LinkedIn is all about making business connections and luckily for you, there are several great tools on the site that makes lead generation on this platform fairly simple. Once you have your profile in place and have made sure all the information is up to date, that you have some blog posts connected to it, and have added a video or two, you are set to network. Here are the three key steps you need to take:
Step 1: Have LinkedIn import your address book and search your email account.
The site will then suggest some connections based on who you already know. Send those suggested connections a connection request and you are on your way.
Step 2: Find and connect with potential clients.
- Search by industry first to see if you already have any connections at companies you are targeting for potential new business.
- If you find that you have a first-degree connection to a prospective client, call or email your first-degree connection and ask them to make an introduction.
- If the connections you find are further down the scale (2nd or 3rd tier connections), use the InMail feature to invite those people to connect with you. Customize your request to provide context for the connection.
- Be sure you have opted in to LinkedIn alerts for all your connections. Once you receive an alert that someone you’re connected with has published an article or has a new job, send them an email to reconnect and rekindle the relationship.
- If you receive an alert that someone has viewed your profile who could be a potential new client, send that person an InMail message asking if you can help.
Step 3: Cultivate new referral sources.
- Find LinkedIn groups that match up with your practice area and join them. Participating in these groups helps drive traffic to your LinkedIn profile page.
- Showcase your expertise by starting your own LinkedIn group and inviting your connections to join.
- Post blogs, articles, firm announcements, press releases, videos on your profile page and in your groups.
- Examine your client’s networks to see if there are any potential prospects you’d like to be introduced to and then ask your current or former client if they would be a referral source for you.
Once you get the hang of how things work on LinkedIn — and how easy it is to connect — you will find that it is ripe for networking successfully. And you don’t even have to leave home or the office to do it!