What are the benefits of a LinkedIn Premium Account for B2B marketers?

Written by Lucy Jones

Jan 21 2015

For B2B organisations, LinkedIn is the go-to social site for networking and thought leadership. But what are the benefits of a LinkedIn Premium Account?

At a basic, free level, LinkedIn already has substantial networking potential, as like many social networks it allows users to search, connect and stay updated with the people and things that matter to them and their industry. But unlike other popular sites, LinkedIn has the option to upgrade accounts to Premium to receive additional, more professional features.

Acting as a business tool as well as a social network, going Premium does have a few benefits that B2B marketers and sales teams may be interested in.

What does a Premium LinkedIn account give you?

As defined by LinkedIn, a basic or free account allows you to:

“Build your professional identity on the web.

Build and maintain a large trusted professional network.

Find and reconnect with colleagues and classmates.

Request and provide recommendations.

Request up to 5 introductions at a time.

Search for and view profiles of other LinkedIn members.

Receive unlimited InMail messages.

Save up to 3 searches and get weekly alerts on those searches.”

If you choose to upgrade, Premium accounts currently offer four plans with differing additional features, dependant on what your Linkedin goals are. Plans are Job Seeker, Business Plus, Sales Navigator, and Recruiter.

For B2B marketers, the two key Premium plans here are likely Business Plus (designed to enhance connections, and promote and grow business and brand), and Sales Navigator (designed to help locate and nurture leads in your niche).

Business Plus offers:

  • 15 InMail messages to contact anyone on LinkedIn
  • The ability to see who’s viewed your profile
  • Premium search filters, and extended network searches

Sales Navigator offers:

  • 15 InMail messages to contact anyone on LinkedIn
  • The ability to see who’s viewed your profile
  • Lead recommendations and saved leads
  • Lead builder
  • Real time intelligence and insight
  • Unlimited profile search up to 3rd degree

Will a Premium account enhance your B2B marketing efforts?

With the ‘Business’ and ‘Sales’ plans, there are a number of features which can bring a lot to a B2B marketing campaign, from increasing engagement and awareness, to generating and nurturing leads:


InMail allows you to contact anyone on LinkedIn, regardless of whether you’re connected or not. Both Business and Sales Premium provide you with a basic level of 15 InMail messages, but more are purchasable. When it comes to reaching out and connecting with prospects; especially those you’ve identified through insights and the lead recommendation feature, InMail can quickly become a useful, productive nurturing tool.

Who’s viewed your profile?

If you’re building yourself up as a thought leader, engaging, and sharing relevant niche information to groups, you’re likely to increase the number of page views you get. The people who view your account tend to be either leads or competitors - so if you know who they are, all the better to act on, reach out and save your leads. Both Business and Sales Premium allow you to see who’s viewed your profile, and where they were referred from.


LinkedIn introductions allow you to contact a second degree connection (someone you already share a connection with). A free account will give you five of these connections, whereas a Premium account will get you 15. Along with InMail, this is an incredibly useful tool to use once you’ve identified a lead and want to nurture the relationship.

Clearer profile visibility

Ever go to view a profile only to realise it’s hidden? Business Premium allows visibility, and makes your profile more accessible to make the most of those lead opportunities. If you set your profile to ‘open profile’ any LinkedIn member can view and contact you without restrictions such as paying for InMail.

Saved profiles

LinkedIn can be used as a CRM. If you’ve got a list of leads (you don’t have to be connected) who you want to nurture, saved profiles allows you to save up to 5 profiles, set reminders, and write notes so that you can pull up that profile when speaking to a lead on the phone.

Enhanced search feature

With additional, advanced features over basic search, Premium search is where your lead generation and prospecting can start to come into its own. With filters such as company size, seniority and group search, it’s easier to drill down into finding and connecting with the right people, faster.

Lead recommendations, saved leads and lead builder

If you have a Premium Sales account, there are a number of features specifically focussed around lead generation and prospecting which are very useful for marketers and sales teams. The Lead Recommendations feature for example allows the discovery of the right accounts and prospects for you, while the Sales Navigator tool sends new leads straight to your inbox or desktop. The Lead Builder tool allows customisable lead lists to be created, and Account Pages can keep you updated with your target accounts, and provide new lead recommendations.

Generating B2B leads and sales with LinkedIn Premium

So is premium worth the investment? Some of the plans are not cheap, but with detailed real-time insight, sponsored updates to promote posts and additional features to streamline marketing and social selling, there’s a lot to sink your teeth into.

This of course is not a complete review of all Premium features, and you’ll want to investigate exactly what features are relevant to you, but if you can gain and convert just one lead through LinkedIn, it’ll likely pay for itself twice over.

With over 380 million global users, it’s a definite tool to consider.

B2B Marketing Zone