The LinkedIn Tutors

Build your business with LinkedIn


4 Steps to Finding the Right LinkedIn Groups for You

Many of my LinkedIn coaching clients  want to build new relationships with prospective clients.  LinkedIn groups can help you do this.  However, before you join any groups, you need to answer the following question – who is your customer? What is their industry, title or function, and where are they located?

For example, I recently searched LinkedIn groups to help me find marketing directors who work within the Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) sector and live in London.  I’ll use this target group as an example of how you can find the right groups for you.

1.     Go to the Groups directory on LinkedIn field:  “UK AND Marketing”. In  the search results, tick the “Open groups” box.  This means you will find groups that are open to all.  If you see the lock icon on a group’s landing page, this means that you must ask to join the group and may not be allowed to join if you don’t meet their member criteria.

2.    You will see a list of possible groups to join.  Click on a group’s name and you will be taken to its landing page.  You will see your photo and the “Start a Discussion” text box – don’t worry – you haven’t joined yet. 🙂

3.  Have a look at the group’s statistics before joining.  There is no point in joining a group that doesn’t include your target market. To view group statistics, scroll down the right column of the Group page, and click on the black “View Group Statistics” button. The group statistics will give you an idea of how active the group is, who is in it, and where they are based.  Make sure you look at the demographics of the group in order to confirm that there are members at the right experience level and in the right industry, in  my case, director level members within the FMCG sector who work in London.

4.    If you find that the group is full of your target audience, join the group! If your target market is not in the group, then move on to the next group found in your search results until you find the right group for you.  If you don’t find it, start a LinkedIn group yourself!

How do you find the right LinkedIn groups for you? I’m interested in hearing your own tips and suggestions.


Tips for getting the most out of attending events by using LinkedIn

Use LinkedIn to get more value out of every event you attend.

Here are some tips for integrating LinkedIn into your face-to-face networking activities when attending an event:

Before the event:

  1. Let your LinkedIn connections know you are attending by posting a ‘status update’ on your profile.
  2. Post the event in your LinkedIn Groups and ask if anyone is going and would like to meet up during the event.
  3. Let everyone on LinkedIn see that you are attending by searching LinkedIn Events (in the ‘More’ menu) for the event and clicking on the ‘I’m attending’ button.
  4. See if there is anyone you’d like to meet at the event by going to the event’s LinkedIn page and having a look at who is attending. You may want to connect before the event and suggest meeting up at the event.
  5. If the event is not listed on LinkedIn, you can create an event page and let your connections know you are attending.  Others can then go to the page you’ve created and register their attendance as well.

After the event:

  1. If you meet someone new at the event, send them a personalised LinkedIn invitation to join your network.
  2. Once you’ve connected, have a look at their connections, is there anyone there you’d like to be introduced to?  Ask for an introduction via LinkedIn or by picking up the phone and calling your 1st degree contact.
  3. Notice what groups your new LinkedIn connection has joined – would these be good groups for you to join?  Find out by going to the LinkedIn Group landing page and clicking on the ‘See group statistics’ black button.

How do you use LinkedIn to build on the face-to-face networking you do?


Is LinkedIn a replacement for face-to-face networking ?

I’m a LinkedIn coach, so of course, I am very keen on LinkedIn as a marketing and business development tool.  But does it replace face-to-face networking?  Absolutely not!

Some people have the misconception that if you simply have a LinkedIn profile, the business should starting rolling in.  LinkedIn activities are most effective when they are used in conjunction with offline networking.  LinkedIn can help you raise awareness and interest in your offering, keep you ‘front of mind’ with current clients and reveal potential new clients.  The key is to take your online networking activities offline.

If you are in the professional services sector (lawyers, accountants, architects, designers, etc), you will rarely gain a new client through purely online activity.  Usually a phone call or face-to-face meeting needs to take place before the prospect knows you well enough and trusts you to give you their business.

Use LinkedIn by all means, but always focus on how you can take your online relationships offline — and watch your business grow.

Do you have any examples of how your LinkedIn activities have resulted in new business?   I’d love to hear from you!


Does your Twitter feed add value to your LinkedIn profile?

