LinkedIn is an often misunderstood platform that business owners discount. It seems as though the people using the platform are disengaged and it's hard to make B2B connections there.
I have found the opposite to be true. As with any social media platform, the key is actually being social.
Building relationships is key to getting prospects to become customers. To do that you need to have a good strategy set up.
Use this list to build an online networking system that works for your business.
It's time to connect
1. Show interest in your connections
2. Engage with those who like, share and comment on your content. Thank them and acknowledge their comments in some way. The LinkedIn Kudos feature is a good place to start
3. Introduce your connections to one another when they can benefit from the connection
4. Like and comment on their posts
5. Ask them questions to get to know them
6. Share valuable content related to their current challenges or industry with them
7. Follow them on other social networks and engage with them there as well
8. Look for natural conversation starters such as events or job changes
9. Do your research. Knowing what your prospects likes, interests and affiliations are gives you a way to start a conversation, especially if it’s something you are interested in too.
10. Participate in groups and discussions
11. Personalize your connection requests to them instead of the default
12. Post articles, case studies, videos and whitepapers on your profile about why they need your service or product
13. Add CTAs to your LinkedIn profile to send prospects to your landing page or website
14. Stay in touch once you’ve made a connection every couple of weeks or so
a. Congratulate them on a new jobs or promotions
b. Interact with them in LinkedIn groups
c. Comment on their articles and updates
15. Be helpful by finding ways to you can give people a boost and not expect anything in return
16. Don’t brag about your skills without providing proof to back them up. Focus on building up your portfolio of past projects and original content that showcases your skills and leaves no doubt in your prospects mind
17. Relationship-building takes time. Be patient and put in the effort to build long term relationships. Prioritize being friendly, learning about others and making true connections
18. Have a complete profile that brands you. It must be more than a list of your accomplishments or achievements or a simple statement. Instead it should tell the story of who you are and gets the reader to want to connect and get to know you better
19. Build and show social proof. Get recommendations and endorsements from former and current colleagues, clients and employers. Include testimonials from leaders in your field if you have worked with them
20. Share where you have been quoted or published in your area of expertise. This can be business publications, on other social media platforms or offline
21. Make your content “sticky”. In other words, choose words or content that make you visible to your ideal client and encourages comments
22. Use video in different ways. Use it in your feed to provide free content that helps your prospect in some way. Add video to your profile summary or on your LinkedIn Company page
23. Seek out the problem your prospects are facing then freely provide a few ideas of how they can face the problem. It can be in a message with links to sources you found or in articles you’ve written that address the problem
24. Show them how their work has impacted or changed your life. Send them a short message telling them exactly how their work created a positive change on you. It’s the greatest compliment you can give someone by proving that who they are and the work they do has created a positive change in someone’s life.
25. Compliment others on their articles, posts, achievements and milestones
26. Be friendly, open and kind
27. Know who your ideal prospect is instead of trying to build relationships with everyone
28. Maintain a positive attitude. Project the energy and confidence you want your clients to feel about you.
29. Be the type of person people enjoy being around and want to work with by showing enthusiasm and zeal for your work and their work.
30. Acknowledge your prospects are individual people. Ask about them and their families, hobbies or interests
31. Be mindful of their time. Don’t bombard them with information and messages
32. Exceed their expectations by delivering exceptional results. Show them how you’ve done this with other clients
33. Diversify your network by gong beyond people in your current level. Seek out others with LinkedIn’s advanced search feature
34. Be honest and authentic. Be yourself
35. Message your prospects to just check in and say hi
36. Respond to messages from your prospects and connections quickly
37. Tell your story. People want to know you behind the business. Share personalized stories within your business content
38. Be visible
39. Be consistent by providing valuable content daily to your LinkedIn profiles
40. Share value added content on your LinkedIn feed, blog, articles, videos or SlideShare
41. Be helpful but not pushy
42. Create a LinkedIn Group and invite your prospects to become members. Share relevant content, ask questions and start discussions
43. Listen before you answer. Really listen to your prospects to know what they need and want, then you can provide the content that will help them
44. Show you’re prospects you value their opinion with user-generated content. Ask them for ideas on what your business should do next or in a certain situation or what design/style/flavor/color they think you should go with next. Then repost or use any ideas you receive. Give credit to those who shared their ideas
These 44 ideas on building relationships with your prospects are just the beginning of building a long-term business relationship that can be rewarding in many ways to both of you.