LinkedIn Sales Navigator: what makes it so special?
LinkedIn, being a social platform for professional networks and relationships, is an effective place for lead generation. Sales Navigator, a paid solution of LinkedIn, has been created to facilitate this process by enabling salespeople more power to look for potential clients. Sales Navigator is considered to be the best version of LinkedIn for sales professionals. LinkedIn says, “Sales Navigator features a powerful set of search capabilities, improved visibility into extended networks, and personalised algorithms to help you reach the right decision maker”.
Sales Navigator is a paid tool available for all LinkedIn users. There are different subscription plans depending on the size of the team and its main needs:
1. Sales Navigator Professional (for 1 sales representative). Price – $79.99 per month or $779.88 per year.
2. Sales Navigator Team (for 2-9 sales representatives). Price – $134.99 per licence per month or $1,240.00 per year.
3. Sales Navigator Enterprise (for 10+ sales representatives).
Let’s discover the most significant features of Sales Navigator and whether it is worth paying for it or not.
Sales Navigator has some impressive premium features. Here are the most important of them:
1. The possibility of sending 20 InMail messages per month.
InMail is a key feature for salespeople who are doing lead generation on LinkedIn. You can write messages to people with whom you are not connected. The free version of LinkedIn doesn’t allow its users to write messages to people outside of their network. If you consider a person to be a potential client and have a reason for writing a message, InMail will be of use to you.
If you want to write an InMail, you have 1900 characters for the message and 200 characters for the subject. You are also able to add a signature to your messages.
You can send 20 InMails per month. If you do not use all your credits over a month, they will be transferred to the following months. For example, if you send only 10 InMails over a 30-day period, you will have 20+10=30 InMails for the next month. But all your credits will expire within 90 days if you do not use them. You will always see the number of remaining credits the moment you open a window to write a new InMail:
Since you only have 20 credits for InMails per month, you should try to use them in full and therefore generate new leads. Be aware of your remaining number of credits and send LinkedIn InMails only to your target clients.
To save you time, several LinkedIn automation tools enable you to automate sending InMails. You just have to create a template message, collect the list of people to whom you would like to send InMails and choose the timeframes. But we advise you to write personalised InMails each time in order to grab the attention of prospective clients. Search through the person’s profile, read their latest contact publications and news feed, look through their company page, and find out some distinctive facts to put in your InMail to show there is a reason to contact them. The perfect InMail should spark a conversation. That’s why you need to catch the recipient’s attention. You need to remember that if you are writing a message to a decision-maker or influencer, it may be one among 100 s/he receives per day, so you have to stand out.
Read more about InMails and our advice on how to write best InMails in our article.
2. Advanced search.
The most important feature of Sales Navigator for salespeople, hiring managers, and others who would like to expand their professional network on LinkedIn, is the advanced search. With its help you are able to narrow your target audience and, thus, have a better chance of hitting the bullseye. It contains the same fields as the usual LinkedIn search (for example, geography, relationship, industry, title, etc.), but there are a number of features that differ Sales Navigator advanced search from the usual LinkedIn search.
Sales Navigator contains different blocks of filters with a large number of them in each block. There are drop-down lists and different parameters for each filter. After applying all the filters and receiving a list of prospective clients, you can easily change each of the filters and amend your list. Making changes in one filter will result in immediately receiving an updated list of prospective contacts.
What is more, you can also exclude saved, viewed, or contacted leads to make your search result list more relevant.
The most important filters of Sales Navigator advanced search are:
1. Company headcount. You are able to choose the number of employees within the prospective person’s company – whether it is a self-employed person or someone working in a company with 200+ employees. For example, if you want to sell an IT solution to big corporations, you can choose the required company headcount, and will get a list of people working there.
2. Years in current position. If you filter the prospective clients by years in their current position, you can contact, for example, newcomers and ask whether they would like to implement suggested solutions.
3. Years at current company. If you select the option “Less than 1 year” at the current company you will more likely contact the very people (especially the likes of CTOs, marketing managers, etc.), who are in direct need of implementing various solutions.
4. Years of experience. You can use this filter if it is important to receive a list of people with a certain number of years of experience in a certain industry.
5. Posted content keywords. You can add keywords to your search to look for people who have posted content on their accounts with those keywords (who therefore might be interested in your services). This filter is important if you want to draw attention from these prospective clients to the content posted on your profile.
3. The possibility of narrowing lead lists.
After applying all these filters, you get a list of people and have the unique opportunity of choosing different options (that’s why you should create separate lists for various purposes):
- The total result – all people who fall under the applied filters.
- People who changed jobs in the past 90 days.
- People mentioned in the news feed in the past 30 days.
- People who have posted on LinkedIn in the past 30 days.
- People with shared experiences to you.
So if you choose, for example, those people who have posted on LinkedIn in the past 30 days, you will receive a list of active LinkedIn users, not those who created accounts years ago and are no longer active. If you choose a list of people who changed jobs in the past 90 days, you are able to contact those specialists who might need to implement some updates as newcomers to their position. With the help of this function you will increase the conversion rate of your sales process.
4. The possibility of saving a search.
The next important feature of Sales Navigator is the ability to save your search. Once you have applied all the filters and get the list of people, you can save this search, give it a unique name, and Sales Navigator will send you updates for this search daily, weekly, or monthly (you can choose how often), including new people who also fall under all the applied filters, so that you can contact them immediately. Once you’ve saved a search, you can open the search list anytime, change one or several of the filters and get the new list in a few minutes.
