If you do B2B sales, you need to evaluate Sales Navigator, says Jacob Cynamon-Murphy, Account Strategist for Microsoft Relationship Sales. As the bridge between the LinkedIn and Microsoft sales teams, Jacob is a huge advocate for LinkedIn Sales Navigator, a tool that can help you expand your network, collaborate across departments, and leverage the power of LinkedIn for your sales team.
Jacob has worn many hats in his career — he has been an end-user, a developer, a consultant, and a seller of CRM solutions. Jacob loves his current role at LinkedIn not only because of the vibrant company culture, but because his position is all about helping sellers better themselves – both within LinkedIn and Microsoft, and as clients using Sales Navigator to expand their reach.
Jacob shares a number of exciting features of Sales Navigator, and explains how Sales Navigator can help your team collaborate, cross-sell, enter and use data more efficiently, and utilize connections across your organization — even outside the sales department. He also shares words of advice on how to best implement Sales Navigator in your organization. His #1 tip? Start small, go slow, and be agile. The more you can analyze use and make micro-adjustments to learn best practices, the more successful you’ll be.
Watch or listen to this episode:
Fri, 12/4 11:39AM • 38:31
sales, linkedin, sales navigator, organization, crm, customers, sellers, salespeople, office, prospects, capabilities, engage, expand, insights, focused, opportunity, selling, people, sales enablement, linkedin sales navigator
Jacon Cynamon-Murphy, Christopher Smith
Welcome to the Sales Lead Dog Podcast hosted by CRM technology and sales process expert Christopher Smith, talking with sales leaders that have separated themselves from the rest of the pack. Listen to find out how the best of the best achieve success with their team and CRM technology. And remember, unless you are the lead dog, the view never changes.
Christopher Smith 04:46
Welcome to another episode of Sales Lead Dog. I am very excited about today’s guest, Jacob Cynamon-Murphy. Jacob, welcome to the show.
Jacon Cynamon-Murphy 04:57
Thank you very much. It’s a pleasure to be here.
Christopher Smith 04:59
Yeah, very excited. I’ve been telling everybody I know when I booked you that you’re gonna be on the show. So I’m very excited. Take, tell us a little bit about yourself in and what you’re currently doing.
Jacon Cynamon-Murphy 05:13
Sure. So I have a technical background, but always with a bent towards sales. And currently, I’m at LinkedIn, as an overlay, focused on helping the LinkedIn sales team selling the Sales Navigator solution, and the Microsoft sellers that are selling business application solutions to collaborate and sell bundle together. So it’s a it’s an interesting role within sales that I’m not a direct seller, but more of an overlay or overhead is, sometimes I joke with the the direct sellers who are doing the day to day work.
Christopher Smith 05:51
Right. Right. But you’ve had a tremendous career, what attracted you to your current position on the Sales Navigator team?
Jacon Cynamon-Murphy 06:00
That’s a great question. I would say there are two things. One, I, I loved working at Microsoft for a number of years, so much so that I left and then came back. Towards the end of my time, this last round at Microsoft, I had the opportunity to collaborate with LinkedIn. And part of what was appealing to me was the vibrancy of their offices, which is probably a little bit awkward to be talking about during the pandemic, you know how much I love going in and being face to face to the 700 other LinkedIn sellers and, you know, colleagues in the Chicagoland area. But there was something really unique to me about, how everyone engaged and spent a lot of time together in the office and focused not only on the da-to-day work, but also on really investing in the culture of the organization. So that was a big appeal to me. The other was having spent time in various sales roles over the years, having the opportunity to really go deep, focusing on helping sellers sell a sales tool to other sellers, and being able to help other salespeople up their game.
Christopher Smith 07:16
Right. Right. Can you talk about your culture a little bit with your organization about what that is, you know, that means so much do you about being in that organization?
