Start Generating Business Leads with LinkedIn
Step 1: Create Your Profile
If you’re reading this post, you already know at least a little about social media and are ready to take it to the next level. You want to increase your online presence, show off your impressive knowledge and generate more leads for your business. Social media tools such as LinkedIn can help you build a community and share content that will strengthen your brand, build loyalty and enhance your position as a thought leader as well as impact your company’s long term growth, stability and success.
It is a platform for engaging and sharing, not selling. So as you’re building your online marketing strategy, think beyond prospects and design a plan to reach and influence all audiences related to your business. By promoting and connecting your partners, clients, vendors and peers in an authentic way, you will advance your own capabilities and expertise. The future of marketing is about listening, learning, building relationships and bringing value to the communities relevant to your organization.
Let’s Get Started
Today’s consumers are very skeptical, and LinkedIn can help build a credible reputation for your personal brand as well as your company. People feel a closer connection to products or services when they know and like the people behind the brands. Here are some simple steps to get out there, build genuine relationships and let your passion and expertise shine through:
1. Set up your profile. If you don’t already have a LinkedIn profile, now is the time to create one. It is free and easy to do. Go to www.linkedin.com and click “join now.” Follow the online steps to create an account.
2. Complete your profile. Add your work experience, the schools you attended, etc. A photo helps make sure someone searching for you finds you and not someone else with your name, and it personalizes your profile. Your goal should be 100% profile completion. The more information you give, the more trustworthy and transparent you seem to your audience.
3. Ask for and give recommendations. Don’t be shy. Ask your past employers, current partners and people in your community. Give when you take, and recommend those who recommend you. These recommendations add to your creditability.
4. Promote your company. Make sure to publish your current company as well as all past experiences. The full text summary section is indexed by Google, so make sure to include targeted keywords. LinkedIn allows you to list up to three websites, so include your blog and other social media accounts.
5. Use custom anchor text in links. Unlike some social media sites, these links pass along SEO credit. Search engines look at the text used to describe the links to help the engine (and viewer) understand more about the content of the pages they link to. Use one of your keyword phrases in the text that links to your website. Example: at Grasshopper, we want to rank well for the keywords “marketing strategy company” so we can use “Marketing Strategy Company” instead of just “my company website.”
6. Customize your profile URL. You can easily create a personalized LinkedIn URL in your name. This makes it easier for people to remember and it looks cleaner and more professional. Additionally, this will help ensure it appears in online searches for your name.
- Go to Profile > Edit Profile.
- Click “edit” next to your Public Profile.
- Click “Customize your public profile URL”
- Add your first and last name to the box and click “Set Custom URL” (see below)
- Now your LinkedIn URL is: www.linkedin.com/in/yourname