The Linkedin platform is a social medium that enables you to build a network of business contacts, create relationships with potential customers and search for employees. As befits a social network, it is very important to present yourself, your experience and skills. At the moment Linkedin has more than 575 million registered users worldwide and is therefore the best platform to generate leads.
79% of marketers believe that Linkedin is a very good source of potential customers.
43% of marketers gained at least one customer from this platform.
B2B marketers say that 80% of their social media leads come from Linkedin.
According to Hubspot, Linkedin is 277% more effective in attracting potential customers than Facebook and Twitter.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
What can you do to make your profile look professional and attract interest?
The most important rule is simply to use all the possibilities that Linkedin gives us. As it is a social medium, a profile photo is a very important aspect of your profile. It is thanks to it that you appear more reliable and come out from the shadow of anonymity. From experience, the smile on the picture is what attracts the most.
Another important issue is to complement your profile with a background photo, referring to the product or company you currently work for.
Apart from the photo, what attracts attention is the headline. It should briefly reflect your approach to your work, your client or refer to what we are aiming for in your actions. A sole description like “Owner at XYZ” does not say much.
Linkedin is often referred to as business Facebook, so in order to establish more effective business relationships, it is worthwhile to supplement the profile with professional experience and education. It also allows you to be found by potential employers. It is also recommended to add a short description of your current position and include a short information about your activities and achievements.
An obligatory point is to present your skills in order to distinguish features related to your professional experience. If you have literacy in a demanding programme, system or have experience in negotiations, this is the right place to highlight this.
The key to building a professional business profile is the so-called endorsements, i.e. recommendations from people in our business circle. Ask your employer, colleagues, clients or business partners to give you a recommendation that is an assessment of your work. Other people and their good feedback will make your profile look complete, reliable, and will give an impression of you as a professional who knows his or her profession best.
How to effectively use the knowledge and relationships from your academic days on Linkedin? You have a lot of valuable relationships, but don’t know how to take advantage of it? It’s very simple. Go to Linkedin and then open the profile of the university you studied at. Remember that this university must be connected to your profile in the Education tab.
Go to the general profile of the university. Then, on the main profile, click on the “Alumni” button in the left menu. Linkedin will take you to a very interesting place.
Alumni section allows you to search the lists of graduates of a given university and filter these results based on very interesting criteria. This can be a very good place to generate leads on Linkedin.
You can, for example, search for people who have studied at the same time, who completed the same major as you and who today work in the banking industry, are sales directors or work in a company you would like to reach. Using your relationships is very important in sales and customer acquisition. The Linkedin platform works well in this respect.
There are many search criteria. By moving the filters left or right as in the picture below of the Linkedin Alumni section you can choose the right criteria.
Thanks to this, you can easily and quickly establish relationships with potential customers with whom you have not only the potential for business cooperation, but also a common past.
Using such relationships in business is a big advantage. If you are trying to reach a particular company, it is worth checking if you have any relationships that can help you in this.
Linkedin Sales Navigator
If you intend to expand your network of contacts, reach out to potential customers outside your circle of friends or find contact details of a specific person from a certain company, then you will definitely find this additional feature in the Linkedin platform useful.
Sales Navigator is a mini CRM embedded in Linkedin platform with one very important function – advanced search. In the Sales Navigator module you can search for people or companies. You have many criteria, extensive commands, the possibility to save filters and access to the network of so-called 3rd connections – people with whom you do not have many connections yet. If you are responsible for customer acquisition in your company, you should definitely check out the Sales Navigator module on Linkedin.
Depending on your needs, you can choose from such criteria as industry, region, employment, turnover, position, education. You can also search by keywords, which is very useful. I will describe the latter in the next part of the article. The ability to search by advanced criteria allows you to display up to 1000 results. Therefore, it is important to narrow down the criteria accordingly, otherwise a good quality target can be overlooked.
The Linkedin Sales Navigator is ideal for prospecting and lead generation purposes.
It allows you to prepare a list of companies you are interested in with specific parameters or a list of people in a specific professional position in specific industries. You can also directly build customer relationships through an invitation or InMail.