Jacon Cynamon-Murphy 07:27
Absolutely. LinkedIn is, has a very strong values, a mission statement that we live by, and, you know, our focus is on empowering everyone around the world to have greater economic opportunity. And you see it in not only the products that we make at LinkedIn, but how we engage with our members, everyone has a LinkedIn profile, and with our customers and with our partners, and it’s that, to use a term from another expert in the business world, it’s that true north that we can focus on that makes it so easy to work together as a company, because it’s very clear cut, in most cases, how to go to market, how to do the right thing, for our members do the right thing for our customers and do the right thing for our organization. On top of that, there’s a lot of investment within LinkedIn, both at the corporate level and at the office level, around both diversity, inclusion, and belonging, which is very important to LinkedIn. But even beyond that, just feeling a sense of community, within the organization. So there’s a lot of investment in involvement and well being that I also really appreciate.
Christopher Smith 08:58
That’s awesome. That’s so important. Do you miss being, going into the office?
Jacon Cynamon-Murphy 09:04
I absolutely miss going into the office. I will not deny that I have found other uses for my commute time. So I have a new routine now that I’m working remotely, you know, five days a week, I look forward to being able to get back into the office in the future. But I do anticipate that my schedule will be a bit different than it was, it previously was fully five days in the office a week. But I do miss seeing the friendly faces having the impromptu conversations about work, about life. You know, so that’s, I definitely missed that and we try to make up for it with more virtual engagement and, you know, a occasional check-ins with with one another.
Christopher Smith 09:54
Right, right. If I have revenue responsibly, as many of our listeners do, from the perspective of strategy, why should I want my sales organization using Sales Navigator?
Jacon Cynamon-Murphy 10:10
That’s a great question. First, I would say, from a prospecting, prospecting perspective, it’s really around tapping into a much larger market, then you might otherwise be able to access with your company network. You know, we have over 700 million members on LinkedIn, and Sales Navigator unlocks the ability to discover and identify those that could be a good fit as a prospect. Or as a way, for those of you who have a defined account list, or relationship managers being able to uncover new relationships in your accounts. So whether you’re a hunter or a farmer, there’s an opportunity to be able to expand your reach. So that’s a big piece. It’s also pretty critical in in this day and age, where we are overwhelmed with with saturated inboxes, and people are less likely to respond to or even listen to voicemail, finding ways that our prospects are going to care, and be more likely to engage. You know, we see a lot of uptake with LinkedIn in mail, direct messages through the LinkedIn network and Sales Navigator, that’s a big piece is being able to have not only that direct engagement, but having Sales Navigator equip you with insights that can make it a more personalized outreach, so that you’re more likely to get a response and drive that opportunity to engage and really show the value that you can bring to an individual or an organization.
Christopher Smith 11:57
700 million is a mind-boggling number. That is unreal. I knew it was a big number. I didn’t realize it was that it’s incredible.
Jacon Cynamon-Murphy 12:07
Yes. It’s interesting, even in the time that I’ve been at LinkedIn, the, the celebrations of hitting new milestones of membership have expanded, expanded, because it, you know, used to be much smaller numbers that were exciting, you know, years ago. And now it’s, but it’s the speed at which LinkedIn continues to add members is amazing.
Christopher Smith 12:34
Oh, yeah, yeah, it’s really become part of our culture. You know, in our work culture, it’s, it amazes me how many students, contact connection requests I’m getting from students, people that are getting close to graduating that are really embracing LinkedIn, it’s, I think it’s great to see.
Jacon Cynamon-Murphy 12:54
Christopher Smith 12:55
tactically, if my boss comes to me and says, “Hey, we’re using Sales Navigator.” What is the compelling “why” that gets me as a, as a sales guy, or person that gets me to buy in to using this tool.
Jacon Cynamon-Murphy 13:13
There are a few things that as an individual contributor, or sales person would be valuable. A couple of things we’ve already touched upon, really being able to uncover new prospects or new contacts within an organization being able to get direct outreach. There are some other pieces as well, in terms of being able to enrich the data in CRM. So with certain CRM partners, being able to have write-back of some data, like activity, so if you are engaging with a prospect or a customer on LinkedIn through Sales Navigator, it can write back that activity. So less data entry. So a nice appeal to any salesperson who really wants to focus on getting out and sell, rather than filling out forms and putting data into the system. There’s a huge value there. There’s also a collaboration aspect. We have the ability to share lead lists and account lists. So if you’re part of a sales team, or you go after the same prospects that someone in another division goes after, and there’s cross sell opportunities, it’s a way to be able to share who you’re going after and what kind of engagement you have with them to be able to expand your reach.
