08 Apr How To Use LinkedIn To Find Clients for Your Business
Article contributed by John Dubay
LinkedIn has made a business out of connecting businesses and business professionals. 77% of job recruiters rely on LinkedIn to expand their talent pool.
If a majority of businesses are on LinkedIn, wouldn’t it make sense that businesses who provide products/services to other businesses would also establish a LinkedIn presence?
You may not think of LinkedIn as a traditional social media source, but with targeted marketing it can prove to be a great asset to your brand.
Optimize Your Profile
First things first: if you want to attract clients, your profile page needs to be engaging and attractive. Sure, your LinkedIn profile is basically a resume. But it shouldn’t read like a resume.
Let’s say you want to adopt a dog. Which advertisement would you respond to?
Dog #1 – 2-year-old mutt, Sits, stays, lays down, potty-trained, available ASAP
Dog #2 – Sparky is a 2-year-old pup with mysterious, parentage. We think he has some sort of hound in him, but your guess is as good as ours! Sparky already knows how to politely ask to go outside to use the bathroom, and he’s respectful enough to avoid using your flower beds as his potty. Bring Sparky home with you today!
Which dog do you want to see a picture of? Dog #2, right?
These hypothetical dogs are actually the same dog. In the first ad, we gave you a bullet-point resume list of information about “Sparky,” but in the second ad we used evocative words to show his personality and engage the reader.
It’s important to note that the second advertisement ended with a call to action. Of course, you’ll be doing plenty of reaching out to clients, but if a client stumbles upon your page you want them to feel compelled to interact with your business more.
You can find plenty of ideal client profiles, but if they aren’t interested in working with you, you’re back at square one.
At the same time, your profile page should be reflective of who you are as a company. If we’re still using the Sparky example, you can’t advertise Sparky as a giant dog when he’s actually the size of a Chihuahua or say his fur is white when it’s black. Whatever you tell people about your company should be accurate and exciting.
Attracting Potential Clients
Now that you have a top dog profile, it’s time to start attracting clients.
Much like on Facebook, and other social media websites, your business can post updates that are shared with the entire LinkedIn community. Sharing interesting content and providing answers on LinkedIn is a great way attract new customers looking for solutions to their problem.
Your updates should follow an 80/20 rule of providing useful information 80% of the time and information about yourself 20% of the time.
You should also take the time to engage with posts made by connections or others in your industry.
Another way to target a niche audience is by joining a LinkedIn Group. The platform offers over one million groups, and you can join up to 100 of them.
Joining groups strategically is a great way to discover new potential leads and connect with people you haven’t previously reached. If you offer a solution to a commonly held problem in a group, those group members have a higher chance of engaging and thanking you. You also gain credibility and authority as an expert in this particular issue.
If you can’t find a particular group that fits perfectly, start your own group to attract leads and like-minded individuals.
LinkedIn created Showcase Pages so users can “represent brands, business units, or company initiatives. These pages are intended to develop long-term relationships with a specific audience.”
Leverage these Showcase Pages to demonstrate how you help one target segment of your clientele. People can explore the showcase page that most applies to them, and it offers another way for them to connect with your business.
Optimize your Showcase Page(s) in three simple steps:
- Make it easy to generate conversions like on your Main Page and your Website
- Keep the name of the page short so it doesn’t get cut off in the sidebar
- Use a word that your audience will relate to in the name
Don’t Wait for Them to Come to You
Now that everything is optimized for lead conversion, you can sit back and wait for clients to flood your inbox, right?
If you really want to attract clients to your business, you must take a proactive role. You can’t sit back and wait for them to come to you.
Use LinkedIn’s Advanced Search feature to narrow your search and target a specific demographic, industry or market niche.
An advanced search on a free LinkedIn account allows you to filter based on:
- Current company
- Past company
- Profile language
- Nonprofit interests
- Degree of connection
An upgraded account will include the above filters plus
- Years of experience
- Seniority level
- Company size
- When they joined LinkedIn, and more
If you’re on LinkedIn specifically for B2B lead generation, I recommend you invest in a premium profile to help narrow and identify your target groups and prospects.
The good news – you only have to create an incredibly specific search once because LinkedIn allows you to save your search filters. You can then set up alerts on your saved search so you can stay up to date on new matches for your profiled targets.
If you want to find leads and customers, you no longer need to rely on traditional media. We’ve moved past the era of putting classified ads in the newspaper to generate business. We live in a digital age when everything can be done online. If properly used, LinkedIn can be an excellent tool for building your brand and attracting new customers for your business.
Author’s bio: John Dubay is the Managing Partner at Leads at Scale, an outsourced sales support company that helps B2B companies generate well-qualified leads at scale, ready to be closed.