LinkedIn Automation: The Why, Whats & Hows

LinkedIn Message Automation: The Why, Whats & Hows
19 minutes

You’re probably looking for information about LinkedIn Automation. 🚀

You are certainly on LinkedIn, and so are your customers. There’s no doubt you’ve heard of how it’s a gold mine for building and developing your business. You may have even heard about LinkedIn automation.

The benefits, but also the risks.. and you’re not sure what to expect.

In this article, we go into detail about what LinkedIn automation is, the different types of automation, what they allow, what they don’t allow, what you need to know to make the most out of them, and what the risks are. Basically we’re going to tell you everything there is to know about LinkedIn automation tools 😁

 

LinkedIn automation allows you to carry out the 4 main types of marketing actions possible on LinkedIn, namely:

  • Profile visits,
  • Profile follow-ups,
  • Sending of connection requests,
  • Sending of messages.

What are the differences between these types of actions?

“Secondary” LinkedIn features

Profile visits allow you to indicate to your prospect that you are interested in them. This helps to arouse their curiosity. When you visit someone’s profile, the person receives a small notification that you have visited their profile.

Note that beyond a certain number of people visiting a profile, a user must have a LinkedIn premium subscription to be able to access the identity of the person who visited the profile.

Profile follow is quite similar to profile visit. The difference between profile visit and profile tracking is that when you track a person’s profile, that person is systematically notified of the identity of the person who tracked their profile, whether that person has a LinkedIn premium subscription or not.

In addition, when you follow a profile, you access the profile’s news in your News Feed (publications, job changes, etc.).
Visiting and profile tracking are therefore recommended functions when you want to gradually get in touch with a prospect, and when you want to arouse the interest of your prospect.

These functions also increase the acceptance rate of connection requests.

Main LinkedIn features

At the heart of the LinkedIn prospecting war is to get in touch with prospects and then contact them by message.

The connection request is the first step. On LinkedIn, to be able to send a message to a person, you first have to be “connected” with them. To do this, a connection request must be sent to the person.

You can only send a LinkedIn connection request to people who are “in your network”, i.e. 2nd and 3rd-degree connections.

  • 2nd-degree connections are individuals with which you both share a 1st-degree connection.
  • 3rd-degree connections are people who are connected to your 2nd-degree connections. In other words, you know someone who knows someone who knows that person 🤯,
  • An “out-of-network” person is someone outside your 3rd-degree connections. Essentially, you don’t know anyone that knows somebody that knows the individual, and therefore cannot get in direct contact with him/her.

That’s why it’s important to grow your LinkedIn network. The larger your network, the more profiles you can access.

When you send a connection request to a person, you can attach a 300-character “note”. This note allows you to introduce yourself, present what you do, and explain why you want to get in touch with the person. But you’re probably wondering if you even need to write a note? Or if notes have any significant impact on whether or not your connection request is accepted? The answers are in this article 😁

And now, for the last of the 4 types of actions possible on LinkedIn – the message.

As previously mentioned, it is only possible to send a personalized message to people with whom you are connected. So the optimization of previous actions so that you can arrive at this point is crucial.

However, the message is the all-important step that allows you to highlight your product, your service, and what you offer. It is the step that allows you to convince your prospect.

You will have 10,000 characters to do this, and you will need absolutely impeccable copy-writing skills – but we will come back to this later.

So what’s all of this got to do with automation? Well it’s very simple: LinkedIn automation tools allow you to automate these 4 main types of actions, some of them in a sequenced way, without you having to move a finger.

There are 2 main families of tools, each with their advantages and disadvantages.

Google Chrome extensions for LinkedIn automation

Google Chrome extensions were created several years ago and allow you to automate LinkedIn actions directly from your computer.

The principle is simple: in one click you download the extension from the Google Chrome Store. Doing this automatically retrieves your LinkedIn authentication cookie that will allow the extension to connect to your LinkedIn account.

This method is particularly safe as actions are sent from your IP address (unlike Cloud tools – more on this see later) and bypasses the need to disclose your LinkedIn login details.

