LinkedIn

The ultimate guide to LinkedIn prospecting in 2024

Charles Tenot
LAST UPDATED
May 21, 2024
READING TIME
7 min.

Your cold emails still don't get you replies or booked meetings?

Then, it’s time to switch your outreach to multichannel and start LinkedIn prospecting!

Instead of traditional outreach, you can increase your reply chances by connecting with your leads on their preferred channel, such as LinkedIn.

LinkedIn is a platform with 800M+ potential leads that can easily match your ICP, thanks to its advanced filtering.

But how exactly do you find your target audience on LinkedIn? How can you use networking to grow your business?

In this article, get top LinkedIn prospecting strategies and tools that will help you find new buyers in 2024.

‍What is LinkedIn prospecting?

LinkedIn prospecting is the strategic process of identifying and reaching out to potential clients or customers on LinkedIn.

This approach is not about sending out mass, generic messages. Instead, it focuses on building genuine relationships and transforming LinkedIn connections into paying customers or clients.

The goal here is to draw attention to your expertise and value proposition, showcase your experience, and engage with your prospects in a meaningful and authentic way.

It's a proactive approach to lead generation that requires a personalized touch.

Why LinkedIn prospecting matters

LinkedIn is home to professionals from all industries, making it a great hunting ground for prospects.

With LinkedIn prospecting, you can zero in on individuals or businesses that are most relevant to your industry, niche, and offer.

This targeted approach can significantly increase the quality of the leads you generate.

LinkedIn vs. traditional prospecting: What's the difference?

Traditional prospecting includes traditional outreach channels, such as emails or cold calls. Because of the straightforward nature of these channels, the goal is usually to create relationships with leads that lead to sales.

On the other hand, LinkedIn is a social media channel where instead of “reaching out” you aim to “connect” with your leads.
This means no harsh sales messages. If you want to make deals with them, first your approach should be friendly, instead of sales-y.

Multichannel prospecting: Combine email & LinkedIn for maximum impact

What is multichannel prospecting?

Multichannel prospecting is a powerful sales tactic that involves leveraging multiple platforms simultaneously to communicate with leads.
This can include cold emailing, cold calling, LinkedIn, and other social selling options.

The idea is to use these channels in sync, ensuring you reach your leads on the platforms that are most convenient for them.
Meeting your leads according to their preferences and availability can significantly boost your chances for replies and meetings booked.

Why should you combine email & LinkedIn in cold outreach

One of the most effective channel combinations that you can add to your outreach is using emails and LinkedIn simultaneously.

Here’s why 👇

1. Maximize exposure →

By reaching out on both email and LinkedIn, you ensure that your message gets the maximum exposure. If a prospect misses your email, they'll probably catch your LinkedIn message and vice versa!

2. Build relationships →

You can use LinkedIn to establish rapport with your prospects before even sending an email. By engaging with their posts or sharing valuable insights, you can warm up your leads, making them more receptive to your later emails.

3. Keep the conversation going →

While emails are great for detailed pitches and providing comprehensive information, LinkedIn is perfect for quick check-ins, sharing updates, or even sending a brief introduction.

4. Increase reply chances →

If a prospect doesn't respond to your cold email, you can follow up with a personalized LinkedIn message. The more channel touchpoints you have with your leads, the higher your chances of getting replies.

6-step process to implement LinkedIn prospecting in your outreach strategy

Step 1: Define your Ideal Customer Profile (ICP)

In LinkedIn prospecting, always aim for leads’ quality instead of quantity.
This means that instead of aiming to find as many LinkedIn leads as possible, focus on finding a smaller number of highly qualified ones.

The first step to finding your potential buyers who will reply is having a clear understanding of who they are, AKA define your Ideal Customer Profile (ICP).

ICP is a detailed representation of your ideal customer, including their:

  1. Professional background: What's their job title? Which industry do they belong to? What's the size of their company?
  2. Goals: What are they aiming to achieve in their role or industry?
  3. Buying journey: What is their path to purchase?
  4. Pain points: What challenges are they facing that your product or service can solve?
  5. Objections : What could go wrong? What would discourage this persona from being in business with you?

Free Ideal Customer Profile template

To create your own, you can duplicate & fill out the ICP Template

Step 2: Find leads that match your ICP on LinkedIn

To start your search, visit LinkedIn’s People search page, where you’ll have access to its advanced filters.

By understanding and leveraging LinkedIn’s advanced filters, you can pinpoint the exact audience that matches your ICP.

