Case Study: Sales pipeline Grows to $1.45M In Seven Months on LinkedIn
Lori Carr didn’t have to think long about the impact that Top Dog Social Media and Melonie Dodaro have had on her sales efforts. “I keep track,” Lori said. “I’ve had 26 conversations with qualified leads, I have $1.45 million in my pipeline, I’ve had four in-person meetings and I’ve closed two deals. In my world, that’s really good stuff in terms of lead generation and I attribute it directly to the consulting I received from Melonie.”
Armed with an already-enviable list of brand name clients and a proven track record, Lori, president of Lori Carr & Associates, had come to a point where she knew she needed to ratchet-up her outreach and tell her story to more of the high-level (and hard to reach) senior executives who needed her consulting skills.
“I looked around for someone to help me with my LinkedIn strategy and I actually talked to three different people but I ultimately decided on Melonie for two reasons: she was very professional and she immediately understood what I was after in terms of focusing on prospects in large companies,” Lori said.
Like many of Top Dog’s clients, Lori described herself as a savvy LinkedIn user before she began work with Melonie on Top Dog’s “LinkedIn Domination” strategy. Melonie said that’s common with her clients – many of whom have been on the platform for years but haven’t been using it as a true lead generation engine.
“Most people who come to me think they are savvy LinkedIn users but I can tell you hardly any of them fit that description because they are missing so many components,” Melonie said. “I specialize in LinkedIn for B2B clients because it is, hand’s down, the number one tool you can use. If you use it correctly, you don’t have to worry about Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest – it’s LinkedIn that can position you as a credible authority.”
Melonie says recent research proves LinkedIn’s worth for B2B businesses: LinkedIn is 277% more effective for lead generation than Facebook or Twitter.
“That stat astonishes me because most people who use LinkedIn are using it ineffectively so if we can increase proficiency, imagine what we can achieve. Also, people are two times more likely to trust what they read on LinkedIn than they are Facebook or Twitter.”
Power of the Profile
The key to unlocking leads on LinkedIn and building your brand as a thought leader and an authority starts with your profile. “I always talk about laying the foundation for your success on LinkedIn by having a really professional profile,” Melonie said.
“Your profile is an essential part of your personal brand. Also, LinkedIn has really powerful search rankings. So, you must understand that when people Google your name, what they will often see first is your profile so it becomes your first online impression.”
As with many clients, the profile is where Melonie started her work with Lori. Many LinkedIn users make their profiles too “bio-like” and miss an opportunity to speak to their prospects. “My profile was all about me,” Lori said. “Now, it’s about those client personas that I’m trying to reach. That was a major change that Melonie made for me, which I think has made a big difference. She said ‘let’s use your profile to draw those people you are seeking and, in order to draw those people you need to define their personas and speak to their specific problems, etc.”
Melonie explains that the profile should always be less about you and more about your prospects: “People don’t care about you or me, they care about how we can help them and if the profile doesn’t convey that message it won’t be very effective.”
The Right Groups
Many people are drawn to LinkedIn because of its various affinity and professional groups that can offer networking opportunities. While Lori was active with this feature, Melonie helped direct her with a different strategic approach.
“The other thing that made a real difference for me was Melonie’s advice on joining groups,” Lori said. “I was already in lots of groups but they were in my area and with people who do what I do — like customer experience, customer service, etc. Melonie said no, get out of those groups and join the groups where your prospect personas are. So I started getting into groups where my prospects were, and then she taught me some techniques to prospect within those groups.
“LinkedIn provides you with un-gated access to the top decision makers of companies of all sizes. We also know that almost every person manages their own LinkedIn account — which means you have direct access that you can’t get anywhere else,” Melonie says.
Working the System
In the end, Lori credited the very regimented and recipe-like approach of Top Dog’s LinkedIn Domination strategy with providing the discipline and the roadmap for success. Melonie’s clients receive step-by-step instructions including how and when to connect and reach out to prospects in order to generate leads.
“I did everything she outlined,” said Lori. “When she said to send out 10 customized invitations a day, I sent out ten invitations a day. She said when they accept your invitation – send the next LinkedIn message the following day etc. I was so regimented about that process. The only time I deviated was if I got a response from a company that was too small to be a good prospect for what I offer.”
Melonie explained that “we’ve literally created a paint-by-numbers method but the client still has to implement it and Lori has been one of the best implementers we’ve seen. And, since we’ve also created a step-by-step tutorial that walks clients through the system, the beauty is that even someone like Lori, who doesn’t have time to do all the implementation, can easily delegate it to someone else.”
Full pipelines are the key to growing business
“It’s absolutely vital that you keep your pipeline filled and that’s why lead generation strategies like this are so important,” Lori said. “It’s been a great change for me and I know the reason that I have the pipeline that I have now is because of Melonie’s process. For professional service providers like me, it’s such a relief that there’s a solution out there like this. We’re good at what we do. In my case, I’m excellent at customer experience strategy and maximizing that for company growth. But when it comes to reaching out to people I don’t know and then making a sale – that just wasn’t my key area of expertise. Melonie helped me to find those people and become an expert on LinkedIn and so I could nurture relationships with it.”
Melonie Dodaro is founder of Top Dog Social Media that helps brands and businesses, use social media marketing and social selling to boost visibility, attract new customers and increase revenue. Melonie is also the author of The LinkedIn Code. To learn more visit www.TopDogSocialMedia.com.