The Ultimate Guide To LinkedIn Lead Generation [Top Strategies To Get More Leads 2023]

Cover image of LinkedIn lead generation top strategies to get more leads

Did you know that LinkedIn lead generation is one of the most vital activities for the sales departments of B2B companies?

“Why?” you ask.

Well, because LinkedIn is the #1 social media for generating leads. Its lead conversion rates are 3x higher than any other major social media platform. Moreover, LinkedIn alone generates 80% of B2B leads coming from all social media channels a company uses.

We can go on with the metrics, but you get the gist. LinkedIn is one of the best social media platforms for generating tons of qualified leads that convert successfully.

Sadly, many people do not take advantage of this social media platform. Or they do not have the desired results using LinkedIn lead generation and just give up. 

So, in this complete guide, we will walk you through everything you need to know about LinkedIn lead generation. To be more precise, you will learn: 

  • What is LinkedIn lead generation;
  • How to generate qualified leads on LinkedIn whether you are a marketer or a sales person;
  • What you need to do before you even think about a LinkedIn lead generation;  
  • Top intent-based strategies to make your LinkedIn lead generation flow in with results and shorten the buying cycle;
  • What are the best LinkedIn lead generation tools are;
  • How to perform outreach after you generated high-quality leads;
  • Answers to most frequently asked questions about LinkedIn lead generation.

Let's do this LinkedIn lead generation meme

What Is LinkedIn Lead Generation?

LinkedIn lead generation represents activities associated with identifying, gathering, and warming up potential clients on LinkedIn. Sales and marketing teams do so by using ads, forms, various tools, strategies, and outreach to generate qualified leads. It is an ongoing process that creates steady income for all B2B companies.

Why LinkedIn?

With the competitive market, generating high-quality leads has become somewhat of a challenge for B2B companies. Thus everyone needed to step up their lead generation efforts to stay relevant in the market.

That is where LinkedIn comes in. With 875 million members from 200+ countries, this #1 social media for professionals became a goldmine for B2B marketers and sales executives. 

Due to a large pool of professionals, 4 out of 5 LinkedIn users drive certain business decisions. Hence this audience has 2x buying power of the average web audience. Therefore, LinkedIn has been recognized as a perfect place where companies can find ideal leads and offer a solution to their problems. 

To make it easier for you to find the perfect lead, LinkedIn provides insights such as job titles, company they work in and its size, content they like and more. Moreover, this social media platform offers many ways sales and marketing teams can use to acquire qualified leads. So we will talk about all of them today.


How To Generate Leads From LinkedIn?

To generate high-quality leads on LinkedIn you need to perform different sales and marketing activities, leverage performance data, and improve. These activities include but are not limited to defining target audience, outreach, creating or sharing gated content, communicating benefits, and lead nurturing. 

Depending on whether you are a salesperson or B2B marketer these activities may vary but do have the same goal. So let’s break them down and check out what is the main focus for each professional.


LinkedIn Marketing For Lead Generation

LinkedIn marketing is a form of digital marketing where B2B marketers use LinkedIn to promote businesses, share content and generate leads. In most cases, marketing managers use LinkedIn to provide value and raise awareness through posting educational or gated content on the company page, thus generating more leads.

In other words, marketers use LinkedIn to:

  • Provide value through posting educational and engaging content on the company’s LinkedIn page;
  • Raise awareness about the product/service by creating and sharing case studies or specialized landing pages;
  • Grow following and increase engagement with target audience;
  • Create gated content and share it on LinkedIn with benefits and call-to-action for the said content;
  • Optimize LinkedIn page and content for SEO;
  • Host and share an online event ( webinars, hangouts, etc).

As a part of their marketing strategy, some content marketers even become influencers or thought leaders themselves. This way, digital marketing managers can expand their network and have an additional channel to share their content. 

The previously-mentioned activities are heavily based on organic content marketing. However, as a part of LinkedIn marketing, you can get paid traffic, engagement or generate leads by publishing sponsored content, aka ad campaigns.


LinkedIn Ads

Digital marketers often publish sponsored content through the LinkedIn campaign manager as part of lead generation efforts. They do so by specifying their target audience with certain demographics or other parameters and presenting them with the purposeful ad they create. 

For example, they can create an ad campaign with a call-to-action button to visit a landing page with gated content. The target audience then goes to a landing page and leaves contact information. 

For those who don’t know, gated content is digital material, such as educational videos, ebooks, or other documents that request users to fill out a contact form before they can download or access them. This is one of the classic ways marketers use to generate leads. 

Therefore, to get their lead gen forms to a wider audience and gather potential customers for their sales team, digital marketers can opt-in for sponsored content on LinkedIn as a part of their marketing strategy.

What does this mean in terms of activities? Well, marketers can use LinkedIn campaign manager to:

  • Raise awareness about their business or product;
  • Boost content engagement
  • Launch lead generation campaign (LinkedIn lead gen forms or landing page promotion);
  • Or message your potential customer directly through ads.

They say a visual is worth more than a thousand words, so here is how sharing gated content or launching a lead generation campaign works in real life.