It is also extremely simple and fast as you don’t need to create an account. The account is automatically created and linked to your LinkedIn account when you download the extension.

The two types of Chrome extensions

Among Google Chrome extensions, there are two subcategories of extensions: those that perform actions on your LinkedIn page live, and those that perform actions in the background of the extension, in a way that is invisible to the user.

Extensions that perform live actions
Some extensions like Dux-Soup and formerly Linked Helper allow you to automate LinkedIn actions directly on your LinkedIn page. Concretely, it is a “robot” that takes control of your computer to perform the different actions. You can see the different actions running live on your LinkedIn page.

The major disadvantage of this form of automation is that it does not allow you to do anything else on LinkedIn while your actions are running. So you have to navigate to other pages while the automation is running.

Extensions that perform actions in the background
Other extensions such as Octopus or ProspectIn perform actions directly in the background.

The principle is simple: you program your LinkedIn actions in advance and they are carried out directly and automatically from the background of the extension. From a technical point of view it’s as if you were on your computer and are clicking to carry out the actions. Except you aren’t.

This allows you to browse LinkedIn with peace of mind while scheduled actions continue to run automatically.

The major disadvantage of all Chrome extensions is that you’ll have to have your computer on and a LinkedIn tab open in order for the actions to run.

Furthermore you’re obligated to use a Google Chrome browser. Which may not be some user’s first choice.

Cloud applications

Cloud applications are more “conventional” applications than Google Chrome extensions. They are applications that you download from a site and then install directly on your computer.

With these applications, you have to provide your LinkedIn login details so that the application can connect to your LinkedIn account.

Also, it works slightly differently to how Chrome extensions work. With Cloud applications, the actions do not start from your computer, but from the Cloud.

What is the Cloud?

Simply put, the Cloud consists of a remote computer, capable of performing LinkedIn automation actions from a different location than your current one.

This has two important consequences:

  1. The first is that the actions will not be performed from your IP address, but from an IP address linked to the Cloud. LinkedIn does not like IP address changes at all. It views these changes suspiciously, and therefore their use may lead you to an identity check. Let’s be honest, it is very suspicious that your automated actions are running from the United States, whilst you’re active on your account on a daily basis from France. But if you want to continue to use your LinkedIn account outside of an automated tool, you don’t have an option but to use two different IP addresses. The only way to overcome this dilemma, is to use a proxy to ensure that the IP address of the Cloud corresponds to an IP address in the same country. This solution is reliable, but can be a bit technical for inexperienced users.
  2. The second consequence is that with the use of Cloud tools, you’re able to automate your LinkedIn actions, without having to leave your computer permanently turned on and a LinkedIn tab open.

This webmarketing solution is ideal for people who manage several LinkedIn accounts on behalf of third parties and cannot afford to have several accounts running continuously on their computer.

On the other hand, these tools are often riskier and more expensive. They will not be suitable for the average user.

Okay, let’s recap.

Advantages of Google Chrome extensions

  • Secure.
  • Easy to use.
  • Quick to install.

Disadvantages of Google Chrome extensions

  • Need to have your computer turned on with a LinkedIn tab open.

Advantage of Cloud Applications

  • Actions that send 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Disadvantages of Cloud applications

  • Technically complex to use.
  • More expensive.

However, there is a solution that brings together the best of Chrome extensions with the best of Cloud applications, eliminating the drawbacks of both.

Let me introduce you to… Cloud Francewaa. A tool that allows you to run any Google Chrome extension in the Cloud, with zero tech know-how needed.

Simply:

  1. Enter your LinkedIn login details.
  2. Choose your country and the times at which you want to run your extensions.
  3. Launch the session.

That’s it!
Cloud Francewaa is the optimal solution for anyone who wants to take advantage of the best of both systems. We highly recommend it. 😉

 

We’ve painted a complete picture of the automation landscape, the different solutions to automate LinkedIn for your company, and the advantages and disadvantages.

By now it’s likely you understand why you should embark on your automated LinkedIn prospecting journey.

