combining Salesforce and LinkedIn Sales Navigator

How to combine the power of Salesforce and LinkedIn Sales Navigator

Gabe Villamizar

Reading time: about 5 min


  • Sales

In today’s technology-driven, data-centric world of B2B sales, more and more sales reps find themselves juggling a variety of platforms, tools, and apps to complete their daily activities. Of course, this doesn’t begin to cover all the non-selling activities that place daily demands on their limited time.

  • From managing nonstop emails to inputting sales data into the CRM, one global study suggests that sales reps spend 66% of their time on non-selling activities!
  • Another report revealed the average sales rep only spent 10.7 hours (or just 23% of the workweek) actively selling, not the 20+ hours expected by their managers.
  • The trend of time-management issues for sales teams is supported by XANT (formerly, whose independent study notes reps spend 61.7% of their time using sales technology.

Given the sheer number of administrative tasks and other work responsibilities that the typical sales professional deals with each day, it’s not surprising that one recent statistic claims 57% of reps expect to miss their sales quota this year.

So, what can be done?

Instead of asking overwhelmed sales reps to continually shift their focus from one daily activity to the next, I suggest combining the power of Salesforce and LinkedIn Sales Navigator. 

On the surface, this suggestion may only seem like one less window to navigate or less time wasted on non-selling activities. But done correctly, it will result in better customer engagement, faster identification of your product or service’s ideal target audience, and a more personalized relevant sales outreach effort. 

But first, let me show you how to connect and sync LinkedIn Sales Navigator with Salesforce.

LinkedIn Sales Navigator widget in Salesforce

1. Use LinkedIn Sales Navigator widgets within Salesforce to find connections and personalize outreach

With the AppExchange integration, you can log your LinkedIn Sales Navigator activities directly into Salesforce, syncing the world’s largest professional network to your CRM.

There’s no better way to understand the value of your prospects than by seamlessly harnessing the information that they’ve already provided within their social profiles. By using widgets within Salesforce, you can pull LinkedIn accounts that share the same email, which then allows you to:

See what shared connections you might have with a new prospect so you can get introduced to that person if you’re not already connected.

Observe a prospect’s recent LinkedIn activity (e.g., what articles they’ve shared or liked) as a natural starting point for you to engage with them.

shared connections and recent activity

Message prospects right in Salesforce, make connection requests, send InMail, and reach out to any related leads, all essential for multithreading an account.

sending InMail from Salesforce

Best of all, you can check “Copy to CRM” to record your message as a touchpoint in Salesforce. Given how difficult it can otherwise be to measure your social selling activities, this step is vital.

Besides speeding up the contact creation process and ensuring data quality by building lists directly from a Sales Navigator Lead Page, CRM integration provides access to a company’s LinkedIn Company Page, a great resource for doing your homework before engaging decision-makers. This widget includes recent news about the company, the number of employees they have, and any existing connections you have, which can all be saved to an account list for your sales outreach.

2. Set up LinkedIn Data Validation to flag contacts leaving a company

With LinkedIn Data Validation, you can leverage your network even further, especially once you factor in CRM Sync and its ability to flag out-of-date contacts in Salesforce. It works like this.

Whenever one of your contacts leaves their company, you will be notified within 24 hours, giving you time to pause contact with them. Then you can either switch to one of your different connections at the company through your professional network or find out who replaced them.

data validation for Salesforce

LinkedIn Data Validation also enables you to pull up a report that details how many people no longer work at the companies you’re negotiating with, further improving your sales pipeline and minimizing client churn.

3. Create contacts from Sales Navigator to push back to Salesforce

Viewable as a widget within your CRM, Sales Navigator can be synced to exchange important information, including new leads and accounts, and keep data moving forward with Salesforce.

But if you really want to take advantage of Sales Navigator’s Contact Creation capabilities, you need to activate that feature within Admin Settings (provided, of course, your company’s admins have both an Enterprise Edition subscription and Salesforce for CRM and enable CRM Sync).

create CRM contact

Contact Creation within LinkedIn Sales Navigator not only speeds up the sales process, but it can also help streamline workflow and ensure CRM data quality. Contact Creation can be initiated from a Lead Page or Lead List within Sales Navigator by choosing “Create CRM Contact” in the dropdown menu. To adhere to permissions, sign in to CRM if you’re not already authenticated.

If you don’t have permissions for Contact Creation, ask your admin to follow these steps:

  1. Click on Admin Admin Settings.
  2. Next to CRM Settings, click “Change.”
  3. Confirm that the setting for “Auto Sync all seat holders with CRM” is now set to “Yes.”

By encouraging your sales team to record contact information in Salesforce, your organization will save extra time by establishing a single source of truth for everyone working on the account.

With the increasingly data-driven and complex nature of B2B sales, there are almost too many non-selling activities competing for your attention on any given day. 

Fortunately, keeping all of your information up to date and gathering fresh insights on your most promising leads doesn’t have to be so time-consuming. Not only does combining the power of Salesforce and LinkedIn Sales Navigator automate many of those tasks, but it will also make you more relevant as a sales rep.

About the author

Gabe Villamizar is the Global Evangelist at Lucidchart. He is recognized as a leading social selling and social media practitioner by LinkedIn, Forbes, Forrester, and Salesforce. Gabe's social selling online courses were recently published on and LinkedIn Learning and have been viewed by 70,000+ sales and marketing professionals worldwide. Whenever Gabe isn't tweeting (@gabevillamizar), he's most likely grilling some bomb carne asada tacos in his Traeger Grill. Follow Gabe on Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn.

About Lucidchart

Lucidchart, a cloud-based intelligent diagramming application, is a core component of Lucid Software's Visual Collaboration Suite. This intuitive, cloud-based solution empowers teams to collaborate in real-time to build flowcharts, mockups, UML diagrams, customer journey maps, and more. Lucidchart propels teams forward to build the future faster. Lucid is proud to serve top businesses around the world, including customers such as Google, GE, and NBC Universal, and 99% of the Fortune 500. Lucid partners with industry leaders, including Google, Atlassian, and Microsoft. Since its founding, Lucid has received numerous awards for its products, business, and workplace culture. For more information, visit

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