Example how using LinkedIn ads and gated content can generate leads

Even though LinkedIn ads are a part of overall LinkedIn marketing, they are not mandatory for LinkedIn lead generation, as you can do certain things organically. However, they can be immensely beneficial if you wish to go all in.

That said, here is what all LinkedIn marketing activities would look like in a funnel.


Image of LinkedIn lead generation funnel for marketers

Using LinkedIn Outreach For Lead Generation

LinkedIn outreach signifies contacting and warming up potential customers on LinkedIn. It is the next step in the lead generation process, once salespeople finish with LinkedIn prospecting or after the marketing team acquires contact information through gated content. LinkedIn is the preferred social media for outreach due to communication simplicity.

Salespeople can outreach two types of leads to generate and qualify them: inbound or outbound leads. Inbound leads are the ones who have already interacted with your company (e.g. gave their information due to lead generation strategy or contacted via chat). On the other hand, sales professionals outreach outbound leads by themselves after finding them via prospecting.

Outreach on LinkedIn is definitely a long and separate subject on its own. However, there are definitely a couple of main principles we must mention for the sake of this article.


LinkedIn Outreach Principles

Firstly, LinkedIn outreach is the main part of the social selling strategy. In other words, it focuses on building relationships, offering a solution to problems, and nurturing leads throughout the buying journey.  

For example, you will usually find sales professionals starting the conversation on LinkedIn by asking about the lead’s workflow. Or they will offer educational content or case studies long before they pitch their product or service.

Secondly, LinkedIn outreach is about quality, not quantity. So make sure to find and outreach the right people according to your ICP or Buyer Persona.

Lastly, as marketing can retarget website visitors, salespeople can use retargeting of their own. To clarify, they can reach out to people they already had contact with in some shape or form and didn’t convert. The outreach message can be a simple follow up to catch up after a while or a full product update, depending on where they left off the conversation. 

With that in mind, here is a funnel with all the activities that sales people go through regarding LinkedIn lead generation.


Image of LinkedIn lead generation funnel activities for sales

If you do not have time to do the above-mentioned activities, you can always hire a LinkedIn lead generation agency to do it for you. However, if you wish to do it yourself, stay tuned as we will show you tips, tricks and strategies on how to do it right. 

What Do You Need to Do Before LinkedIn Lead Generation?

As previously stated, LinkedIn lead generation is undoubtedly the main focus for B2B companies. However, you can’t just dive right into LinkedIn lead generation without first establishing the basics.

If you do, you will generate a miserable number of leads and not the good ones either. The reason for such an outcome is poor LinkedIn lead generation basic steps, strategy, targeting, and outreach method. Luckily we will cover everything below.

Are you ready? We will start with what you need to do first. 


Create Highly Converting LinkedIn Profile

Before you start any LinkedIn lead generation activity, you must improve your LinkedIn profile and optimize it for conversions. If you do it thoroughly, it will stand out from other profiles and attract more people to visit it.

For example, your LinkedIn URL optimized for SEO and the headline created to boost LinkedIn lead generation will get you more profile views. Even a profile and LinkedIn cover photo can get you 14x more profile views. More visits will result in a lot more connection requests and engagements. 

Let’s take a look at this way. What profile photo captures your attention first in the following example?


Image of LinkedIn profiles that demonstrates the importance of fully set up LinkedIn profile for LinkedIn lead generation

We would guess that your answer is the lady with the orange background.

The reason she captured your attention is the fact that she implemented steps that more than 80% of LinkedIn users don’t. 


image for setting up your linkedin profile masterclass


People are more prone to send you a connection request if they like your profile. Furthermore, they will accept your requests frequently. Thus, your success in generating new leads, acquiring new users, and even selling will increase significantly.

Marketers, this goes for the company’s LinkedIn page, as well. Set the high-quality logo as your profile picture, add a high-quality cover photo that mirrors your branding, and import as much info as possible. Lastly, don’t forget to optimize your LinkedIn public URL for SEO, as LinkedIn users and search engines will use it to find your page.


Image of LinkedIn company page URL optimization - example

So, to stand our case, optimizing your profile will improve the conversion rate. Thus, it is one of the most important first steps to successful LinkedIn lead generation.


Define Your ICP And Buyer Persona For LinkedIn Lead Generation

Ideal Customer Profile and Buyer Persona are complementary documents that define your perfect customer and their company. In other words, they contain lead specification variables such as job title, the industry they work in, company size, or location. 

You should create your ICP and Buyer Persona based on your current customer data. This way, these documents will contain what type of lead: 

  • Has the shortest buying cycle;
  • Keeps high retention rate and LTV; 
  • Refer your product elsewhere.

If you do not define your ICP and Buyer Persona, you won’t be able to: 

  • Prepare your LinkedIn lead generation outreach message that converts; 
  • Generate high-quality leads;
  • Or create thought-leadership content to appeal to your ideal potential customers. 

In other words, you can’t do all these things because you don’t know who you are doing it for, to begin with. So be sure to define both to make your LinkedIn lead generation strategies more effective.


