How To Use LinkedIn For Small Business
How To Use LinkedIn For Small Business
WHY LINKEDIN FOR SMALL BUSINESS?
- 107 million users are in the USA alone
- 2 new users join every second
- 41% of millionaires use LinkedIn
What the above stats tell us is that LinkedIn, if used properly, can be a goldmine for finding high value, high spending customers. But you have to do it the right way. This blog post will help you get started.
WHAT IS LINKEDIN?
LinkedIn is a social network for professionals. The objectives of LinkedIn are to help professionals showcase their experience, form professional online connections, find employment, get recommendations, and showcase expertise. Most small business owners are self employed, and that means they don’t need to use LinkedIn for their own professional development and therefore they are not familiar with it.
However, LinkedIn is a great way to generate high quality leads for your products and services. This guide will show you how.
- LinkedIn started in 2003
- 42 million unique mobile visitors per month
- 1 in 3 professionals on the planet are on LinkedIn
- The average number of connections in 930
- 39 million students and new grads on LinkedIn
- 42% of users update their profi le regularly
- 35% of users access the site daily
WHY DO SMALL BUSINESSES NOT USE LINKEDIN?
LinkedIn is a social network for professionals. The objectives of LinkedIn are to help professionals showcase their experience, form professional online connections, find employment, get recommendations, and showcase expertise.
Most small business owners are self employed, and that means they don’t need to use LinkedIn for their own professional development and therefore they are not familiar with it.
STEP #1 : JOIN LINKEDIN
Head over to LinkedIn and create profile.
STEP #2: GET A PROFESSIONAL HEADSHOT
Invest in a professional headshot. People want to visualize who they are dealing with.
Tips for a great Linkedin Profile headshot:
- Do not use a passport picture.
- Use a high resolution image.
- The image should be close enough to show your face, but far enough to show a bit of background.
- Dress professionally.
STEP #3: WRITE A COMPELLING HEADLINE
The first thing a prospect will see in your profile is your headline and image. Now that you have created an amazing, professional image in Step #2, its time to pay attention to your headline.
Here are 4 great tips for your LinkedIn Profile
- Add your value proposition
- Use Simple Language
- Don’t Brag
- Use industry keywords
The below are great examples of LinkedIn headlines for small business owners:
Bringing The World Of Music To Children
Painting Beautiful Home
Helping Businesses With Book Keeping
Creating beautiful retreats and backyards
Wakeup everyday to a snow free driveway
Helping travelers discover the world
STEP #4: WRITE A GOOD SUMMARY
Your summary is the next thing that your profile visitors will see. Again, this is a great place to showcase your products, services, experience, mission, and also use keywords to be found by prospects.
As a small business owner on LinkedIn you are primarily using the service to generate high quality leads.
Your summary section should be written in your own style, but should contain the following elements:
What makes you and your business different from everyone else (your unique selling proposition).
- Your products and services.
- Links to your website.
- Geographic areas you serve.
- Who your typical customers are.
Close your summary with a single sentence. If you had to tell people who you are, and why they should do business with you in a single sentence, that would be it.
STEP #5: CREATE A COMPANY PAGE
This step is optional, but can be very helpful. You need a registered domain, with a branded email
address to perform this step (for example, Bestwebsitestore.com)
Having a company page on LinkedIn allows you to officially register your business with LinkedIn, have your logo uploaded and use your logo in your profile.
Also a company page allows you to talk about your business rather than just yourself. It also allows you to add your team members as employees.
STEP #6: PUT IN YOUR WORK EXPERIENCE
Since you are a small business owner your position should be something like:
Owner at XYZ Painting Company
Music Teacher at ABC Music Business
If you were able to create a company page, you will be able to upload a unique company logo which will appear in your work experience.
A compelling work experience summary should include the following:
- A 2-3 overview sentence of your role and business.
- Quantify what you have done
STEP #7: CONNECT WITH PEOPLE YOU KNOW
You know a lot of people. Many of them will be on LinkedIn. Start reaching out and connecting with as many people as you can. The larger your network, the more people you will be able to connect with.
STEP #8: CONNECT WITH EXISTING AND PREVIOUS CUSTOMERS
Use the search features of LinkedIn to find your existing customers and reach out to connect with them. Remember to attach a short message to remind the customer of who you are. The following script works like magic:
I am not sure if you remember me, but I (insert your service such as painted your house, taugh your kids music, etc). I recently joined LinkedIn, and with your permission, would love to connect with you.
Sincerely, (your name).
STEP #9: ASK FOR RECOMMENDATIONS
One of the most important features of LinkedIn for small business is the ability to get recommendations and endorsements from your clients.
Once you receive recommendations from your clients, they will look something like this:
WHY DOES THIS WORK?
When someone recommends you on LinkedIn, their connections are able to see those recommendation. The way that LinkedIn works is very different from other social networks. It highly depends on the concept of networks:
- First Network: People who are a direct connection.
- Second Network: People who are direct connections of your connections, but not directly connected to you.
- Third Network: Everyone else.
The Goal here is to generate leads from your Second Network. Your second level network (connections/friends/colleagues of your first level network) will be able to see your profile, and recommendations.
When they see that someone they know has recommended your work, they will count that as a highly verified, and credible endorsement of your business and work.
This is the Key To Getting more Customers on LinkedIn for Small Business.
STEP #1O: CONNECT WITH PROSPECTS
You can connect with two types of prospects on LinkedIn.
The first type, are those people who view your profile. One of the best features of LinkedIn is that it lets you know exactly who has viewed your profile. When people see that others have recommended you, they will naturally be curious and checkout your profile.
That is a good opening for you to reach out to them and connect directly with them.
The second type, are those people who are colleagues and friends of your clients. Reach out politely to them, and in most instances they will be more than happy to connect with you. use the below script which works really well:
We don’t know each other directly, but with your permission I would like to connect on LinkedIn. I am new to the LinkedIn, and would like to expand my network. Sincerely, (your name).
Once you connect with them you will be able to share updates, and news about your company and business with them.
Using LinkedIn for small business growth is a smart, powerful, free and relatively simple way to generate very high quality leads, and to help spread the word of mouth about your business, products, and services.
This guide gives small business owners a clear recipe to generate these high quality leads on LinkedIn.
Although, LinkedIn offers other interesting features such as paid advertising, company pages, and showcase pages that can be effectively used to find customers and expand your business. However, these features are outside the scope of this guide. We will do our best to write other blog posts about how to make use of these features.