Updated: Nov 19, 2020
We've all seen the posts on LinkedIn...
"Hey, check out my AMAZING SSI score on LinkedIn, I'm the best at social selling in my company and my house also smells of rich mahogany"
(For anyone who doesn't know, the SSI (Social Selling Index) is LinkedIn's very own scoring system for social selling activity, giving you a number out of 100 on how well you're doing)
I've seen this is in sales teams as well. Sales reps boasting about how great they already are at social selling and sometimes even MANAGERS saying that their reps have amazing SSI scores and probably don't need training.
But then I ask one little question...
How much have you actually sold from LinkedIn?
And that is why the SSI score is nothing to boast about if you work in sales.
You see there is only one thing that really matters in sales and social selling...
WHAT YOU SELL!
Boasting about an amazing SSI score is the equivalent of boasting about how many cold calls you made.
"Oh man I made 200 cold calls today, how amazing is that?!"
That's great, but how many meetings did you book? How many opportunities did you create?
How many conversations did you have?
And this is what you need to start measuring when social selling.
These are the things that really count.
Salespeople aren't hired JUST to make cold calls, they're hired to sell. Salespeople aren't hired to JUST send emails or attend meetings, they're hired to SELL. Whilst everything that leads up to the sale is important, there is no revenue generated until a deal is signed.
Don't get me wrong, the SSI score isn't useless. It provides very unique data and insight into some of the important metrics of social selling. Just like how you would measure the number of calls made and the number of emails sent etc
The SSI score only paints PART of the picture.
It's not the whole picture, but a very good part of it and should be used alongside other key metrics.
So what SHOULD you measure?
If you want a truly comprehensive view of how well you or your sales team are performing with social selling, this is what I would recommend you measure:
Sales won that came from LinkedIn
Opportunities created that came from LinkedIn
Meetings held that came from LinkedIn
Meetings booked that came from LinkedIn
Put all of that information together and you have a pretty good view of how well someone is leveraging social selling. Unfortunately, a lot of that information will have to be collated manually. This is where your CRM can become even more useful. Adding in sections to record the above data will make it a lot easier to track. Failing that you'll never beat a good old spreadsheet.
This is what I used to measure my sales team's success with social selling, it's what I recommend to every sales team that I train and it's what I recommend to every sales leader that I work with.
You will always get sales reps that boast about everything they've done APART from closing the sale. Sales reps that boast about the AMAZING pipelines, the record amount of calls they made, or LinkedIn messages that they sent.
Unfortunately, they're also often the ones who don't actually hit target.
So if you've got a great SSI score then well done!
I would just make sure you can back it up with the other important factors as well :)
I'd recommend using it as a guide to track your progress on LinkedIn and with social selling.
I'd then also recommend tracking the other key metrics as well to get a full picture view of progress and success :)
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Daniel is currently delivering LIVE LinkedIn Social Selling virtual training sessions for businesses and salespeople around the world. For more information please email email@example.com