That leaves you wondering what all the fuss is about. Who are all these people who claim they have gotten new, profitable business on LinkedIn?
Bad news: It’s not LinkedIn. It’s you.
To drive business on LinkedIn, you need an action plan and a system, just like any other business strategy. You’re only going to get back what you put in. Without a plan, you’ll waste a lot of time being sociable, with no real business to show for it.
This is the biggest complaint I hear about social media marketing…it takes a lot of time and results never seem to materialize.
I agree, it is time-consuming. But when done correctly (which means planning SMM into your day, maximizing that time, and maintaining a narrow focus), the results can be astounding.
It’s kind of like cleaning your house. You start out enthusiastically enough. Two hours later, though, you haven’t moved from the bedroom. You end up sidetracked, going through closets and drawers and…“ooohhh! What’s this? My high school love letters!”
Before you know it, you’ve walked so far down Memory Lane you’ll need to catch the bus back to the corner of Main & Reality.
8 Steps to Optimizing Your LI Connections
1. See the future: How much new business can you comfortably handle? Be realistic. One new client a month is 12 for the year. Not bad.
2. Choose a target market and do not stray from this focus
3. Join groups for those markets and actively participate in a meaningful way
4. Educate yourself on effective LI search…there are ways to search and findspecific information about specific people
5. Stand out: Be active! Be proactive! Be visible! Get out there and get involved. Create a highly compelling profile; not a resume rehash.
6. Answer questions to highlight your subject expertise
7. Accept connections and request connections. People want to connect with you!
8. Talk to people. I mean, really talk. Show an interest, look for ways to help each other…seeking connections isn’t only about having lots of connections!
Remember…this is social media marketing. You wouldn’t walk into your neighbor’s BBQ, announce your arrival, then sit in your neighbor’s favorite chair and start dominating the conversation, would you? The beauty of social media marketing is the opportunity to use natural, social strategies of communicating, connecting and collaborating to build your online visibility and attract the attention of companies you really want to work with.