SDRs, salespeople, and Internet hustlers everywhere…
Have you ever been told to buzz off by a prospect after sending a cold DM?
It happens—we’ve all been there. But it doesn’t have to be that way. LinkedIn prospecting tools can give you a way to get past that initial resistance and onto the phone with somebody who’s actually interested in your offer.
Think about it—would you rather dig a hole with your bare hands, or use the spade shovel? Yes, the shovel costs money, but when you use the right tool for the job, you end up saving a ton of time and digging a way better hole.
Shovel analogies aside, if you’re doing any cold outreach on LinkedIn, it’s essential that you have the right software for the job.
In this post, we’re going to break down five of our favorite LinkedIn prospecting tools and give you some insight into how they can help you target the right contacts, make the connection, and actually get a positive response. But first, a little background on the how and why some of these tools will make your life a lot easier.
Why Use LinkedIn Prospecting Tools?
As we alluded to in the intro, the first reason you’re going to need tools to help you generate leads on LinkedIn is effectiveness. The road to Sales Hell is littered with the corpses of SDRs who tried to send a bunch of cold DMs manually, failed, and ended up with a career in marketing.
If you’re serious about getting results prospecting on LinkedIn, you’re going to need the right tools for the job.
The second reason you need LinkedIn prospecting tools is time, which of course, equals money. Between logging your calls, updating your pipeline, and sitting through sales standups, there simply aren’t enough hours in the day to successfully close LinkedIn prospects with 100% manual effort.
The last and arguably most important reason you should be using the proper toolkit is consistency. Look, if you’re reading this, you are (most likely) human, and no matter if you stream Gary V podcasts directly into your veins 24/7, you’re going to take days off. However, with the proper technology setup, you’re prospecting on LinkedIn can literally run in the background while you sleep.
There are basically three categories of LinkedIn prospecting tools:
- List building
- Data enrichment
- Sending automation
Quickly, let’s understand how these fit together in the grand scheme of prospecting on LinkedIn.
First off, no matter how incredible your copywriting skills are—and let’s face it, they’re probably mediocre—if you’re sending to a list of unqualified or straight-up bad prospects, you’re just wasting your time. Therefore, using a tool to ensure you’re targeting a solid list is an absolute must-have for prospecting on LinkedIn.
Second, the reality of sales is that you’ll likely have to make contact more than once, and probably on different platforms (email, phone, etc.) Enriching your LinkedIn connection with these other forms of contact info is massively beneficial.
Last, if you build a solid list with enough data points, it makes sense to put some systems in place to help you contact these people in an efficient (read: automated) manner. The last type of LinkedIn prospecting tool is one that will help you send messages at scale.
Note—This is NOT an excuse for sending crappy, robotic, irrelevant cold outreach. If you need a refresher on how to be a genuine person, here is some further reading.
As you’ll see in the next section, some tools will overlap into two or three of the different tool types.
Tracking so far? Great—let’s get onto the tools themselves.
Our 5 Favorite LinkedIn Prospecting Tools
Here are a few of our favorite tools to help you prospect on LinkedIn.
1. LinkedIn Sales Navigator
No surprise here, but if you’re planning to use LinkedIn for lead generation, it might make sense to start with the tool they created themselves.
The most popular feature of Sales Navigator is widely considered to be its advanced search functionality. Some advanced search filters include:
- Recently posted
- Company size
- Job change
You can also save these searches for quick reference in the future. By narrowing your searches with such specific criteria, you can really personalize your outreach. For instance, if you can look up somebody who fits your target who’s also recently posted on LinkedIn, you can reference their content in your outreach.
There are plenty of other useful features in the advanced search criteria. People who have recently changed jobs are often great candidates for outreach since they’re usually re-tooling their department, hiring new talent, etc.
Additionally, LinkedIn Sales Navigator has a tag feature that allows you to track your leads, almost like a lightweight CRM.
There are many more useful features—too many to list—but you can learn more about Sales Navigator or start a free trial here.
2. Crystal Knows
More salespeople know that there’s an element to psychology in sales, and Crystalknows aims to help you capitalize on that. Crystal Knows is a Google Chrome extension that ‘reads’ your prospects’ public content and shows you their DISC profile so that you know how to communicate with them.
This data enrichment will give you that extra boost of confidence on your initial outreach attempt.
At its core, PhantomBuster is an automation platform that is highly adept at connecting different technologies and executing tasks automatically with what it calls “Phantoms,” which are similar to “Zaps” from Zapier. While the tool isn’t limited to LinkedIn specifically, it does have some neat features that could help with your prospecting.
With PhantomBuster, you can create workflows to automate many tasks involved in LinkedIn prospecting and outreach. For instance, you could design a workflow to execute the following actions in order:
- Scrape and export the results of a LinkedIn search to a Google Sheet
- Collect all data from the search results of LinkedIn profiles—including emails
- Using the list of companies, find all their information on LinkedIn
- Auto-connect on LinkedIn by sending invitations with a personalized message
Again, that is just a quick example of how PhantomBuster can accelerate your LinkedIn lead generation efforts with automation. For more information or to start a 14-day free trial, check out their homepage.
LinkedIn is a great place to start your prospecting, but it can also make sense to continue your outreach on other channels like email. If you want to extract emails—actual company email addresses—from your prospects list, Skrapp.io is a great way to do that.
Skrapp.io uses a web extension that integrates directly with LinkedIn to provide verified business email addresses with one click in less than a second.
In addition to integrating with LinkedIn, however, Skrapp.io can also pull emails directly off websites that you’re researching with the same technology. Although Skrapp.io has a singular focus and doesn’t do much in the way of automation, it fulfills its singular purpose extremely well, as made clear by its reviews on G2 Crowd.
For more info, check out skrapp.io.
We couldn’t write a whole blog post about LinkedIn prospecting tools and not mention our own at least once 🙂
We’ll keep it brief since you’re already on our site and can check out our features anytime, but there are a couple of key benefits we’d like to point out.
We use a Google Chrome extension that allows you to easily pull all the contact data for decision makers on LinkedIn. With just a click, you can add them to your prospecting list for follow-up.
Speaking of follow up, we also offer icebreakers to get you through that initial wall of resistance that’s so common in cold outreach. Using public social feeds, local news, and more, we curate a list of talking points for you to start a warm conversation with your prospects so you can start building relationships without coming off too sales-y.
And that’s just the start! If you’d like to try Datanyze today, here’s 10 free credits to get started.