The real powerhouse for business networking and prospecting is the business focused social media site, LinkedIn.
platforms enable you to stay in contact with friends and family and stay current
on their life activities. They can also benefit you on the business side,
especially for sales. For many people, the top
social media networks that come to mind are Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
While these sites have some benefits for sales prospecting,
with general consumers, the real powerhouse for business networking and
prospecting is the business focused social media site, LinkedIn.
In fact, when it comes to business, LinkedIn with over 360
million members world-wide, is the top social media choice for business
networking and sales prospecting.
If you are using the popular social media business platform, LinkedIn,
you might find that there are additional ways to reach potential clients or
connect through others to increase sales.
For many, LinkedIn has been somewhat thought of as the go to
social site when you’re looking for your next job. It certainly has value for
this purpose, and it is extensively used by recruitment specialists world-wide
to find and contact prospects, but its benefits far exceed that. In the know business
people use LinkedIn more and more as a revenue generating, sales prospecting
LinkedIn is a perfect tool to make lead and sales
prospecting smoother, quicker, and ultimately, profitable. It is an extremely
cost-effective tool for business development.
Modern sales techniques have changed, and LinkedIn allows
you to connect directly with and gather information on companies and prospects,
as well as develop relationships and contact decision makers directly.
Here are some proactive, easy to implement strategies for using
LinkedIn as a tool to effectively increase your sales prospecting and grow
Optimize your LI Profile
With a couple tweaks,
you can turn your LinkedIn profile into a powerful sales asset. The most
important thing is that your profile is 100% complete. There is a high chance
that your prospects will look you up if they are interested in what you are
selling. When they do, your profile should give off a professional impression
of you and your company.
An important thing to do when beginning to get serious about
using LinkedIn for prospecting is to take a long hard look at your contacts.
Contacts are the bread and butter on the site. If yours are predominantly
family, your college classmates, and friends, you need to do a little work.
Connections spawn more connections. Your primary contacts
open a route to a wide range of second and third level connections. This is how
to scale up your efforts.
and Map Your Leads
LinkedIn users generally put a tremendous amount of
information on their profiles. Everything from which teams they work with, what
projects they are focusing on, which office they work out of and more.
You can use this information to develop a map of who the
decision makers are and how they can be reached and influenced to make the
sale. (Start by checking out the “viewers of this profile also viewed…” box
on their profile.)
Groups to Keep Up To Date and Engage With Prospects
Groups on LinkedIn are collections of people with similar
likes, needs, skills and more. They are a great way to learn about the
industries you target for sales and can be a great source for new prospects.
Engaging with member questions is a great way to build trust and authority
while raising your thought leader profile which can lead to sales inquiries.
They are also a great “soft” way to make contact with a prospect.
Turn Your Profile Into A Lead
Much of what we’ve touched on so far has been outbound
information, where to go to find prospects, how to engage, etc. This is purely
inbound. The prospects you’ve engaged with through connections and Groups will
most likely seek out your profile to learn more about you. (Information flows
both ways on LinkedIn!). So it only makes sense to optimize your profile to
Make sure you have current links to your company
site, your Twitter account and your Facebook page. Include some high-quality
recommendations from existing happy customers – think quality, not quantity.
This can give visitors a better idea of who you are and what you’re all about.
Remember, effective sales is all about building trust and relationships.
You do a good job of promoting your business, right? You have a website, place ads in publications that your target market is likely to read and you support your community through key sponsorships.
You have a strong cadre of clients, influencers and prospects because you’re a great networker. So, why do you need to create and maintain a professional profile on LinkedIn?
Is this social networking thing ever going to go away?
It’s not going away, and LinkedIn is a fabulous tool for your business networking. If you utilize only one online network for your business, make it LinkedIn.
LinkedIn is the largest professional network in the world, that’s why. Your network is using it, your competitors are using it, your prospective employees are using it, your local media is using it, and you better be using it, lest you fall behind.
Here are the key steps to creating your LinkedIn presence:
Create a strong profile. Tap into your marketing team’s writing skills to create a professional summary of your skills and description of your business. This is an opportunity to promote your business and establish yourself as a thought leader within your business. Use your resume to list your job history, education and highlight industry and community organizations in which you participate. Be prudent in listing any organizations that are personal.
Establish a presence. Once you’ve created a strong profile, begin building connections. Here’s a shortlist of people you need to invite to connect with you: coworkers, former coworkers, everyone in your network, former college friends (again, with prudence). Also, you’ll receive lots of invitations to connect with other professionals. Be sure to connect with them. Avoid “spammy” looking connection requests. They are not in your best interest.
Build and maintain relationships.
Scroll your LinkedIn news feed to stay abreast of your connections’ news. They’ll post when they change jobs, when they receive awards, have articles published, etc. Congratulate them. And, be sure to post your own news. This is an opportunity to grow relationships … relationships that may someday lead to new business.
Help others learn about you and your company. LinkedIn is a terrific recruiting and marketing tool. Encourage your teams to use it.
One additional note: educate yourself on the various security features of your LinkedIn account to mitigate unwanted email, connection requests and various other barriers to your privacy.
Prospective customers are not the only ones Googling your title insurance business before they call or email. Have you stopped to wonder what kind of impression is your title insurance agency making on prospective employees?
The jobs market is as good as it’s ever been in the last decade, which means more jobs and fewer candidates. The title insurance business has a unique problem when it comes to recruiting new talent – no one goes to school to work in the title business; it’s something we fall into for the most part.
The talent pool is small to begin with, and to attract the best talent your title company has got to stand out to prospective employees. One way to do this is by being aware of your agency’s current online reputation and the myriad review sites out there geared toward job seekers.
Here are two platforms that should be on your radar when it comes to managing your title business’s online reputation as it relates to prospective employees.
If someone Googles your business name or “working at [your business name],” chances are good a Glassdoor business profile will pop up on the first page of search results. How does your Glassdoor profile appear in search results?
Through Glassdoor, employees of your title business are able to anonymously leave a review of what it’s like to work for your company – including insights into salary, benefits and what the interview process is like. Your HR or administrative team can provide balance on your Glassdoor profile by completing the company information, uploading a logo and sharing company updates.
Unfortunately, one disgruntled employee leaving a 1-star review can quickly torpedo a title agency’s online reputation from the standpoint of prospective employees, especially if the business owner has not taken the time to claim or complete his Glassdoor profile. Claiming your profile is a free and easy way to monitor your business’s reputation so you can attract top talent to your organization.
With over 500 million members, LinkedIn is the largest social network for professionals. Prospective employers researching a company on LinkedIn are able to see if any of their connections are connected to a business, which allows for more personal insights into what it’s like to work for a company.
While LinkedIn does not currently support a user-review feature like Glassdoor, it does provide great information in terms of visitor demographics, including industry-type, location by region, company size and seniority. Knowing this information can help you tailor your online reputation to appeal to the exact type of candidates you’re hoping to reach.
Both Glassdoor and LinkedIn allow site users to “follow” your title business, a good indicator that these folks may be interested in working in the title insurance business. Both also provide data on how users engage with the updates your title agency shares on the platforms, allowing you to refine your communication with prospective employees over time.