Christopher Smith 14:36
That’s a common issue we hear all the time of, you know, when you have different groups selling to the same organization to have that level of insight. To know, “Hey, this group is is coming in to that same customer or prospect.” It’s critical. Absolutely critical. That’s a huge benefit.
Jacon Cynamon-Murphy 14:55
Yes. And there’s a another capability, being able to discover warm introductions across the the organization. So with a capability we call Team Link Extend, you have the ability to uncover relationships that might not be business relationships, but are professional relationships or connections on LinkedIn. So someone who’s not in a sales role, maybe someone in accounting or HR, or an executive has a relationship and a connection on LinkedIn with someone that you would want to have a business relationship from a sales perspective, and you get discoverability across the entire organization.
Christopher Smith 15:35
Jacon Cynamon-Murphy 15:36
So when, when Microsoft acquired LinkedIn, all of a sudden, all of the LinkedIn sellers, and there were about 11,000 to 12,000, had access to the entire network of over 100,000 Microsoft employees. And when you see that, that kind of scale within an organization, even smaller organizations, being able to tap into everyone in that network, and be able to find new prospects and new relationships, it really accelerates the time to value that you can present to a customer. That’s awesome.
Christopher Smith 16:12
Let’s talk about different groups of the better involved in sales. What is the “why” for the different parts, like marketing and sales ops?
Jacon Cynamon-Murphy 16:20
Sure. With sales ops, one thing that I may touch upon a little bit later, but is a new product that we’ve introduced the second product within LinkedIn sales solutions, which is exciting. I’ve just recently announced it, called LinkedIn Sales Insights. And it’s a tool that taps into that same pool of data, to be able to help sales operations, be able to understand territories, and define markets and quota for salespeople based on what might really be out there and available in market, based on what they know about their target demographics and sales organization. So there’s that new product, but then just within Sales Navigator, there’s also the ability, again, to have more of a collaborative selling process. So that can be an opportunity to include sales operations into visibility of what’s going on. There’s also ROI capabilities to be able to have the CRM system and Sales Navigator in communication. So that essentially, with a click of a button, you can say how was Sales Navigator influencing and driving business growth within our sales organization. And that can be powerful for sales operations to understand whether to further invest or how to train up new employees, or where to you know, expand sales enablement activity across both processes and people. With marketing, there are a few different places, there are some tie-ins to the LinkedIn marketing solutions. So if an organization is using LinkedIn marketing solutions, they can then more effectively target content and help their sales people understand when folks that they’re marketing to are looking at that content, so that the salespeople can immediately jump in and, you know, just knowing how challenging that that marketing to sales collaboration can be. That can be a huge piece to make it a little more seamless, and help marketing and sales, sort of share the love and show each other value rather than pointing the finger and saying, “Well, they’re not giving me good leads. And well, they’re not using the leads that I’m giving them.” So really is changing, changing that conversation around.
Christopher Smith 18:53
That’s great. So let’s talk a little bit about how Sales Navigator has become such an integral part of CRM, like Dynamics 365 that we use we, I personally live and die by Sales Navigator and Salesforce as well.
Jacon Cynamon-Murphy 19:09
Yes, so, so you mentioned the two primary CRM platforms that LinkedIn Sales Navigator integrates with at the highest level today. And so that capability is both visual UI elements that are inside of the sales experience within CRM, as well as capabilities around the CRM sync, like the activity write-back that I mentioned. So really, the focus there is on ways to improve the productivity of the salesperson by getting the data in the right place. So whether they’re looking at a account contact or opportunity form, and get some insights served up to them or the ability to engage through Sales Navigator right from inside the record, or when they’re in Sales Navigator, being able to see is this potential prospect or account already in our CRM system. And maybe I need to do a little additional research because maybe someone’s already working with them. Or being able to write back the activity to increase my productivity by not making me do data entry or double entry of data. And so there are pieces on both sides to enhance the value of both platforms.
Christopher Smith 20:35
What recommendations do you have for someone that is, maybe they’re just starting out with this tool integrated with their CRM, what’s your recommendation for how they should get the most value out of the platform?
