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Linkedin for B2B Marketing

Discussion in 'General Marketing' started by jrbiz, Oct 22, 2019.

  1. #1
    There is no doubt that linkedin is the social media platform for business professionals. I have been on it since around the year 2000 and have seen it grow in membership and influence over the past two decades. I have over 1,400 connections (many of which are recruiters and/or people that I do not personally know.) I am regularly asked to connect with people who are obviously looking to sell me something and should I choose to accept their invitation, it is always followed by a sales pitch (that I have never really been interested in.)
    SEMrush
    I have also had my marketing teams over the years, try posting and advertising to try to generate our own leads with no real success. So, I thought that it might be interesting to start a thread to discuss successful (or at least novel) approaches to doing business on linkedin. Let us know what has worked or what hasn't worked for you on this B2B platform.
     
    jrbiz, Oct 22, 2019 IP
    SEMrush
  2. qwikad.com

    qwikad.com Illustrious Member Affiliate Manager

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    #2
    Just the other day I was looking through a discussion on Linkedin where some were complaining that Linkedin has become just another social media platform, meaning users post videos, memes and posts unrelated to b2b, b2c or any other business interactions. Yet, some of those users are now having greater following and influence. You know, the influencers. And if you ask me, this is the current state and the future of Linkedin. People have an incessant desire to be entertained. Stroking everyone's egos is the name of the game today. If you can capitalize on that, you will have an engaged audience, respect and as a result sales.
     
    qwikad.com, Oct 22, 2019 IP
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  3. jrbiz

    jrbiz Illustrious Member

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    #3
    Interesting observations, as always. Would like to explore them a bit more.

    Let's say my sales team and I are trying to find prospects in a specific B2B industry niche and, ultimately, close them on six- or seven-figure deals for a product or service. If my marketing team were to "engineer" someone in the company (a senior manager, probably) becoming an lnfluencer with a significant following, do you think that would open doors for him with high value prospects that we find and have him to reach out to? Or would they have to have been following this person already? I guess I am trying to understand how being an Influencer will lead to sales in the B2B world if you are trying to sell big ticket items to a very small and focused market.
     
    jrbiz, Oct 22, 2019 IP
  4. qwikad.com

    qwikad.com Illustrious Member Affiliate Manager

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    #4
    Yours is a tough one. Still, imagine if someone like Gary Vaynerchuk or Jon Steinberg makes a mention of your business in one of their video clips. Their posts are seen by hundreds of thousands. You'd get a chain reaction from it, for sure. I just Googled something (maybe you already saw it), seems to be right to the point: https://www.jeffbullas.com/micro-influencers-increase-sales-find/
     
    qwikad.com, Oct 22, 2019 IP
  5. JoeSpirit

    JoeSpirit Active Member

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    #5
    Interesting article. The way I read it the more specialized or niche-specific the influencer is the more influence he'll have toward promoting a specific product. Seems to me that applies no matter how high-ticket the product is.

    It seems to me that if the high-value prospects check social media for information on your senior manager (as suggested in the article) and find that he is an influencer then the conversion rate would be higher.

    If they don't perceive that he is an influencer I think the fact would have no influence on the sale.
     
    JoeSpirit, Oct 23, 2019 IP
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  6. jrbiz

    jrbiz Illustrious Member

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    #6
    I think this is part of "squishiness" of this potential marketing approach. It is the question of whether or not these high value prospects utilize social media for their professional development (beyond just job hunting or being entertained.) I have not seen much from linkedin, in this regard, but I am open to learning what I may be missing.
     
    jrbiz, Oct 23, 2019 IP
  7. JoeSpirit

    JoeSpirit Active Member

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    #7
    I have an interest in learning marketing concepts for linkedin too. I've had an account for years but haven't done much with it.
     
    JoeSpirit, Oct 23, 2019 IP
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  8. jrbiz

    jrbiz Illustrious Member

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    #8
    LOL, I joined linkedin in either 1999 or 2000 at the urging of a neighbor who was an IT professor. It was just beyond beta stage at that point. I mostly ignored my membership for years and then, about 12 years ago, I discovered that there were a ton of recruiters on it and I started connecting with hundreds of them. Never really got a job from that effort, but you never know. Now, my teams and I use it to research prospects and companies, for the most part.

    BTW, I buy my salespeople the $300 annual Career Search Premium membership because it is much cheaper than the $800 Business Premium membership and offers just about all of the same benefits. I love to see the look on the Finance people's faces when they see me approving a Career Search membership for my team. ;)
     
    jrbiz, Oct 23, 2019 IP
  9. JoeSpirit

    JoeSpirit Active Member

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    #9
    I don't even remember when I joined.

    I imagine that would raise some eyebrows in personnel too.
     
