In an increasingly noisy marketplace, this old-school approach cuts through the clutter to catch a customer’s attention.

I live (virtually, of course) on LinkedIn.

In fact, I’ve spent the past 48 months studying the world’s largest networking platform for professionals from a distinct perspective: How to use LinkedIn to find (and sell to) the exact people who would benefit from your products or services.

What I’ve discovered is that far too many Business Coaches, Consultants, Small Business Owners, Sales Executives and Business Development professionals are missing a key piece of the puzzle – social proof.

The Big Trap on LinkedIn

Instead, far too many are falling into the hyperbole and hype of wild promises, click-bait type LinkedIn headlines and other approaches popularized by internet marketing gurus who promise to sell your own dream back to you for just 3 easy payments of $997.00.

The crux of the issue is this – Too many people online are claiming authority instead of demonstrating it.

On LinkedIn, especially, hyperbole and hype almost never work.

Instead, simple, straightforward and clear plays best.

The Simple Way to Win New Customers on LinkedIn

Nothing gives more clarity to the value of your product or service than customer success stories and testimonials.

For instance, the #1 objection and/or question potential customers have when evaluating my LinkedIn training program goes something like this: “Well, it works for you – but will it work for someone like me? Has anyone in my industry or line of work actually had success using what you teach?”

When I can share real-life examples of professionals generating as much as five figures a month in new revenue on LinkedIn using my methods, that gets someone’s attention.

Again, anyone can promise a specific result or outcome. To have proof that it works in someone’s specific niche or industry is quite another matter.

Best of all, because LinkedIn is such a highly visible, trusted social network for professionals, when someone puts his or her name and personal brand behind a testimonial on your LinkedIn profile, others have the ability to immediately find that person and verify the story for themselves.

What to Ask For in Testimonials

When you ask a happy client or customer for a testimonial on LinkedIn or anywhere else, it’s critical that you give them guidelines on exactly what you’re looking for. Don’t leave it up to the customer to guess what you want them to say! Instead, tell them what you’re looking for – whatever those key metrics are that impress prospects in your niche. Make it something concrete – amount of revenue, amount of new clients, amount of website visitors – something tangible.

In some cases, of course, people will be reluctant to share exact dollar amounts, number of new clients, etc. In those instances, ask them to share growth numbers or percentages – how revenue increased by a certain percentage or similar.

Also, it is critical that you get people to share their full name, company name, photo and other relevant information. A partial testimonial – one with just a first name, or someone’s job title but not his name, etc. – might as well be made up.


Showcase Your Success

You will also want to display those testimonials prominently on your LinkedIn profile. LinkedIn’s current way of displaying testimonials you receive from connections “hides” them at the bottom of your profile’s Experience listings. Instead, copy-and-paste your best testimonials directly into your LinkedIn Summary and Experience sections as text.

You want to make sure people don’t miss them.

Don’t Have Social Proof? Do This Instead

If you’re just starting out, or don’t have a great client success story to share, go get some!

Offer your product or service to someone influential or important in exchange for an honest review of how the experience goes. Then deliver the goods! Make sure you do whatever it takes to ensure the person is beyond thrilled with your efforts, and (most important) that he or she gets measurable ROI from the experience.

I did that when I was first building out my LinkedIn training program, and it not only helped with social proof, but it also opened up huge doors to joint venture opportunities and other platform-building endeavors (Podcast interviews, etc., with happy “customers” that I’d done free LinkedIn profile rewrites for.)

Bottom line – you need social proof and testimonials to sell well on LinkedIn or any other online space.

You can stick with hype, hyperbole and wild promises if you like, but don’t be shocked if that strategy leaves your sales funnel empty.