4 Ways to Boost Your SSI Score (And Why It Matters)

Learn four simple strategies to bring your SSI score higher than ever.

April 17, 2016

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When LinkedIn’s Social Selling Index (SSI) was first introduced in 2014, it codified our concept of the “four pillars” of social selling. Essentially, SSI is a numerical score that measures how well each user fulfills proper social selling practices. It’s a simple way for sales reps to measure their progress at a glance. At the same time, it allows sales leaders to highlight the link between social selling engagement and performance.

Above all, your SSI score measures your adoption of best practices for selling socially on LinkedIn. If you already maintain a complete profile, seek out decision makers, share content, and connect with prospects, then your SSI is likely respectable.

But all of our available statistics show that the better your SSI score—that is, the more engaged you are with social selling—the better your sales results will be. Which begs the question: once you’ve already established a presence on LinkedIn, how do you continue to boost your SSI score over time?

With that in mind, let’s take a closer look at some of the simplest ways that you can raise your score—and get measurable results out of your relationship with social selling.

1. Boost your professional brand with a richer, stronger presence on LinkedIn.

If you haven’t already completed your LinkedIn profile, then that’s a great place to start raising your SSI score immediately. LinkedIn’s algorithms look at profile completeness when determining your score—and potential clients care about your profile, too. Building your professional brand is one of the pillars of the social selling, and for good reason. For buyers and prospects that you haven’t met in person, trust is key in determining whether it’s worth their time to connect and build a relationship.

One major component of creating that level of trust is establishing yourself as an expert in your field. Having a thoroughly completed profile that details your experience and accomplishments is the ideal way to begin that process. From there, posting useful and relevant updates will reinforce your professional brand. As a result, your prospects will be more likely to turn to you when they need assistance—and your SSI score will shoot up, too.

2. Actively search out the right people.

LinkedIn is all about building your network of connections, but you SSI score in particular rewards your proactive searching for the right decision makers. This element of your SSI depends largely on two things.

The first is that you’re viewing accounts and seeking second- or third-degree connections—the kind that will help you to create warmer introductions with prospects and leads. Simply set aside some time to search for promising new prospects. Experiment with advanced search to find more targeted results. You should also consider checking who has viewed your profile and making sure to engage with them.

The second important consideration for SSI score is to understand that you should be specifically looking for influencers and decision makers. Your connections with lower-level employees may help you, but the most important thing is to find ways to connect yourself with senior level executives—people who can make waves for you when the time comes.

3. Join groups, engage with relevant industry insights, and start sharing more.

Many social sellers find that posting updates and sharing content on LinkedIn is one of the most enjoyable parts of the platform. In fact, if you’re posting content that’s interesting to you, chances are that it’s interesting to your prospects and leads, too. Just make sure that the content is relevant, always positioning you as an expert who’s up-to-date on the latest developments in your industry.

Joining groups will also help you to connect with the right people on LinkedIn. Once you’ve developed the habit, sharing and discussing professional content with LinkedIn can be just as fun as sharing personal content on other social media platforms. Just remember to keep the updates coming regularly so that clients can see your consistency—it will help your score as well.

4. Build trusted relationships by making new connections and always looking to add value to your relationships.

If you’ve been in sales for any length of time, you already understand the importance of building trusted relationships with your clients face-to-face. As it turns out, all of the same principles apply to LinkedIn—and SSI score measures them for you.

Many of the early statistics regarding social selling point to the importance of referrals. In other words, as in other areas of the business world, it’s all about knowing the right people. In fact, your SSI score considers both your connections on LinkedIn and the acceptance rate of your connection requests. That means that it’s best to reach out as much as possible to form new connections, but always with an eye to how each connection fits into your existing network. Don’t spam requests at cold contacts without any prior engagement—a lower acceptance rate will hurt your SSI.

As with all engagement on the LinkedIn platform, the key thing to remember is adding value. Instead of prioritizing the sale, look to offer relevant solutions to your clients so that they’ll think of you in the future—and recommend your services to others.

Remember that your SSI score is just a number that indicates your engagement with social selling practices—it’s your results that really matter in the end. With that in mind, when you make an effort to be a better social seller, your SSI score will naturally rise as a result.

Learn more social selling best practices with The Sales Rep’s Checklist—download it here for free.