Personally, I don’t like to see someone’s entire twitter feed on their LinkedIn profile – especially if they use twitter as a business channel AND a personal one.  I am interested in any business-related conversations or information they can provide via twitter but I am decidedly not interested in where they are going for dinner or how nice it is for them to walk their dog!

I decided to find out what others thought and created a poll on LinkedIn.

Does seeing a person’s complete twitter feed on their LinkedIn profile annoy you?

Yes:                  96%

No:                     4%

Don’t care:           0%

For details of the poll, click on the link below:

http://linkd.in/szJMLl

Based on the results of this poll, I took my twitter feed off of my LinkedIn profile and now post twitter jargon free status updates — there’s no point in annoying people when you don’t have to!

What’s your view?


No more hit and miss when joining LinkedIn Groups

Until recently, if you wanted to join a closed LinkedIn Group, you could only see which of your connections were group members before joining.  You may have joined groups based on this information and then found, once you were a member, that the group wasn’t what you thought it was and you had little in common with the other group members.

That’s all changed now.

If you want to learn more about a LinkedIn Group (closed or open) before joining, you can look at the group’s statistics (found on the right hand side of a group’s landing page) before clicking on the ‘join’ button.

This handy statistical infographic provides the titles of the group members,  where they are based, the group’s discussion activity level and much more.  You now don’t have to join a LinkedIn Group blindfolded only to find out it’s not for you.

Which new LinkedIn tools have you found helpful?


Your online professional presence – manage it or let it manage you!

Let’s face it –  an online presence is imperative if you want to thrive professionally in the 21st Century.

Potential clients/partners/employers will look at your LinkedIn profile to check you out before they meet you or afterwards.  Your profile is a piece of important marketing collateral for you and for the organisation you represent.  What does it say about you?  What does it say about your organisation?  Could it be:

That you don’t care about communicating your value to others?

That your organisation has a disjointed brand message?

That you don’t see any value in using 21st Century communication channels?

NOT having a decent LinkedIn profile speaks volumes.

LinkedIn provides a powerful channel for communicating your brand and the unique value you offer to clients and partners.  Get it right, and see your business grow.

What does your LinkedIn profile say about you?


Show you care through LinkedIn

According to a new report by the Rockefeller Corporation, the main reason customers leave a company is because they do not feel that the company cares about them.  This reason was chosen by 68% of the respondents. Surprisingly (or not, depending on your point of view) price and quality were not mentioned as reasons for changing companies.

In the professional services sector, the sector I’ve had over 15 years’ experience in, the ‘company doesn’t care’ reason for leaving a provider could score even higher.  In this sector, people buy people.  You only feel that a professional service provider cares about you if you know, like and trust (#klt in the twitter world) them.  If you don’t know, like and trust the provider, you will not use their services for very long.  As the report highlights, dropping your price won’t help you keep your clients in the long term if they don’t think you care about them.

LinkedIn provides us with an extremely efficient and effective way to connect with prospects and clients and show them we care.  I’m not saying that LinkedIn can replace offline relationship building — I’m saying that it can turbo charge your existing marketing/business development strategy and therefore speed up the ‘know, like and trust’ process.  The result? Increased revenues and more referrals.

Here’s some suggestions for building relationships via LinkedIn,

  • Share your client’s LinkedIn profile with another LinkedIn contact. Use the ‘share’ button to send his/her profile to someone you think your client should meet.  This shows you are not only interested in taking their money – you want to help them grow their business as well.
  • Invite a client/prospect to attend an event they might find of interest.  Locate the event through ‘Events’ (found in the ‘More’ menu) and then use the ‘share’ button to send the event details to them.  It’s a great opportunity to suggest a meeting while at the event.
  • Transform a cold call into a warm one.  Locate a prospect in one of your LinkedIn Groups, contribute to their discussions and then follow up by emailing them via LinkedIn to suggest an offline meeting or telephone chat.  Your online conversations will make that first offline conversation much warmer and effective.

What other ways have you used LinkedIn to show your customer you care?

Source:

Smashing Magazine article, Rockefeller report. http://bit.ly/qQdOFc