Join Brad Batesole for an in-depth discussion in this video Using LinkedIn's Social Selling Index (SSI), part of Marketing Tips.
Hi and welcome to another episode of weekly marketing tips.. I'm Brad Batesole and this week I'd like to talk about something that LinkedIn released surrounding the topic of Social Selling. It's a tool that helps you measure your Social Selling Index. Now, I know, not all of us hold a traditional sales role. But to be honest, if you're a marketer or self-employed or even wearing multiple hats at a company, you're selling something. You might not be directly selling a product or service but instead you might be selling yourself, your ideas and so on.
This idea of Social Selling isn't new but it's been gaining a lot of traction recently as data comes out demonstrating its power. The idea behind Social Selling is that it enables you to use social networks to find the right people and relationships which you can then leverage either to pitch a product, an idea, or to establish a connection that you might need later. It's a complete loop. You identify opportunities through social networks and your contact has the opportunity to review your personal social presence and your brand's social presence to understand who you are and where you are coming from.
Put another way, Social Selling is about establishing yourself as a professional or positioning your brand properly, finding the right people, engaging them by using insights, and nurturing those relationships to help them grow. You can use Social Selling in so many facets. It's not just about selling a product to a person. But at the core social networks are the key to Social Selling. And, let's be honest, when it comes to business networks I really think LinkedIn owns the space.
They've got some 364,000,000 members on what they call the world's largest professional network. Your LinkedIn profile is always working for you to promote your expertise and accomplishments. So it helps you build trust and gain credibility, which is the first step in the Social Selling cycle. But, when we talk about the Social Selling cycle, this can be a really challenging area to navigate. I can barely keep tabs on if I've replied to all of my emails this morning, let alone remember if I've been active in my Social Selling objectives.
So I'm super excited about this new resource that LinkedIn unveiled. Again, it's called your Social Selling index. By checking out your SSI you'll see how you stack up against your industry peers and your network on LinkedIn. Further, you can see how you are performing on each of the four elements of Social Selling; Establishing your professional brand, Finding the right people, Engaging with insights, and Building relationships. This lets you track your progress over time so you can see if you are improving or not.
Now, not only does this help you see how you're ranked compares to your peers, but more importantly, it helps keep you motivated to not skimp on your Social Selling efforts. So, if you have a LinkedIn profile and you are an English speaking member, you are going to have immediate access via www.linkedin.com/sales/ssi. You can see I've already got this pulled up on my screen. Once you're here you'll get a quick overview on your SSI. At the top left I can see who I am and my current job.
Over here on the right hand side I can see how I stack up in my industry and my network. So you can see I'm in the top 3% for the industry and in the top 21% for my network. Now, at any time if you want to share your SSI you can tap the link in the upper right hand corner and that will let you push a post out to your network. As I scroll down I can see how things look for me today. It's easy to pop in here say, midday, and identify where I can improve. Here along the right hand side we can see sort of the scores.
There are four scores that go up to a total of 25 giving us an overall total of 100. So here on the left I can see I score a 67 out of a hundred. And I can see that these different numbers 21, 18, 5, and so on, all correspond to the colors on the left which help me understand which ones are making up the bulk of this score. Let's go down them together. First, we have the Establish your professional brand section. I can see that I have made a lot of improvement here. A key way to help improve this is to continue adding things to my profile as well as publishing meaninful content related to my industry and network.
From here I can see I've moved the bar for Find the right people. If I wanted to move this even further I can go out and run searches for the type of people I'm interested in connecting with. Again, this could be people I just want to introduce into my network to collaborate with or perhaps people that might be able to introduce me to someone else I'd like to connect to. Below that we can see the Engage with insight section. Now, here I've got a pretty low score, a five. This means I need to be better at sharing meaningful posts, and interacting with my network on their content.
If you want to get some more information on what all of these mean and how they pan out for you on LinkedIn, you can simply click the link. Here I select Engage with insights and I get seven slides that I can go through. I can tap the expand option in the lower right hand corner to make that full-screen. Go ahead and exit that, and close that. You can review those on your own if you want to undertand some key actions within each of these sections. Finally, we can see that I am scoring fairly well for Building realtionships. This means I am really keeping that professional network growing.
As I scroll down we can see the index week over week. So you can see I've got some improvements and where, maybe, I have some declines. Below this we can see how we stack up with people in our industry and people in our network. As well as the break down of where they tend to score highest and lowest. So we can see that within the network most people score a six here on that Engaging with insights. Which means I'm not doing terrible in relation to my network overall. It seems they score pretty low there, as well.
But, I could get a leg up on them by moving that needle further. Now, I know some of you might be thinking, this is really centered around LinkedIn. Sure, for the most part a lot of these action items are biased towards using LinkedIn to move the needle. But, as I mentioned earlier, LinkedIn is really great at helping you identify these connections but it doesn't mean you can't take these learnings to other platforms that you may be more engaged with. If you have LinkedIn it's a free tool to explore and it could really help move the needle on your marketing objectives.
At the end of the day, even as marketers, we're selling. So if this can help you get a leg up it's worth a shot. Thanks for checking in this week. As always, I'd love to hear from you. So let me know what you thought about this week's episode. You can reach me on Twitter @bradbatesole or via email firstname.lastname@example.org. I'll see you next week.