Sync Your Sales Outreach with These 10 Trigger Events on LinkedIn

Identifying and reacting to sales triggers is key to successful sales prospect engagement. Here are 10 sales trigger events to watch for on LinkedIn.

July 6, 2017

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Cold outreach has no place in the world of digital sales. Inevitably, selling works better when you can point to a reason for approaching prospective buyers.

Sometimes this is the result of a direct action sales prospects have taken to qualify themselves as an interested party. Other times, the relationship between action and interest may be less clear. If you pay close attention to how your connections behave on LinkedIn, though, you’ll soon realize that your LinkedIn account is a window into a range of potential sales triggers you can use to identify potential buyers and initiate warm outreach.

There are literally dozens of LinkedIn sales triggers worth your consideration, but we’ve boiled it down to the 10 of the most prolific social actions. Note that these actions aren’t always indicative of a buying signal, but they’re always worth exploring for opportunity.

10. You Get Endorsed for a Skill

This likely comes from a current or former boss, co-worker, or client. Endorsements from within your company won’t help you out in terms of identifying prospects, but past associates and clients could signal an opportunity to reconnect.

A former client of yours may have a new need for the solutions you sell. Similarly, a former co-worker may have entered a new position where your company’s offerings could help their business grow. If you’re getting endorsed, you can rest assured that the individual already has some confidence in your abilities, so it makes sense to reach out via a LinkedIn message to see if there’s any way you could be of service. See who your endorser is connected to, who they’re engaging with, etc. These are all potential prospects. Endorsements are easy to track—the platform will notify you when you receive them.

9. Responding to Group Threads and Conversations

If you’re a member in LinkedIn groups related to your profession and your company’s industry, you will regularly see conversations relevant to what your company offers. Keep an eye on these conversations and look out for users seeking solutions that you might be able to offer.

You could respond directly in the thread to put your expertise on display for other users facing similar problems. Or, if you prefer a stealthier approach, you can send a private message.

8. Receiving an InMail or Direct Message

Since InMail credits come in limited quantities, receiving one is a big deal—it means that user has significant interest in connecting with you. Even if this person is trying to sell you something, there may be an opportunity for a mutually beneficial relationship. Capitalize on this opportunity by crafting a thoughtful response that takes the conversation to the next level.

Don’t just copy and paste your sales copy into this message. Check out the sender’s background and write a personalized message that speaks directly to their professional position and addresses each point of the original message. Insincere messages are easy to spot, and they’re a major turn-off.

7. Suggestions in “People You May Know”

When you identify a prospect with whom you share a connection, you can use this mutual relationship to greatly improve your chances of starting a conversation. In fact, B2B buyers are 5x more likely to engage when the outreach is through a mutual connection.

Consider asking your mutual connection to introduce the two of you. The prospect may not have taken any direct action, but if their background is relevant and you have common connections, it’s worth reaching out.

6. Recommendations Offered and Received

Soliciting recommendations is important to growing your credibility on LinkedIn. When you’re reaching out to past employers, clients, and co-workers, it never hurts to ask if they have any needs you might be able to help with.

The same is true for when recommendations are received. Whenever you’re interacting with people who view you favorably, take the opportunity to reassert your value and your potential to help.

5. Engagement with Shared Content

Any engagement with content you have shared is worth examining for potential leads. This goes for both LinkedIn blog posts, links to offsite content, and other updates and activity on LinkedIn. When people like, share, or comment on things you have posted, check out their profiles to see if they fit the background of your target prospect.

It never hurts to respond to comments and to thank them for their engagement. Even if those users don’t have a need for you now, you can build up your reputation so that they’ll think of you when a need does arise.

4. Contact Mentioned in News

Everyone loves attention. When your contact appears in an article, it doesn’t hurt to share that article, comment on their appearance, or reach out privately. People appearing in news online expect to receive that engagement, so you don’t have to worry about coming off as overbearing.

Depending on the context of their news appearance, you might be able to uncover angles worth exploring as you determine whether a sales opportunity might materialize. At the very least, it’s a good idea to maintain relations with socially active, highly visible professionals.

3. Contact Reveals a Job Change

This is one of the best opportunities to reconnect with an old associate. When one of your LinkedIn connections takes a new job, every B2B salesperson should check out their role and reach out.

Sometimes, these professionals will be hired with the goal of making swift, radical changes. Other times, it will take time for them to develop a blueprint for innovation. Either way, sales teams shouldn’t sleep on this sales trigger—throw your hat into the ring at the earliest opportunity.

2. Invitations to Connect

An invitation to connect is about as blatant a signal as you can get. The majority of LinkedIn users want to build a network of thoughtful connections that can help them in their professional lives. If you receive an invitation to connect, don’t dismiss the opportunity: Send a friendly message thanking them for the invitation, and ask the user how you can be of value to them.

The instant you accept the connection, you also bring on a new group of second-degree connections with at least one connection in common. 

1. Profile Views

Views of your profile might not be a direct form of engagement, but they often represent the behaviors of individuals conducting research online. Recruiters, sales teams, HR managers, and other business professionals are likely viewing your profile either in consideration of you as a job candidate, or because of your role with your company.

Meanwhile, the people viewing your profile know that their identity will be known to you. Don’t pretend like you didn’t see it: Treat this profile view as a sales trigger. Do some research to qualify the opportunity (or future opportunities), and if it makes sense, reach out.

Sales prospecting can be much more bountiful when you know which sales triggers to hold in high regard. Use this list to capture potential leads and referral partners who might otherwise slip through the cracks. Get creative when investing time on LinkedIn. Constantly ask yourself, “Where’s the opportunity here?”

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