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As technology changes, so does the way businesses make sales. Using social media to find leads and build relationships is one of the latest trends.
Central to this is LinkedIn’s Social Selling Index. In this article, we’ll discuss social selling and how you can increase your LinkedIn score.
Social selling is the act of using social networks in the selling process. This usually happens on LinkedIn. Sales reps can use the tools available on the platform for all parts of the selling process; from building relationships to converting leads into customers.
The Social Selling Index is a score LinkedIn gives all its users that is supposed to show how well they use the platform to sell. The metric measures what LinkedIn calls the “Four Elements of Social Selling.” These are:
The Social Selling Index gives every user a score out of 100. Each of the above categories is worth 25 points.
LinkedIn updates the score daily, and users can see a neat graph that shows how their score is increasing or decreasing. The social network also shows your score compared to both people in your industry and people in your network.
LinkedIn is at pains to show the benefits of having a high social selling index score. According to the social network:
These numbers suggest that increasing your social selling score can help your reps sell more.
It’s worth pointing out that LinkedIn has an obvious motivation for getting people to increase their scores—the more time people spend doing so, the more time they will spend on the platform. This can result in more profits for LinkedIn.
Also, a high social selling score on its own won’t automatically result in high sales. That will come down to your product and your team’s ability to sell.
However, it does make sense that increasing your social selling score will help sales teams. Reps with higher scores will generally be those using the platform to build relationships, establish thought leadership, and connect with potential clients.
These are all activities that, irrespective of the Social Selling Index, could lead to sales.
Increasing your social selling score essentially comes down to taking part in activities related to the above four metrics LinkedIn uses to measure social selling.
Of course, all your actions will have to take place on LinkedIn for them to increase your social selling score. You could be the greatest social seller Twitter has ever seen, but that won’t make a difference to your Social Selling Index.
Here are some ideas you can utilise to potentially increase your Social Selling Index rating on LinkedIn.
1. The first thing to do when to comes to establishing your professional brand is completing your profile. Ensure you have filled out all sections, including profile and cover photo. When completing your profile, make sure it contains information that is likely to be appealing to your buyer personas. To get an idea of what a good LinkedIn profile looks like, check out the profiles of thought leaders in your industry.
2. The next step is to create and publish content that shows your authority as a thought leader. This could be blog posts, videos, or presentations. Even if you don’t have a blog, it’s easy to publish content using LinkedIn’s built-in publishing platform.
3. Another way to establish your brand is to ask for endorsements from people within your network. Assuming the endorsements come from the right people you should be able to increase your Social Selling Index Score.
1. Building a network with the right people is thought to affect your social selling index score. You can use LinkedIn’s search tool to find people in your industry and connect with potential customers. The position of the people you connect with within their company will also affect your score. Try to aim for leaders where possible. If you have LinkedIn Premium, you can search for people to connect with based on their position within a company.
2. Another way to connect with people is to join a LinkedIn Group. Joining and being active in a group by commenting and posting content can be a good way to connect with others in your industry.
3. When connecting with people, remember thatؙ like in the real world—people don’t always respond well to cold connection requests. You can increase the chances of someone accepting your request by instead sending invitations to relevant people who have viewed your profile or by filtering your search to only show second or third-degree connections.
1. Interact with others in your industry on LinkedIn. Posting insightful replies or sharing content written by those in your industry will increase your visibility and could help increase your social selling index.
2. You can also take part in discussions on LinkedIn groups. According to LinkedIn, you are 70% more likely to get an unexpected sale or meeting if you are a member of a group.
3. If you see content that could be particularly useful to a certain lead, share it with them to stay in their thoughts and build your relationship. Be careful not to spam people, though.
1. Social selling is all about building relationships. Be sure to connect with all your relevant real-world contacts on LinkedIn, so the relationship feeds into the social selling algorithm. If you have multiple contacts at a single company, it could be a good idea to add them all.
2. Another easy place to gain connections is in your own company. Adding your colleagues on LinkedIn will build your network exponentially through second and third-degree contacts.
3. Once you have built your contact list, be sure to interact with content people share and reach out where necessary.
Having a high Social Selling Index score won’t guarantee sales. However, it does show that you are performing activities—such as building relationships and establishing authority—that could eventually lead to sales. Use the tips explained in this article to increase your score and potentially bring in more sales.
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