How to Use LinkedIn Sales Navigator (like a Growth Hacker)

How to Use LinkedIn Sales Navigator (like a Growth Hacker)

written by Houston Golden
Founder & CEO, BAMF Media
April 30th, 2021
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Yes, it’s worth it.

That’s why a lot of LinkedIn influencers and growth hackers have it their arsenal of tools to growth.

Do you want to know how to use LinkedIn Sales Navigator like one of the pros?

You’re in the right place.

In today’s in-depth guide, I’m going to personally train you on the basics, go through the features that you need to get started, and throw in the secrets that growth hackers use.


Let’s do this.

(By the way, this is the first part to our new series on how to use LinkedIn Sales Navigator for advanced prospecting. Stay tuned for highly specific guides coming out weekly!)

What is LinkedIn Sales Navigator?

LinkedIn Sales Navigator is basically LinkedIn on steroids.

And, yes.

I’m serious.

For just $64.99 you get access to a full suite of advanced prospecting and search features, InMails, CRM integration, the ability to add tags and notes to leads, access to everyone that’s viewed your profile, and they’ll even throw in lead recommendations!

Here’s why I personally love it.

Vanilla LinkedIn (or free LinkedIn) is already pretty powerful since you get to connect with close to a quarter of a billion active professional users.

But, it comes with two major problems.

  • The Data You Get

LinkedIn search – even with filters and boolean logic – is highly restrictive. You can’t do much with the filters that you have and they even limit the amount of information you can get about a person depending on their privacy settings.

  • The Number of Searches You Get

Making matters worse, it comes with a limit, this means that at any given moment – they don’t tell you how many you have left – there’s a fair chance that you could run out of free searches in a month.

All you get is a notification telling you that you’re about to run out and, boom! That’s it.

And there’s no way that they’ll increase the number of searches that you have. You’ll just have to upgrade to LinkedIn Sales Navigator or wait until the first day of the next month to get a refresh on your search limit.

Of course, LinkedIn hardcoded these limitations so that you’d stop prospecting on the free version and get on the paid version.

And, we can’t hate them for that.

They are still a business and we’re being given access to one of the greatest things to happen to online B2B prospecting. Some growth hackers pay more for tools that do less!

LinkedIn Sales Navigator is the way to go to bypass all of these restrictions.

How to Use LinkedIn Sales Navigator Filters

Let’s start off with the biggest reasons you’re here.


In this section, we’ll talk about everything that you can with the search functionality of LinkedIn Sales Navigator.

How to Search on LinkedIn Sales Navigator

Now one of the highlights of LinkedIn Sales Navigator is its advanced filters that don’t come with your regular version of LinkedIn.

You could simply just search for a term on the platform, but that’s not why you’re here.

Advanced search is the way to go.

To start a search, head over to your LinkedIn Sales Navigator page and click on “Advanced” that’s nested in the search bar.

You now have the option to search for leads or accounts.

A popup window will now appear with a bunch of filters that you can use.

Top Filters

  • Keywords 
  • Past lead and account activity
  • Geography
  • Relationship
  • Industry
  • School
  • Profile language
  • First name
  • Last name

Role and Tenure Filters

  • Seniority level
  • Years in current position
  • Years at current company
  • Function
  • Title
  • Years of experience
How to Use LinkedIn Sales Navigator, How to Use LinkedIn Sales Navigator (like a Growth Hacker)

Company Filters

  • Company 
  • Company headcount
  • Company type
  • Past company

Other Filters

  • Became a member
  • Groups
  • Tags
  • Posted content keywords
  • CRM contacts

Once you’ve input all the filters that you want in there, all you have to do is click on “Search.

And, voila, you’ll have a list of contacts that you can reach out to.

We strongly advise that you combine this with Boolean search to get results that are narrowed down to your target customers.

Search Hacks You Should Try Out

  • Use Boolean search – using Boolean search within your own searches helps you narrow down your parameters and define the type of people you want to reach. The five basic logical syntax that you can use with LinkedIn are AND, NOT, OR, quotations, and parenthesis.

Find out how you can use LinkedIn Boolean search to get better results in our extensive guide.

  • Groups – the groups filter is a good way to isolate members that are a part of a certain group. When a prospect is part of a particular group, you know that they share that group’s characteristics and interests. This makes it easier to strike up a conversation with them.
  • Posted content keywords – want to know what’s going on inside a prospect’s mind? Then, check out their posted content keywords. Say your ideal customer talks about “growth hacking” all the time, you can set this parameter down, connect with them and start engaging and interacting with the posts that they have.
  • Company headcount – do you want to dominate a particular industry from the bottom up? If you’re first starting out, focus on relatively smaller company sizes. It will be easier for you to find the top DMU (decision-making unit this way).
  • Past company – pay attention to the past companies prospects have worked for because it is a good indicator of how receptive they are to the product or service that you have to offer.

Search Results Filters

That’s not all.

After you’re done with your search, there are a bunch of other filters that you can apply to your search results to narrow down your prospecting even further.

  • Leads and Accounts – differentiate between actual people and company LinkedIn pages
  • Keywords – search for keywords within your results, this acts like quotation marks if you’re familiar with Boolean search.
  • Exclude Saved Leads
  • Exclude Viewed Leads
  • Exclude Contacted Leads
  • Search Within My Accounts

With that much filtering, I’m sure that you’re pretty convinced that you’ll find the leads that matter to you the most.

Filtering results is critical to creating hyper-targeted campaigns. You need to make sure that you’ve zeroed in on the ideal customer profiles that you want to target.

This not only reduces the amount of time it takes to bring in new leads, but also helps with creating custom campaigns that resonate with your targets.

