Gone are the days when an online presence was an option for a business. Today, your digital footprint is akin to your front door. It’s not just where your clients are finding you; it’s also how they decide whether to work with you or buy from you. After all, more than 80% of consumers use online research before they make a purchase.
If you think those stats are relevant just for your business and not about you, think again. Marketing yourself has moved online too. Networking with potential clients, business partners and employers requires a healthy online presence. Being active on social media platforms like LinkedIn isn’t an option. More important than having an account, however, is using the platform properly. Here are five tips to make LinkedIn work for you.
Being on isn’t enough
According to recent statistics, more than 100 million LinkedIn members actively visit the site each month. To be considered linked in, you need to be active on LinkedIn. Simply having a profile is like buying a ticket to a networking dinner but not attending the event. What does active look like, you ask? Good question. Keep reading.
Post relevant articles
Merely having a title and a job description doesn’t convey expertise. As Ernest Hemingway once said, “Show the readers everything, tell them nothing.” You’re a top notch financial advisor. That’s awesome. Make sure your profile says that and then take the time to share an article or two a day with your LinkedIn community. That thought-provoking piece about the impact of current events on investments from the Forbes web site? That would be a good start. Introduce the article with your own thoughts on the subject. Go ahead and ask an open-ended question to encourage comments too.
Share the love
Being successful on any social media platform is only partly due to what you post. If you want to make a big splash (and lots of helpful connections) let others know that you notice them, too. Take the time to like and comment on other people’s posts. Wish those in your network a hearty congrats on accomplishments and new ventures as they appear in your feed. Take time to endorse others for relevant skills. Be a giver.
Quality over quantity
In the Wild West days of social media, it was easy to get caught up in the numbers game. Having a long list of connections or followers was a status symbol. Today we know better. While growing your network is important, it’s not simply about the digits. Think of it like your sales funnel. Isn’t having 5 hot leads and 95 warm leads better than having 1000 cold leads? Be judicious with your invites. Look for people who have similar professional interests. Connect with potential referral sources, clients and partners.
Don’t hard sell
Social media isn’t for advertising. An occasional post about your business is fine. In fact, it’s a great idea. However, the content you share needs to offer your connections more than a running sales pitch. Social media is about relationship building, not marketing. Network. Establish your expertise. Trust me on this one.
Interested in talking more about professional growth and business? Send me a connection request on LinkedIn!