Become A Thought Leader

Here is an interesting fact for you. Did you know that many decision-makers, 54% of them to be more precise, claim they spend 1+ hour per week reading and reviewing thought-leadership content

Being someone others follow to discover more about their position-related news is one of the essential activities of LinkedIn lead generation. Keep in mind that being a thought leader is a continuous process. Once you get started with it, you need to be consistent to grow your network.

The best hook for any thought leader is offering valuable and actionable content to your network. Moreover, you will have better engagement if you add proof of success, for example, the exact results you achieved.

By offering a lot of valuable content, you’re earning people’s trust and building the image of an expert in your field. This will help you gain influence status in your market and get tons of leads through your posts. 

Whatsmore, you will connect with people on a much deeper level by being proactive and initiating different conversations based on your content.


How To Become Thought Leader?

Provide people with actionable steps to implement in their business. In addition, these steps should demonstrate your experience in improving your own or someone else’s business. Or, you could share stories about tools and strategies you used to get incredible results. 

To clarify the previously stated, let’s go through an example.


Post example demonstrating LinkedIn lead generation strategy through leadership

Why did this post work?

Firstly, the opening line promises a lot and entices readers to discover more about the story.

Secondly, the author showcases the astonishing results and what they could bring to anyone who follows the same steps.

Thirdly, by explaining how the content they share helped his company, the author provides the direct benefit and why people should read the document.

Lastly, they include an alluring CTA so people continue engaging with the post. Moreover, said CTA plays the main role in increasing this post’s tremendous reach (98,910 people).

How?

Well, this post uses the LinkedIn algorithm to its fullest potential. To clarify, when you publish a post, this is what the LinkedIn algorithm does:

  • First, it shows your post to a small group of people called a test group;
  • Secondly, if the test group engages with your post, LinkedIn starts showing your post to all your 1st-degree connections and their friends;
  • Lastly, if the 2nd or 3rd-degree connections engage with it, it will appear in their network too.

That’s how the wider audience can see this post and engage with it. 

What the author asks of people who want to see the guide, in this case, is to first engage with the post by commenting on it. 

That’s why the post became viral. And not only did the post become viral, but it paved the way for network expansion and lead generation. All that from the post alone. Wow! 


Build Your Network And Relationships On LinkedIn

Being a thought leader is all nice and fun. However, you won’t get far unless you use this social media for what it truly is for: building a network and nurturing real relationships with other members. 

There is no workaround for this one. The only way to build a relationship with your network is to reach out and start a conversation with them (read between the lines – LinkedIn outreach). Talk about their work experience, and what they find most challenging or exchange tips. You can also have a digital coffee with them.

That said, establish a habit of finding new people to interact with each day. After all, from honest and good relationships, great customers are born. And that is Social Selling for you folks.


Create A Personalization Spreadsheet

Speaking of Social Selling, you should know that its backbone is actually personalization in communication. Nobody would want to talk to you if you appeared generic or dishonest. Thus, if you wish to do LinkedIn lead generation right, you need to first hyper-personalize your communication on this social media.

So, when you start generating leads on LinkedIn, you need to research what that person is all about so you can start a genuine conversation. The one thing that will help you keep organized in this detective work is a lead personalization spreadsheet. It is a simple yet effective document where you will gather everything about your leads, such as: 

  • First and last name; 
  • LinkedIn profile URL;
  • Company name.
  • The topic of the content they published;
  • What stood out for you the most from the particular post;
  • School they went to;
  • Field of study;
  • Jobs they posted;
  • The technology they use;
  • Company growth information;
  • Personalized message intro (the message you can create based on above mentioned);

Keep in mind that this spreadsheet needs to contain actionable data that you can use in your outreach. We will explain how it can become actionable in your outreach in detail after you gather leads using LinkedIn lead generation.  


Image of spreadsheet example with leads' information to personalize outreach

Keep in mind that this spreadsheet functions as an actionable document you can use in your LinkedIn lead generation efforts. Don’t worry. We will explain how it actually becomes actionable, so stay tuned.  


Understand Buying Signals When Doing LinkedIn Lead Generation

If we needed to label the urgency of what you should do before LinkedIn lead generation, this would be Very Urgent on our list. Why? Because marketing and sales change their approaches rapidly. So you must keep up with these changes to stay relevant in the market. 

To be more precise, you need to be aware of this change called buying signals. It is the activity that leads perform to indicate buying intention for a specific product or a service. Or a buying signal can be an event that has taken place within the company that changed the company’s needs. 

For example, a prospect can post about a service explaining their good or bad experience and demonstrate their (dis)satisfaction.

Content marketers and sales are already using buying signals to generate high-quality leads with specific intent because it is a way to faster and better conversion. Consequently, LinkedIn is no exception. 

For example, marketing may notice a buying signal if visitors from LinkedIn go to several pages and end up on a pricing page in one session. Marketing then can post sponsored content on LinkedIn, retargeting those who ended up on a pricing page with another highly-converting landing page.

The sales team, on the other hand, can notice a person liking a case study they shared. After checking if the person has interacted with the business in some other way, they will outreach them on LinkedIn to connect or follow up on the said topic. 

