6 social selling strategies for B2B salespeople

linkedin salespoeple socialselling strategies Apr 28, 2023
social selling strategies

How to Include LinkedIn in the Sales Process? Social Selling Strategies in the Work of a Salesperson.

 Well-thought-out Social Selling strategies allow you to effectively use the time that a salesperson spends on LinkedIn. It is important for salespeople to have developed and well-written strategies (which are included in the sales process and salesperson's roles) for navigating LinkedIn. A hunter responsible for acquiring customers will use LinkedIn in a different way than a farmer who is responsible for contacting current customers in their database.

 Below are six strategies for using Social Selling in the work of a B2B salesperson.


In building a network, we focus on groups that are important from the point of view of achieving the salesman's goals. The most important group is customers and potential customers. It is also worth expanding your network with contacts within the so-called related groups (i.e., people communicating or selling to the same target group).


It's a good idea to add content to each invitation. Not many people on LinkedIn do this, so an invitation with added content is a distinguishing feature and at the same time complies with LinkedIn business etiquette. Although I have heard opinions that invitations without content have a higher success rate, I believe that it all depends on the strategy we adopt. My recommendation is to build trust in the eyes of customers and not to focus on one-off performance indicators.



 Building relationships in the world of LinkedIn mainly means joining discussions, — recommending and commenting on publications that are shared by our network and clients. These activities are the currency in social networks. Thanks to this, we are able to build and/or "extend" our relationships with clients in the digital world.


Participants in Social Selling programs and trainings often say that this type of activity is manipulation. It is worth asking yourself to what extent these activities are only aimed at achieving benefits and to what extent is it a really interesting publication that you would like to recommend or comment on? In addition, it is worth talking openly and directly with customers about the fact that this is the natural environment of business relations. Therefore, posting/commenting on published materials or leaving congratulations on a customer's achievements is a natural element of commercial work nowadays.



 Following the company profiles of customers is a valuable source of information about the company. Thanks to such information, the salesperson is able to monitor the events that are important (from the company's point of view) on an ongoing basis. Therefore, knowledge that is collected may allow the salesperson to understand the wider context of the client's business. Information about the company's strategy, internal changes, etc., is often published on company profiles.

 Observing hashtags can be useful for salespeople. It allows them to make sure that the publications they are used in will be displayed on their boards. We can find hashtags in the search engine. We enter the # character followed by a search word. We add the result to the watched.



 You can read about the multi-channel strategy in this article. Here, I will focus on how LinkedIn can participate in the processes, depending on where we take the first step.


4.1. The process begins on LinkedIn

 In the first step of the process on LinkedIn, we can distinguish two situations: the customer reports to the salesperson (LinkedIn inbound) and the salesperson reports to the customer (LinkedIn outbound). Of course, the first strategy, although it is “music to the ears” of salespeople and is a possibility (we have examples from the Polish market for this type of inquiry in the IT industry), it happens relatively rarely at the beginning of the Social Selling path. The probability of receiving an inquiry is increased by:

When a salesperson reports to a customer, we are dealing with messages sent via a direct, private contact. Sending this type of message is controversial on both Polish and non-Polish LinkedIn because many people abuse this way of reaching the customer by thinking that Social Selling is simply changing the mode of contact to a private message on LinkedIn. As an ambassador of "classy sales", I advise against sending intrusive messages that proposes a "casual meeting" to the other party in the first contact. Why? This approach does not solve the main problem faced by sales today — attaining trust from the customers. LinkedIn gives us space to really influence this trust and spamming causes us to burn a database of potentially good contacts.

The easiest way to send a message to a potential customer is to share knowledge, so we rely on an engine in the form of content. And the best form of private contact is an invitation to read our original article, e-book or watch a webinar in which, as salespeople, we participate as experts. This is the essence of solving the problem with confidence —  which is why it is so important today, my dear salespeople, to actively participate in creating content. Read about the competences of modern sales, including creating the content of an article here.

It is also important to have a sensitive approach — meaning that we propose the next step only after correspondence has been exchanged and we have concluded that the topic in question is currently important to the other party. Then, in the next step, we suggest moving on from LinkedIn for a phone call.

 The above situations describe LinkedIn as the first step in the sales process.


4.2. LinkedIn turned on after a phone call

In many projects in which I participate, the sales processes partially start with the telephone. Salespeople themselves perform “cold calls” (a better term might be “smart calls” because preparation must be made for us to achieve some level of effectiveness) or make a phone call as a result of receiving a marketing lead from a telemarketing company. In any of these three cases, salespeople can turn on LinkedIn after a phone call as part of building a lead base. One of the problems of hunters is the fact that they hardly reach the customer who is now ready to buy and talk (More about it here.) However, by adding a client to LinkedIn who is not ready to buy, the salesperson has the opportunity to cultivate the contact until ready.


4.3. LinkedIn in email

E-mail is an indispensable channel of contact with the customer. Also in this channel, we can turn on LinkedIn by adding a link to the profile to the footer. If we send e-mails as part of prospecting activities (e.g., a telephone announcement), a well-completed LinkedIn profile can increase the effectiveness of this type of activity.



Typically, salespeople do not want to use their private Facebook profiles in Social Selling programs. What they benefit from and what brings real value is their presence in the Facebook groups to which their potential and existing customers belong. In Facebook groups, clients look for recommendations and knowledge, even in areas such as IT.

 On the other hand, groups on LinkedIn function much worse than groups on Facebook. Members are not very active. LinkedIn plans to change this, therefore in the future it is also worth looking at which groups on LinkedIn our current and potential customers belong to and join these groups.



Strategies designed for Strategic and Key Accounts (in which standard activities at the Strategic Account Management level are extended to LinkedIn) and work on the client may affect different people in the organisation (e.g., the president builds relations at the CEO level on the client's side, financial director with finance, etc.), dependent  upon who sits on the purchasing committee. All work is coordinated by a salesperson with knowledge of Social Selling and building relationships on LinkedIn with the help of marketing. Additionally, marketing can support sales with the Account Based Marketing strategy. 


In conclusion, it is worth looking at LinkedIn from multiple viewpoints or dimensions and including it as a permanent element of your commercial work. Today, LinkedIn is the platform that enables salespeople to grow and advance their image in the eyes of customers. Regardless of whether the salesperson's goal is customer acquisition, retention or upselling, activities on LinkedIn really influence and contribute to how they are perceived in the eyes of both regular and new customers (where first impressions and then trust are especially important).

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