Image Credit: Digital Vidya
As you can see, the statistics are all there; LinkedIn is a brilliant platform for generating leads. And, as we all know, lead generation means more sales! But what is LinkedIn, and how can you use it as a social selling tool to increase your potential customer base?
LinkedIn is a social media platform – just like Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram – but it focuses on business. Individual users can create their own personal biography which includes education, work experience, and skills, and then link to a company. In terms of skills, other members have the option to endorse you, which shows that users are good at the things that they say they are good at. Otherwise, there is also a message service and a newsfeed. For companies, LinkedIn is a great place to advertise your company and post information or news stories in order to reach those all-important clients.
Now that we have a brief explanation of what LinkedIn actually is, it’s time for the most important part; finding out how to gain potential clients. Earning leads with LinkedIn is simple as you’ll see from the six steps below;
Step 1: Look after your profile
Firstly, it’s important to ensure that your profile is completely filled out so that customers can find out all about you – at this time I`d concentrate mainly on your personal profile as opposed to your business one, LinkedIn is all about personal relationships so using your personal account is an important part of this.
You need to ensure that all of your profile is properly filled out, and that you have added of all the skills and services you offer and ensure that you ask clients to give you recommendations to give you more authority and trust.
Step 2: Target your audience
What customers do you want to target? You need to think about this as the next steps tend to look at actually catering your information to that audience. Who requires your products or services? Are you a catering company looking to expand your bakery customer base? Are you a web design company looking to connect with marketing managers at companies? Once you have an idea of who your target audience is, you can then target them using location, company size, job title, or even skills.
Step 3: Create a group
A group on LinkedIn is just like a conference with all of the people who are within your target audience or area of expertise. Creating a group is simple and can allow you to network, share ideas and content, and find jobs. Once you’ve created a group, you need to make the page look as professional as you can, and then invite the whole of your target audience to engage with your group.
The key to building a group is the authority that it can give you – as the admin it allows you to create a community and sense of trust from others members.
Step 4: Contact your target customers
When you feel like you want to reach out to your potential customers, you should do a filtered search in LinkedIn, where you can search by keywords, companies, location, industry, etc. Once you’ve found a good amount of people to contact, you simply need to connect with them.
Consider writing a personalized message to draw similarities between you both and to make the experience more personal to them. Never look to sell to them right away, that`s never going to get you anywhere. Instead look to share value and build authority and connections over time.
Step 5: Talk about your group
Once the connection is there, talk to your potential customer about the group you have created. Talk about what it is, why they might be interested, and the benefits. Keep it going as a conversation so that you don’t seem as though all you want is a sale.
The more touch points you have with a potential customer the more aware of you they`ll become – half of the battle is making people aware of what you offer and can help them with.
Step 6: Engage, engage, engage!
Keep building connections and keep having conversations with your potential leads. Encourage them to get in contact with you and to learn more about your company. Ensure you tell them exactly how they will benefit from your product or services, or even from just knowing that you exist. Keeping in contact will keep you on your lead’s mind, and you will come into their mind whenever they need the service that you possess.
Image Credit: DowSocial Digital Consultancy
In summary, it’s important to keep the above daily actions in mind when using LinkedIn to gain those all-important leads; share content, make the right connections, and follow-up. Sharing content puts you in front of potential customers. But this is only significant if you make the right connections.
Find those people who are looking for services such as yours, and LinkedIn can be a powerful advertising tool.
Finally, follow-up with people and remember interactions are key.