That is what is happening in sales and marketing at the moment. People are figuring out holistic high-intent and signal-based approaches, and you should be one of them. So if you plan to work on LinkedIn lead generation, first learn to detect these signals on LinkedIn and use them to their fullest potential.


Top LinkedIn Lead Generation Strategies To Generate More Leads in 2023

Do not worry if you are still unsure of buying intent and how to create your strategy based on it. We’ve got your back. Some of the LinkedIn lead generation strategies listed below will give you an idea of how to do the prospecting on LinkedIn to detect these signals, find them, influence them, and reach out to your leads at just the right moment. 


1. Use LinkedIn Sales Navigator Search For Lead Generation

LinkedIn Sales Navigator, a platform for sales executives, is a the first method for B2B lead generation. 

Apart from the leads they get from marketers, who use LinkedIn lead gen forms, sales executives can generate their own leads using Sales Navigator’s extensive list of filters.

Sales Navigator offers Lead filters to search for your Buyer Persona and Account filters if you wish to find your ICP.

However, amidst all the filters, we wish to highlight one in particular that every sales expert in SaaS companies would like to see – the Technology used filter. This filter allows you to find people who use software similar to yours or even your competitor’s products and reach out to them.

Simply go to your Sales Navigator Account filters and find Technology Used or search by keyword.


Image of where to find Technology Used account filter in Sales Navigator

Once you do, go to that company page and find the decision-maker and reach out to them. 

You can also send them gated content that will act like a LinkedIn lead gen form for your marketing team. They can use it to target the leads with other beneficial content. Whatsmore, you will raise awareness and establish contact with them without pushing them to buy, but rather pulling them towards your company. 


image for watching the skylead demo


2. Search According To Your ICP Or Buyer Persona

One of the well-established ways for B2B lead generation is to use the LinkedIn search filters to their fullest. 

Dear sales teams, this is where your ICP and Buyer Persona come into play. If you read our guides, then you already know that each piece of information in these documents should be actionable.

Set the filters according to the documents using either LinkedIn Premium or Sales Navigator accounts to narrow your search. Once you do, copy the search URL. You are going to need it soon.

Trust us. By combining LinkedIn lead generation with your ICP or Buyer Persona, you will notice far better results than before since your leads will be more qualified.


3. Use LinkedIn InMail Templates For Lead Generation

LinkedIn InMails are direct and private messages you send or receive from a LinkedIn account that is not in your network.

InMails is a nifty feature for salespeople to use if they cannot get a hold of the lead using other methods (e.g. by sending a connection request). To clarify, once you send an InMail, the person will receive a notification as they would for regular messages.

If you are unsure what type of message to write to generate leads and get additional contact information via InMail, stop by our other blog and check out 13 LinkedIn InMail examples with a 25% response rate formula.


4. Job Posting Search

If a company publishes a job post, it usually means that they: 

  • Got funding for the department;
  • Something is not right in the current process;
  • Or a person from the team is leaving for some reason.

Whatever happened here, this is your chance to investigate and detect the buying signal. 

In other words, this LinkedIn lead generation strategy focuses on job vacancy search, adding companies to a spreadsheet, and then finding decision-makers and reaching out to them. 

Here is how you can generate leads by discovering specific job posts. For example, let’s say your company outsources sales specialists. To find these job posts, simply type that keyword in the LinkedIn search field. For example, you can search for a Sales Manager and use all filters to get as close to your ICP as possible. 


Image of LinkedIn lead generation strategy that detects buying signals through job post

Once you find the desired company, go to their LinkedIn page and search for decision-makers within those companies. Lastly, write them down in your Personalization Spreadsheet so your outreach can later be more effective.


5. Team Up Sales And Marketing Efforts For Ultimate LinkedIn Lead Generation

We cannot talk about LinkedIn lead generation and miss mentioning the marketing and sales synergy. Today people research services of interest first before contacting sales or support. Thus, it became essential for marketers to cater to these research needs by creating content and working alongside the sales department to generate leads with personalized sponsored content.

On the other hand, salespeople are responsible for inbound contact and outbound activities. They do this through thought leadership, prospecting, and personal contact once the lead lands in the funnel.

Here is an example of how sales and marketing activities should be in synergy.


LinkedIn lead generation strategy to align sales and marketing activities

Thus, one of the main LinkedIn lead generation strategies should be aligning their activities on LinkedIn too. In other words, marketing and sales should:

  • Communicate the same benefits and messaging;
  • Create gated content;
  • Serve personalized content on LinkedIn;
  • Address immediate pain points and buying signals. 

It is essential to align your sales and marketing teams since they are equally valuable. In other words, if the sales team targets the leads using buying signals, marketing should do the same as one of their activities. For example, if sales send the leads to a book-a-demo page, marketing can create a LinkedIn lead generation ad to target people who visited the demo page but didn’t convert. 

Note: To reach the ultimate results using lead generation, the best-case practice is to extend your lead research beyond LinkedIn. In other words, discover other places to find B2B sales leads according to buying signals and trace them back to LinkedIn for outreach.

6. Check For Buying Impulses By Searching LinkedIn Hashtags

LinkedIn offers many holistic ways to generate leads. Thus, searching for the leads who shared their pain points or someone who wasn’t satisfied with your competitors via hashtags is one way to do it. 