Saved Searches

Once you’re done with a search, you can save it so that you can refer to it later.

All you have to do is start an advanced search from the search menu, apply your filters, and once you have your results and save them.

You’ll now get a popup window that will give you a chance to name your search and choose how often you get alerts with this particular search.

How to Use LinkedIn Sales Navigator, How to Use LinkedIn Sales Navigator (like a Growth Hacker)

You can choose either daily, weekly, or monthly alerts to let you know if there are new leads. LinkedIn Sales Navigator will send you an email if anything new comes up.

This is a great feature for growth hackers because it ensures that there are new leads coming in consistently that they can to their prospecting lists and funnels.

Lead Recommendations

Automated lead recommendations aren’t as good as the ones that have been generated by manual prospecting, but LinkedIn does a fairly good job at them.

It’s a great nice-to-have if you’re looking at the package as a whole, and it can add to your lead list.

By analyzing your past search history, the platform gets to figure out what sorts of leads you’re looking for and throws you a couple of recommendations.

All you have to do is navigate to your “Saved leads”. Click on “Leads”, “Saved accounts”, and click to view an account.

Underneath you’ll find recommended leads and an option to view more.

Although we won’t recommend that you base your entire lead generation efforts off of this, it’s a good addition to any list that you’re building.


Not a lot of people use InMail but think of it as a fancy way of being able to contact anyone on LinkedIn.

It’s more than just your ordinary LinkedIn message.

With InMails, you can contact people who are not your first-degree connections. This makes it a powerful tool for people that you can’t reach normally.

With a Premium Career account on LinkedIn you can contact up to ten people a month, but LinkedIn Sales Navigator allows you to bump up that number to 20.

Now since it’s a limited premium feature, you should pay attention to who you want to send InMails to. Use it when you need to use it because you only have a limited amount of credits in a month.

If you want to send an attachment, you’re given a 200 MB limit – which is more than what normal emails give you. So, think of it as a great last resort for people you can’t reach on other channels.

Here’s why we think it’s the bomb.

Since InMails have a limit for everyone, it’s always a treat for someone to receive an InMail. This basically means that someone when out of their way to contact you.

Our advice is to use InMail sparingly.

If you really can’t get in touch with a lead or someone that you want to connect to then that’s the time to use it.

Make sure that your LinkedIn profile is properly optimized before you use the feature. You don’t want a potential lead to check you out and find that you weren’t worth the time.

However, really private people still have the option of not allowing you to send them an InMail.

Job Change Triggers

A job change is an example of a trigger event.

Trigger events are events that give you an excuse to contact a prospect. Things like birthdays, promotions, and, of course, job changes, are all great excuses to drop by and start a conversation.

You can send them a quick InMail congratulating them or asking if they want to collaborate or partner with you, or you can simply note/tag this in their profile.

Finding out who’s changed jobs in the past 90 days is easy.

All you have to do is navigate to the “Job change” filter on any search that you have on LinkedIn Sales Navigator.

Who’s Viewed Your Profile In The Last 90 Days

This is one of our favorite features of LinkedIn Sales Navigator.


Because it gives you a list of people that have visited your profile and therefore already have an interest in you. Plus, it makes for a good trigger event.

It’s a good list to leverage to get conversations going because you know that they’ve already made the first move.

On normal LinkedIn, you only get access to five people, max. However, being able to track people for the past 90 days gives you so much legroom to compile lists and accurately market to people.

Tag and Add Notes to Leads

You won’t really use LinkedIn Sales Navigator as a CRM, but it really helps that it’s got a feature that allows you to tag and add notes to your leads.

This helps you when you’re doing in-depth searches and want to keep notes on a particular prospect’s connection with the rest of their organization, personal notes that you may have on them, or little pieces of extra information.

It’s not a game-changer, but it does tell you that LinkedIn, thinks about the little things.

Synchronize Your CRM

As a growth hacker having a good CRM to manage your leads is a must, and LinkedIn allows you to integrate the information that you get from your prospecting into your account of choice.

You get great synchronization with popular CRMs such as:

  • HubSpot
  • Oracle Sales Cloud (updated)
  • SAP
  • SugarCRM
  • Zoho

The information you get from Sales Navigator depends based on the CRM that you are using.

Free Subscriptions

When you pay for LinkedIn Sales Navigator, you automatically get access to the LinkedIn Learning Center, which is a good resource for basic lessons on a lot of professional topics.

It has a library of 16,000+ topics that you can use to enhance your skills and grow as a professional.

How to Use LinkedIn Sales Navigator, How to Use LinkedIn Sales Navigator (like a Growth Hacker)

You even get certificates after completing a course.

This is a great nice-to-have, you get access to training programs while reaching out to people.


LinkedIn Sales Navigator is among the must-haves in your toolkit if you want to take your lead generation on LinkedIn to the next level.

Just removing the LinkedIn limitations on searches and its advanced prospecting tools are enough to justify its price.

Of course, we must admit that it isn’t the strongest tool out there since you still have to rely on CRMs and other automation tools to create multi-dimensional campaigns.

But, you still need it as a foundation.

So, is it part of your toolkit already?

If it’s not.

You already know what to do.

About the Author

The name's Houston Golden. I'm the Founder & CEO of BAMF — a company I've grown from $0 (yes, really) to well over $5M+ in revenue over a span of 5 years.

How did I do it? Well, it's quite simple, really. I've helped hundreds of business owners and executives get major traction (because when they win, we win), I tell all on this blog.

Growth hacking is a state of mind. Follow along as I explore and expose the unknown growth strategies and tactics that will change the way you think about marketing.
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