How to use LinkedIn’s advanced search filters

Here's your filters’ cheat sheet to help you find ideal connections:

  • 1st Degree Connection: Reach out to familiar faces or acquaintances.
  • 2nd Degree Connection: Tap into introductions through mutual connections.
  • 3rd+ Degree Connection: Explore potential leads outside your immediate network.
  • Connections Of: Target the network of a specific individual from your 1st-degree connections.
  • Followers of Creators: Identify individuals who follow specific creators on LinkedIn. Tailor your outreach based on shared interests or influencers.
  • Location: Segment your search based on regions, countries, or postal codes. This will help you resonate with cultural nuances or regional trends.
  • Talks About: Pinpoint individuals discussing specific topics, giving you a hint about their interests and how your services might fit.
  • Current Company: Target specific businesses or industries.
  • Past Company: Connect with individuals who've transitioned, potentially leveraging past experiences with your solutions.
  • Alma Mater: Engage with fellow alumni, using shared educational experiences as a conversation starter.
  • Industry Focus: Target professionals in industries that align with your offerings.
  • Profile Language: Understand the linguistic preferences of your prospects.
  • Open To: Use this niche filter to find prospects in the non-profit sector. Identify individuals open to pro bono work, volunteering, or board positions.
  • Service Categories: Find professionals based on the services they offer. For example, if you're selling to Business Coaches, you can find them in seconds through their service category.
  • Keyword Search: Use it to find profiles based on specific terms in their first name, last name, title, company, or school. This is especially useful for targeting specific job roles.

By mastering these filters, you're not just searching; you're strategically prospecting. Try to use as many filters as you can, as each filter offers a unique angle, ensuring your outreach is relevant and effective.

LinkedIn Sales Navigator vs. Traditional LinkedIn search

LinkedIn Sales Navigator is a premium tool that offers enhanced filtering options and the ability to save leads. While it costs over $80 per month, it's designed for those who want to supercharge their prospecting game.

However, the traditional LinkedIn search shouldn't be underestimated. It's free and can still deliver impressive results!

But, like all tools, LinkedIn has its pitfalls, such as:

1. Duplicated profiles

Both in traditional search and LinkedIn Sales Navigator, you might stumble upon the same profiles more than once.

2. Mismatched results

You might be looking for a "Head of Sales" and end up with an "Account Executive" in your results.

To avoid these issues and optimize your Sales Navigator experience, consider integrating LinkedIn with tools like Evaboot. A tool designed to refine your search results, ensuring you connect with the right professionals every time.

Find LinkedIn leads with Taplio's Advanced LinkedIn Lead Discovery

While LinkedIn's search capabilities are robust, sometimes you might need a more specialized tool, like Taplio, to find your niche.

Taplio covers millions of LinkedIn profiles, including their posts and engagement metrics. It's like having a magnifying glass over LinkedIn, allowing you to spot potential leads with high precision.

Which Taplio granular search options should you use to find leads that match your ICP:

  • Post Topics

Find professionals discussing specific themes like AI, sales, or any niche topic.

  • Engagement Level

Identify profiles that not only post but also engage meaningfully with their network.

  • Industry & Job Level

From interns to C-level executives, find the exact professional background you're targeting.

  • Company Specifics

Whether you're looking for leads in startups or established enterprises, Taplio's company filters, like name and employee count, will help you find the perfect fit.

Step 3: Add LinkedIn leads to your outreach campaign

Now that you've found your target audience on LinkedIn, it’s time to push them to your outreach campaign and reach out to them. There are two ways to do it - directly from LinkedIn, or via the Taplio app.

Add your leads to outreach campaign directly from LinkedIn

The easiest way to add your LinkedIn leads to your outreach campaign is to use lemlist's Chrome extension!

Here’s why 👇

1. Seamless Integration

With just a few clicks, you can export data from LinkedIn, whether it's a single profile or an entire search result. No more manual data entry or juggling between tabs.

2. Campaign Integration

Once you've selected the profiles, you'll be prompted to choose a lemlist campaign. This ensures your outreach is organized, targeted, and ready to launch.

3. Email Finder and Verifier waterfall enrichment:

Thanks to the process, you’ll get 80%+ valid leads’ emails from multiple data providers.

4. Multichannel Engagement

By importing LinkedIn profiles and their associated emails, you're ready to execute your powerful multichannel engagement strategy.

