Build your connections on LinkedIn with these five simple strategies.
If your business is a professional service in the B2B space, then using LinkedIn as a social media marketing tool should be high on your list of priorities.
While the use of this platform is definitely growing, it’s still tremendously under-utilised by small business owners – particularly in regional areas of Australia.
There are a couple of ways that you can build a community on LinkedIn. You can encourage people to follow your LinkedIn Company Page, or you can build connections and followers of your personal profile.
Setting up your LinkedIn profile and connecting with your work colleagues, family and friends is just the beginning of your connection activity on LinkedIn. Once you have nailed those connections; you can progress to the connections that may sit slightly further afield by following the following steps.
OK, this is your low hanging fruit. Click on the ‘My Network’ at the top of your LinkedIn page. It is here that LinkedIn serves you up literally hundreds of suggestions based on your current connections and profile inputs. You can simply scroll through these suggestions and ‘Connect’ with those you know already or who may look like a good connection to have.
Think of all of the people that you might interact within a week whether it be clients, centres of influence (other business people that might influence people to buy from you), media or people that you meet at conferences or workshops. There are potentially loads of people who you have face-to-face interactions with who you can then connect with on LinkedIn to continue your relationship.
I’m now in the habit of when I go to a conference, I’ll take note of all the people who I meet there as well as the keynote speakers that I resonate with, and I’ll drop them a note afterwards and ask them to connect. I’ve gone on to develop some great relationships with people who I have connected with in this way.
I can’t tell you the number of times I have connected with someone after I have seen a post of theirs or even a comment on someone else’s post that I resonate with. If I like their post or comment, I’ll view their profile and assess if they might be a useful person to have in my network. If the answer is yes, then I’ll drop them a line and ask them to connect.
Right at the top of your LinkedIn Page sits a little search bar. If you click into that, a drop down menu will appear. Click on ‘People’. Underneath this bar will then appear another bar with some filters – navigate to the right of this and click on ‘All Filters’. You now have several filters to search for potential connections.
This feature works best when you invest in the ‘Premium’ option as the free version of LinkedIn will only reveal a limited number of results before asking you to upgrade.
When reviewing the requests to connect with you, be open to opportunity. While I certainly don’t recommend accepting connection requests from obvious potential spammers, just because you don’t know someone personally, does not mean that you shouldn’t connect with them.
I like to compare LinkedIn to an in-person networking event. If someone approached you at a networking event and introduced themselves, you wouldn’t brush them off simply because you had never met them before. You would take the opportunity to get to know them, possibly swap contact details and then perhaps continue the conversation next time you met. LinkedIn is like the online version of that!
By following these five easy steps to proactively connect with people and build your connections on LinkedIn regularly, you’ll grow your network in no time.
With more connections, comes increased opportunity. Just remember to leverage your LinkedIn connections by posting content that they can view and interact with and by supporting their content by liking, commenting or sharing