Linkedin Lead Generation Strategy

A powerhouse of professional networking, LinkedIn offers fertile ground for businesses looking to cultivate meaningful relationships with potential customers, clients, or partners. But how can you tap into this professional network most effectively? That’s where a focused LinkedIn lead generation strategy comes into play. By laying a strong foundation, businesses can turn digital introductions into long-term partnerships. There are four major components to a LinkedIn lead generation broken out by personal/business and paid/organic strategies.

Differentiating between personal and business profiles

LinkedIn offers two primary avenues for marketing yourself or your brand: through a LinkedIn Page (for your brand) and through your personal profile. While both have the overarching objective of building and promoting an entity, they differ significantly in their functionalities, reach, and strategic applications. Here’s a breakdown of these differences:

Key Differences

Representation: LinkedIn Pages are designed to represent organizations, providing a more formal and scalable approach to branding. In contrast, personal profiles focus on individuals, offering a more personalized and relationship-driven networking experience.

Network: Your personal profile allows you to build a network through ‘Connections,’ facilitating one-on-one interactions and personalized communications. On the other hand, a LinkedIn Page gathers ‘Followers,’ aiming for a broader audience reach without direct, individualized engagement.

Advertising: If you’re looking to run ads, you’ll need to utilize a LinkedIn Page. Personal profiles do not offer the option to create or manage advertising campaigns, making Pages the go-to choice for paid promotional strategies. However, there are work arounds to this limitations. For example, you can always create a LinkedIn page for your own personal brand.

Prerequisite: To set up a LinkedIn Page, you must first have a personal profile. This ensures that there is a responsible individual linked to the organization’s professional platform.

Content Sections: Personal profiles feature sections like ‘Activity,’ ‘Experience,’ ‘Skills & Endorsements,’ ‘Recommendations,’ and ‘Interests.’ These sections offer a nuanced view of your professional journey and areas of expertise.

Conversely, LinkedIn Pages include categories like ‘Overview,’ ‘About,’ ‘Jobs,’ and ‘People,’ designed to provide a comprehensive look at an organization and its offerings.

Paid & Organic Differences

LinkedIn serves as a powerful platform for both organic and paid marketing initiatives. Like all other channels, paid strategies will get you results instantly. However, LinkedIn organic offerings are unrivalled across social media and gives you unique access to professional audiences. Here’s a breakdown to help you understand the differences between organic and paid marketing on LinkedIn:

Organic LinkedIn

Organic content is any post you haven’t paid to promote. Whether it’s text, images, or videos, as long as you haven’t used any paid advertising tools to boost your content, it’s considered organic.

Key Factors to Maximize Performance:

• Quality of Content: The more enticing and valuable your content, the higher the chances of it being seen. A well-crafted video will generally have more reach than a simple text update (depending on LinkedIn algorithm changes).

• Relevancy: Tailoring your content to your audience’s interests is essential. An irrelevant post can lead to lower engagement and reduced visibility.

• Engagement: Posts that attract likes, comments, and shares are more likely to be seen by a broader audience. High engagement often leads to a snowball effect, amplifying the post’s visibility.

• Timing: Posting when your audience is most active can make a significant difference in reach. Analytics tools can help you identify the best times to post.

Pros and Cons:

Pros: Organic content is cost-effective and generally viewed as more authentic, resonating better with the audience.

Cons: Algorithmic limitations can severely restrict your reach.

Paid Campaigns

Paid content is created or promoted through a platform’s paid advertising tools. You define your target audience, set your budget, and your content is promoted accordingly to reach a broader user base.

Key Factors to Maximize Performance:

Tied to organic and other marketing channels: Paid ads rarely act alone. Once someone interacts with your ads, they may also check out your company profile or visit your website. That’s why is vital to plan ahead and view paid channels as a piece of a broader picture.

Quality and Relevancy: Just like with organic content, quality and relevancy matter. Ads should be engaging and relevant to the targeted audience.

Utilize Analytics: Use in-depth analytics to track how your paid content performs and adjust your strategies accordingly.

LinkedIn Lead Generation Strategies

In the bustling ecosystem of LinkedIn, personal profiles can serve as potent catalysts for lead generation without needing to spend a single cent on advertising. Budget willing, ramp up with the constraints of a start-up budget or a combined strategy could be the powerhouse of influence and opportunity.

By the end of this section, you’ll gain a holistic understanding of how to synergize organic and paid activities on LinkedIn to position yourself as a thought leader—all while maintaining a sensible grip on your start-up’s budget. I’ll also show you how to ramp up multi-channel campaigns to generate high quality leads.  Let’s dive in.

Personal Profile Led Thought Leadership

When it comes to establishing thought leadership on LinkedIn, the people you connect with can make or break your strategy. It’s not just a numbers game; it’s about building meaningful connections that resonate with your professional goals and vision. The beauty of curating your connections carefully is that it can also significantly impact your lead generation performance. When you’re connected with industry leaders, potential clients, and other key stakeholders, your content becomes more visible to them and their networks, giving you direct access to qualified leads.

Moreover, LinkedIn’s algorithm favors active and meaningful engagement. By connecting with relevant professionals, you enhance your profile’s algorithmic appeal, making it more likely for your content to show up in the feeds of your connections and, by extension, in the feeds of their connections. It’s a ripple effect that can broaden your reach exponentially.

Strategy for Connecting with Target Accounts

Connecting with target accounts is critical for any thought leadership strategy. The key is to not rush into sending a connection request blindly. Instead, warm up your leads by engaging with their content first. Like their posts, share your insights in the comments, or even reshare their content, giving them credit, of course. This opens the door for an organic relationship, making your eventual connection request more likely to be accepted and engaged with. Once the connection is made, don’t hesitate to send a thoughtful, non-salesy message to kickstart a genuine conversation.