5. Bulk or Individual Imports

Whether you're eyeing a single profile or a list of potential leads, the lemlist Chrome extension keeps the process streamlined. Just select the campaign, and the data will be imported accordingly.

6. Rich Data Capture

Beyond just names and titles, the lemlist Chrome extension captures over 50 fields from the LinkedIn profile.
This includes the headline, profile URL, company domain, number of LinkedIn employees in the company, date of creation, and more.

These data points are crucial for personalizing your outreach, ensuring each message resonates with the recipient.Now, you can easily combine LinkedIn prospecting with email outreach, and even cold calling for your most qualified leads!

Now, you can easily combine LinkedIn prospecting with email outreach, and even cold calling for your most qualified leads!

Push your LinkedIn leads from Taplio to your outreach campaign

Once you've identified your leads on Taplio, pushing them to your lemlist campaigns is a breeze!

To get a step-by-step guide, follow the actionable tips with how to turn LinkedIn engagement into sales opportunities.

Step 4: Engage with your leads to build rapport

Before reaching out directly to your LinkedIn leads, it’s important to engage with their content first.

Like, comment, and share their posts to get on their radar.

This will show your genuine interest in their work and position you as a friend rather than a salesperson.

Here are some of the key steps to ensure you remain active & visible in your industry circles:

1. Tune into industry leaders

Begin by following the luminaries in your field. Their content can inspire you and inform you on topics you can share further with your network.

2. Keep an eye on industry news

Being timely and relevant in your content showcases your proactive approach.

3. Curate daily insights

Whether it's a nuanced analysis or a snapshot of a trending topic, ensure it's insightful.

4. Engage, don't just post

When your content sparks a conversation, be part of it. Engaging with comments strengthens relationships and fosters a sense of community.

5. Measure to improve‍

Periodically assess which topics resonate most. This feedback loop helps fine-tune your content strategy.

6. Leverage LinkedIn groups for amplified reach

Share your expertise, engage in discussions, and network with peers. This will help you make valuable connections and foster collaborations.

To get a complete process with examples that will turn your LinkedIn engagement into $$$, check out this ultimate guide Linked Engagement Playbook.

P.S. You can use Taplio to automate your engagement with content and swiftly respond to comments!

Step 5: Reach out to your leads

After building rapport through engagement, it's time to reach out to your “warm” leads.

How to automate your LinkedIn outreach

lemlist users can automate all their LinkedIn prospecting tasks wtih lemlist, to replicate genuine human interactions while saving hours of manual work!

Here’s how to craft an effective LinkedIn campaign with lemlist:

  1. Send personalized Connection Requests: Use lemlist to send tailored connection requests, making your outreach more personal and increasing the likelihood of acceptance.
  2. Visit your leads’ profiles: Automate profile visits after your connection request. It subtly reminds your prospect of your invitation and showcases genuine interest.
  3. Use multi-channel advanced conditions: Auto-adjust your sequence steps based on leads' interaction with your campaign without sounding like a robot.
    For example, If a prospect accepts your connection request, set up lemlist to automatically send a follow-up message, continuing the conversation.
    For those who don't respond to your LinkedIn invite, automate an email outreach, offering another touchpoint.

Additionally, lemlist allows you to set specific intervals between each step, ensuring your outreach feels organic. Plus, you can schedule your invites and messages to be sent at leads’ optimal times, maximizing engagement chances.

How to write LinkedIn message that gets replies

The LinkedIn messaging platform is minimalistic, without official email formatting, and fosters a direct approach. Your message should be laser-focused, addressing a specific pain point or interest of the prospect.

Consider using a pointed question to boost your leads' curiosity.

5 key tips for effective messaging on LinkedIn 👇

  1. Personalize your outreach‍: Ditch the generic template and add unique variables to the individual! For example, mention a connection, mutual interests, or a recent post they've engaged with.
  2. Use a friendly tone: Initiate with a friendly tone, highlighting any commonalities or mutual acquaintances.
  3. Reference leads' content: Reference a particular post or article they've shared, explaining its impact on you or its relevance to your outreach.
  4. Be clear: Clearly articulate the reason for your message, whether you're offering insights, suggesting a partnership, or introducing your offerings.
  5. Make it human: Remember, behind every LinkedIn profile is a person. Keep your outreach genuine, relatable, and human-centric.

