Should I use an automation tool to speed up my LinkedIn results? I don’t have time can’t I just use a bot to automate the relationship building process?

These are common questions we get asked all the time when chatting to potential clients.

And the short answer is simple: Definitely not.

Automation certainly has its place in business that’s for sure.

In our business there are a lot of processes and tasks we’ve automated through the use of good technology to help remove some of the heavy lifting.

For example the front end of our sales process is completely automated.

When someone wants to enquire about one of our products, we ask a questionnaire, once they fill this out they go to another page where they can book directly in with one of our consultants.

At no point was anything done manually and just like clockwork one of the team will call the prospect at the scheduled time.

It’s easier for everyone, they book in a time that’s convenient for them as well as one of our team members.

They’ll call them at the scheduled time and everyone’s a winner. But when it comes to building relationships which is what LinkedIn is all about – it’s a definite no no.

Sure it sounds great in theory to send out automated invitations at mass instead of doing it manually one by one.

Or to have a reply message sent out every time someone accepts their invitation.

But in reality there’s some huge problems with doing this.

Getting Your Account Banned


For one it’s against LinkedIn’s terms of use and you can get your account banned. LinkedIn is fast becoming even more important than your website.

Nowadays when people search for you online the first thing that comes up is no longer your website it’s actually your LinkedIn profile.

So if this was to suddenly disappear, you not only become a ghost to potential prospects but you will also need to build your network up from scratch.

Here’s a link to a page that describes what’s prohibited on the platform.

Prone To Errors

biggest-mistake-linkedin
LinkedIn are constantly looking at ways to shut off automation tools by changing things that make it difficult for them to function 100%. This means that if you send out messages or connection invites often the wrong message goes to the right people or vise versa.

We often see mass messages or auto replies that have the first name field missing or with a strange string attached to it.

Imagine a contact of yours sees a messages that starts with ‘Hi {first name}’, what do you think is the first thing they will do?

Probably delete the message or report it as spam.

In today’s day and age reputation is everything so don’t risk your personal brand on tools that don’t work half of the time. It’s just not worth it.

Authenticity


Now there’s also the issue of authenticity, when people ask us if they should use automation tools we always use the analogy of: would you go to a networking function and get a robot to network for you and build relationships?

No you wouldn’t, so why would you do it on LinkedIn?

People can tell, they’re not stupid, they can smell it a mile away.  All of a sudden you connect with them and 5 minutes later you get a well crafted pitch message sent.

They know it was automated and that you don’t care.

It’s inauthentic and not the right way to build relationships online. Period. Not only that but it will also show up in your results.

Generally when you use automation tools your connection invitation acceptance rates will be low, not many people will reply to your messages and any leads you do produce will be low quality.

There’s a better way to do things which will still allow you to leverage your time, but yield much better results in terms of building quality relationships and more engagement on the platform when connecting with your target market.

Get Clear On Your Client Avatar


Firstly you need to get clear on your client avatar, who is it that you’re looking to connect with?

Through LinkedIn we look at 5 metrics which include:

  • Title
  • Seniority level
  • Company Size (headcount)
  • Location
  • Industry

Let’s say for example you’re looking to connect with owners of boutique law firms in Melbourne, the metrics for that would look something like this:

  • Title: Lawyer
  • Seniority level: Owner, CXO
  • Company Size: 1 – 50
  • Location: Melbourne, Australia
  • Industry: Legal Services

Now that you’re clear of who you want to target, you need a tool to help you search for them on LinkedIn.

Sign up to Sales Navigator


To do that you need to sign up to Sales Navigator, this is one of LinkedIn’s premium options allowing you to easily find, engage and connect with your target audience.

Through the advanced feature of Sales Navigator you can drill right down from the 550 million plus members on the platform to the couple of thousand lawyers you need to get in front of in Melbourne.

Here’s a link to sign up to Sales Navigator, there is usually a 30 day free trial.  And if you would like a more comprehensive and detailed understanding of how to use it download our free video and digital guide of the 3 Steps to LinkedIn Mastery.

Develop a Personalised Invitation


Now that you have your list of contacts you want to connect with it’s time to write your personalised connection invitation.

A script that can be easily used across a range of people without taking too much time to personalise for each individual person.

For example it could be something like: Hi (name), I’m connecting with lawyers in Melbourne. I came across your profile and thought I’d reach out. (your first name)

This can be easily personalised for each person you’re looking to connect with in that particular target market.

Outsource And Delegate


And last but not least you need to look at how you can outsource and delegate the entire campaign unless you want to sit there sending out one invitation after another. To outsource your campaign you have two choices, you can hire an assistant to run the campaign for you or you can hire us to manage the strategy and implementation on your behalf

If you’re time poor and just want the entire thing outsourced, here’s a link with more info: https://linkfluencer.com/linkedin-campaign-management.

To manage it in house simply give your login details to your assistant and ask them to send out up to 75 personalised invitations to your target market using the contacts you saved inside of Sales Navigator.

This will begin to build up your network with targeted contacts and conversations will start to open up. From there you can follow up and take the conversations off LinkedIn and start the relationship building process.

This is the best way to leverage your time when doing your LinkedIn Marketing as obviously it can be quite monotonous if you are doing that yourself.

Remember don’t automate it’s not worth the damage it can do to your account and your personal brand, if you’re thinking about doing this because you just don’t have the time to execute, definitely check out our campaign management service.

We’ll execute our award winning strategy on your behalf to help you open up conversations with your target market the right way, to find out more check out this link.