    JoeSpirit, Oct 24, 2019 IP
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  10. jrbiz

    jrbiz Illustrious Member

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    #10
    Absolutely, until I show them the feature comparison between the two options and the differential in cost. Then, all is good. ;)
     
    jrbiz, Oct 24, 2019 IP
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  11. monorattlesnake

    monorattlesnake Greenhorn

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    #11
    In my opinion, you have to provide immense value to be seen on LinkedIn. One way to do this is to post articles that get read, shared and commented. The other way is to inject yourself in other people's conversations with adding incredible value - and I think this is the best one to get new leads.
    You could also try LinkedIn advertising, which is notoriously known for its high prices, but on the other hand you can specifically target the person you need in the companies you're searching for.
     
    monorattlesnake, Nov 13, 2019 IP
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  12. CarlsonGuo

    CarlsonGuo Peon

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    #12
    i have tried such marketing way for 3 months then i quit. i know it could be too short for that decision. But i have found the connections i have created are not always online, let's say once per 2 weeks in average. And my expereince told me for the leads who are either way not a owner of the business or not working for a company less than 20 people maybe, they don't really like to be "disturbed" with direct marketing questions, simple reason for that is people takes that as social media not a business media. Of course, if you do it in a way like creating values publicly (articles/valuable posts/etc), then it is a long run to go because it will be like an B2C slef-marketing way. But if this is the case, why not try even bigger platform to be an influencer which have much more members / direct leads ? Forum will be a perfect example of direct leads, and then Twitter/FB/Other local social media (your targeting locations) will be examples for bigger social platform.That is how my decision was made.
     
    CarlsonGuo, Nov 16, 2019 IP
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  13. jrbiz

    jrbiz Illustrious Member

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    #13
    So, I have recently joined a company that is going to offer a SaaS solution for the IoT market early next year. It will be a solution for engineers/engineering managers at companies that manufacturer IoT devices. We are right now discussing our initial lead generation program which should be composed to multiple marketing campaigns. We may try a linkedin advertising campaign to target this small niche and, if we do, I will report back with results. Probably will also do AdWords. I am even thinking of a direct mail campaign (retro marketing.)
     
    jrbiz, Nov 16, 2019 IP
  14. CarlsonGuo

    CarlsonGuo Peon

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    #14
    IoT products ? Let me know more details about your company pls, i have interests on this niches, and actually i have some projects which are related with IoT.
     
    CarlsonGuo, Nov 16, 2019 IP
  15. JoeSpirit

    JoeSpirit Active Member

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    #15
    If you do I'll be interested in those results.

    I suspect that linkedin and Twitter don't have the marketing power that they once had although my experience is rather small.
     
    JoeSpirit, Nov 17, 2019 IP
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  16. Mike2718

    Mike2718 Greenhorn

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    #16
    I think when someone contacts you first on LinkedIn and then you trying to sell him something in response, it can be more effective then regular sales. Just an idea..
     
    Mike2718, Nov 20, 2019 IP
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  17. jrbiz

    jrbiz Illustrious Member

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    #17
    So, I think what you are saying is that it is best to advertise on linkedin to get people to reach out to you, versus directly reaching out people on linkedin. I agree, for sure, as I do not care for all of the unsolicited invites to connect that I get almost daily now.
     
    jrbiz, Nov 20, 2019 IP
  18. davilama2682

    davilama2682 Greenhorn

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    #18
    I just joined Linkedin - and I noticed that I got first message after I provided my interests on the platform. It was obviously a sponsored ad disguised in the the form a private message. It was recruiting for a college that I live no where near and was very impersonal. I did not like it. There was not even any contact information for who had "supposedly" sent me this "message." I did not join Linkedin to try to be sold things to or bothered with unsolicited advertisements for services/products I did not request nor plan on using. That was first message. Then my second message was from Linkedin itself offering me a free trial of their premium service. That second message of course has a picture of someone's face and a name associated with it. Like damn. Let me learn the platform first, establish a reputation on there. Jeez. Its uncanny how fast someone will try to sell you something - whether you are looking to buy or not!
     
    davilama2682, Nov 20, 2019 IP
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  19. jrbiz

    jrbiz Illustrious Member

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    #19
    As I mentioned in my original post, I have been on linkedin for almost 20 years, now. It has been interesting to watch it change over this time period. Right now, it seems to be in the throes of commercialization and monetization as evidenced by what you experienced as a new member. I suppose that it will survive this evolution, but part of question revolves around the current status of linkedin (where I think that members are getting clobbered with advertising, messaging, etc.) and whether, therefore, it is a viable advertising platform for a niche B2B campaign.
     
    jrbiz, Nov 21, 2019 IP
  20. JoeSpirit

    JoeSpirit Active Member

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    #20
    That clobbering isn't just at linkedin either. Seems like even the big marketers slam you with product pitches.

    I agree with Mike that we need to let the potential client decide if he wants to contact us.

    I'm all for giving value first and letting them figure out if I'm someone they want to do business with. The barrage of adverting without value is tiring and wastes too much time. I've gotten to the point where once I identify someone who does little but pitch me I don't even open their messages unless I'm headed straight for the unsubscribe button.

    These days I only glance at linkedin long enough to see if there's something new waiting and I don't spend long on that if I don't immediately see something of interest.
     
    JoeSpirit, Nov 21, 2019 IP