Chico Escuela once said: "Baseball been berry berry good to me!" Well actually it was Garrett Morris on Saturday Night Live. I used to play baseball when I was young and I enjoyed it very much. But, really, I was never going to be a famous baseball star.
I'd like to say, however, that LinkedIn has been very very good to me. I have found customers, old friends, great resources, and I have developed a professional mutual trust and friendship with more people that I could have ever dreamed possible. It is a wonderful tool for connecting with professionals in all types of businesses. I have connected with artists, programmers, directors, presidents, CEO, producers, and all manner of movers and shakers in the business world. I am very happy for that.
There has been the occasional scammer but overall I am very pleased with how LinkedIn has delivered a professional connections capability that has been extremely useful and satisfying.I really like seeing posts from my connections. I get lots of valuable information there. Things, of course, don't happen overnight. If you keep communicating and keep on top of it, LinkedIn can be a very valuable tool.
My mother told me, when I got out of the Marines, that I should go back to college and get an MBA. I complained "Mom, I'll be 38 years old by the time I graduate!" She replied, "How old will you be in five years if you don't go to school?" - I went to school - the logic was humbling. Moms are smart sometimes.
Sales and marketing strategies have changed considerably over the last several years. If your primary method of selling is still cold-calling, it's time to adapt your techniques to remain competitive in today's marketplace. First thing's first: if you haven't already joined the wildly popular professional networking site known as LinkedIn, you must remedy that immediately. If you do have a LinkedIn profile but rarely log on or avoid engaging your network, it's time to remedy that too. Like it or not, social connections is the wave of the future.
It's never too late or to soon to plant a tree and it is never too late or too soon to start connecting in LinkedIn. So get started today. Read on to learn how to use LinkedIn to effectively generate business to business leads for your company:
Post regularly. While it's okay to market on LinkedIn, don't be a pushy sales guy, if people want to connect with you they will. Don't try to sell a hammer somebody when all they need is a bucket. Make sure to post some value-based information. Share articles or blog posts that are relevant to your industry. Post regularly-- at least a couple of times per week-- so that your name stays at the top of people's minds and your visibility is increased.
Engage your network. Posting is important, but so is responding to other people's posts. Strong relationships require reciprocity. Make sure to comment, like, or share posts from other people in your network. An added bonus is that, if you share their posts, they're more likely to share yours--effectively broadcasting your information to their network.
Do your research. Calling a prospect without even knowing the name of the decision maker is a sure-fire way to get transferred directly to voicemail. Before calling or visiting a prospect, do your research. Use the advanced search feature to determine the name of the decision maker you're trying to reach. Then learn everything you can about that decision maker before picking up the phone. By viewing the decision maker's profile, you might find that you have certain things in common-- perhaps the same alma mater or similar hobbies-- that make for good talking points.
Get recommendations. You can build credibility by including recommendations from past clients on your LinkedIn profile. Recommendations are different from endorsements on LinkedIn, so make sure not to confuse the two. Ask satisfied clients to write a quick paragraph of recommendation that you can use on your profile.
Project a professional image. Make sure that your LinkedIn profile reflects your brand image in a positive way. Keep in mind that many potential clients will research your company on LinkedIn before deciding whether or not to contact you. Keep your profile updated and remember to include relevant articles, links, videos, blog posts, and any awards you've received. Consider using a professional headshot for your profile photo.
I am an artist, an analyst, a researcher, and an online development specialist serving the online information industry.