LinkedIn – the 500-million-strong social networking site for professionals – has gone beyond being a platform for job seekers and givers, to an effective medium for knowledge-sharing, branding, and lead generation. The social media platform is frequented by educated professionals and influencers (presumably) with a great deal of insights to offer and an even greater deal of money to shell on meaningful services and products.
Generating leads and building businesses through your LinkedIn network, however, is possible only when a sound strategy is implemented. And writing this strategy involves knowing how to harvest the knowledge and experiences of job seekers, providers, and creators, and influential people, and sharing some of your own.
- Create Unique Content for LinkedIn
Creating content just for LinkedIn is the fastest way to becoming a personal brand and growing connections. The content can be a short- or long-form article, a video, a piece on your niche, and anything else that will interest your target audience. It is important to note that not everything that piques the interest of your audience is useful to them.
Produce and post content regularly. Use a LinkedIn schedule tool, if you’re a busy professional.
- Send Personal Notes for Invites
Send a personal message to the professional whose connection you seek mentioning the reason behind sending the request. You must do this because experienced LinkedIn users often don’t accept connection requests without knowing the reason. Send out a note even if you do know them already, for courtesy. This will help you build a network of people who are actually related to your niche. The more relevant connections, the more visibility.
If you are a company and need to increase your visibility, be sure to have a dedicated LinkedIn profile and encourage all your employees also to have their official profiles with links to the company website. LinkedIn Recommendations can also increase your company’s visibility in the channel.
- Educate, Don’t Sell
LinkedIn is a professional network where great ideas and leaders are born. Obviously, selling your product and services will feel incongruous in such a platform.
But getting your product, service, or brand noticed on the company isn’t impossible. You just need to change your approach, entirely. LinkedIn users expect companies to offer them solutions to their problems. If you offer those solutions in your content, they will recognise you and start talking about you. When people start talking, products start selling.
- Build Relations with Influencers
Although long-drawn, this is arguably the best way to enhance your visibility, add value to your brand, and get people talking about you. Follow influencers, share their content, and interact with them on their posts.
If you do this and they notice you, they may share your work and recommend your business to the tens of thousands of followers they may have. If you do it the right way – engaging influencers regularly and exchanging knowledge with them – you will get results right away.
The social network offers tremendous number of avenues for branding and lead generation, but those who don’t have a proper LinkedIn marketing strategy cannot take advantage of those avenues.