From there, building relationships and successful sales are already within your reach.
Saving search filters – notifications
Another very interesting feature on Linkedin is the option to save filters. In the Sales Navigator section you can not only build advanced search criteria but also save these filters. Saving such a filter will activate a very interesting tool.
Linkedin will then send a weekly notification that it has “found new people matching your filter”. This means, in business terms, that someone has just changed jobs and taken up a position that lies within your target, or that someone who hasn’t been visible in your search before is now available for contact on Linkedin.
Linkedin allows you to save multiple filters. If your product or service is dedicated to a very narrow audience, this tool can be very useful for you.
Boolean Search – advanced search
Do you use the Linkedin search? Are your results too general?
Linkedin allows you to use additional search commands that many people have never heard of.
Some time ago developers added a very interesting feature: “Exclude“. It allows you to exclude a specific phrase, company, industry, etc. from advanced search. In order to use the Exclude option, you have to select a criterion and mark it in red by clicking on it. See image below:
In addition to the recently added Linkedin feature, advanced search allows you to use OR, NOT, AND commands.
For example, if you want to search specifically for people with experience. e.g. Java Developer at Junior level with the exclusion of Seniors, just write “Java Developer” NOT “Senior”, which will allow you to exclude the latter phrase.
Such an advanced search allows you to acquire clients with a very narrow profile and shortens the process of finding potential leads.
On the Linkedin Blog there is a lot of material on advanced search, which we kindly invite you to get familiarized with and inspired from.
Referral – how to use recommendations
Many people proudly brag about the thousands of contacts on Linkedin. Does it take so much to successfully attract new customers on Linkedin? In my opinion it’s not about the amount, but how you use your contacts.
The Referral method is nothing more than a request for referral. At InStream Group we use this method every time we finish a project and our client’s evaluation gives us the basis for a good reference (which is always☺).
Firstly, go to your potential customer’s profile and then open their contacts tab. (Paid version is not required). Just like in the picture below.
After entering the contacts tab you will see your client’s entire network of friends and the search bar. Linkedin allows for advanced search of your client’s contacts, which allows you to narrow the results and focus only on potential clients for your business.
You can narrow down the search results by position, industry, region and many others criteria.
Therefore, you will be looking for people who represent sales potential for you from among your client’s network of contacts.
Once you find such two or three persons you should ask your client to introduce you. To do so, contact your client directly and simply ask for it by a Linkedin message or by sending an email with a link to your Linkedin profile.
Now all you have to do is wait and, if need be, remind Mr. Wojciech about your request after a while:)
According to our statistics, 1 in 3 people asked for a recommendation are willing to help and introduce you to the chosen person. This often helps you to jump over a barrier that would seem impenetrable without specific knowledge.
Importing contacts from your email inbox
Importing contacts seems to be an obvious feature, but have you used it on the Linkedin platform? The platform suggests contacts not only on the basis of your current network, but as you can probably guess, of the email box on which the account is based.
An additional feature allows you to import contacts from a CSV file.
CSV files are used to store contacts in many email service providers websites.
Just enter the contact options in your mailbox and look for an “Export to CSV” option.
Linkedin has also thought about automatic import from Gmail.
Such a file can later be imported into Linkedin. On the basis of the email addresses saved in the document, Linkedin will propose automatically generated yet appropriate and correct business contacts, allowing you to send invitations to them immediately.
To import your contacts into Linkedin, simply go to the Network tab in the top menu and then to additional options. See image below:
Linkedin is a great place to attract customers. Its authors have enabled you to collect recommendations, confirm your skills and many more. If you are responsible for building new relationships in your company you definitely need to familiarize yourself with the full list of features that this platform offers.
Of course you should not treat Linkedin as a “database”. Social network users value their business relationships and take them very seriously. Act honestly and with sincere intentions. Don’t use Linkedin as a mass marketing campaign tool. The more you focus on your potential customer, the better your customer acquisition results will be.
You are also most welcome to sign up for our training:)