I’ve never been fond of LinkedIn’s InMail service which is limited in its utility. However, InMail claims to have a 15% response rate which is 5x that of email. What’s more the top ten percent of InMail senders net a 30% response rate. According to Doug Camplejohn, Head of Products at LinkedIn, this disparity demonstrates that there are a set of best practices which improve rep response rates. LinkedIn is rolling out a 2.0 version of InMail which assists with sales rep personalization.
“The best InMailers don’t treat InMail as a SPAM cannon, they really think about it as a handwritten note,” said Camplejohn. “They take a little time to personalize things and we want to make it easy for all of you to be that good at InMail.”
The first step was making the InMail box smaller so that it doesn’t cover up the recipient’s profile. Thus, it is easier for reps to identify a personal hook to the recipient. InMail is also providing a set of icebreakers (e.g. recent posts and updates) and shared connections to assist with messaging. A critical new feature is the option to synch the email to CRM, providing an audit trail for InMail communications within SFDC.
InMail 2.0 also supports a signature block, attachments, and a new Inbox with threaded messages. There is also a pending tab for tracking InMails that lack responses.
InMail is included as part of the Sales Navigator service. Professional users receive twenty InMails per month while Team accounts are granted thirty InMails per sales rep per month.
Improving rep messaging is a key aspect of their Navigator product strategy. LinkedIn is also working on integrating the PointDrive sales messaging service into Sales Navigator in Q1.
LinkedIn has begun rolling out InMail 2.0 to users.