The most efficient channel for B2B prospecting

As of now (2021) if you want to obtain new customers for your service, or acquire new users for your product on a large scale, you only have a limited number of channels available.

If you’re brave and have a lot of money to waste (and you’re selling insurance to seniors), you can turn to telephone canvassing.

It will cost you a fortune salary-wise (even if you relocate your call center), you will get catastrophic conversion rates, and 99% of the time you’ll have to go out of your way to disturb people, due to very limited targeting possibilities.

If you are a little more switched on to the current prospecting climate and practices, you will turn to two other channels: emailing, and LinkedIn prospecting.

Emailing: a prospecting solution less and less efficient

Emailing is very convenient to contact a very large number of people at a low cost. But it poses two major concerns:

First, to be able to send a large number of emails, you have to have a large database of emails.

In order to acquire a large database of emails, you have two possibilities:

  1. Buy the database.
  2. Scrape the database.

With the first possibility, you’re gonna spend a lot of money. This somewhat defeats the main advantage of emailing – it being pretty low cost.

With the second possibility, you’re gonna spend a lot of time, which isn’t entirely efficient. At Waapi we’re not a big fan of inefficient methods.

There’s also the fact that emails are a popular mode of communication. If you use it to acquire new customers, in addition to communicating with your existing customer base, the result will be: you constantly drowning in emails. Not to mention that emailing is highly popular, which makes it increasingly difficult to stand out from the crowd when trying to reach new customers through this channel.

Email open rates are very often under 20%, and click rates under 5%. Needless to say, you will have to send a huge number of emails before you can turn a significant number of prospects into customers. However, it is often difficult to accurately target your prospects through emailing, so once again, your results are going to be anything to marvel at.

LinkedIn Automation: the future of effective prospecting

In contrast to your other options, LinkedIn is a highly qualified open-air database, just waiting to be used.

Today, the platform has more than 600 million profiles. All of which contain detailed information on their location, industry, position, or the school they attended.

The targeting possibilities are almost infinite, especially when using Sales Navigator. And fine targeting of prospects is indispensable for the success of any prospecting campaign.

Another key driving force behind the efficiency of LinkedIn prospecting campaigns is the opening and response rates to LinkedIn messages. The open and response rates of LinkedIn messages are much higher than those observed in emailing.

In general, the open rates for LinkedIn messages are close to 100%, and the response rates are higher than 20% (and can even exceed 50% for the best performing campaigns).

Why is prospecting via LinkedIn so efficient?

Simply because on LinkedIn your prospect feels like you’re addressing them personally. This differs from emails, where the prospect knows that they’re in a loop of automatic emails, and as a result won’t bother to reply to, or even read your email.

When it comes to results, email prospecting campaigns have nothing on LinkedIn prospecting campaigns.

LinkedIn’s automation is a monumental time-saver

If you want to find qualified leads on LinkedIn, the first step is to define the persona you’re seeking, as precisely as possible.

Who is the average person you want to reach? Where do they live? What do they do? What are they seeking? What frustrates them? What do they eat? (well ok, this one may not be necessary, and may be bothering on stalking, but you get the idea 😁).

Once you have a clear image of your ideal persona, you will have to find this persona via a LinkedIn search.

In other words, you’re going to play with LinkedIn filters to make your persona stand out in the search results.

Let’s say you identified your target as a “French” speaker who works in “Lyon” and is in “marketing” and filter these elements, you would receive a list of about 2000 people.

utiliser LinkedIn pour son entreprise avec les filtres sur prospectin pour prospecter facilement

 

Now, can you imagine contacting these 2000 people, then sending them follow-up messages manually? Of course not. It’s as ridiculous as the idea of contacting individuals for a prospecting campaign one email address at a time. It would take you days.
That’s where LinkedIn automation comes in. You plan your actions in advance and the automation tool takes care of the rest.

With ProspectIn, you can export all the profiles from the search page with one click.

Once exported into the tool, all you have to do is prepare your marketing sequence and launch your campaign!

The actions are then queued directly and you just have to reply to the generated messages.

Once automated, a job that would have taken you several hours a day, can now be performed easily in just a few minutes.

