Dynamics 365's Intelligent Integration with LinkedIn

Author by Edidiong Odiong

Microsoft's acquisition of LinkedIn was yet another innovative move towards building a world of intelligent business applications; and even more exciting was the ready-to-use integration with Dynamics 365. This integration surfaces a LinkedIn widget on the account, contact, opportunity and lead forms with profile, activity and connection information about these different entities, leveraging LinkedIn's vast collection of professional data. All of the intelligence is rendered in the context of the signed in user with a targeted experience that obviously saves the time that would be otherwise used to toggle between both applications.
 
The solution (available on AppSource) will actively sync information and records bi-directionally between Dynamics 365 and LinkedIn Sales Navigator. In this walkthrough, you will see the different capabilities and benefits this would bring to a sales implementation. Note that you need to have a LinkedIn Sales Navigator Team Member License at the least to access these capabilities.
Upon installation, the LinkedIn Company Profile and LinkedIn Member Profile widgets are automatically added to the areas of the system where data validation is needed- like accounts, contacts, lead and opportunity forms.  As with every new tool adoption, you will need to tailor it to fit the work cadence of the targeted users, and Dynamics allows that flexibility. You can choose to remove these widgets from the entities you do not need them on, via the Dynamics customization interface.
 
On the Company Profile widget, three tabs are introduced as seen below. 1) Recommended Leads 2) Connections 3) News.
 
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  1. Recommended Leads surfaces all the top connections in the company record you are on. It will also highlight any professional information you share with them, like mutual groups. You can save those lead directly to your LinkedIn Sales Navigator account if you need to revisit them.
  2. The Connections tab highlights potential contact persons for that company and tries to guess ones you would most likely be able to establish some interaction with. Within this tab, you are also able to view TeamLink connections. TeamLink allows you to view and search your team's connections. You can also see who on your team is connected to your leads and contacts, and ask for an introduction. Likewise, your team can view and search your connections.
  3. News will show what is currently important to that company regarding reports or announcements around earnings, acquisitions, press releases etc.
 
On the Member Profile widget, three tabs are also seen. 1) Icebreakers 2) Get Introduced 3) Related Leads
 
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  1. Icebreakers will show a person's highlights, activities etc. It will identify commonalities between you and your process, like a recent job move to a place you previously worked in, an article share, or even a common education history say you went to the same college with that person.
  2. Get introduced shows your mutual connections and allows you to identify those people that could potentially introduce you to the prospect. Quick and easy way to get your foot in the door!
  3. Related leads will show other potential prospects with similar rankings as the person.
 
Clicking on the 'View Profile' button opens the lead's profile in Sales Navigator where you can access their full profile, browse connections and even sync relevant notes and message threads to D365 as InMail and Message activities, visible through the Activity Pane.
 
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LinkedIn Sales Navigator is continuously undergoing feature updates and improvements listed on their product page. The most recent Q3 release comprises of new functionalities like: 
  • A new search experience that brings information to the forefront to increase visibility and access to insights and actions.
  • Mobile view optimized for Android and iOS.
  • An O365 Profile Card Integration that surfaces on the Outlook Web Client.
We can expect that these new features will also be optimized to work seamlessly within D365 in true Microsoft fashion, empowering users to work smarter.
 
Author

Edidiong Odiong

Associate Systems Engineer

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