10% of salespeople and marketers have closed deals just by being active on social media, and 39% say it reduces the time they spend looking for leads. 84% of B2B marketers find LinkedIn the best place to generate leads.
Speed is often a competitive advantage, especially when it comes to trigger events. There’s a critical window of opportunity where you need to act before your competitors.
Nowadays, you can find those triggers more easily on social media, especially LinkedIn. There are unique social selling triggers you should keep an eye out for, too.
The trick is to know what social selling triggers to look for, where to look, and how to use them.
That’s why we’ve compiled this list of 10 LinkedIn social selling sales triggers.
1. Changes In C-Suite
Sometimes new leaders are brought onboard to initiate a change in direction. And they often want to make their mark quickly.
Look into what press releases, blog posts, and social media posts celebrating their new position say.
Often, it will include why someone has been hired, especially if it’s to do with implementing change (versus the previous person moving on).
Sometimes, their social media can offer more insights. On LinkedIn, you can dig a little deeper into the executive’s background and activity to see where their potential strengths and interests lie.
2. A Contact Changes Roles
If one of your contacts changes roles within their company, they may become a more relevant prospect.
You can open the door by reaching out with a congratulatory InMail, or comment on their job change. Wishing them luck and following up later can be all you need.
If your contact is a satisfied client who’s moved on to a new, relevant company, you could be even more direct – ask if they need help making their mark in their new company at the same time as wishing them congrats! (You know your relationship and whether this slightly cheeky approach, or a softer one, would work best.)
3. You Notice Prospects Talking To Competitors
If you’re following your prospects on LinkedIn, your news feed should show when they’ve shared or commented on a competitor’s post. If they’re in talks with your competitors, they may be in the market for their services - and yours too.
As sales triggers go, you could end up jumping on the back end of their buying decision process, but you could also spot these conversations when your buyers are still in the awareness stage. And as you’ve seen what competitor content has sparked their interest, you’ve already got an idea of what their pains and motivations are.
4. They’ve Viewed Your Profile Or Sent A Connection Request
If someone’s viewed your profile or wants to connect with you, it might be because you have shared interests or connections. It could also mean they want to pitch you their products or services!
If a post you’ve shared or a comment you’ve made has interested them, that could be because they’re in the market for your products or services (or will be in the future).
Or, even better, they may actively be looking for services or products and you’ve appeared in their search results/been recommended through their network.
So, while this isn’t a red-hot sales trigger, it’s one worth acting on. Send them a message to thank them for their interest and find out why they’ve contacted you.
5. Funding Rounds
Funding rounds mean a company will have money to invest. Where they do that depends on what stage of investment they’re at.
In the first found, they’re likely to need to establish product/market fit.
At later stages, they’re usually looking to scale their product/service or expand their geographical base.
You may be able to help at any or all of these stages.
Do your research before pitching. A message saying, “I see you have money to spend!” will be a bit too transparent and forward.
If your prospect announces a new funding round, see if you can find a press release that says what their plans for it might be.
Also check their social media posts to see what they’ve been doing so far on these initiatives, as well as combined with other growth sales triggers to notice.
6. LinkedIn Funding & Innovation Groups
On LinkedIn, you may notice less obvious potential funding before it’s covered in a press release.
For example, the UK government wishes to promote and invest in R&D, so government and research bodies publish regular funding calls – they announce that they’ll offer grants for particular issues they wish to address.
Organisations include Innovate UK and the Medical Research Council, but you can find a full list of relevant bodies via the UKRI.
It’s worth following relevant LinkedIn groups to keep an eye on funding calls that may affect your sector.
As well as the far-reaching Innovate UK, there are industry-specific groups dedicated to helping businesses access funding and R&D grants, such as the Energy Innovation Centre and local council initiatives.
Are any of your prospects also members? This may suggest that they’re hoping to access funding or have ongoing/upcoming R&D projects.
7. Growth Triggers
Whenever a company announces one of the following, they’re subtly indicating that they need new solutions to help them achieve their growth goals:
- Launched a new product/service
- New funding rounds
With funding, it will depend on the stage of funding. If it’s new, they’re likely to need to establish product/market fit, but at later stages they’re usually looking to scale their product/services or expand their geographic base.
See if you can identify what they’ve been doing to date on these new initiatives and combine with other growth sales triggers to build out the bigger picture.
8. Competition And Market Triggers
LinkedIn is one of the easiest ways to stay up to date with the latest industry news.
By following target companies, their competitors, and those within their supply chain, you can quickly spot sales triggers such as:
- A new entrant to the market
- A significant new product/service launch by a competitor
- A change in supply and demand
In the case of the first two, your prospect may be looking to make a bold move in response.
And in the case of the latter, they’ll want to be the first with a solution before their competitors jump in.
9. Marketing Ramp-Up
If you notice a ramp up or change of direction in the content your target account shares on social media, it signals that they’ll be doing the same with their products or services.
Marketing teams often begin campaigns ahead of launching new products or services. This is a sales trigger you can try to harness before the competition does.
By following your target accounts and prospects, and keeping an eye on your newsfeed, you should hopefully develop an intuitive feeling for any change in marketing strategy.
10. Hiring changes
Whether a company is hiring or laying people off, it can give you a good indication of current growth plans, focus areas and potential efficiency issues within the company. All of which could be an opportunity for you to provide products or services to help.
When you follow a company on LinkedIn you may see them promoting new roles via their social posts, but it’s also worth checking target companies’ company pages as part of your weekly prospect profiling.
Timing is everything with sales trigger events.
And the beauty of social selling triggers is that you can receive alerts as soon as something happens, giving you the upper hand if you combine these triggers with your social selling skills.
Editor's Note: This blog was originally published in September 2021 and has been completely refreshed and updated.