Target your competitors’ users

With LinkedIn, you can also target your competitors’ users.
There are two different techniques for this.

Targeting members of a Facebook group or a Slack group

If you have a precise idea of where your target is, you can also carry out ultra-targeted prospecting campaigns.

For example, if one of your competitors has a Facebook group or a Slack community, you can very easily scrape the data and re-import it into an automation tool like ProspectIn.

  1. Start by identifying a group of users of your competitors. In our case, we were able to target the Facebook group of Dux-Soup users.
  2. Using PhantomBuster, retrieve information from the profiles you want to target.
  3. Import the results into ProspectIn.

The process takes less than half an hour and is extremely efficient. What better audience to target than your competitors’ users?

If you want to see how to set all this up in detail, here’s an in-depth article we wrote on the topic.

Targeting people who are fans of a company page on LinkedIn

Sometimes it will be difficult to access the Facebook group or Slack group of your competitors’ users, or they simply don’t have a group for their community. But don’t worry, your vision of having all your competition’s users jumping ship hasn’t gone down the drain!

You can, thanks to a small hack, target people who like a company page. Just a heads up, you’re gonna need Sales Navigator.

  1. Create a LinkedIn profile, stating that you work in the company of the subscribers you want to target,
  2. Perform a Sales Navigator search (you can choose to target everyone who likes the company’s page, or you can choose to add an extra layer of personalization, such as only people living in France),
  3. Go on to the tab “These prospects follow your page “,
  4. Export prospects with ProspectIn.

utiliser linkedin pour son entreprise avec le sales navigator

Once again, the process is extremely fast and produces spectacular results.

Now that you’re starting to get a clear idea of what LinkedIn automation can do for your business, it’s time to see how you can optimize it all.

When you’re looking to start prospecting on LinkedIn, there are some guidelines and tips to follow. This is what makes the difference between a LinkedIn campaign that transforms exceptionally well, and a campaign that produces poor results.

Optimize your profile to acquire more customers

Let’s be clear, your LinkedIn profile is your showcase on LinkedIn. This is what allows you to attract the attention of users and retain the prospects you bring to your profile.

It should be thought of as a website, or a landing page. Every detail is important. This is the first thing to optimize before you start prospecting on LinkedIn.

A clear and impactful title to attract the right people

Your job title is the first thing (along with the profile picture) that users will see when your profile appears. It not only appears on your profile, but also when you post or reply to comments.

It is therefore very important to choose it carefully. Use a clear job title that encapsulates your role.

Have a professional profile picture to inspire confidence

Your aim, and we can’t repeat it enough, is to have a professional profile picture, taken by a professional.

Too often I still see poor quality pictures of people, or worse, totally unprofessional poses. Also, remember to smile. It’s good for personalizing your professional LinkedIn 😉

Have a promotional banner to spark curiosity

LinkedIn allows you to add a “banner”, a kind of cover photo. Take the opportunity to create an image that allows you to visualize your value proposition at a glance.

utiliser LinkedIn pour son entreprise en créant une banniere promotionnelle sur linkedin

Tell your story in the “Summary” section to trigger an emotion in the prospects who will come across it

LinkedIn offers a “summary” insert that allows you to speak more about yourself: who you are, what your areas of expertise are, what you offer. Use storytelling!

Use the “Highlight” section to display your activities

The “Highlight” section on LinkedIn allows you to showcase your articles, a website, videos. Choose well the first 3 elements, because these are the ones that will appear first on your profile.

Experiences and training, no need to lie

When you create your CV for LinkedIn, it wouldn’t occur to you to invent a life for yourself, would it? Well here it’s the same. No need to lie about your past experiences. Be sincere and don’t forget to detail your experiences, what you’ve done, and the specific results you obtained.

Translate your profile to increase your prospecting reach

 

It is imperative to have your profile translated in at least English.
This will allow most prospects who come across your profile to understand who you are and what you do.

Targeting prospects in B2B: the name of the game

As I said earlier, prospect targeting is essential if you want to obtain satisfactory results from your prospecting campaign.
The first step to successful targeting is therefore the clear definition of your persona.

