Mastering LinkedIn Navigator

LinkedIn Navigator Optimisation

LinkedIn Navigator is the most incredible tool for Salespeople, Marketing Teams, Branding Teams, CX, Project Management, Event Management, and many others. LinkedIn Navigator optimisation sits at the heart of success in the above use cases.

The primary purpose of LinkedIn Navigator is that it allows you to systematically engage with “target groups” of people, working with them through nurture, engagements, conversations, meetings and ultimately to becoming clients.

What do I mean by “target groups” of people?

The first thing you should have done when you are building out your Account-based and Outbound marketing model is your Segmentation, differentiation, and value proposition. This will help you understand and assess who you should be talking to. This is the start of all sales modelling, and without it, you are flying blind. Having this, you can now look at how you are going to target specific segments being supported by LinkedIn Navigator and CRM.

It’s important to not run away from the word Sales. You and I after all are in businesses that to survive need to bring in new clients consistently; the definition of selling for us at 1000Steps is “helping our clients do what they do better“. By getting them to bring us in at the right time to help them do this; they then become a client. We all want to make sales; we all want to drive revenue. The elephant in the room is; do you do this ethically, or are you the pushy closing type, with no follow-up and purely transactional? The following model is based on using LinkedIn Navigator and rotates around the concept of building relationships, trust and keeping a consistent engagement going with your contacts; this does not work when all you want to do is close the deal and move on.

The above is a well-known diagram that walks through the separation of the market from an inbound and outbound marketing point of view. It breaks the market into five sections and helps you understand and build your strategy around the areas you will focus on.

Section one. Three per cent of the market is actively looking for solutions.

Section two. Seven per cent are aware they have a need but are not looking for solutions.

Section three. Thirty per cent have a need but are not aware they have a problem that needs to be solved.

Section four. Thirty per cent have no need for your services at the moment.

Section five. Thirty per cent will never use you for a variety of reasons, from not liking you, bad experience, poor management, lack of investment to name a few.

We want to target Sections two and three, the 37 per cent, they have a need, and we want to be the ones to engage with them first. This is what Navigator facilitates best. It allows you to nurture, track and in conjunction with a good CRM will enable you to be front of mind for all of these contacts; ultimately, when they are looking, you will aim to be that point of contact. You will have the relationship and you are aiming to be the incumbent. Think back to the number of times you have gone to one of your contacts about one thing, and they raise another issue that leads to a project. LinkedIn Navigator and CRM are what allow you to be profoundly more effective at this process. This is the key to successful lead generation. Being front of mind with clients and building high quality trusted relationships.

Three groups of people that LinkedIn Navigator does not work for

  1. No clear idea of who your target persona is and which segments they are in. It’s crucial to understand your value proposition and the Segmentation of your marketplace. Without these, you will not know your target market, you will not have a strategy around your database, and you will, in my opinion, be wasting your money purchasing Navigator.
  2. No database to speak of. You need a minimum of 1000 contacts on LinkedIn, built out strategically before you invest in Navigator. Without connections, it’s a waste buying the system.
  3. No allocation of time to build the database and use LinkedIn Navigator. Don’t waste your money if you are not committed.

Features of LinkedIn Navigator

Negatives out of the way, below are a list of my top 20 uses for LinkedIn Navigator.

  1. Advanced search
  2. Database building
  3. List building
  4. Client relationship management support
  5. Outbound marketing
  6. Pipeline management
  7. Account-based marketing
  8. Referral management
  9. Partner management
  10. Sales team coordination of all databases
  11. Advanced messaging
  12. Multiple team collaboration within one Account
  13. Coordination of events
  14. Course management of attendees
  15. Event management of attendees
  16. Lead nurture
  17. Event invite tracking
  18. Smartlinks
  19. Short term notes
  20. CRM support

The twenty I have listed here are all things that LinkedIn Navigator can do, and our clients and ourselves use daily. As you can see, there are a lot of things you can do with the system. For the rest of the paper, I am going to use some of these and break them down using a case study based on how you would use the system for Account-based and Outbound Marketing.

Account and Outbound Marketing Model

Building out your model you need to consider 5 core parts to your model. In the next section, we will break these down and look at how you would focus on LinkedIn Navigator Optimisation to get the process working.