Jacon Cynamon-Murphy 20:54
I’ll say, I know, we bandy about crawl, walk, run a lot in in our world. But I think that that’s a good approach to take is identify who within the organization is going to get the most out of the platform, initially out of Sales Navigator out of integrating Sales Navigator with the CRM platform, and start there, and begin to understand how they’re using it, what’s going well, where there’s room for improvement. And for customers who meet a certain level, they get a customer success manager assigned, who can help with training and onboarding and ensuring that they’re maximizing the value of their investment, and then expanding out from there to other groups. So often, customers think, well, it’s our field sellers. It’s our field sellers. It’s our hunters who are the best fit for this because they’re out prospecting. And so that’s often where an organization will begin. And then might expand into the farmers, the relationship managers. Might expand further into, if they are an organization that has customer success, or customer service, that is very hands on, that might be another place. And sometimes even tying in marketing or inside sales, especially if it’s longer sales cycles. So there’s a very much a natural progression to, to expanding the program and getting the most value out of it.
Christopher Smith 22:26
Yeah. Sales Navigator sits alongside many other sales enablement tools. Can you talk about that?
Jacon Cynamon-Murphy 22:36
Sure. You’re right there. The, it’s I would say it’s not quite as saturated as the the mark. tech. stack, you know, marketing technology. No organization exists on a single solution. But within sales enablement, there are still a lot of different solutions focused on inside sales on sales enablement on sales productivity. And, you know, it’s we’re no stranger to that at LinkedIn. So in addition to the CRM partners that we work with, we have a program called snap our Sales Navigator application partner program that enables strategic partners to tie in the Sales Navigator value into their platforms. So again, whether that’s a marketing automation solution, or a sales enablement solution, having more of a seamless experience where it’s not every tool siloed by itself, but you have a seamless experience where that familiar Sales Navigator profile or engagement activity is accessible, and creates more of a seamless experience for the salesperson.
Christopher Smith 23:47
That’s awesome. Tell us about some of the new features. You mentioned a little bit earlier about some about one of them, but what are some of the new features our listeners may not be aware of yet?
Jacon Cynamon-Murphy 23:57
Sure. So every quarter, we do a quarterly product roadmap and release updates. And, you know, this year, despite the pandemic, has not slowed us down from introducing new capabilities. Within the last year, we have added, I would say two primary new features. One is data validation. So the first use case for our data validation is data validation on job change. So this allows any, any saved lead that you have, so any person profile that you’re tracking, if they update their LinkedIn profile, they’ve moved to a new company, it can flag the record in CRM, to say that this person may no longer be at the company to which you have them associated. And that ties in with native reports that are built out in you know, both Dynamics 365 for sales and Salesforce, that alert you to not only folks who have changed and may need to have a review of the profile, but opportunities that may be at risk, as well as opportunities that may be latent because they’ve moved to a new organization that you don’t have a relationship with. So being able to tap into that value very rapidly by having invested in, you know, tracking those people that you care about. So the data validation is a very exciting, newer feature. Another one that we’ve added that enhances the relationship with CRM is contact creation. This is a longtime ask from our customers. And the content creation allows me to go to a LinkedIn Sales Navigator profile, and with the click of a button, it pre-populates a form where it’s going to put in public fields from the record. So it’s not taking any of that private information, we rely on trust, so I want to emphasize that, but it will take first name, last name, title, and company. And then if there are additional required fields that your organization has to save a record into the CRM, those can be enabled, like email address, or phone number, and then it’ll put that on record in CRM. And if you already have that record in CRM with the notification badge, that I mentioned earlier, you can refresh the data from CRM, or from Sales Navigator into CRM. So it’s a rich way, again, to reduce double data entry and ensure that you’re working with the right folks and engaging in the right way.
Christopher Smith 26:41
Yeah, those are huge. Two, I mean, both of those. They’re, that’s incredible.
Jacon Cynamon-Murphy 26:47
Christopher Smith 26:47
The engagement, being able to engage with people change jobs, that that’s so important, and being able to prompt it. So you’re not having to actively look and maintain that. But again, it’s much more efficient to have the system prompt you when that happens. That’s tremendous. So, when you’re doing your job, what are some of the common questions you get asked?