Sales Navigator is crucial for searching for prospects if you want to use LinkedIn to its full potential. The standard search is far too limited.

For those of you who can’t afford the Sales Navigator subscription, we have uncovered a way to use it without having to pay.

Performing a good LinkedIn search with Sales Navigator

When using Sales Navigator, there are a few things you should know before you start using LinkedIn for your business.

Do not use the main keyword search bar

This may seem counter-intuitive, but searching for profiles via the main keyword search bar is to be avoided.

Running a search via the main search bar will result in LinkedIn looking everywhere in a profile for the keyword you entered. This means you may come across results that are far removed from what you were originally looking for.

Use the job title

Instead of entering a keyword in the main search bar, we recommend you use the job title filter. This will give much more relevant results.

The job title is one of the most relevant filter elements. It is often the core element of the search, whilst the other filters are mainly there to refine the search further (geographical area, language spoken, etc.).

Use quotation marks

The use of quotation marks allows you to only display results that contain the exact word sequence within the quotation marks.

For example, if you are searching for a “Business Developer” and do not use quotation marks, you may for example come across “Software Developer” profiles, which do not match the actual profile you are looking for.

Using Boolean operators

Boolean operators, when mastered, can be extremely powerful. They can be used to combine elements and exclude others. It is an essential tool for performing a highly accurate search.
The “NOT” allows you to exclude certain unwanted terms.

For example, if you want to search for a consultant but you are not interested in freelancers, you should enter “Consultant NOT freelance”.
Booleans can be used in filters other than the title, for example in the “company” filter.

If you want to target people working at Google or Facebook, you can use the enter “Google OR Facebook” in your search.

Targeting decision-makers

When looking to sell a product or service on LinkedIn, it is important to speak directly to the person with decision-making authority. Sales Navigator makes it possible to target by seniority level.

Do not exceed 2500 search results

This is THE rule to follow if you want to optimize your LinkedIn searches. There are two reasons for this:

  • The first is that the Sales Navigator does not allow access to more than 2500 search results (100 pages containing 25 profiles per page). It will therefore be impossible to export and contact prospects beyond 2500
  • The second reason is that it is essential you categorize your campaigns as finely as possible, so as to optimize personalize for each one.
    The more targeted and better categorized your campaigns, the more personalization you’ll be able to have in your campaigns.

 

Personalize your LinkedIn approaches to optimize your conversion rates.

Personalization of your approaches has a significant impact on the performance of your campaigns, but who says automation doesn’t go with personalization? I mean, come on, they even rhyme 😉

ProspectIn allows you to automatically personalize your messages and notes using the classic elements of {{firstname}} and {{lastname}}.

You might feel that these elements don’t allow sufficient customization. And I’d be inclined to agree with you on that.

I’m going to show you 3 really efficient ways to customize your prospecting campaigns on LinkedIn while using ProspectIn.

Target people who comment on a LinkedIn post

With ProspectIn, it is possible to directly target people who have commented on a LinkedIn post, automatically.

I’m sure you already know the technique of offering content (such as a White Paper for example) in exchange for a like and/or a comment on a LinkedIn post.

Well it is also possible to target people who commented on someone else’s post. Since these kind of LinkedIn posts target a particular audience, you can use the post to retrieve profiles from that target audience. You then get a highly qualified audience and create a highly personalized initial approach. An example:

“Hello {{firstname}), I saw that you commented on XXX’s post about YYY, I’m also in the ZZZ sector and would love to connect so we can share our knowledge on these topics. »

All you have to do is find a certain number of relevant posts. One of the ways you can do this is via hashtag searches.

Target people in your industry with LinkedIn automation

You can also use hashtag searches to target people who talk about your topics.

Nothing could be simpler. You just need to prepare your sales strategy. An example :

“Hi {{firstname}}, I found your post through the hashtag #hashtag. I really liked the post and would like to learn more about what you do”.

