LinkedIn Sales Prospecting with Sales Spotlights - dummies

LinkedIn Sales Prospecting with Sales Spotlights

By Perry van Beek

Sales Spotlights is a LinkedIn feature that uses LinkedIn’s data to pick out the prospects in your search who are most likely to be receptive to your communications. Sales Spotlights are located above your search results and are only available on the search results page. Clicking within each section highlights it, indicating that the results you see reflect that specific Sales Spotlight.

The first section in the list is the search’s Total Results. It’s exactly what it sounds like: all your search results, without being segmented down into the specific Sales Spotlights. Total Results always shows the highest number of results and is the default view on your search results page.

LinkedIn Sales Spotlights
The Total Results of this search is 903,600 leads!

Keep in mind that the more criteria you enter before the search and the filters you apply after the fact can greatly reduce your total results.

The Sales Spotlights that follow Total Results are broken down into these six categories:

  • Changed jobs in past 90 days
  • Leads with TeamLink intro
  • Mentioned in the news in past 30 days
  • Posted on LinkedIn in past 30 days
  • Share experiences with you
  • Leads that follow your company on LinkedIn

LinkedIn Sales Spotlight: Changed jobs

The Sales Spotlight to the right of Total Results is “Changed jobs in the past 90 days,” which displays the number of leads in this search results list that have recently made a career change in the past 90 days, whether that is changing companies, taking a new position at the same company, retiring, or becoming unemployed. This change is displayed with the words New role in blue underneath the person’s profile blurb. It also lists the lead’s new job, company, and how long the person has been in this new position.

Knowing that someone has changed jobs is helpful for a few reasons. First is the fact that this change may have made this lead a closer connection to you, whether it’s through your general LinkedIn network or your colleagues through TeamLink. It just may mean a warmer introduction for you.

The second reason this information can be helpful is if you’re already familiar with the company or even the person who previously held that position. It’s a great “in” when reaching out to introduce yourself.

The final reason why this is good information to have is because it simply gives you a reason to reach out. It’s common for people on LinkedIn to congratulate others on new positions. While you may not know the lead personally, that is a legitimate reason for reaching out.

LinkedIn Sales Spotlight new role
The words New role appear underneath the person’s profile blurb when he or she has changed jobs.

LinkedIn Sales Spotlight: TeamLink leads

The Sales Spotlight section, “Leads with TeamLink intro,” indicate how many search results are connected to you via your own team. These TeamLink leads are unique in that you have built-in warm introductions to prospects because they are already connected to your team members.

Sales Spotlight new role
The words New role appear underneath the person’s profile blurb when he or she has changed jobs.

To call out an available TeamLink connection, Sales Navigator includes a link with the words Intro via TeamLink followed by a number in parenthesis. This number represents the team members who are connected to that individual and able to give you a warm introduction. To see who those team members are, click that link, at which point those team members’ profile blurbs appear underneath the lead entry.

LinkedIn Sales Navigator Teamlink
You can easily see which search results you can connect with more easily via TeamLink.

The importance of utilizing your TeamLink connections cannot be stressed enough! It opens up your network exponentially and is essentially a foot in the door to leads you otherwise wouldn’t have access to.

LinkedIn Sales Spotlight: Mentioned in the news

Another great way to break the ice with someone is by mentioning something they’ve done that was published in the news media. This is the purpose of the Sales Spotlight section aptly titled “Mentioned in the news in past 30 days.”

These search results will contain some of the biggest names in the industry or industries you’re searching in. For example, in the image below you can see that the search results for the word social resulted in the top two profiles in the list being from some of the most well-recognized (and respected) names in the social media world.

LinkedIn Sales Navigator New Mentions
See which of your connections was recently published in the news.

This is a perfect reason to reach out to a prospect. After all, who doesn’t like to be written up in the news (for a positive reason, at least) and for your professional network to have seen it? Tell the prospect you saw the piece and add in an anecdote or two related to the subject matter to let that person know that you paid attention and actually care.

Do actually read the article and check to see if it’s the correct person. For example, there are 13 John Jones who work at IBM. Did LinkedIn pick up on the correct John Jones? Plus, actually reading the article gives you a greater chance of engaging with that person with actual insights.

LinkedIn doesn’t monitor every news outlet in the world, so just because you don’t see a mention in your feed, doesn’t mean the company isn’t making the news! It’s a good idea to supplement this filter with a general search on your favorite search engine

LinkedIn Sales Spotlight: Posted on LinkedIn within the past 30 days

There’s nothing worse than putting blood, sweat, and tears into social selling on LinkedIn and not get any bites because people just aren’t on their LinkedIn accounts that often. That’s where the “Posted on LinkedIn in past 30 days” Sales Spotlight filter comes into play.

LinkedIn Sales Navigator posted in last 30 days
These individuals are active on LinkedIn.

Gone are the days of sending out InMails or messages to people who aren’t active on the site only to have them languish, unread, in inboxes everywhere. Not to mention the fact that you may actually be wasting your limited number of monthly InMails and have nothing to show for it. With this filter, now you can see who has logged into his or her LinkedIn account in the past 30 days, making it easy for you to decide whether or not you want to take the chance on a prospect who may not be an active user of the social network.

LinkedIn Sales Spotlight: Shared experiences

There are different ways to connect with leads, and the Shared Experiences results screen is the perfect place to start collecting those ideas. As you can see below, the “Share experiences with you” Sales Spotlight notes when you have things in common with a lead, such as the LinkedIn Groups you both belong to.

Shared experiences LinkedIn Sales Spotlight
These people share experiences with me.

Being able to approach a lead with a shared experience makes you seem less like a stranger. Sure, you may start the conversation based on the commonalities Sales Navigator pointed out, but chances are, once you start communicating with the person, there will be more. People buy from people they know, like, and trust. Leverage these shared experiences to get your foot in the door.

LinkedIn Sales Spotlight: Leads that follow your company page

If you took the time to check out the lead’s profile, then obviously that person is on your radar. For Sales Navigator users with a Team-level or Enterprise-level account, the final section in the Sales Spotlight, “Leads that follow your company on LinkedIn,” shows the leads that follow your company page. That means that you and/or your company are on the radar of the leads in these results. How’s that for a foot in the door?

LinkedIn leads that follow your page
These leads are interested in what your company is up to.

How can you leverage this information? If they’re aware of your company, chances are they’re more open to a “cold call” than someone who isn’t aware of it. Knowing that the lead is already aware of your company is a great sign, and it’s one you should take advantage of!