Jacon Cynamon-Murphy 27:16
I will say, in my role, since I’m working with the LinkedIn and the Microsoft folks across both existing Sales Navigator customers, existing dynamics customers net new Dynamics customers and new Sales Navigator customers, there are a wide variety of questions, I would say some of the most common ones, especially when we’re trying to establish a, an initial Sales Navigator program or expand one is, are my salespeople using LinkedIn, and are my prospects on LinkedIn. And, you know, having having moved over to LinkedIn and seeing just the incredible amount of insights that we can bring to a customer to show them a, you know, how effectively their sellers are leveraging LinkedIn, even linkedin.com, the you know, the free platform, and where there might be missed opportunities to uncover more value relationships that they didn’t identify, but that exists within the organization, or engagement that they could have had, but didn’t, didn‘t see that there was some interest on the part of the prospect. That’s a huge piece that we bring, bring to bear. And then in terms of the, you know, our my prospects on LinkedIn, being able to show with some of the search capabilities, how to slice and dice the data, to really get even zip-code level specific, and understanding what types of roles or levels within the organization matter most and be able to to share that with a customer. It’s usually pretty eye-opening.
Christopher Smith 29:06
Yeah. I love to ask this question to everybody, because I never know what I’m going to hear. But do you have a funny sales story from your career you could share with us?
Jacon Cynamon-Murphy 29:18
I’ve got one that immediately comes to mind, but it is, it’s not appropriate to share with our studio audience. I’ll tell you some other time. But one that’s a little more suitable for work is I, so I went to college in St. Louis and have a territory now that includes St. Louis. So a little over about a year and a half ago. I was, almost two years now, I guess, it’s already almost winter, I had a January visit to St. Louis to one of the St. Louis suburbs for a customer meeting. And it’s a it’s a fairly sizable customer within the area. So I booked my travel, I booked my hotel, I, you know, made sure that the hotel was really close to the office, the customer office that I was going to, got in that evening, met up with one of my Microsoft colleagues, he took me to a Blues game, had had a great time. Got home, woke up in the morning, gave myself plenty of time to have some breakfast and get ready and drove to the office for the meeting. And I don’t see anybody I know. And usually we’re waiting in our cars, they’re warming up, especially that time of year just until it’s time for everyone to go in together. Nobody. So I’m like, “Okay, I’ll give him a few minutes. I got I got plenty of time.” And then I get a text from from this colleague, and he says, “Where are you? I don’t see you.” I said, “I’m right here. Where are you?” He said, “I’m at their office, you know, it’s such a such and such street.” I said, “Wait, that’s where the meeting is?” Going, “Wait, really?” And I said, “I looked it up online, it looked like it was going to be at this office.” “No, they had to move because they had a bigger group, and they didn’t update the appointment.” But everybody else, everybody who was local knew. So you know, I get back on the road. And it had been a snowy day. So I’m driving slowly. And it still make it in time. But you know, I got some grief when I, you know, got into the office, and they’re waiting for me to get set up. So always, always, always triple check where that meeting is supposed to be.
Christopher Smith 31:53
Oh, you’re so lucky you gave yourself you got there so early and give yourself time.
Jacon Cynamon-Murphy 31:57
Christopher Smith 31:57
That’s a good rule to live by. Because you just don’t know what’s gonna happen. Oh, that’s crazy man talking about sweating some bullets there. That’s pretty crazy. Let’s talk, you have an extensive background in CRM, with your work with Microsoft Dynamics 365. What are some of the common CRM problems you’ve seen?
Jacon Cynamon-Murphy 32:19
Hmm. Well, it’s, it’s interesting. I’ve worn multiple hats in the CRM space. I’ve been an end user seller, a consultant and developer. So I’ve seen bits and pieces sort of everywhere. I think probably some of the biggest issues that I’ve seen, or biggest challenges are assuming that a change in technology is going to solve a problem that is not a technology problem. And over-engineering a system to address other challenges, either process or people within an organization.
Christopher Smith 33:01
We see that a lot. What are your keys to success that, you know, sales leaders should be looking for for CRM implementation.