This strategy is perfect for zeroing in on the leads based on buying signals. However, it might need some time as it requires manual work.

All you need to do is type your competitor’s name to find dissatisfied customers, search for the hashtag. Or explore hashtags to find a person who asked for advice on their pain point. 


Image of post example where competitor's customers didn't like their product which is considered buying signal; LinkedIn lead generation strategy

Once you do, write down everything you discover in your personalization spreadsheet. This way, you will gather all the information you need to personalize the message for the outreach.


7. Combing Through LinkedIn Groups 

You can also find the leads by searching through LinkedIn groups – the themed places for professionals of all caliber to share their thoughts and experiences or ask questions about the group topic in one place. 

Unfortunately, post-engagement-wise, LinkedIn groups are dead. However, that doesn’t mean that your leads aren’t there or their content. In other words, these groups still hold a place for LinkedIn accounts that joined the group in the first place. So go ahead and find the groups your Buyer Persona would be in. Join those groups and leverage them for LinkedIn lead generation by reaching out to its members or finding a post that demonstrates buying signal or intent.

For example, if your target group is marketers, you can search the group by keyword and find your ideal leads.


Image of example how to use LinkedIn groups to generate leads

From there, you can invite them to connect with you by writing a message such as this:

Hey Aanya,

I’ve seen your interesting posts on the right partnership in digital marketing in the Software/Technology group. So I’m reaching out in hope to connect with you on that topic.

8. LinkedIn Lead Generation Strategy That Includes Targeting Posts 

One way to jump over gatekeepers and reach decision-makers directly is to find content that appeals to them. Let’s take a look at the following post, for example.


Image of viral post to use for LinkedIn lead generation

If you click the reactions or comments, you will for sure find some decision-makers out there.


Image showing how to generate leads from viral posts; LinkedIn lead generation strategy

This is a valuable LinkedIn lead generation strategy, as you will have the perfect conversation starter once you outreach the decision-maker. For example, your conversation starter, based on the previous example, could be:

Hey Tomer,

I noticed you liked Gary Vaynerchuk’s post on making decisions easier by watching consumer behavior, being customer-centric, and putting in the hours. I wanted to ask you how you make decisions in your company. Are there any obstacles and challenges in what Gary mentioned? Let’s connect on this.

Furthermore, you can check the post reactions a dissatisfied customer wrote on your competitor and generate the people who agreed with their opinion. The possibilities are endless.


9. Generate Leads From Event Attendees List

If you wish to research your leads’ buying signals, you need to start thinking about what LinkedIn events your ideal audience attends. Whatsmore, you can find them all in one place. Attending an event of this kind gives you valuable insight into their problems and needs. 

To target event attendees, you need to first search for the events. Then, choose the event and click the Attend button. 


How to apply LinkedIn lead generation strategy that generates leads who attended events

Next, click the Attendees button and check for the list.


Image of how to find and generate leads from LinkedIn events, LinkedIn lead generation strategy

Once the event is live, be sure to write down all the questions, concerns, or comments your leads have so you can personalize your outreach later on.


10. Referral Program For LinkedIn Lead Generation

LinkedIn’s main benefit is networking. So why shouldn’t you use this benefit for LinkedIn lead generation?

The key here is to connect with your customers and offer them an incentive to refer your service to people who might be interested in using it. In other words, you can create a referral program for your current customers. 

Here is an example of how the LinkedIn lead generation referral program works. First, you can offer a 20% discount for 1 month to your customer for every LinkedIn user who comes to your demo. If they find three people, that’s a 20% discount for 3 months. 

What happens, in this case, is that if the recommended leads convert, they can branch out and find other leads for you to contact and convert. 


Image of how LinkedIn lead generation strategy that uses generated word-of-mouth works

This referral program acts as word-of-mouth and a passive LinkedIn lead generation. You get leads with the buying signal, and your clients become your advocates. In return, they receive an incentive. Win-Win.


11. Generate Leads From Your LinkedIn Post

Posting content on LinkedIn as a thought leader is the most beneficial way of attracting the leads you wish. The type of content you post is your decision and creative liberty. However, for LinkedIn lead generation purposes, be sure to post in a way to appeal to high-quality leads in a unique and personalized way. 

Once you see the reactions piling in, you can gather the LinkedIn profiles in one place, and outreach them manually or use the LinkedIn automation and Email software to do it for you. But we will talk about this soon.


12. Gated Posts As LinkedIn Lead Generation Strategy

Another thing you can do for LinkedIn lead generation that includes posts is to create a piece intended for acquiring new B2B leads. 

To clarify, B2B marketers publish lead generation campaigns to boost their overall lead generation efforts. The type of sponsored content they publish the most are gated content and LinkedIn lead gen forms with call to action.

Similarly, salespeople can share gated content with their network. The catch is to write about the benefits of said content within your post. At the end of your post, you can share a landing page that leads to a form. Or you can ask the network to leave a comment on your post for two reasons:

  • To appeal to LinkedIn’s algorithm and get more eyes on your post (more engagement leads to more impressions);
  • And to have a reason to contact the leads directly and keep the conversation going (or use a lead generation tool to do the outreach for you).

