(Fire-Tested) Anatomy of LinkedIn Appointment Setting Pitches That Convert Cold Contacts

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Using LinkedIn as part of your  lead generation strategy can be frustrating at times, espcially when you’re talking about how to do cold outreach via outbound messaging. What do you write? How do you end the message?

Let’s talk about it:


[Author’s Note: I hate when people present their information as though it were gospel. The truth of marketing and sales — that I know no one wants to admit — is things change ALL THE TIME 🙂 and that includes this pitch. While this has worked well for past customers and clients, you’ll definitely want to test what works best in your situation.


Remember, the ONLY killer marketing app is humility and a willingness to test what works. That said, here we go…]


I learned LinkedIn and got into LinkedIn Lead Generation because I wasn’t able to sell any of my other marketing offerings. Well, maybe that’s not completely true. Perhaps the REAL truth is that I was working with independent artists, trying to get them exposure online– and I’d had enough of the price complaints regarding my $99 services (yep, I was rolling in it).


My first LinkedIn Lead Generation customer was a software company owner I tried selling on a plethora of things until he finally came at me with,


“I can’t use any of that stuff.”


“So what do you use?” I asked.




“Sure, I can do that.”


What follows is what I learned via trial and error on LinkedIn after I said “Sure.” I pissed off people for months and got a whopping 0 sales calls for my paying customer week-after-sickening week and month-after-depressing month in order to learn this information. Yep, I went through it.


And because of that, I can tell you this is that I truly learned what it takes to craft a perfect appointment setting pitch on LinkedIn


Anatomy of a Perfect LinkedIn Appointment Setting Pitch

Start personally with your pitch


And by that I mean actually taking a few minutes to look at what the person is posting and what they’re sharing on LinkedIn then mention that.


Say what you’re about. 


You want to spend two quick minutes and just say, Hey, this is what I am doing. This is why I’m reaching out. 


Example: “I’m with Bug-Free IT. We are an IT service company and we help protect your data.”


See how we’re keeping it super simple, right? You don’t have to make it super long. The thing is that no matter what you do or what industry you’re in, everyone swears that their business proposition or all the cool stuff they do could not be explained quickly. You typically can. You just need to think about it a little more. 


Seal the deal.


This is where you finally lay your cards on the table. If you’re going to ask for a sales call, ask for a sales call. If you want to ask for a download then ask for the download. Just seal the deal.


We were able to take a customer from 1 to 22 sales calls in  by getting folks from affiliated member association to connect with them. 


Note that LinkedIn, after you put some work into it, is (at best) an appointment setting starting point.


UPDATE: These days, I prefer making a small (few sentences) pitch and ask for an email to continue the conversation. The problem with staying on any one platform/one channel in sales is that you can easily be ignored, ghosted or otherwise rejected — I once had a prospect get back to me after 6 months of silence. Apparently, he hadn’t seen my message(?!)  (don’t know if I believe that one).

Biggest Sales Mistake People Make On LinkedIn


Let’s talk about the biggest sales mistake people make with LinkedIn.  

Now you might be reading this thinking, “I got this pitch on LinkedIn and it was terrible!” or “Whenever I get them, I ignore them.” I’ve gotten these bad pitches too — and these folks are actually committing one of the greatest sins of LinkedIn Lead Generation: not using personalization. Let’s talk about why that just won’t fly in our current culture of digital sales.


The Necessity For Personalization In Social Selling


Let me take you back to the late 1990s/early 2000s when I got my first job doing telemarketing, also known as cold calling for sales. I would do my 140-plus calls and people would curse me out. But at 7:30PM, I hung up the phone and I walked out of there. I didn’t get any flack from potential customers until I headed back into the office the next day. 


With your Linkedin or typical social media platform, you don’t get that option. You do not have the option of simply ignoring that stuff. People are going to have access to all the time. So for me, it’s super important to make sure the strategies and sales prospecting techniques I share are things that don’t leave you or the people you ‘touch’ feeling icky.


Use Video To Add Humanity To Your Sales Prospecting  and Marketing

These days, I recommend using social selling and video together. This is an example of what it looks like in someone’s LinkedIn…

I’ll use the tool Loom (available for the Chrome Browser) and record a quick pitch via webcam. I like to record this in front of someone’s profile and while pitching them. My goal is to get people on an exploratory/ sales call.


A major benefit of video-powered messaging is implied consent.


When you can see that a lead watched your video, there’s at least some interest there. If you do follow up, you’re not doing it blindly. You’re not just blasting people.  This is critical, and one of the pitfalls of classical marketing where we’re often just blasting people who may have zero interest in what we have to offer. Video is an easy way to figure out if there’s some interest and then take it from there. 


Can’t say enough about video-powered messaging. It’s awesome. It’s super personal, a cheap type of lead generation, and it just really adds humanity to the whole sales process. 

After all, isn’t sales just about people talking to people?


Honestly speaking, I’m not always proud about what we do in sales and marketing — it’s often mucho lame and could be a lot better all around.


Here’s to doing marketing better.


By the way, if you’re looking to do LinkedIn Lead Generation that produces amazing results for you and your business, I’ve created the “Ultimate LinkedIn Sales Lead Generation Guide” so could better use LinkedIn for B2B Sales.


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  • The number 1 sales mistake people make on LinkedIn
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