LinkedIn represents one of the most effective platforms for connecting with your peers as well as promoting you personal brand and business. It provides you with easy access to people you want to build business relationships with and helps you to keep in touch with those you know. Here are a few tips on how to maximise this effective tool to expand your lead pool and grow your business:
Add your email contacts
LinkedIn allows you to sync your email contacts and send automatic invites to them. You can handpick your selected contacts or import your entire library. It’s easy and it will reconnect you with those you already know, which is much more effective than just randomly connecting with people who never heard of you before. This will also indirectly extend your potential lead list, you will uncover your contact`s second level connections and will get better visibility into those.
Search for alumni
With all the data LinkedIn collects, you will be able to track your contacts from school and previous roles. Same as with your email contacts, by expanding your networks with those who already know you, you will also be able to become a second tier connection to their network. It`s also a great way to reconnect with people you haven`t been in touch with for a long time and see if there is potential for any business partnership or introductions.
Use advanced search
The basic search functionality works well if you know the name of the person you are searching for. In case you are doing your research and have a set of criteria that defines your audience, you will find advanced search very helpful. You can search by title, functionality, country, language, keywords and many others and go through a list of people who match your search criteria.
Use LinkedIn groups
Groups are an effective way to exchange ideas and knowledge with fellow members. You can search for groups based on your interest and once you are a group member you can send unlimited messages to other group members – use this opportunity to introduce yourself as a fellow member. You can also leverage groups for content sharing, polls and keeping in touch with your prospects, clients and colleagues.
Look for people you might know
LinkedIn will suggest people you might want to link with based on your existing connections and common interest – having something in common will help to start the conversation and establish a relationship. Just because you have a connection in common it doesn`t mean that they will automatically want to connect with you so remain personal and include a message in your invitation.
Use LinkedIn Pulse
Content writing and publishing is much more frequent now than it was a few years ago. Pulse is one good place to search for content that is close to your heart, however as with any self-publishing platform you need to source through the articles, as there will be difference in relevance and quality. Get involved with those that you feel are in line with your thinking and interact with the authors. It may not be immediately linked to lead generation, but it will certainly help you learn new things and build relationships in the long term.
Interact with businesses that are on your target list. It will help you to stay connected to their latest activities and make any marketing efforts more relevant. The more you know the better. You can also consider directly approaching individuals with a personal message and invitation to connect if you feel it`s relevant. As always avoid a hard sell and focus on long-term relationships instead.