With to 476 million LinkedIn users and counting LinkedIn is now the third fastest growing social network, - and it’s easy to see why. It’s become a hub of business news and content, making it easier than ever for diverse professionals to connect and engage. LinkedIn is home to everyone from familiar-faced college alums to CEO’s of Fortune 500 companies. What do they all have in common? An interest in strengthening their professional knowledge, network, or both.
Consulting companies have a particularly unique opportunity on LinkedIn because consulting is built on extensive expertise within a particular field; showcasing that knowledge on LinkedIn can have an incredibly positive impact on your bottom line. Clients are far more likely to engage with you if you’ve provided them with helpful content in the past on LinkedIn. For this reason, LinkedIn is the perfect platform to let your knowledge and industry expertise speak for itself. This article will help you to illustrate your expertise effectively to attract high quality leads through LinkedIn.
Be Clear and Direct
If you are trying to promote your services through LinkedIn, make sure your profile is up to par with your consulting skills. This platform gives you the opportunity to be heard - it’s up to you to provide the right information to your target audience to drive them to work with you.
In a world consumed with online research, LinkedIn and other social profiles are often the first impressions potential clients have of your business. For that reason, it’s important that your profile remains functional, practical and concise. Use simple headlines and clear summaries that keep audiences engaged and in search for more information and next steps. Keep your LinkedIn introductory piece short and to the point; simply state what you do and what your goal is for the future. Keeping it simple will not only give a clearer picture of what you do, it’’ be more memorable too.
While it may be tempting to use lofty wording on your profile to distinguish yourself from the competition, it can take a toll on your visibility and performance. The reality is, your audiences aren’t typing flowery words into the search bar. It’s much more beneficial to be direct and use key industry terms that will make your profile an easier find for your ideal clients.
Earn Your Following
Unfortunately, it’s not easy to get people in your target audience to simply stumble upon your LinkedIn and read all of your content. The best way to attract new clients or expand your following is to actively post and engage in various groups within LinkedIn. Comment on other people’s posts and articles, contributing your thoughts or posting complementary pieces of research. You could say something as simple as, “Hey Rachel, I loved your article Family Feud: How to Bring Sales and Marketing Together, I found another article you might be interested in reading by my favorite author, check it out here.” Potential clients will appreciate your thoughtful effort and may start checking out some of your professional content in return.
Business Coach and Consultant John Hawkins notes that it’s also important not to self-promote when engaging in groups and posting articles. People don’t want to be bombarded with sales pitches when scrolling through their LinkedIn feeds. You are far more likely to engage a prospective client by showing your genuine interest in a topic and sharing your thoughts. If a person likes your research and opinions, they will naturally gravitate towards your business in their own time.
Leverage Your Network
Your LinkedIn network can be a gateway to new referrals, roles, partners, and opportunities. Regardless of which areas you’re aiming to strengthen professionally, every new connection is another step toward expanding your professional network. You never know which seemingly inconsequential connection might lead to an important business relationship down the road.
Personalizing your messages to connect with people, rather than sending the generic “I’d Like to Add You to My LinkedIn Network” message is a great way to establish more relationships. A unique message humanizes you, making your requested connection far more likely to reach out. For example, write a brief yet engaging connect request such as, “Hey Rachel, I’d love to be part of your LinkedIn Network – your experience in marketing seems unique and I am really enjoying the content you’ve been posting on social media paid ads recently. Thanks!” This small but genuine and personal gesture can help your name resonate with your new connections and imply that you are willing to go the extra mile for your business.
There will always be room to expand your network, knowledge, and consulting business on LinkedIn. By implementing our three tips to create a well-rounded profile, your following is sure to start growing. You’ll also be able to collect new, valuable information to keep your consulting strategies refreshed and up to date with trends and changes in the industry. It’s important to remember that these changes won’t happen overnight, be sure to stay patient and consistent to see a boost in your qualified LinkedIn leads.