Is it ok to send introductory e-mails as soon as you're connected with potential prospects on LinkedIn?
I am involved in IT outsourcing. What is the best practice to follow up with potential prospects on LinkedIn? How do I get similar prospects from Facebook? I think FB is considered for more informal communication, but what do you think? How can I reach out to my prospects via these platforms?
Is always better to send emails for that purposes, otherwise people will not know at all than you or your company are on the market
Ravindra - Sending a thank you note immediately after connecting with someone is not a problem as long as you don't jump on on them with a sales pitch. Wait a couple of days and send some useful content. Ask your prospect if the subject of your second mailing represents a challenge his/her company is working to resolve. Use your sales management system to track responses to help you remember what you learned. This will help you keep your follow-up telephone contact on track. Hope this helps. Steve Chapman
The others have good comments, I'll just add a legal issue if you are emailing people in Canada. Know the anti-spam laws of countries they're in. Canada just passed a law effective July 1st that includes Linkedin Emails unsolicited as spam. To quote an article,
"CASL applies to a commercial electronic message (CEM) sent by any medium.
“They don’t look at the sender, they look at the message, and it is technology neutral,” Ms. Babe of Miller Thomson says. “If you use social media to merely post an item, fine. If you use your LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter account to send an e-mail to another person, which is commercial in nature, then it is a CEM under CASL (Canadian Anti Spam Legislation” from the Globe and Mail -
Just Google CASL for the specific laws.
It depends on what 's the content of your "introductory" email.
A good rule to follow... GIVE before you ask for something.
Remember you are trying to get prospects to KNOW LIKE and TRUST you.
Make sure you really understand who your target market is. Write down a detail profile of who you want to do business with.
You need an OFFER that your prospects will be attracted to. Something that will help them address a need, want or problem they have.
You can use Facebook to promote the OFFER. Major objective: to capture the email address of prospects, so you can build an email database.
To your success,
'the Marketing Coach"
Yes but you need to be careful about the content:
1. LinkedIn: Introductions are par for the course but don't push your product or your company. Find a way to connect via tings that you have in common. You need to start a conversation first--it's off putting otherwise.
Example: I recently connected with a recruiter from a company in which I am interested. I noticed that we had both lived in a similar location and that she as a recent transplant to our city. I opened by telling her that I was happy to connect with someone from home and gave a few quick tips about how to survive the summer heat--I approached her like a human and not like a sales robot--I also got a meeting. :)
2. Facebook can work for lead generation, too, but you need to think of your Facebook content more from the vantage point of curation. Your FB content should only be about 20% you pushing your company and the rest should be parallel content that establishes you as a resource for your fans--you need to build trust by showing not just that you can sell but by what you know and how you apply that knowledge.
This is what I tell my clients: would you try to sell someone a magazine that is 100% ads? No. You need to have funny, insightful, and relevant content in addition to the sales stuff so that you allow your fans to engage with your brand.
I hope that helps!
Simply offer "real benefits." Plus be smart, bright and polite.
Good question and I agree with many of the responses below particularly Pete. Linked-in is a great way to get in front of a prospect and after you've connected, (and perhaps you also can mention a colleague's name whom your both connected to) send that email or call the person to find out their interest in your products. Linked-in's 'inmail' is also a great feature to use but you need a premium membership.
I would suggest that you message the prospects that you connect via LinkedIn. Same for Facebook. Keep your communication within the platform where you are connected and then ask for permission to contact them via email/phone, etc.
Provide information of value and seek to serve rather than sell.
You build trust by sharing information of value.
Build sufficient trust and people will reach out to you when they're ready to learn more or buy.
Re LinkedIn, I would recommend waiting for at least 2 days. Your message then should always start with"Thank you for accepting my connection invite" and so on. I don't use FB for business but I guess it depends on your business model.
As others have pointed out, ensure your message contains something to help the prospect, gauge their interest in your services and does not sound like a used car salesman.
Since you are B2B, another good tool I've recently discovered for connecting with biz owners/managers is Manta -- it's kind of LinkedIn for businesses. Manta makes default profiles for businesses, and business owners can join Manta (free) to build out the profile as they see fit. What's especially useful is roughly 40-50% of the time you can see the owner's/manager's name & contact info, if you're looking up a specific business. As many have said, tailoring your introduction email to the specific client is critical in B2B cold outreach. Hope it helps, happy selling!
Absolutely, and it is good ettiquite. I use a template which basically runs my elevator speech while offering them a free consultation. I modify the first paragraph with a personal message regarding the contact I'm sending it to.
Send a simple introductory email thanking them for the connection. Make it as personal as you can and leave it at that. Mass generic emails will be annoying and deleted.
I have found the best way to build on this first connection is to ask about them. Find out more about their company, services or products. Once you know that - determine if you can help them - giving first works for me - not all situations will fit this - I am also selective in accepting invites - especially since our niche is very narrow.
Once connected to someone on LinkedIn it is acceptable practice to communicate with the person. Ensure that your message is personally addressed to the person indicating why you are connecting with them and how you connected with them (thru an acquaintance, at a network event etc.
In your message indicate how your service can help the person with a particular problem them may have.
Invite them to connect with you and leave a phone no.
Follow up, if possible, with a personal phone call to the person referencing your LinkedIn note.
We train sales executives on social Selling using Linkedin and many other social media tools . regarding the linkedin, certainly great tool to identify your potential prospects, however, reaching them with introductory emails is not a very effective way and can get annoying .
We usually advise sales people to do your research first and see if you have the correct audience. Once that is established, then you can introduce yourself, however also share some great content or whitepaper that will get the attention of your prospect. You may have to do this on continuing basis, till you establish the connection.
Once the connection is established, build upon it by sharing more valuable content and add value to that relationship. Look for triggers to pitch your products. For more information on the Social Selling curriculum go to
and also read our blog on http://www.salesforlife.com /blog
I have sent introductory emails immediately after I have connected and I have also waited until I have seen that they have read something from my blog, articles I have posted, case studies I have attached etc.
I am not sure who the prospects are you reaching out to, but I have received the most positive feedback and responses from the CIO's in the IT field that I have waited to send an introductory email until after they have had an opportunity to review some of the material I have posted.
There's an old saying about striking when the iron is hot, and I believe that applies to LinkedIn connections. When someone connects, it gives you a perfect opportunity to begin a conversation. My recommendation is that you do just that -- begin a conversation rather than jump in with a strong sales pitch. Thank them for the connection, give a brief description of what it is you, and ask if their business is facing any challenges -- basically, the same thing you'd do in person.
I'm not as enthused with Facebook as a tool for leads. It's so socially focused that a using a similar strategy might be more likely to get you unfriended or ignored.
As long as it is an honest and personal intro that isn't trying to sell something or pitch. Just a introduction is great. it's the best way to use LinkedIn and meet new people. Just don't try to sell in the first few e-mails. Just say hello and that its great to connect and maybe ask them a few questions about what they do.
I agree with Sinisa on this one in terms of mass emails. If I have a hint that it's a template email with my name copied in, I immediately delete it and occasionally remove the contact based on their irrelevance. Everybody acts differently to realising they are seen as nothing but a lead, personally I dislike it.
If you're going to send them, what would make me read it in full and potentially implicitly become your lead, then you need to be certain to not only address me by name, but show me that you've read my profile, seen a potential angle and can offer me something worthy of my time.
In short, if you see it as a quick and easy contact method, it's deleted. If it's personalised, tailored and relevant, I'll at least spend the time to read it.