Here is an example. Do you remember the post example from the How to become a thought leader section? Yes, that was gated content designed specifically for starting a conversation with new leads who are already interested in seeing the valuable content. What’s best is that they are the ones who initiated the contact. Thus social selling can go upright from here on now.

To post about gated content for LinkedIn, you can share any valuable piece your marketing team prepared for you. Or you can write one from your experience – the choice is yours. However, keep in mind that this content needs to showcase good results as proof, be industry-specific, and aim to cater to your prospects’ pain points. 

Just try it, and you will see why this strategy is one of the best for B2B lead generation. 


13. Linkedin Lead Generation Forms (Lead Gen Forms)

LinkedIn lead gen forms are a type of LinkedIn ad where the leads need to fill in a form to access the promoted material. It is similar to gated content on the website. However, the only difference is that LinkedIn alone hosts the lead gen form.

Once the lead clicks on the call to action, LinkedIn prefills the form, making it easier for leads to submit the information. You can then easily access the leads list, download it, and import it into the preferred automation tool. Or send it to your sales team. 🙂

LinkedIn charges this type of ad by cost per lead. In other words, you pay once the lead fills out the form. However, it can get quite expensive. It all depends on the industry and other parameters, but the projection for 2023 is that the average cost per lead on LinkedIn will be $75

In addition, please keep in mind that not all LinkedIn lead generation ads need to have a LinkedIn lead gen form. They can be a single image or a video that leads to another landing page with the form. So let’s talk about them.


14. LinkedIn Lead Generation Ads

As we previously stated, LinkedIn ads are powerful thus, they are one of the best strategies marketers can apply. However, many shy away from launching the ads due to their complexity at first glance.

However, marketing teams, to be fair, LinkedIn lead generation ads are not for a scare. They are just a tad more expensive. 🙂 

So here is how to launch any other type of lead generation ads in 7 simple steps.


7 Steps To Create LinkedIn Lead Generation Ad

Go to the Work section and navigate to the Advertise button.


Image of how to create LinkedIn lead generation ad -step 1

Next, if you already have your account set up, choose your account and click the Create button and choose Campaign.


Image of how to create LinkedIn lead generation ad step 2, campaign manager Create button

Then, select the goal of the campaign. You can choose among awareness, website visits, engagement, video views, and conversions. If, for example, you wish to promote your LinkedIn group or company’s LinkedIn page, choose the engagement campaign type. Or, if you wish to publish the LinkedIn lead gen form, use the Lead generation under Conversion.


Image of how to create LinkedIn lead generation ad, step 3, choose objective

Next, define their target audience. While choosing who you wish to see your LinkedIn ads, you can set parameters such as demographics, job titles, or similar parameters. Or, you can opt-in for retargeting your website visitors via LinkedIn Insight Tag. In both cases, do not forget to set conversions to track metrics.


Image of how to create LinkedIn lead generation ad step 4, setting up the targeting

Then, select ad format and placement (should you wish for LinkedIn to distribute your ad elsewhere). Keep in mind that message type ad acts as InMails, and will be labeled as Sponsored (unlike regular InMails). Moreover, the recipient will receive a notification for a message but won’t be able to respond or follow up with you. They can only interact with your call-to-action button.


Image of how to create LinkedIn lead generation ad step 5, choosing an ad format and placement

Your next step is to select the budget and conversion tracking if needed. 


Image of how to create LinkedIn lead generation ad step 6, setting up the budget and scheduling the campaign

Create Your Ad

Now the real fun begins. Once you click Next, you will arrive at the ad dashboard. To start, click the Create new ad button.


Image of how to create a LinkedIn lead generation ad step 7, creating an ad itself

Lastly, create your message, enter the website URL where your gated content is and define a call-to-action button. Here, you are making sure that the core message resonates with the selected target audience, depending on where they are in the buying journey.


Image of how to create LinkedIn lead generation ad step 8, creating a text copy

What’s more, keep in mind that this interface differs depending on the ad form you choose. Here is how it should look if you wish to create a LinkedIn lead gen form.


Image of LinkedIn lead generation form looks like when creating it in LinkedIn campaign manager

Once you insert the ad details, click Create at the bottom right of the screen, and your ad will be ready. You can then track your metrics and success back in the campaign manager.


LinkedIn Lead Generation Ads Examples

One of the shortest and sweetest ads we’ve seen must be the LinkedIn lead gen form that Hubspot published. It carefully emphasizes benefits – everything one needs to promote their business on Instagram and offers a cheat sheet as an easy solution. Moreover, the LinkedIn lead gen form auto-populates the fields, and the leads need only to click the Submit button.


Image of LinkedIn lead generation form ad example

Next on our list is GetResponse, who asked one of their customers to create a short video.


Image of LinkedIn ad example for generating leads, GetResponse

This ad is a win because of three reasons. Firstly, they used video format, which is the preferred format nowadays. Secondly, their customer gives a testimonial, a live word, and their experience with the product. Lastly, they promote their forever-free account, so it’s easier for the leads to sign up without any obligations.