What is more, you will also receive relevant leads based on your sales preferences, search history, profile views, and past saved leads.
5. Access to out-of-network connections.
There are 3 levels of connection on LinkedIn – connections of 1st, 2nd and 3rd level. If you use the usual LinkedIn search, you cannot see 3rd level connections in your search results unless you enter a keyword in your search, whereas Sales Navigator includes those contacts within the list. Therefore, with the latter you can send invitations to those people and expand your network more quickly.
You can also read more about LinkedIn keywords search in our article.
This is another important feature of Sales Navigator – the possibility of integrating your LinkedIn account with one of the popular CRMs – Salesforce, HubSpot, Zoho, Infor, Oracle CX Sales, Pega, SAP, SugarCRM or Microsoft Dynamics. That means that you will be able to perform your entire daily routine with the help of CRM features, and you will reduce the time it takes for opening a new window, manually adding new leads and tasks to a CRM system (as compared with not using Sales Navigator).
You can check the list of all CRM-partners of Sales Navigator here. LinkedIn is planning to extend the list of partners in the near future, so it is not a problem if you currently use a CRM system which is not in the list above.
7. Absence of commercial use limit.
If you use LinkedIn for prospecting, or recruiting people, you probably already know about the LinkedIn commercial use limit. It restricts the number of profiles a LinkedIn user can search for within one month. It was intended to prevent salespeople or recruiters from using the LinkedIn free version for their professional goals, instead of upgrading their personal profiles to paid versions. When you have reached the limit, you have to wait until the beginning of the next month when you will receive new credits. In Sales Navigator, a paid LinkedIn solution, there is no commercial use limit, that’s why you are able to conduct as many searches as you wish without any limits or restrictions.
8. Ability to send an unlimited number of invitation requests.
If you are using the free version of LinkedIn, you are allowed to send a maximum of 100 connection requests per day (whether manually or with the help of any LinkedIn automation tool). When you exceed the number of 100 invitations, you have to enter a Captcha each time because otherwise LinkedIn considers you to be a spammer.
If you are using Sales Navigator for the lead generation process, you are allowed to send more than 100 invitation requests without risking being restricted by LinkedIn’s policies and regulations. In any case, the Dooozen team does not recommend you sending more than 100 invitation requests per day on a regular basis if you want your LinkedIn profile to remain unrestricted.
9. Receiving sales insights.
If you are using Sales Navigator for lead generation, it will analyse your network, activity, and communications, and will keep you posted on significant updates from within your network, such as job changes, company updates, relevant connections, hot leads, etc. This will facilitate a process of searching for prospective clients because you will be able to establish quick connections with those recommended.
To summarise, there is no doubt that premium features and sales resources available on Sales Navigator bring significant benefits if you want to be efficient in selling through LinkedIn. If you’re unsure whether you need Sales Navigator, you can apply for a free trial period for 30 days and try out all its functions. After that, you can choose one of three pricing plans: Professional, Team, and Enterprise. The size of your team or organisation and your goals will help determine which plan is right for you. If you are interested in Sales Navigator Professional (the best choice for salespeople), it will cost you 79.99 EUR a month, or 779.88 EUR a year if you pay for 12 months in advance.
In this article we have listed only the basic features and functions of Sales Navigator; there are many others, such as tagging contacts, saving your campaigns, etc. We will describe all of them in due course, but right now you can also read about the comparison of LinkedIn search and Sales Navigator advanced search in our article.
Subscribe to our blog to get more useful information about lead generation on LinkedIn and more besides. And try Dooozen – a LinkedIn automation tool that helps you avoid the daily grind while working with LinkedIn.
1. How much is Sales Navigator on LinkedIn?
There are 3 types of Sales Navigator plans:
- Sales Navigator Professional (for 1 sales representative). Price – $79.99 per month or $779.88 per year.
- Sales Navigator Team (for 2-9 sales representatives). Price – $134.99 per license per month or $1,240.00 per year.
- Sales Navigator Enterprise (for 10+ sales representatives).
There is also a 30-day free trial period for Sales Navigator with all its features available during this time. You can cancel the subscription at any point, to prevent being billed when the trial period expires. You will also receive a reminder 7 days before the trial period ends. Bear in mind that if you stop your Sales Navigator subscription, you will lose all the data such as saved searches, saved leads, and messages.
2. Is LinkedIn Sales Navigator worth the money?
Definitely. Whether you use LinkedIn for prospecting, growing your professional network, hiring, or for any other reason, Sales Navigator is a useful tool as it serves a lot of significant functions.
The most important features of Sales Navigator, in comparison with the LinkedIn free account, are:
- The possibility of sending 20 InMail messages per month.
- Advanced searches.
- The possibility of narrowing lists.
- The possibility of saving searches.
- Access to out-of-network connections.
- Unlimited search results.
- Ability to send an unlimited number of invitation requests.
- Sales insights.
3. What is the difference between LinkedIn and Sales Navigator?
LinkedIn is the social network itself while Sales Navigator is its paid solution. There are 7 types of LinkedIn accounts, and Sales Navigator is just one of them.
7 types of LinkedIn accounts:
- LinkedIn Free Account.
- LinkedIn Premium Career.
- LinkedIn Premium Business.
- LinkedIn Sales Navigator.
- LinkedIn Sales Navigator Team.
- LinkedIn Recruiter Lite.
- LinkedIn Recruiter.
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