LinkedIn and other social media sites provide a portal to an infinite universe of prospects, customers, contacts and resources; so much so, that it can be overwhelming. As sales professionals, there are two categories of folks with whom we want engagement but don't yet know:

  1. qualified prospects who would be interested in our products, services and insights, and
  2. those who can provide valuable insights and information to make us more effective at our job.

How can we find the right people amidst a universe of options? LinkedIn Groups is one great tool of how to use LinkedIn for sales to find the right people to engage with! Here are tips to find and engage the best groups to support your sales and social selling success:

Search by Relevant/Key Words

  • Consider the vertical and geographic markets of your key prospects and explore relevant LinkedIn groups using key words OR do the same using key words for your own industry/profession.
  • From your home page on LinkedIn, type relevant keywords into the search window. Once the search screen opens, be sure you select the "Groups" tab to better filter the results.
  • Assess groups based on their relevance/name, the number of members and participation by your contacts or peers who are already members.

Search by Example

  • Research the profiles of key customers and prospects to see to which groups they belong OR do the same for mentors and leaders in your company/industry. This is an easy and efficient road map to highly relevant groups.
  • Go to a key customer's (or sales mentor's) profile and scroll all the way down to the "Interests" section. At the bottom of that section, click on "See All."
  • When that window opens, go to the top and click on the "Groups" tab to see all the groups to which the individual belongs.

Click here to watch the video.

These group search tips should make your efforts to connect with relevant and valuable people easier and more efficient, and this is just one of many, many ways in which we can leverage social media to drive sales and professional development.