Engaging with Content from Other Voices

One way to solidify your thought leadership status is to interact with content from other influential figures in your industry. It’s a two-fold win: firstly, you get noticed by other thought leaders, making it possible to tap into their following; secondly, their audience, who already value insightful content, will likely be interested in what you have to offer as well. By engaging with posts from other leaders, you don’t just expand your reach; you also keep abreast of industry trends and topics that you might want to cover in your own content.

The Importance of Posting Quality Content Consistently

Consistency is king, but it should never come at the expense of quality. When posting on LinkedIn, each post should offer value, whether it’s a new insight, a helpful tip, or a thought-provoking question. Quality content reinforces your position as an expert in the field and encourages more people to engage with your posts, boosting your profile’s algorithmic ranking in the process.

Get more exposure through paid ads

You will need a company page to launch ads on LinkedIn campaign manager. Create a company page using your own name and add yourself as an employee. You can now  run a brand awareness campaign and sponsor your own posts as an employee. 

To wrap everything into one strategy, use your personal LinkedIn profile to establish thought leadership involves a fine blend of whom you connect with, how you engage with content, and the quality and consistency of your own posts. And remember, the LinkedIn algorithm is your friend, as long as you know how to work in tandem with it. Be strategic with your connections, genuine in your engagements, and consistent in delivering high-quality content, and you’ll be well on your way to becoming a thought leader in your industry. Leverage paid campaigns to expand your reach. Leads will naturally reach out to you once you establish a content production and distribution engine.

Budget Startup

A budget constrained start up should deploy a combined version of personal branding through founders and key executives + paid ad campaigns to support your brand. You can the following logic to determine what campaigns to launch.

1. Deploy personal profile led thought leadership strategy across the team (best to start with founders and key executives to prevent risk of employee turnover).

2. If you obtain sufficient traffic volumes to your brand’s website, run a paid remarketing campaign to retarget visitors to your website. You can also retarget visitors to your LinkedIn page or ad interactions if you start running more ads. Consider running lead form ads only to directly capture lead details within LinkedIn.

3. If you have leftover budget, consider opening up a prospecting campaign to reach new audiences and feed more visitors to the remarketing campaign.

The founders and key executives need to treat their own profiles as organic marketing channels for the brand. Follow the same principles outlined in the “Personal Profile Led Thought Leadership” strategy.

Combined Multi-Channel Strategy

Multi-channel strategies generally rely on more paid advertising instead of personal branding. While personal branding still plays an important part (usually at c-suite level), a multi-touch paid strategy is really going to be lever for substantial growth. Generating a combined LinkedIn advertising strategy that utilizes Sponsored Content, Sponsored InMail, Display Ads, and Dynamic Ads can be a powerful approach for lead generation. Sponsored Content serves as an initial hook, offering valuable content right in the LinkedIn feed, while Sponsored InMail provides a more personalized touch by delivering tailored messages to targeted members. Display Ads keep your brand visible, serving as a reminder for potential leads, and Dynamic Ads offer scalability with a personalized flair. By using these ad formats in tandem, you create multiple touchpoints that enhance engagement and increase the likelihood of converting quality leads.

Advanced Strategies

You can also deploy more advanced strategies if you have an outbound sales team. Run outbound campaigns and then retarget users with ads to improve outbound lead conversion rates. Alternatively, you can use LinkedIn insight tags to generate audiences of companies who visited your website but did not convert. It’s basically a free tool that reveals anonymous traffic giving your sales team more leads to work.

Common Mistakes to Avoid

Lack of Personalization in Connection Requests and Messages

One of the most common errors in LinkedIn lead generation is sending generic connection requests and messages. People can easily differentiate between a personalized message and a templated one. Taking the extra time to customize your outreach not only increases the likelihood of acceptance but also sets the stage for a more engaged conversation.

Overly Aggressive Sales Tactics

LinkedIn is a platform for professional networking, not hard selling. Approaching prospects too aggressively, especially without building any rapport first, can turn people off. Aim for a balanced approach that combines providing value and subtly leading prospects further down the sales funnel.

Inconsistent Posting and Engagement

While it’s crucial to keep your profile updated and regularly post quality content, inconsistent posting and lack of engagement can hurt your lead generation efforts. Inconsistency can lead to decreased visibility due to the platform’s algorithm, and it also fails to keep your connections engaged and aware of your offerings.

Failing to Leverage Advanced Search Features

LinkedIn’s advanced search features can be an invaluable resource for lead generation, helping you to narrow down your target audience with precision. Ignoring these features means you’re missing out on the opportunity to connect with the exact demographic that could benefit most from your product or service.

Ignoring Analytics and Data

LinkedIn provides robust analytics tools that offer insights into your reach, engagement, and overall campaign effectiveness. Failing to monitor these metrics means you could be repeating ineffective strategies without understanding what needs to be improved.

Poorly Targeted or Irrelevant Content in Ads

When running paid campaigns, it’s easy to assume that broader targeting will result in more leads. However, poorly targeted ads often lead to low engagement and a poor return on investment. The content in these ads should be closely aligned with the needs and interests of your target audience for maximum impact.


In sum, LinkedIn lead generation is a nuanced art that can be approached in various ways to achieve robust results. Whether you’re looking to establish personal brand credibility through thought leadership, are a startup on a budget combining paid ads with organic influence, or a well-established entity aiming for a multi-channel ad network reinforced by founder thought leadership, each strategy offers unique benefits tailored to specific needs and resources.

The key to success lies in leveraging the right mix of these approaches, continually fine-tuning your tactics based on performance metrics, and building genuine relationships that convert leads into loyal customers.



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