LinkedIn is undoubtedly one of the most powerful business tools available today. It enables us to present who we are, what we do and why people need us to anybody who happens to come across our profile.
It also enables us to find and connect with the kind of new people who are going to be useful to us in some way which is the focus of this video. We start by stating the prerequisites of any LinkedIn campaign before exploring the three key ways of finding and connecting with new people.
There are two things you should do before you ramp up your LinkedIn activities.
- Get your profile right: As you become increasingly active on LinkedIn more people will look at your profile so it’s vital that what they see meets with their approval. The videos to help you achieve this are in this tutorial.
- Log your existing connections: the more genuine connections you have the more valuable LinkedIn becomes. The groups of people to start with are your Colleagues and Trusted external stakeholders such as intermediaries.
Remember do not link to anybody who you do not trust or value. Competitors are a BIG no-no.
Once you are happy you can start to use LinkedIn Groups
Groups are usually organised around a common theme such as a market sector, an interest or maybe even an organisation. Members post discussion items and perhaps contribute to other people’s discussions which is a great way to find out what the current “hot topic” with a specific group of people is, whilst also promoting your knowledge of the subject being discussed at the same time.
One huge benefit for the avid business developer is that you can also see the names of other group members whom you can then invite to connect with you. Here’s how to approach it: –
- Focus on the groups your clients are likely to be members of, you can look and see what groups your current clients are members of or you can search for groups based on job title, industry etc.
- Once you have found the appropriate groups join them and start by browsing the members to find suitable targets, some people will accept connection request purely because you are members of the same group, alternatively if you aren’t comfortable doing this then you can strike up dialogue on group discussions to make yourself a little more well known before sending an invitation to connect.
- Whichever method you choose, be sure to customise your invitation so that people feel they have been individually targeted.
- When they accept it is a good idea to send a welcome message and perhaps send over something the connection will find interesting or useful, like a blog or whitepaper.
We advise that you spend 10 minutes a day two or three times a week following this method. You will be amazed at how quickly your connections will grow with potential clients.
LinkedIn also offers a good search facility where you can enter criteria and receive a list of suitable matches in return.
You can search on key words, job title, location as well as market sector. It is worth playing around with the search criteria to see what brings back the best results and repeat the searches that work every month or so. Again, a video on this is available in this tutorial.
LinkedIn is a versatile and very powerful business tool that will give you some great results provided you get the basics right to begin with and then consistently invest some time into connecting with people. With only few minutes a day you will begin to create a strong network of useful and potentially valuable people who you can then establish a mutually rewarding relationship with.