26 Oct Getting the Most Out of LinkedIn
ARE WE JUST TOO BRITISH TO GET THE
MOST OUT OF LINKEDIN?
LinkedIn is a great place for making business connections. A virtual networking platform. But why do we treat it differently to when we’re physically networking?
I think we all know that networking, making contacts and building partnerships / alliances is an essential part of business, so when it comes to doing it online why are we all so… well, British?
I still come across a LOT of profiles on LinkedIn that are hidden or aren’t fully populated; very little information about their business, or themselves, no profile picture etc., and really don’t sell that person or how they can help. Almost like they’re hiding. Would you be this vague if you met someone at a networking breakfast? I doubt it. Usually people are more than happy to talk about themselves, waxing lyrical about their business and what they do (although a few more benefit-led conversations would be nice).
And, hiding your profile. Would you go to a networking meeting, golf day or business lunch and turn up with a bag over your head so no-one could see who you were (although you can see everyone else!)? Again, I doubt it.
When it comes to making business contacts and assessing potential alliances or actual business; that is what this platform if for and to get the best out of it, it needs to be treated in the same way you would if you met someone in the flesh.
UPDATE YOUR PROFILE
Would you decide not to tell new acquaintances what you do, how you do it and the benefits of working with you and your business. People buy from people and your chances of generating new business when no one can see you are greatly reduced.
DON’T BE AFRAID TO ASK TO CONNECT
Would you choose not introduce yourself to people whilst physically networking? When you do invite someone to connect, send a personal message rather than the automated one LinkedIn sends out. Would you use the same generic, impersonal line over and over when taking to people normally?
TAKE IT OFFLINE
As you would when you meet someone face–to–face, set up a phone call, coffee, Skype, whatever it may be to see if there is a possibility you can work together.
As with physical networking, even if there is no direct business for you, you never know who they might know or who is in their network – it might be your next big customer!