Last, but not least, we have Atlassian’s webinar promotion.


Image of LinkedIn ad example, Atlassian's webinar promotion

Not every lead generation ad needs to have a service sign-up as the ultimate goal. Webinar sign-ups work for different buying cycles just as well, and Atlassian recognized it.

What is a win in this situation is not the copy above, nor a visual (though it helps), but the wording “on-demand”. You see, many of us do not have time, or have different schedules. So it makes it harder to fit one webinar by the time it is up live. The phrase “on-demand” makes it easier for leads to sign up, as they can watch the webinar whenever they find the time.


15. Use Sales Navigator’s Buyer Intent Feature For Lead Generation

Lastly, Sales Navigator introduced its Buyer Intent feature. It offers insights into accounts showing the level of interest. Buyer Intent helps sales professionals reach out to the right people and companies at the right time.

How it works is that LinkedIn tracks accounts that interacted with your business on many levels (e.g. if the leads viewed your profile or a company page, accepted your request, etc). It then labels them by the level of interest and recommends them to you. It is a perfect way to generate leads that previously showed some level of interest in your company.

However, keep in mind this feature is only available for Sales Navigator Advance and Advance Plus users. Thus if you have a Sales Navigator Core account, you won’t have this functionality.


Best LinkedIn Lead Generation Tools

LinkedIn lead generation tools are automation tools that streamline your lead generation activities on LinkedIn, help you track metrics, and optimize your efforts for success. In other words, these somewhat done-for-you tools automate the processes, such as prospecting and initial outreach, that you’d otherwise do manually. In addition, they help you with time-consuming tasks, thus saving you time to focus on closing the deal.

What’s more, LinkedIn lead generation tools are data-driven. To clarify, they provide you with precise metrics of your activities and show you how to optimize them for better results.

So what tools and platforms are the best for your LinkedIn lead generation efforts?


Campaign Manager For The LinkedIn Lead Gen Forms Ads

Unlike the Sales Navigator platform created for sales executives, LinkedIn’s campaign manager is a tool created for marketers. It basically allows marketing specialists to publish a different kinds of ads on LinkedIn, 

As we previously mentioned, one of the best ad types is the Lead Generation Form ads. However, they are and will be expensive as they directly generate the leads’ contact info on LinkedIn. 

Thus, you are probably wondering if you can use something less expensive. Yes, you can generate leads on LinkedIn via outreach, which is a cheaper method, even if you use the tool with it.


Sales Navigator For Prospecting

We cannot stop gushing about Sales Navigator simply because it offers many possibilities for sales professionals to streamline prospecting efforts as part of LinkedIn lead generation. In other words, Sales Navigator offers:

  • 15 different Account filters to narrow down your search according to your ICP;
  • Apply 29 Lead filters to find your Buyer Persona;
  • Leveraging the Buyer Intent feature to generate high-intent leads;
  • Setting alerts for leads or companies to get a notification if something changes;
  • Integration with CRMs (such as Salesforce);
  • Creating Leads lists to separate and save different decision-makers profiles.  

And these are just to name a few, as there are many other Sales Navigator features for lead generation. However, be aware that the features you’ll have at your disposal entirely depend on the type of Sales Navigator plan you use. Thus, read about all the plans and choose the one that will suit you best. 

So, once you find your ideal leads, you can outreach them directly from Sales Navigator or use the LinkedIn automation tool.


LinkedIn Automation Tools Designed For The Outreach

You could outreach the leads manually. Simply define the personalized message according to the info you gathered about them in the document. Then, outreach them one by one via LinkedIn or email. 

However, I have a question: What would happen if you generate hundreds or even thousands of leads? Would outreach them manually and watch over each step of the outreach process for every lead? 

Well, the good news is you don’t have to. You can use a LinkedIn automation tool to do it for you.

LinkedIn automation tools are software that helps you save time by streamlining the most time-consuming part of the outreach process

To clarify, let’s take our very own Skylead, a LinkedIn automation and Cold Email software. With Skylead, you can streamline the process of:

1) Finding your target leads;

2) Building your network to accelerate becoming Thought Leader;

3) Outreaching and establishing the first contact with your leads according to their behavior via Smart Sequences (this is one of the best Skylead’s functionalities);

4) Sending native hyper-personalize messages with variables, Images, and GIFs to increase the response rate;

5) Finding and verifying your leads’ email addresses to multichannel your outreach;

What’s more, you can integrate Skylead with your CRM and send data via Zapier webhooks or by using API. The choice is yours.

That said…


How Should You Approach Outreach After Previously-Mentioned LinkedIn Lead Generation Activities?

Our third and final part of the ultimate guide to LinkedIn lead generation will show you how to leverage a LinkedIn automation tool to streamline your outreach process. Moreover, we will cover how to approach your leads and start converting them seamlessly. 

Let’s go!


Save The Time And Outreach Smart

Here is how you can use Skylead to get the outreach done easily and quickly. Firstly, go to your Skylead dashboard and click the Create new campaign button.


