First, let’s talk about what LinkedIn is. Did you know that you could have a LinkedIn account for yourself and your business? Well, you can! And you should. As you know, LinkedIn is free. You can post information about yourself and network with other people. You can posts links, videos, update your status and tweet. LinkedIn allows you to advertise your products and services for free. And, it hooks you up (in a business way…mind out of the gutter, please) with people with similar interests, services and products. LinkedIn keeps up-to-date metrics on how many people looked at your profile, how often you showed up in a search, and how many connections you COULD have, based on the connections you DO have.
Second, you need to have a complete profile, because that is how people will decide if they want to network with you. Make sure that you have indicated your current employment as well as your past employment. Then, complete your experience and education sections. The more robust your profile is, the more connections you will make and the more searches you will appear in. Don’t be modest, ask for recommendations from peers and associates. And don’t let your LinkedIn page get stagnant; update your status with valuable, pertinent information that will benefit your connections and potential connections!
Now, let’s talk about how you can generate leads, because that’s why you’re still reading this…right? You can either import your contacts from your existing email system (such as Outlook) or add them manually. You can also search in LinkedIn to see whom else you may know. Add as many people as you can. Just like you asked people to “Like” your Facebook Business Page (here’s mine), you need to ask people to connect with you. Once you are connected with them, ask their connections to connect with you. Wow! Look how many connections you have now, and how many thousands of potential connections!
Think of yourself being at a party, or in an elevator. You don’t have a lot of time to interact; make it count. Talk about what interests other people; find out what they value. Give before you ask. Begin by checking out the profiles of other LinkedIn users. Respond to their updates, join Groups, start a Group. Add status updates on your page; unlike Facebook, you can be more business-focused here. The more active you are on LinkedIn, the more relevant connections you add, you increase your visibility. Start a conversation; make sure it’s open-ended. Ask for a recommendation for a service; ask a question. Now you are ready to promote your business and services to new people. Do you have a new product that you are launching; can you recommend someone else’s? If people find your posts, links, videos, etc., valuable, they are more likely to use you and refer you. You can also refer/send people to your website or Blog. After you have established a relationship with them, and given them things of value, then your request is more welcome.
Here is another valuable resource, an eBook by HubSpot on “How to Use LinkedIn for Business” It contains information
Join me next week when I discuss “What Should You Delegate and What Should You Retain as Core Function that only you should do?”
–Joy Bolluyt, Owner, President Manageta. GROW your business … and Take Back Your LIFE!!!
Joy A. Bolluyt © Copyright 2011. WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR E-ZINE OR WEB SITE? You can, as long as you include: Joy Bolluyt, owner of Manageta, is a business consultant, certified online business manager and virtual teaming expert. She works with highly motivated consultants, business owners, and solo entrepreneurs that want to GROW their business and take back their LIFE! to contact Joy got to http://manageta.com. to schedule a complimentary consult, go to https://my.timedriver.com/L4B6Gby