5 Ways to Get Started with LinkedIn for Sales
- Create a great profile page
It is rumoured that only half of all LinkedIn users have fully completed their profiles. Those users aren’t getting the results they would like, because their profiles are missing crucial information that could help them connect with the right people. Your account should be a value centred profile that focuses on what your clients want. It’s not about who you are but how you can help your clients.
First impressions count and people will judge your profile partly on how good your photo is. It’s your chance to communicate that you are friendly, likeable, and trustworthy. Think of it as your first step to building your personal brand on LinkedIn. It should be high resolution, up-to-date and taken in a professional setting e.g. not a holiday photo.
It’s also useful to ask a handful of people from your existing network to recommend you. A recommendation is a comment written by a LinkedIn member to recognize how you can help people. People prefer to work with people who come recommended, as this is a clear signal you are trustworthy.
- Network, network, network
Names are great but what are you going to do with them? It’s no use making connections if they aren’t valuable in some way.
If you want to nurture existing contacts (1st degree connections) click ‘advance’ next to the search field at the top of your profile page to filter the exact people who you want to target.
If you’re looking to network with new people (2nd degree connections) focus on the company, rather than the person, you want to connect with first then see where the mutual connections are.
Be aware of LinkedIn Open Networkers (LIONs) and avoid becoming one yourself. These people are open to networking with everyone, whether they know them or not. LIONs generally accept invitations to connect from everyone. This puts them in danger of creating a network based on quantity and not quality.
- Get writing
LinkedIn’s allows you to post your professional insights via your profile page, helping you position yourself as a subject matter expert in your field. Content you post is shared with your connections and followers in their news feeds, and sometimes through notifications.
You can find LinkedIn’s publishing platform on your profile page; just click underneath your profile photo on ‘write an article’. The post editor is very simple and has everything you need to create a great piece of content.
Top tips for creating content:
- Keep your title short and sweet, around 50 characters maximum.
- Make your post clear and visual. Use subheading and images where you can so the reader can navigate through your post easily. Avoid jargon.
- Aim for 1,900 to 2,000 words.
- Publish on Thursdays when posts get most views.
- Don’t write your post title as a question.
- Write about topics that will interest your audience e.g. trends in your industry or insights into what you’ve learnt from your clients.
Make sure that you back up all your published content because your information is stored on LinkedIn’s server and if LinkedIn decides to close down their publishing platform your hard work is lost forever.
- Join some groups
Joining a group allows you to meet lots of like-minded people in one place (click on ‘interests’ at the top of your profile page). Maybe you’re looking to meet more people in your industry, your geographic location or those who share the same values as you. Groups offer the perfect environment to listen, learn and share. They also provide a place you can go to for help with new ideas or problems you are facing. Being an active member will single you out as a genuine and authentic sales person who people will trust and turn to in the future.
Take the same approach to groups as you would with your network – go for quality not quantity. Don’t be afraid to try out a few first before settling on a handful of key ones.
- Keep up to speed with the news
LinkedIn is a great way to stay up-to-date with what’s going on in your industry or your geographical area of the world.
Here’s how to update your settings to make sure the news you need hits your inbox right when you need it: https://www.linkedin.com/help/linkedin/answer/5009?query=news%20updates