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How to Find Your Ideal Prospect on LinkedIn Using Regular Search and Sales Navigator

Updated: Aug 9, 2021

LinkedIn search engine is the most powerful tool startups and B2B companies have today to find targeted audiences. Using advanced features can cut down the time wasted on irrelevant prospects and help you focus on higher-quality prospects. Disregarding the search filters could result in spamming and risking your reputation.




In this article we're going to cover the following:


  1. What are the 5 basic search critias on LinkedIn

  2. How to use your current clients to look for similar prospects

  3. How to search using Boolean LinkedIn search

  4. How to use Sales Navigator to find prospects

  5. How to use Sales Navigator to find companies




The 5 basic search critia on LinkedIn


Finding clients lits beging with basic 5 critirias that will yield a wide prospect list you can later filter furthure to create more focused list.

The critiria are:


  1. Connection. Make different lists for your current network and for 2nd and 3rd-degree connections you want to connect with. Different lists will allow you to custom your messaging strategy.

  2. Industry. LinkedIn has its own industry list so when searching, filter according to your client's industry. See the full list here. How do you know what industry your clients are in? Later on, I will talk about a cool hack you can use to find out.

  3. Location. Each market requires a different outreach approach. If you're targeting the entire US, it's probably too wide. Start with the market your product or service is the best fit for, or they might be early adopters.

  4. Title. This is how you know which individual in the company you will reach out to. If you target very common searches like "Owner" or "CEO", make sure you have Sales Navigator and you can target according to company size. I will share how to use SN in a minute.

  5. Company size. This is a feature available only on Sales Navigator. It's highly effective and if you can afford SN, I suggest buying it. In most cases, decision-makers in Big companies don't share the same titles as in small companies and you want to create different segments.



How to use your current clients to look for similar prospects?



When my clients aren't sure what industry their clients are in, I use this cook hack to help them find clients that are similar to their current client.

  1. Choose an ideal client, insert their company name in the search bar.

  2. Click on the company to visit their page.

  3. See how many people are working in the company.

  4. Look for the name of the industry they are under.

  5. Search for the title of the person that hired your services

  6. Now you have industry, company size, and title!

  7. Look for these criteria on LinkedIn search

  8. Rinse and repeat with other clients




How to search using Boolean LinkedIn search


This is extremely helpful on LinkedIn's regular search engine. If you want to add more than one title to the search, or avoid reaching out to your competition.


Bollean search offers 3 elements:


NOT searches: Type the word NOT (capital letters) immediately before a search term to exclude it from your search results. This typically limits your search results. For example, "programmer NOT manager".


OR searches: Type the word OR (capital letters) to see results that include one or more items in a list. This typically broadens your search results. For example, "sales OR marketing OR advertising”.


AND searches: AND searches: Type the word AND (capital letters) to see results that include all items in a list. This typically limits your search results. For example, "accountant AND finance AND CPA".



See this video to explore the options listed above :




Sales Navigator offers search engine of leads and companies. They are both very important and provide different data sources. We're going to explore both.



How to use Sales Navigator to find prospects using Lead search?



Most of the filter we discused in the regular search such as industry, location, and title apply here as well. However Sales Navigator offers a great deal of filtering options we can't fing in regular search.


The most effective search filters in my opinion are:


  • Company size

  • Groups

  • Years of experience


Pro tip: "Years of exerience" filter criteria can be used when targeting people in a certain age group. As a general rule, younger people will be included in juniors lists and older people will be included in the senior list.

Group filter- Even if you arent part of a group, you can still create a list of prospect that share the same common interest and are part of a group you want to target.


In this video you'll learn how to search on Sales Navigator:



How to use Sales Navigator to find companies Using Account filters?


The benefits of this search is that some filters are relevant only for companies and are'nt available in lead search such as:


  • Department headcount

  • Company headcount growth

  • Annual revenue

  • Technology used

As you can see in this video:



When should you use Lead Search And When should you use Account search?

Assuming you want to reach out to prospects on LinkedIn, why would you look for companies? Because sometimes the lead search is not enough. Let's say you're looking for e-commerce businesses. It is not included in the industry list. Using keywords only offers you e-Commerce services, meaning competitors.

With account search, you can search for individuals by first filtering the company they work for. If you're looking for an e-commerce business you can add "Shopify" or Woocommecre" in the "Technology used" filters to find the allusive result.

Once you found the companies you can click on "Select all" and click on "Lead Results" to find the employees.


The one big problem with this search- you need to click "Select all" on every page to add more employees. Why? Ask LinkedIn




At the end of the day, there isn't a better tool than LinkedIn for B2B leads. Learning how to use it is the back bone of good prospecting. Using regular search means you will miss out most of the time, because it will be harder to segment your audiencewithout the company size. I would like to point out that Sales Navigor could be a great lead saving and engaging tool. But this is for next time.



Want to learn more about segmenting your audience and how to optimize your profile? Join Linked-N-Go to get the complete playbook on how to navigate LinkedIn in short and fun videos.






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