  1. Define your target market, segment, and persona
  2. Define and start to build your database
  3. Build out your lists and keep adding to them
  4. Track, nurture and engage
  5. Convert to meetings
  6. Keep doing all the above in balance

Stage one

Define your target market, segment, and persona

Common sense here, get this right; if you haven’t, then why not? Apologies for being blunt but you cannot run a company without defining this. Your sales teams can’t be aligned with marketing and sales support without this laid out. I am not going to cover how to do this here as it’s complex and takes a one day workshop to work out, and we are focussing on Navigator. The importance of doing this properly cannot be underestimated in getting the following model to work.

The below diagram is a typical flow of how you should be planning.

The below diagrams are typical outbound methods of reaching out, adding in Email and Mailshot campaigns and you cover most bases.

Stage two

Build your databases

You will need a database to talk to people, and LinkedIn is incredible at letting you grow this. The number of connections you can connect with weekly is 100 sent. If a week goes by and you do not connect, you cannot keep the credit of 100 for the following week, so make sure it’s done weekly. I suggest sending 80 at the start of the week, keeping 20 for people you interact with as you go through your week. Make sure all team members are building their database, especially sales and management.

Your connecting should rotate around three core groups of people

  1. You are looking at your existing client database first. Make sure the right people are connected to the right contacts within your clients. This is usually badly done and the mistake is only one person connecting with a few people. CEO should be connected to CEO, project managers to key engineers and operations to operations. The broader the spread the more useful it is when you need to reach out to someone.
  2. Send connections requests to contacts within your target accounts based on your segmentation model and target persona’s within the companies you want to engage with—Eg CFO, CTO, Project Manager, Procurement Director and others.
  3. Send connection requests to contacts within any groups, networks, events attended that are relevant to your Segmentation. As soon as you meet someone within a group that’s relevant to you, a connection should be sent, followed by a message.

This should be an ongoing process that you do week by week and that all team members do junior to senior. It’s free to build databases on LinkedIn, and all have a responsibility to do this. The more targeted and structured you are, and your team are, the more valuable the database will be.

NOTE. IT’S FREE. WHY WOULD YOU MISS THIS OPPORTUNITY?

Stage three

Build out your lists in LinkedIn Navigator

Now we get to the critical part, and this is where you can build out your lists within Navigator. There are two parts to list building in Navigator. Accounts and Individuals. Building out an individual’s list as it sounds rotates around lists of people that belong to a group. These can be existing clients, networking groups, target groups of people, partners, influencers, prospects, your pipeline contacts, target accounts, groups of people within a budget and any other group that is useful to have in one place.

Accounts rotate around the companies that you are targeting in your Account-based marketing model.

Do this in alignment with CRM, and ultimately you do it in both places as it allows you to manage the contacts in a different way as each platform has its methods of engaging with contacts. CRM facilitates the building and engagement of lists. Navigator builds lists and allows you to track and engage in a more personal nature.

See the examples below of lists we use followed by a screenshot of a list of lists.

  1. Webinar optimisation
  2. Webinar attended invite coordination
  3. Existing client tracking and management
  4. Group organisation
  5. Partners
  6. Influencers
  7. Networking group groups of names
  8. Networking events lists of names
  9. Prospects live in CRM and Navigator
  10. Target accounts

Stage four

Roles required in running who uses LinkedIn Navigator

Now we get to the area that most struggle with and is the single biggest cause of failure in most BD models. The allocation of time and who does what. We now must think about how to operate in a practical sense and use the lists effectively. To do this, you need to consider the list’s purpose, how you will use it as a single list, what time is allocated to this, and who supports it.

In the sales process, five primary roles are involved with your Outbound and Account-based Marketing. As you build out the model, each must know what they do, when they do it and have the time allocated weekly.

  1. BDA
  2. Salesperson
  3. Sales manager
  4. Sales director
  5. C-Suite

Roles that need to be done consistently by the above positions.

