I hear it from almost 90% of my new clients… “Christine, I have a profile on LinkedIn, but no leads from being there. And no one becomes my client, even though I have contacts, and I’m frustrated. What am I doing wrong?”
When I dig a little further, I usually find that the sense of overwhelm is coming from the same source: These people haven’t identified their most profitable LinkedIn activities, and placed those activities ABOVE everything else in their LinkedIn priority list.
In other words, they don’t have a LinkedIn marketing system.
A LinkedIn marketing system helps you focus on what to do, and when to do it—so you can focus your time and energy into ONLY those activities that will generate maximum results. By using an effective LinkedIn marketing system, you are clear on the activities on LinkedIn that are worth your time, and those that aren’t. It’s a powerful tool to help you stay focused and energized. And it WORKS.
In my LinkedIn Marketing Power program, I show you how to create an effective LinkedIn presence in these five easy steps. Here’s a quick peek at what I recommend. Enjoy!
STEP 1: Plan before you create
It’s important to set yourself up for success with your LinkedIn marketing…and you can do it without much effort. But there are a few things you NEED to do that will save you time and headaches later. Just as when you’re building a home you need a solid foundation for it to be strong, you need to do this for your LinkedIn presence.
This means identifying your ideal audience, naming and branding yourself, strategizing about how you’ll stand out from all your competition, and planning for fast contact growth.
And the quickest way to execute this strategy is to ask yourself these THREE simple questions.
1. What is my business objective for being on LinkedIn?
2. Who is my ideal audience?
3. What is the next step for them to take with me?
STEP 2: Your compelling content
Content is critical! WHAT you put in your profile is the reason people will connect with you, and the reason they will then take the NEXT STEP with you. There are simple formulas that are easy to use and will help you promote your business, products, and services.
And it’s really important to keep your LinkedIn profile up-to-date. The more people who see you on LinkedIn, the more they are likely to view your profile to learn more about you. And if that person is relevant and potentially interested in your business, they may click through to your blog or website and take the relationship from there…or send you an invitation to connect.
For example, let’s say you’re a marketer or salesperson and you want to find leads on LinkedIn.
First of all, it’s important to build a compelling personal profile on LinkedIn. You need your prospective clients and customers to be able to understand what you do without using any fancy terminology. Be very clear in what you do, whom you help, how you can help and what the next step to take with you is.
Your compelling content is the first step (I’ll touch on the others later in this article) if you want to create an effective LinkedIn marketing lead generation process. Here’s how it looks:
- 1. Build a great personal profile.
- 2. Activate that profile so you begin to share interesting, valuable, helpful content with your network.
- 3. Be consistently visible and stay top of mind.
For helpful ideas to use your content to get more clients with your LinkedIn marketing, see my post, “How To Generate Leads for Your Business on LinkedIn in 15 Minutes or Less.”
STEP 3: Easy updates
How do you decide what’s most effective to share? YES it’s as easy as pressing send…but you have to consider frequency and timing and a few final steps before hitting that send button. For maximum effectiveness, it’s easiest to use a pre-send checklist.
Use your updates as part of your LinkedIn marketing to position yourself as a thought leader. Grow your influence with your network and niche. If you want to attract leads and people to your business, it’s the easiest thing to do. And the more value-focused you are in your LinkedIn marketing, the less people realize you are marketing to them.
Your main goal is to aim to be consistently visible and valuable. Studies have shown that it takes someone seven to 10 exposures to you before they really start to pay attention, listen and determine whether it makes sense to take the next step.
I use my updates as LinkedIn marketing opportunities to position myself as a resource within my niche.
Your updates are the “meat” of your LinkedIn presence, and they should have great information to keep your ideal audience engaged.
And it’s not about selling. You have to use your LinkedIn marketing educate and provide great information if you want to engage your audience.
For example, one of the LinkedIn marketing tools I use, LinkedIn Pulse, is a great way to quickly find easy updates that are relevant to my target market and then share them on LinkedIn. Try it and you’ll quickly discover the benefits of using these easy and value-rich status updates to stay top of mind.
STEP 4: Manage your contacts
There are easy LinkedIn marketing systems and tools out there that will help you grow and manage your contacts…that will also prevent your account getting restricted from connecting! And the good news is once you start using a system, it will all mostly be on autopilot.
As you grow your LinkedIn marketing and network on LinkedIn, it’s a personal decision whom you connect with and how you use those contacts to generate leads. It all depends on your business situation and if you want to make your network as big or small as possible.
For example, I prefer to work on the depth and breadth of my network. Since I’m on LinkedIn to attract new clients and joint venture partners, the more connections I have, the more opportunity I have for visibility and the more business opportunities I’ll create for myself. And I’m going to show up in more LinkedIn searches.
As a result, 90% of my new business comes from LinkedIn.
So if your LinkedIn marketing goal is to generate business and leads, then you need to think about growing your connections. Think about peers in your industry, clients, prospective clients, joint venture partners, thought leaders, etc.—anybody you may know and have a good reason to be connected with. I’ll share another connection tip in the next section.
STEP 5: The next level
Once you go through the above steps you might be ready to ramp-up your LinkedIn results. Some of my students have turned LinkedIn into their primary marketing vehicle because they have found such success from it, and that may be the case for you, too.
Some the things you can do next on LinkedIn would be to promote your blog, ebook or webinar on LinkedIn with your status updates and in your profile.
Another great LinkedIn tool that takes your presence to the next level are Groups. In group discussions, you have the opportunity to interact with mutual group members whom you might not necessarily know. As you get to know some of the members in the group, you can message them and ask if they’d like to connect with you.
You can join up to 50 LinkedIn Groups. They’re a great place to add value and can easily lead to potential clients and customers.
So how much time do you need to commit to get the most out of LinkedIn?
Once you have a system, you only need to spend 15 minutes a day to make a good impact on your network.
It’s about having a focus and a purpose when you go in.
Remember the Silent Benefits of Your LinkedIn Presence Too!
Keep in mind that even if you aren’t getting direct business from LinkedIn at this time, it’s still delivering many benefits that may be less obvious. Your presence is helping to establish you as an expert in your field. It’s giving you larger online exposure. You’re gaining further credibility with your current clients and customers. And it’s forcing you to write compelling content, which you can recycle for many other marketing uses!
QUESTION: How has your LinkedIn marketing helped your business or your credibility grow? Please share your experiences in the comment section below.
To practice what I’m preaching above, did you know I’ve created a step-by-step manual that walks you through planning, creating and promoting your own LinkedIn profile and presence? It’s called “LinkedIn Marketing Power: How to Use LinkedIn to Attract Hot New Prospects, Win Loyal Customers, and Grow Your Revenues FAST.” Get all the details here.