Any social network can be used to look for prospects, but since LinkedIn is intended for business professionals, it sets itself apart from the other networks. With an array of tools, a businessperson can use just one or all of them to find great increases in lead generation. As with anything else in business, this all starts with smart planning and a sound strategy.
LinkedIn Groups and Discussions
Two absolutely free ways to get exposure on LinkedIn and build up potential leads is by using the Groups and discussions sections that are available on the website. Groups may take a little more time to get established, but they can often lead to a lot of connections, which can produce a lot of leads. The key to either of these is to set a weekly quota on how many discussions you start in the group/s and how many questions you answer in the answer section. By sticking to these quotas, you will make steady progress and start building new and hopefully lucrative connections.
For groups, many experts suggest that you start at least four or more conversations each week. Within discussions, commit to providing at least two answers or meaningful contributions per week. By doing so, you put yourself out there as someone who knows about your industry. This will set you apart from the competition and bring in plenty of new leads.
LinkedIn Direct Ads
LinkedIn direct ads may cost money, but if you are looking for business professionals or business owners, it can be the best way to target your desired population. As you do with any other advertising method, first figure out how many clicks you will need before you can expect someone to become an actual buyer of your product or service. As a simple example, consider that you sell a $400 product and you can convert one out of every 40 people with your advertising. If you bid $1 per click on LinkedIn ads, you will pay $40 to get a client that will then end up spending $400. No matter how you look at it, that’s a great investment.
Use Your Tools Wisely
Though these are not the only tools LinkedIn has available, the smart businessperson will use everything at his or her disposal to make an impact. The best part is that most of these methods are free, only requiring a bit of time and know-how on your part. For options such as LinkedIn ads, the cost is typically much lower than you would spend on other advertising methods. Ultimately, when you know how to use this network, it can be an absolute goldmine of business prospects.
About the Author
David Rose is a Social Media Manager at Woocom, a dynamic, full service multi-channel web marketing agency specialising in every aspect of web marketing from content management systems through to social media and custom application development, based in Perth, Western Australia.