Jacon Cynamon-Murphy 33:12
I think one big thing is what you know whether you’re a waterfall and agile or another implementation methodology, go slow and validate. You don’t, you don’t need I mean, I know the waterfall approach is kind of waning in popularity. But you don’t need to try to build out everything for everybody up front. And if similarly to what I said about starting with the people who are going to get the most benefit from Sales Navigator, start with the people who are going to get the most benefit from enhancements to your tools. And another big thing, try to stay native, whenever possible, get familiar with what the platform can offer out of the box, rather than either trying to build things internally to match an older system or a homegrown system or process or falling for the consultants, and most consultants are responsible and good about this. But sometimes consultants want to prove they’re metal by building out things that could really be more easily adjusted by using native functionality and tweaking a process.
Christopher Smith 34:26
That’s great advice.
Jacon Cynamon-Murphy 34:27
So I’d say those are probably the big things.
Christopher Smith 34:28
Yep, how does CRM help your organization?
Jacon Cynamon-Murphy 34:33
Oh, it’s, it’s it’s the it’s the Alpha and Omega. I mean, it’s it’s our source of truth. It is our source of collaboration. Considering that LinkedIn is for business units, we you know, we have our sales solutions we’ve been talking about but we also have our marketing solutions, our talent solutions and our learning solutions. And, you know, even though those sales organizations tend to be going after different folks within businesses, there’s still a lot of overlap around the organizations that we’re selling to, and the conversations that we’re having. So having that visibility into who else is working with an account or who else is working with a contact within an account is valuable. And then our system is engineered. So it not only is the source of truth for forecasting and pipeline and sales process, but also then when deals are closed one triggers the provisioning within our back end system. So it is a critical piece from start to finish.
Christopher Smith 35:39
Yeah, yeah. I love that. Love that. We’re coming up on the end of our time here. What is the last point on Sales Navigator you would like to leave our audience with?
Jacon Cynamon-Murphy 35:53
I would say, for, for salespeople and sales organizations that have a business to business sales component, Sales Navigator is definitely a tool that if you’re not using, you should at least evaluate. Because in the years that I’ve been in sales, focused on on on b2b selling, it is a game changer in terms of getting access to the right people, being able to engage with personalized insights, and being able to drive more meaningful conversations that can accelerate your sales cycle.
Christopher Smith 36:28
Yeah. I love your background. We talked about this a little bit before we started the recording. Could you tell us about your background?
Jacon Cynamon-Murphy 36:37
Sure. I’m a member and a big fan of the Seed Savers organization in Decorah, Iowa. And it’s a it’s a farm, an active farm, as well as an organization focused on preserving heirloom produce. And so you can get seeds from them. There’s even a catalog where there’s a community of folks who can share seeds and around different varieties, heirlooms across pretty much anything you’d want to grow, produce and flowers. They have an orchard of heirloom apple trees. And it’s, and it’s, it’s a place you can visit. So you can go and you can walk through their farms, they’ve got some hiking trails, they even have some heirloom livestock, they have these beautiful white cows that are just stunning. And so just the I when the pandemic began, they released some backgrounds and so I occasionally like to put them up, especially this time of year, it’s nice to see some green.
Christopher Smith 37:40
I bet kids would just have a ball going there and walking around. But there’s so much to look at. That’s amazing. If listeners want to reach out to learn more about Sales Navigator, what’s the best way to contact you?
Jacon Cynamon-Murphy 37:53
They can reach me on LinkedIn, I am the only Jacob Cynamon-Murphy on LinkedIn. So it’s easy to find me. They, and you know they can feel free to reach out, send me a message. And you know, I’m happy to answer any questions they have or engage further.
Christopher Smith 38:13
That’s awesome. That’s awesome. Well, thank you very much. I’ve really enjoyed listening to you. Terrific insight. Thank you for sharing with us today and being on Sales Lead Dog.
Jacon Cynamon-Murphy 38:23
Thank you, Chris. This has been grea
As we end this discussion on Sales Lead Dog, be sure to subscribe to catch all our episodes on social media. Follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Instagram. Watch the videos on YouTube, and you can also find our episodes on our website at Empellorcrm.com/salesleaddog. Sales Lead Dog is supported by Empellor CRM, delivering objectively better CRM for business guaranteed.
- “Really, the focus there is on ways to improve the productivity of the sales person by putting the data in the right place.” (19:39-19:50)
- “Some of the biggest challenges [with CRM] are… assuming a change in technology is going to solve a problem that is not a technology problem.” (32:35-32:47)