LinkedIn automation and cold email software tool, outreach campaign creation using generated leads

Next, choose the lead source, aka where Skylead will pull your leads from. For the sake of this article and to show you how to use a Personalization Spreadsheet, we will choose to upload a CSV file. In addition, don’t forget to name your campaign.


LinkedIn automation & Cold Email software, outreach campaign creation from generated leads step 2, choosing the source

Be sure to create a new CSV file out of the information you gathered about your leads. The only condition here is to insert a person’s LinkedIn profile and/or email address. If you cannot find the person’s email address, you can use one of these ways to find emails yourself or let Skylead take care of that

Skylead provides the following native variables you can use to personalize your messages:

  • First name
  • Last name
  • Current company
  • Years in current company
  • Total career positions count
  • Total years of experience
  • College name
  • Occupation

In addition, you can insert other information in columns, such as the topic of the article they wrote, and Skylead will recognize them as custom variables. In other words, this column becomes actionable data you will use in your outreach. 

For example, your CSV file can end up looking something like this:


Image of CSV file example with personalized information to outreach leads with LinkedIn Automation & Cold Email software

Once you click next, set up your additional campaign settings and when you wish to launch your campaign.


LinkedIn Automation & Cold Email software outreach campaign creation step 3

Smart Sequence Creation

Welcome to the Smart Sequence builder page. Here, you need to create an action path that Skylead will follow once you launch the campaign. This action path (Smart Sequence) will observe the leads’ behavior and act accordingly until they respond to your outreach. 

Simply drag and drop actions and use different conditions based on their behavior to maximize getting in touch with your leads.


Image of LinkedIn Automation & Cold Email software smart sequence creation, outreach campaign step 4

Do not forget to write personalized messages for an invite to connect, InMail, LinkedIn, or Email message steps. 

The good practice here is to connect with your leads on a deeper level. So, craft your outreach messages to be as genuine as possible. For example, if you wish to send an invite to connect, try one of our invite-to-connect templates with up to a 78% acceptance rate, such as:

Hello {{firstName}},

I’ve noticed you have {{MutualConnectionName}} in your network. I worked with them at {{CompanyName}} a while back. I really loved {{whatYouLovedAboutMutualConnection}}.

That said, I see that we are both in the {{IndustryName}} industry and would love to have you in my network. 

Or, if for example, a lead doesn’t respond, get inspired by our follow up message templates and write something thematic like:

Hey {{firstName}},

 I’ve just seen your fantastic LinkedIn post on {{Topic}}. The thing that really resonated with me was {{Quote}}. 
 It would be great to hear more about how your business operates in this regard and also share some of my tips if you’re up for it. 

 What do you say? Would you like to chat about this?

image of skylead's sales e-book


After you define all the steps and messages, you can finalize the process by clicking the Start campaign button and your campaign is ready. Easy peasy.


Frequently asked questions about Linkedin Lead Generation

Oh, what a journey has been so far, hasn’t it? However, we still want to cover everything there is to know about LinkedIn lead generation. Therefore, here are a couple of FaQs to sum up LinkedIn lead generation.


Which LinkedIn Ad Format Is The Best For Lead Generation?

The LinkedIn ad format best for lead generation is a Single Image ad because it looks organic with other content you see in the newsfeed. Moreover, if combined with Lead gen form, it can bring amazing results. The next best thing is to promote gated content on your website. 


How Do I Target A Lead On LinkedIn?

You can target leads with your ads by using LinkedIn campaign manager. All you need to do is to define demographics, firmographics, and other parameters of your target audience or choose to retarget your website visitors via LinkedIn Insight Tag. Then create an ad, and publish it.


How Do I Generate B2B Leads On LinkedIn?

You can generate B2B leads on LinkedIn by using any of the strategies mentioned in this article, such as posting gated content, using lead generation form ads, and generating leads from event attendees. Moreover, you can generate leads from job postings, leveraging Sales Navigator’s buying intent feature, and more.


Why Is LinkedIn Best For Lead Generation?

LinkedIn is best for lead generation because it’s the #1 professional network in the world. According to LinkedIn, lead conversion rates are 3x higher than any other social media. Moreover, 4 out of 5 LinkedIn users drive certain business decisions and have 2x buying power of the average web audience. 


Ready To Scale Up Your LinkedIn Lead Generation?

LinkedIn is the #1 place to generate new leads by creating valuable content and reaching out to new connections.

However, before you get started with LinkedIn lead generation, you need to make sure to:

  • Create a highly converting LinkedIn profile;
  • Define your ICP and Buyer Persona;
  • Become a thought leader;
  • Build your network and relationship regularly;
  • Create a personalization spreadsheet;
  • Learn more and understand buying signals.

Once you do, you can apply one or all LinkedIn lead generation strategies to generate leads.


Image of 15 best LinkedIn lead generation strategies to get more leads

LinkedIn lead generation works best if you combine it with other lead generation methods outside of LinkedIn and then circle back to LinkedIn to outreach them.

However, you don’t have to do the outreach alone. Skylead can help you out with that. So come by, check out Skylead, and start your 7-day Free Trial!

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The Ultimate Guide To LinkedIn Lead Generation [Top Strategies To Get More Leads 2023]
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