How to Use LinkedIn to Drive Leads
For those who are in the B2B market space, one of the greatest sales tool you can use is LinkedIn. This free social media site is comprised of more than 467 million professionals, which for anyone in sales, translates to an unlimited number of leads. Not only can this platform help drive leads, it can help you grow your network, maintain your existing customer base, build up you and your company’s reputation and help you keep a pulse on what’s happening in your industry.
Here are 7 key ways to maximize your LinkedIn presence to drive more leads.
1. Optimize Your Profile
Whether you are a new or existing user, having a complete profile is the first step to maximizing the effectiveness of LinkedIn. Be sure to include your title and company name, take the time to upload your company logo and provide a link to your company website. The more complete your profile is, the better. Here are some more helpful tips to boost your profile and optimize it for sales.
2. Make a Lasting Impression
Make sure you have a professional looking photo in your profile. Not only does it serve as a first impression in many instances, it also puts a face to your name and allows your connections to feel more personally connected to you and your organization. If you have other employees or colleagues who are also on LinkedIn, it’s a good idea to have consistency in your photo backgrounds to help build your brand and ensure everyone in your organization is representing your company in the best light possible.
In B2B sales, your customers are all businesses, which means the majority of them are using LinkedIn. Be sure that you connect with all of your customers, prospects and contacts. One of the greatest things about LinkedIn is that you can become a part of someone’s network forever, unless they manually remove you of course. By merely connecting with them, you formally become one of their contacts. This provides another opportunity for direct communication and the ability get a personalized look into their background, employment changes, interests, activity and contacts.
4. Get Active
If it’s not already, LinkedIn should be part of your daily routine. In addition to maintaining and adding connections, you want to be active by liking and commenting on your contact’s posts and keeping a pulse on what is happening in your industry. The more active you are, the more visibility your profile gains. Showing support for industry-leaders, contacts and customers when they publish a great article or win an award, will keep you social, in the know and visible.
5. Share Useful Content
Your customers are faced with challenges, take advantage of this opportunity to be a resource and expert in the area you specialize in. Once you make connections, you have an opportunity to share the content you want with them directly. Whether you create your own content, use your company’s blog posts, articles, social media posts, videos or share industry news that helps to drive home the importance of what you sell, you have a real advantage to help your customers, build your persona as an expert and gain new opportunities. If you don’t have the ability to create your own content, hire a freelancer, agency, or if you are an agent or reseller for a another company, ask if they have content you can unbrand and republish. You can share content publicly, but an even more personalized approach is to select posts to send to customers individually and send them through personal messages. This provides another way to make contact and gives the recipient a more personalized feel, which can help to nurture the relationship and increase their likelihood of reading the content you shared. However, it’s important to be tactical with these messages and to use this approach only on occasion.
6. Drive Traffic
In addition to sharing content to be a resource, you also provide another way to drive traffic to your company website, blog and social media sites. The more traffic your sites receive, the more potential leads. Be strategic in your posts and link them to where you think your customers and prospects might benefit the most. For example, if you launched a new product and want to promote it, announcing it on LinkedIn and linking to a web page, press release or blog post that goes into detail about it is another method for informing your contacts and potentially up-selling existing customers.
7. Join Groups
Joining groups is one of the most beneficial ways to use LinkedIn to drive leads. Once you’ve identified who your target audience is, you should join groups that are related to their industry and interests and ones that decision-makers might be a part of. You can search by industry and topic to find existing groups and also look at your contacts profiles to see what groups they are a part of. These group settings provide insight into what your target audience’s challenges are, as well the opportunity to communicate with them directly. Creating and sharing content that is relative to the group’s pain points and being active in these groups is key.
If you or your company is not already using LinkedIn, it’s definitely time to start. It’s a free and powerful tool that can be used in so many ways to drive leads, build relationships and elevate your business and your career.