I advise my clients that the LinkedIn profile is one of the most powerful small business marketing strategies. It can provide a myriad of benefits. In this article I’m going to take you through the components of the successful LinkedIn profile.
Start to build trust. LinkedIn is a professional networking site with many marketing opportunities for you as a small business proprietor. You can build trust rapidly as your whole life history is there for the reading. Complete the LinkedIn profile as much as possible. Be sure to write a friendly and warm summary, too. Upload a professional head and shoulders image that is friendly and approachable. People prefer to do business with those that they have seen. Humans need to be able to relate to a person before taking a relationship further to the point of spending their hard earned money.
Start connecting. Your next task on LinkedIn is to connect to as many people as you can remember from your past. Rack your brains to think about school friends, colleagues from years ago – everybody that you can remember. The more people that you connect to, the more your connections your profile will show to anybody using LinkedIn to find business partners in your niche. Each connection will work as a backlink to your profile page. The more connections you have to your profile, the better your profile page will perform in search results.
Build more trust. Being connected to more people, you will again be contributing to the trust factor of your profile. People would rather do business with a contact of a connection or friend than with somebody whom they know nothing about. When you come across somebody you know, think about whether you can provide them with a testimonial, and then ask if they could do the same for you. Testimonials are important for trust building.
A LinkedIn profile gives credibility. Even if you do not have much time to sign into and interact on LinkedIn, it is still well worth having a completed profile. I have enjoyed clients contacting me even at times when I haven’t been active on LinkedIn. Make a LinkedIn profile part of your small business marketing strategy.
Get active in Groups and Answers. Groups and Answers are two powerful ways to network on LinkedIn. You can find relevant groups by searching for your niche business area. Think about where you might find the people you can help. Spend time mingling and commenting on the posts of others. Add a few items from your blog as appropriate.
Answers is an opportunity to show that you are knowledgeable about your field. Quite often people will post questions asking for help. You can answer in the most polite, knowledgeable, and helpful way – your answer will be seen by others in the field, and you will build credibility.
In all the years that I’ve used LinkedIn, I certainly have gained many clients and made some powerful business connections. I cannot speak highly enough of Linkedin, and how important it is for a small business to have a presence on this site from a small business marketing perspective.