Linked-in is a great tool for building your brand and generating leads. It’s a social media site that is mainly used by businesses who market to other businesses.  However, don’t let that stop you from being active on this platform. It’s still a great way to build relationships with others who can refer leads to you.  If you are a home stager, you can connect with real estate agents in your area and vice versa.

You want to ensure that your Linked-in profile is complete so that you can be found by other business professionals.  To increase your search engine optimization, make sure your name and title area reflect the major services/products you provide.  Just for the fun of it, Google your business industry  and your location to see if you come up in the search via your Linked-in profile.   If not, you need to revise it using key words for which  you want to be found.

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It’s also a great idea to have your interests completed on your profile .  For example, if you are a biking enthusiast, someone who has that interest may link to you.  You want to connect to as many people as you can.  However, I always check the profile of the person who has requested to connect. Unfortunately, there are people on the site who are ready to sell to you the minute that you connect with them.

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Don’t forget to list your contact information on your profile page, so that people who may need your services or products, can contact you.

When you connect with another Linked-in member, the site gives you the ability  to set reminders to go back and follow – up with people who might be of importance to you.  Simply go to the person’s profile page and you will see an area at the top marked “Relationships”  Just click that word and you can write notes, reminders, details on how you met, and you can even use tags to organize your contacts . (only visible to you) Once you set a reminder, you will receive a notification in your email inbox.

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Don’t forget to join groups.  This is where all of the fun is!  If you click on the tab “Interests”  on your home page, it will take you to Groups.  Linked-in allows you to join up to 50 groups and 12 subgroups.  Once in a group ,check for discussions.  You can even adjust your settings to get notices of new discussions in your email inbox.  You want to participate in the groups and post articles or questions so people can learn from this information.  Once you’ve joined your groups, they will appear on your Groups page. You can also see how many discussions are going on in that group, if there are any jobs posted in that group, and if you are a top contributor which everyone in the group sees.

 

Linked-in-Features You-Need-to-KnowOnce you are on a particular group page, you will see where the promoted events, services  and products for sale are posted by clicking on the “Promotions” tab.

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A newsreader app called Pulse has been integrated with Linked-in.  You can access it by clicking on the Interests tab on your home page. There you will find articles by top influencers and top news tailored to your professional interests which can be shared or liked.  You can also improve your social media engagement efforts by leaving comments on the articles.  This is just one more resource for interesting blog content.

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The sidebar of your home page also contains some helpful information such as: People You May Know, Ads You May Be Interested In, What You Recently Viewed on Linked-in, Who’s Viewed Your Profile, Who Has Reviewed Your Updates, How Many Followers You Have, Jobs You May Be Interested In, Groups You May Like, and Companies You May Want to Follow.

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Linked-in does give you the ability to set up a company page if you so desire.  However, the majority of small business owners have a personal profile only.  Click on the Interests tab and you will see another tab for Companies . Click on this tab and you can start the  process.  Here you can see a sample Company Page of a business called Props America .  On a company page, you can showcase your products and the latest news about your company, and specials you are running.   Viewers can  share and recommend  your products.

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If you’d really like to learn how to effectively use Linked-in for your business, we offer social media training services.  Check out how we can help you here.  Call us today so you can start making the connections that will feed your lead funnel and make 2014 a profitable year for you.

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