  1. Connecting
  2. Messaging
  3. Inviting
  4. Sharing content
  5. Assessing data
  6. Interacting
  7. Managing events
  8. Managing content
  9. Training on the use of LinkedIn Navigator processes
  10. Weekly reviews
  11. Booking meetings
  12. Updating CRM
  13. Updating LinkedIn Navigator lists

These are some of the roles that need to be addressed. As you can see, they form naturally into categories. Building databases managing databases, interactions, admin, and metrics. All the above is done sometimes by individuals, sometimes by everyone. As an example, interacting is done by all, managing events is done by the BDA, updating CRM is done by the BDA and Salesperson. To go into roles in deep detail with who does what in this process is a white paper in its own right, but in a nutshell, the BDA does the grunt work; all admin, coordination, invite sending, follow-ups on events, list building.

The Senior team, sales director, and C-Suite are responsible for the model’s subject matter expertise, direction, and management. Sales managers and salespeople are critical in interacting consistently with clients and contacts. This ball tends to get dropped by them, but they must lead by example and be more consistent.

A breakdown of the above looks like this:

BDA. Builds lists, coordinates invite contacts to the event, sends invites to create the database and manages the lists is responsible for LinkedIn Navigator Optimisation.

Salesperson and Sales Manager. Messaging, interacting, inviting, sharing content, building new contacts, and adding them to LinkedIn

Sales director. Reviews metrics, subject matter expert coordination, overview events, training, coaching and management

C-Suite. Usually are subject matter experts, messages, interacts, shares content, supports, and review metrics

NOTE. Linkedin Navigator optimisation and Outbound lead generation usually fail due to a lack of structure and no precise definition of model and roles. Everyone is busy, and lead generation usually gets left to last or even ignored. My recommendation is that every salesperson does 90 minutes on this daily each week. Usually, 8 am till 9.30 am. I do this personally and find that the bulk of it is done in 2 sessions. Then the other blocked off times is free for other admin tasks within our sales process.

Stage five

LinkedIn Navigator Optimisation allows you to convert more contacts to meetings

We are trying to make money. We are not a charity, and driving revenue is critical. Our sales teams need to be doing meetings, and they fall into two parts.

  1. With people that have shown interest in marketing content
  2. With the right persona, the right company, and the right segment, who have maybe not shown interest but we want to build out a long-term engagement with. Remember the chart. 30 per cent of companies need what you do but don’t know they have a need

We need new meetings coming into our system, whether service meetings, introductory or follow-ups. All create revenue if done correctly.

What’s the process here? It is simple. We look for an engagement that we call a ‘significant interaction’. Make sure that the interaction with them is strong enough that you sensibly can ask for a meeting. I.e. They attended a webinar, had a lengthy chat on messaging, or met at a networking event.

It now makes sense to move to a meeting with you or even a more senior person in your organisation.

These contacts get moved into a prospect list in Navigator and CRM. We do this so that they can be tracked, nurtured, and engaged with until they convert to meetings or move back to nurture.

Stage six

Spinning plates and consistency

Now is the challenging piece. You are spinning plates. A lot is going on, with all team members understanding their roles, facilitating, updating, and doing what they need to do every week to keep the outbound marketing model working.

As a Manager or Director, you need to manage the numbers. Without data and a clear dashboard, you will not be able to see what is working and what’s not working.

Examples of metrics:

Number of new connections on LinkedIn

Breakdown of where contacts came from, i.e. referrals, networking, partners, and others.

Number of new prospects in CRM and Navigator

Number of meetings booked

Number of events attended

Number of nurtures happening weekly

Number of conversations

Time allocated to process

Content created and distributed

Shares, likes and comments

Turnover of staff in existing clients

Nurture points with all groups done

Revenue from all the above and how it’s broken down

This is the Sales Director role, knowing the metrics, seeing the gaps, and fixing them through the sales manager.

LinkedIn Navigator Optimisation Summary

I have given you a high-level view of the depth within LinkedIn Navigator and then taken one use case model around Account-based marketing and Outbound marketing and given you a process, showing you how Navigator facilitates this. There are many moving parts, but if it’s done right, it’s one of the most effective and lowest cost methods of lead generation that gives you control, scale, metrics for managing the process and allows you to drive revenue in a more consistent fashion. LinkedIn Navigator sits at the heart of this and mastering it can only help your business grow.

There are other areas within LinkedIn Navigator that I have not delved into, partner management, client management, referrals, Smartlinks and others that should be explored.

Any questions about this paper, feel free to use the chat and reach out.

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