14 Reasons LinkedIn Loves Modern Sellers

February 13, 2020

Team of Professionals Celebrating Together

Salespeople sometimes get a bad rap.

If you’re reading this, you don’t need me to tell you that. You’ve probably come across all the classic stereotypes and caricatures. There are certain preconceptions that come with the territory.

However, at LinkedIn we love salespeople. We’re grateful for sales professionals of all kinds, but especially those who model themselves under the principles of modern selling, directly countering those negative connotations traditionally associated with the discipline.

Modern selling is about demonstrating genuine investment in the prospects and customers you work with. It’s about coming prepared, and putting the relationship ahead of the sale. In short, it’s about showing the love, and earning someone’s attention and consideration in turn.

To honor those who are paving the way in this new era of selling, here during this warm and fuzzy time in the middle of February, we thought we’d share some of the reasons our team at LinkedIn (and buyers across the business spectrum) appreciates you, and how we hope to show it over the rest of the year.  

14 Reasons LinkedIn Loves Modern Sellers ❤️

From helpfulness to good intentions to collaborative leanings and more, these are the attributes coloring our affinity for modern sellers, and their game-changing impact.

1. Modern sellers want to help.

This is the primary focus in a modern selling mindset. These reps look at each engagement as an opportunity to assist someone. Making a sale is an important but secondary priority. The mindset driving these altruistic pros is, “How can I be helpful for this person who’s facing a tough decision or information overload?” The world could use more of that mindset.

2. Modern sellers are relationship-builders.

Being helpful is the first step toward this hopeful outcome. Strong relationships with buyers are the lifeblood of modern selling success: they build trust, move conversations forward, and set the stage for upsells and referrals. As the overall landscape continues to shift, building valuable relationships will never go out of style.

3. Modern sellers make life easier for buyers.

Wading through the sea of options and information while facing high-stakes business decisions, buyers face major challenges these days. To ease the burden, many modern sellers are adopting a sense-making approach, where the goal is simply to help buyers navigate their journey and clearly understand the pertinent info. 

4. Modern sellers preserve the human element in an increasingly digitized sales process.

At a time where self-serve ecommerce and on-demand tools are gaining prominence, modern sellers who take a helpful and relationship-based approach serve as powerful reminders that a human presence in the sales process matters. No bot will ever replicate the empathy and experience of a salesperson who cares. In fact, savvy reps are leveraging enablement technology to strengthen the human touch.

5. Modern sellers are informed.

Buyers are short on time. Answering basic questions about their business circumstances and pain points is not generally something they appreciate. So we love that modern sellers are becoming increasingly adept at researching and understanding a prospect’s account before the first outreach. 

6. Modern sellers are teammates and collaborators.

Sales was once viewed as a solo endeavor, with reps going it alone and often competing against one another even internally. That dynamic is fading as the value of working together becomes unignorable.  Tapping into the expertise and networks of your colleagues can dramatically improve results, which is why team collaboration has grown as a focus for modern selling. 

7. Modern sellers deliver useful content at the right time.

On the complex path to making a purchase, buyers want relevant and insightful content that gets to the point. Modern sellers are continually getting better at delivering on this.  They arm themselves with independent and objective resources for the earlier stages of the buyer journey, and persuasive case studies and testimonials for the latter stages — always tailored to the context, to the person and to the company they’re engaging. That’s always a recipe for good vibes. 

8. Modern sellers are savvy detectives.

They know where to find the key details. Whether it’s gathering important intel from a prospect’s LinkedIn profile, or noticing an alert that prompts timely outreach, or discovering an opportunity for a warm introduction via TeamLink, these pros are masters of digital sleuthing. Who doesn’t love a great detective? (And what buyer doesn’t appreciate a seller who’s done their research?)

9. Modern sellers are abandoning cold calling and spammy outreach.

What good does it do? The staggeringly low success rates for cold outreach, combined with the negative reactions this technique can generate, have thankfully led to a rapid decline in its usage. That isn’t to say prospect calling is completely on the outs, but it’s getting warmer and there are better ways to go about it

10. Modern sellers are data mavens.

The profession is truly beginning to tap the awesome power of sales data. When fully realized, this information can guide strategies and reveal hidden opportunities to improve performance and process. For our part, we try to fuel a data-minded approach with our annual State of Sales report (2020 edition coming soon!).

11. Modern sellers unlock the full potential of Sales Navigator.

Naturally, we love our flagship Sales Navigator platform, which is designed to fully support a modern selling framework based on the cornerstones we’ve been discussing. So it brings us great joy to see so many of today’s sales teams using its features to target, understand, and engage with prospects in a scalably sophisticated way. Not only that, but your feedback helps us continually refine Sales Navigator to make it more useful.

12. Modern sellers build bridges with marketing. 

When aligned, sales and marketing are the ultimate power couple. Developing a cohesive relationship between these two units has historically been tricky, but the growing receptiveness on both ends has been unmistakable in recent years. A symbiotic partnership with marketing can improve basically every aspect of a modern selling operation, from research to data analysis to content and more.

13. Modern sellers are winning.

A recent report from Forrester shares that “modern sellers create 45% more opportunities and are 51% more likely to achieve quota” than those who remain mired in outdated philosophies. The bottom line is that keeping an open mind about new strategies and techniques will give any seller a leg up. 

14. Modern sellers make us feel optimistic about the future of sales.

You’ve all seen the statistics around the diminishing viability of the sales rep’s role in this technology-driven environment. Projections that suggest a certain percentage of jobs will disappear in the next several years are obviously disturbing. But the qualities of modern sellers that we’ve covered today make us feel deeply confident about the enduring indispensability of human beings in the sales process going forward. 

Spread the Love with Modern Sales

At the end of the day, modern sales aims to infuse the profession with greater warmth and sincerity, in a digital setting that can often encourage the opposite effects. We love to see it, and we’re grateful for every sales pro who’s helping lead the charge. 

Our team hopes to continue providing data, insights, and guidance that will help you cultivate such an approach. You can subscribe to the LinkedIn Sales Blog to be sure you never miss out.