LinkedIn is a huge commodity to professionals, large agencies and enterprises, and small businesses alike. It can definitely be a bit intimidating at first, and some people tend to “not believe in it” but the people and the companies who utilize it properly are doing swimmingly well!
So, let’s explore how to use LinkedIn more appropriately to not only build a true network but garner leads you can actually utilize within your professional setting.
All marketing is based off of market research, and LinkedIn is fantastic for this! You can see exactly the person you’re talking to and what they do, where they live, who they work for, etc.. This is LinkedIn’s forte for marketing.
Market Research – The most important of tips to build a Linkedin network
Market research, as I said, is the backbone of any marketing campaign.
For example, imagine you have a million dollars to spend on an ad campaign for women’s clothing, and you just throw the million dollars to put the ad in front of anyone vs. if you have a thousand dollars, and you perfectly target your ads to people who would be interested in women’s clothes – such as women, women interested in fashion, women interested in culture, and the list goes on as your narrow down your targeting further and further.
It’s as if the thousand dollars would be as effective or MORE effective than the million spent on marketing it to everyone.
This concept is true for PPC and SEO marketing and is taught endlessly in those practices, but don’t forget that it is just as important within social media marketing, and LinkedIn in particular.
So really, you must know your audience, take notes of exactly who your perfect clients look like, jot down as many keywords as you can to describe them, their demographic, and then go looking for these people on LinkedIn.
How to build a network once you identify who you want to see in it?
Stay active on LinkedIn first and foremost. Where to get started on activity?
Before running to the “connect” button, think about how you can bring value and network through activity you generate.
Engage in posts that you like (or that your target audience likes!), comment on things that you agree or disagree with, create discourse, get people to know and remember you on their feed, and get them to keep seeing you over and over. Discover your community by engaging in hashtags that are relevant to your business.
So, if you’re the CEO of a software company, check out the hashtag #softwaredev, #software or even broader terms like #innovation.
When to connect?
Sometimes you might want to be more selective on the connections you have. Not every connection is a positive connection in the long run.
Remember that you have a 30,000 connection cap on LinkedIn, so if you think you won’t be doing business, trading tips with someone, or actually networking with them, maybe don’t connect with them. Opt for the “follow” button instead until you are sure that you or they will be a valuable asset to each other’s networks. LinkedIn is all about curating.
Since LinkedIn is all about curating, again, go to your list of keywords of ideal clients or partners you’ve made, and search them out on LinkedIn, and talk to them. There are a number of tools that can help you with this, but in my experience they’re rather expensive and you can do most of it on your own.
Consistency is always key.
In closing, to succeed on LinkedIn, as in all forms of marketing, the key is CONSISTENCY!
If you’re consistent with your engagement, you will succeed, period – it’s just a matter of time usually, which can be quite arbitrary, and understandably frustrating if you’re not getting results.
But, if you’re not getting results, you may need to retarget your audience to better find people who align with your target market. Always be recalibrating your audience based off new data you may find.
Don’t be afraid to delve into new markets; experiment. This is another core tenant of marketing, to always be “twisting” your methodology. Don’t be complacent unless you’re exactly where you want to be – which unless you’re pulling in millions… I doubt you are, so get to retargeting new niches/keywords/hashtags in your LinkedIn marketing and be patient, yet determined, with building your network.
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