Social selling gets a higher purpose in the enterprise as Microsoft take more steps to integrate LinkedIn into its broad portfolio of productivity and business applications like Office 365. The most recent announcement is the integration between LinkedIn and Microsoft Dynamics 365, the cloud-based ERP and CRM suite. A natural step after the company’s acquisition of LinkedIn last year, we think this integration will help companies support smarter social sales strategies.
A focal point of this integration is LinkedIn Sales Navigator, a tool that helps salespeople be more productive on LinkedIn. They can create a sales lead list, receive lead recommendations tailored to their preferences and real-time updates on prospects and customers and importantly, unlock full profiles for leads who aren’t in their network. Imagine the possibilities for sales productivity now that you can use LinkedIn seamlessly with Microsoft Dynamics 365.
Here are five ways that LinkedIn and Dynamics 365 will help you sell:
1. Save time. Salespeople can reap all the benefits of LinkedIn for prospecting without leaving the CRM interface. They can save leads from Navigator, email and track LinkedIn prospects, and monitor their activity to guide follow-up and interactions.
2. Know more about prospects and audiences. Without having to seek it out, sales and marketing teams can view from within the CRM system the LinkedIn user activity of customers and prospects. That means seeing the latest information about what your customers and people like them are doing and discussing online. This contextual information can lead to a richer database of sentiment data, creating a more holistic view of your market. Companies may even compile data about users who “look like” existing customers to expand leads. Further, building a richer source of data about your market can inform marketing and product development strategies.
3. Maximize your network. LinkedIn Sales Navigator working in tangent with Dynamics 365 allows salespeople to identify existing relationships that can help prospecting. For instance, a sales rep can find out who within the company has connections to a key target on LinkedIn. By connecting the right people inside your organization with the right people at the prospect organization, you can start off a conversation on the best track.
4. Get work done faster using your favorite applications. Integrations between Microsoft Dynamics 365 and Office 365 open up more possibilities for productivity. Employees can use popular apps like Microsoft Excel, OneNote, Outlook and Office 365 Groups, populated with customer and prospect data from Dynamics and LinkedIn, to drive campaigns and track sales and marketing activities.
5. Create tighter bonds with existing customers. Let’s not forget the sage advice that it’s much more expensive to acquire new customers than to nurture existing ones. Through the Dynamics CRM and LinkedIn integration, companies can do a better job of staying in touch regularly with existing customers, understanding their changing needs and even running special promotions or contests through the social media platform.