

🌟 Engage with Purpose. 

Lead discussions by posing thought-provoking questions and challenging conventional wisdom. Introduce innovative ideas that position you as a thought leader shaping industry conversations.

🌟 Micro-Influence

Cultivate relationships within niche communities. Being a big fish in a small pond can have a significant impact. Your influence in these communities drives highly targeted engagement.

🌟 Consistent Authenticity

Authenticity isn’t a one-time act; it’s a consistent behaviour. Regularly share your journey, including challenges and learnings. Authenticity builds trust and loyalty among your audience.

The digital marketplace is crowded. Your brand needs to stand out. 

Because buyers don’t just buy products; they buy into people they trust and respect.

4. Utilising LinkedIn Analytics for Sales Strategy

What if you could pinpoint the exact content that sparks your audience's interest, post at the most engaging times, and even turn your competitors’ followers into your own?

Three years ago, I founded SalesWomentoring. Everything I needed—mentors, speakers, even my first few members—I found through LinkedIn connections. 

My following skyrocketed from 800 to over 17,000. One of my posts even reached over 300,000 people! 

But despite the likes and viral posts, something crucial was missing: revenue. 

I had quantity, but not quality.

I realised that vanity metrics weren’t paying the bills. So, I reoriented my approach, focusing on meaningful engagement and actual results. 

Now, my following grows slowly but steadily, and while I may not get as many views or likes, the revenue speaks for itself. I'm finally attracting paying corporate clients through my LinkedIn content!

Sounds incredible, right?

💡 Here’s the game-changer: Using LinkedIn Analytics for your Sales Strategy 

73% of B2B marketers use LinkedIn for lead generation - but the real magic happens when you dive into the analytics. Those who do see a staggering 20% higher conversion rate. 🤯

Want to know how you can harness this power? Get familiar with measuring three kinds of metrics. 

1️⃣ Follower Metrics can help you to: 

🔸 Understand who is reading your post 

Discover which posts captivate your audience and outperform the rest 

2️⃣ Use Visitor Metrics to

🔸 Understand whether they are taking any action after reading your post, such as visiting your website 

🔸 Know how they are accessing your website, from mobile or desktop, so you can optimise your website 

3️⃣ And finally, Competitor Metrics:

🔸 Helps you to understand trending posts, trending topics, content which your audience likes, the hashtags and keywords they use and the engagement they attract. It gives you essential clues when creating your content strategy. 

It’s time to transform data into your sales strategy’s secret weapon.

5. Account-Based Marketing (ABM) with LinkedIn

Companies using ABM see a 97% higher ROI than traditional marketing methods! 

What is Account-Based Marketing (ABM) Anyway? 

It is a highly focused business strategy in which you target key accounts that are of the highest value to your business.

By focusing your marketing efforts on high-value accounts and personalising your outreach, you can create a more efficient and effective sales process. 

And guess what? Using LinkedIn’s targeting features can significantly enhance your ABM efforts!

Here is how to do it: 

1️⃣ Start by making a list of your top 100 Wishlist accounts

These are the companies that would most benefit from your product or service and have the potential to bring significant value to your business. Use LinkedIn’s search and filter options to find key decision-makers within these organisations.

💡Example: If you're selling enterprise software, your target accounts might include large tech firms. Use LinkedIn to filter by industry, company size, and job title to pinpoint the right contacts.

2️⃣ Personalise Your Outreach 

Research your target accounts thoroughly to understand their needs, challenges, and goals. Craft messages that speak directly to these points, demonstrating how your solution can help them achieve their objectives.

The first InMail can never talk about your solution - you should find something in common with them. Either a city, college or interest, and engage with them. 

💡Example: Instead of a generic message, send a LinkedIn InMail that starts with a personalised note like, “Hi Chitra, I noticed your company is expanding its AI capabilities. Our solution has helped similar companies streamline their AI projects, and I believe it could benefit your team as well.”

4️⃣ Use LinkedIn Ads to create campaigns targeting your high-value accounts. You can also use Sponsored Content and InMail to directly reach decision-makers.

💡Example: Run a LinkedIn Ad campaign targeting job titles like ‘CTO’ and ‘Head of IT’ in your identified companies, showcasing a case study or a whitepaper relevant to their industry.

4️⃣ Position yourself as a thought leader by sharing valuable content that addresses the pain points of your target accounts. Regularly publish posts, articles, and updates that provide insights and solutions relevant to their industry.

💡Example: Post an article on LinkedIn about the latest trends in AI implementation. If it is appropriate and you have engaged with them before, sparingly tag your target accounts and encouraging their decision-makers to engage with your content.

5️⃣ Track the performance of your ABM campaigns using LinkedIn’s analytics tools. Measure engagement rates, click-through rates, and conversion metrics to understand what’s working and what needs improvement. Continuously refine your approach based on these insights.

💡Example: If you notice that InMails are generating higher engagement than Sponsored Content, adjust your strategy to allocate more resources to personalised messages.

LinkedIn’s targeting features can significantly enhance your ABM efforts, making your marketing more precise and effective. 

Adopting a strategic, personalised approach has helped me to drive higher engagement and get better results from high-value accounts.

To Summarise

Building a personal brand and driving sales on LinkedIn is not just for small businesses and startups; it’s a powerful tool that can transform the sales strategies of even the largest enterprises. Microsoft India’s success showcases how LinkedIn can be leveraged for significant brand and sales growth. By identifying key decision-makers, creating high-quality content, building a strong personal brand, utilising LinkedIn analytics, and adopting account-based marketing, you can unlock LinkedIn’s full potential.

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