Then launch the campaign on ProspectIn in auto-pilot mode:

créer trigger sur prospectin pour prospecter sur LinkedIn

Target people who visit your LinkedIn profile

For this technique, you must have a LinkedIn premium subscription, and a minimum number of people visiting your profile.

It works especially well if you are very active on LinkedIn, for example if you post often and write a lot of comments.

Setting it up is pretty simple, just prepare an initial prospecting message like:

“Hello {{firstname}}, I saw that you visited my profile, I recently wrote a XXX article about YYY, I’m interested to have your opinion on it”.

Then launch the campaign on ProspectIn, still on auto-pilot.

Among all the existing automation tools, you’re probably wondering why you should use ProspectIn?

In addition to the classic CRM management and LinkedIn performance management features via a dashboard, ProspectIn stands out in three areas.

Safety

ProspectIn is the safest tool. Everything has been thought of so that the tool replicates human behavior: maximum daily action quotas, random delays between deadlines, undetectable extension, alert in case of abnormal activity…

Scenario feature

What sets ProspectIn apart from its competitors’ tools is its Scenario feature.
The Scenario feature allows you to send sequences of actions in a fully automated manner.

For example, on day 1 you visit your prospects’ profile, on day 2 you send a personalized connection request and on day 3 you send a personalized message to the people who have accepted your request.

scenario linkedin modele

The Scenario feature allows you to automatically follow-up with prospects who have not responded to you. A real time-saver 😉

So far we have seen relatively simple and basic automation. But ProspectIn allows you to take the automation of your prospecting activity much further. Let me introduce you to: the Triggers feature.

Triggers feature

The Triggers feature allows you to trigger an action based on a given event, and certain conditions.

For example, you can set up a Trigger that allows you to automatically accept people who send you a connection request without a note, and send them a welcome message.

It is also this feature that allows you to automatically send a message to people who comment on a LinkedIn post.

Thanks to Triggers, you can also set up fully-automated prospecting campaigns using the saved search function on Sales Navigator.

Finally, the Triggers feature allows you to synchronize your prospecting campaigns with your CRM through Zapier.

You can also conduct cross-channel campaigns by automatically emailing those who accept your connect request. To learn more, read this article. 😉

 

 

Okay, let’s try to summarize what we’ve seen today:

We saw that LinkedIn automation essentially consists of automating 4 types of actions (profile visit/profile follow up/connection requests/sending of messages).

To do this, there are two categories of tools, Google Chrome extensions and Cloud applications.

Chrome extensions are safer and easier to use and therefore are better suited for standard users. Cloud type applications on the other hand are ideal for seasoned users, who often manage several LinkedIn accounts.

We have seen that of all the mass marketing channels, LinkedIn by far comes out on top. There are 2 main reasons:

  • A highly qualified, accessible, and almost infinite database
  • Transformation rates much higher than those observed with emailing

We then saw how automation saves users considerable time by automating manual tasks that normally take several hours to complete.

We also observed that certain techniques make it possible to combine automation with very precise targeting, especially that of competitors.

We then provided some guidelines when using LinkedIn automated tools, particularly how to optimize your LinkedIn profile, the correct use of search filters, and how to ultra-customize your campaigns so as to obtain outstanding prospecting results.

Finally, we saw why ProspectIn is the most suitable tool for the automation of your LinkedIn prospecting. Largely thanks to it being highly-safe, and its scenario and trigger features.

FAQs about LinkedIn Automation

Do I have to be very tech-savvy in order to use automated tools for LinkedIn?

No technical skills are required to use tools like ProspectIn, and users are able to set up their campaigns in just a few minutes.

Is my account safe when I use ProspectIn?

ProspectIn makes it a point of honor to protect the account of its users through the perfect simulation of human behavior and the setting up of alerts in case of misuse.

Does ProspectIn have a free version?

We offer a 7-day trial period on ProspectIn, in which users have free access to all features.

We also have a free plan that gives users access to the basic features with reduced daily share quotas.

That’s all for today! Feel free to contact me on LinkedIn to give me your feedback or if you have any questions 😁

Now you know all about LinkedIn Automation! 🚀