LinkedIn outreach message examples you can start using today

1. Underline familiar context

2. Make your intention crystal clear

3. Continue a conversation from comments

4. Show appreciation

5. Give a genuine compliment

Include Personalized LinkedIn Voice Messages

Personalized messages will definitely send you in the right direction, but let’s be honest, most people are sending messages out there just mentioning the prospect’s name.

If you’re looking to stand out even further, try out lemlist’s personalized LinkedIn Voice Messages.

Just record your generic message (your own or using our templates of messages that work), and then include your personalization.

And voilá!

Step 6: Follow up & engage consistently

The journey of LinkedIn prospecting is more of a marathon than a sprint. Instead of relying on a single message, consistently engage and follow up to boost prospects’ trust and interest.

As you initiate a conversation, make it a habit to engage with leads’ content. A simple like or a thoughtful comment on their posts can go a long way.
This not only keeps you on their radar but also subtly reminds them of your previous outreach.

Here are 3 key strategies to engage effectively:

1. Set follow-up reminders

Mark your calendar or use tools to remind you of follow-ups.

2. Reference recent interactions

In your follow-up messages, allude to recent engagements or content they've shared. This showcases your genuine interest and keeps the conversation relevant.

3. Always add value

Every touchpoint should offer something of value. Share an article, introduce them to someone beneficial, or offer insights tailored to their domain.

Our data of how many cold email follow-ups indicates that it often takes between 4 to 9 touchpoints to push a response from a prospect.
So, patience paired with persistent engagement is your winning formula!

Key Takeaways

In the era of social media, LinkedIn prospecting has emerged as a game-changer for businesses and professionals who want to grow their businesses.

By fully exploiting LinkedIn, combined with strategic multichannel outreach, you can connect with potential leads in a more genuine and effective way.

The key formula to LinkedIn prospecting success is:

  1. Finding qualified leads
  2. Consistent engagement
  3. Authentic outreach
  4. Valuable follow-ups

Thanks to lemlist, you can automate these steps and revolutionize your outreach with LinkedIn prospecting!

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CRM
Summary
Backbone of a business's internal operations.
Backbone of customer-centric interactions and operations.
Goal
To centralize and streamline core business processes in a company.
To increase customer experience, satisfaction and loyalty, and boost sales.
Focus
Internal operations and processes across departments (finance, accounting, inventory, supply chain, HR, and sales).
All interactions with leads and customers.
Manages
Internal business data like financial data, inventory levels, production details, supply chain, HR info.
All customer data like contact info, purchase history, communication history, customer preferences and more.
Users
Finance, accounting, operations, supply chain, and HR departments.
Customer-facing teams like sales, marketing, and customer service.
Benefits
Streamlines operations, improves data accuracy, enhances decision-making, boosts collaboration, increases productivity.
Improves customer relationships, increases sales, strengthens customer service, personalizes marketing campaigns, provides insights.
Price
$150 per user per year on average.
$10 to $30 per user per month on average.
PRM Tool
Rating
Feature
Pro
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Mobile App
Integrations
Free Plan
Pricing
4.65
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star-half
Org-wide alignment
User-friendly layout and database
Suboptimal as a personal CRM
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Lack of tracking system
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Team: $20/month
Business: $45/month
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7-day trial
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High customization capability
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Business: €14/month
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Open-source flexibility
Requires extensive manual input
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Ideal for non-tech-savvy users
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iOS only
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1-month trial
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$14.99/month
3.6
star
star
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star-half
Smart Contact Management
Feature-rich and flexible
Reported bugs
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Rich
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7-day trial
Premium: $13.99/month
Teams: $17.99/month
4.4
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Customizable Interface
Customizable for teamwork
Pricey for personal use
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Standard: $24/member
Premium: $39/member
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Integrated Calling
Integrated Calling
Too sales-oriented & pricey
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14-day trial
Startup: $59/user/month
Professional: $329/user/month
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Business Card Scanning
Business Card Scanning
Mobile only
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4.45
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30-day
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CRM goal
Increase the sales conversion rate for qualified leads from marketing automation campaigns by 10% in the next 6 months.
SMART Breakdown
1. Specific: It targets a specific area (conversion rate) for a defined segment (qualified leads from marketing automation).
2. Measurable: The desired increase (10%) is a clear metric, and the timeframe (6 months) allows for progress tracking.
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Actions
Step 1: Refine lead qualification criteria to ensure high-quality leads are nurtured through marketing automation.
Step 2: Personalize marketing automation campaigns based on lead demographics, interests, and behavior.
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Outcomes
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