It’s been a challenging month in many ways. First, we lost power for four days which I wrote about last week. Then a few days later my main computer died. Thank God I have a laptop!
Then my wife informed me that the place we’re staying for a two-week vacation in Mexico in January is not the place she wants to stay. And they’ll only refund 50% of the fee. And the new place she found costs about twice as much. Ouch.
Feeling sorry for me yet?
But all of this was overshadowed by an unsettling insight. I am starting to realize that the most effective marketing strategy for self-employed professionals who are selling to companies is something I don’t understand and have never used effectively.
And that’s LinkedIn.
Well, the truth is, I’ve never really needed LinkedIn because all my clients come from people on my e-list (you). When I want to fill a program, I simply send out several announcements to you.
But that strategy doesn’t work for the majority of my clients and program participants because they don’t have a big e-list and it would take years to develop one.
But LinkedIn is something almost every B-to-B professional can learn relatively quickly and start connecting successfully to generate qualified prospective clients.
I’ve recently been studying the ideas of a number of LinkedIn Gurus and most of them are saying the same things.
1. Have a great profile that highlights how you help your clients.
2. Post something simple and valuable about once daily. It might be a pithy idea or a link to some valuable content.
3. When you make connection requests, always, always, always add a personalized note.
4. Never, never, never ask for a meeting or make a pitch on your initial connection; start sharing some value instead.
5. Build some rapport at the beginning of an LI relationship before you say anything about your service.
6. When you feel the time is right, move the conversation offline to a phone conversation, but never force it.
Those are basic guidelines. But the devil is in the details.
So over the next few weeks, I’ll be studying the ins and outs of how to connect and prospect on LinkedIn and will be sharing what I learn.
And by the way, please feel free to connect with me on LinkedIn if you haven’t already. But please make the connection personal or I won’t accept the connection!
Here’s to a less challenging month in November! (It’ll probably rain for 20 days straight!)