10 Ways to Generate Leads and Build Influence on LinkedIn

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5. Post relevant content on groups (if that’s their approach) and answer targeted questions.

First figure out the rules of the group. If they allow content sharing, start building your credibility in the group by sharing relevant content that fits the interests of the group. This includes relevant blog posts, links to articles you have written, articles that quote you, and event notices for webinars. Be sure to stay sensitive to the dynamics of your group — don’t ever try to dominate the conversation. Your materials should be a helpful resource, not a sales pitch for you.

8. Search with Advanced Filters and use messaging aka InMail.

One of the best features of having a LinkedIn Premium or Sales Navigator account is being able to use Advanced Filters in search. Not only can you search by company and relationship, but Premium advanced search on LinkedIn allows you to search by function, location, seniority level, and company size, as well. Pair that with Messages (aka InMail), and now you can contact prospects directly without a referral.

When I write personal relevant emails using InMail with research I get via LinkedIn, I almost always get a response.

9. Create your own LinkedIn group

Starting your own group gives you control over its content and reach. You can choose to open the group only to people you know or (if appropriate, and if you have the time) you can open it up to a much larger audience. The goal is to engage your audience and leverage your thought leadership to make a difference with members of your group.

LinkedIn offers tips for consultants using the channel to build their business, demonstrate areas of expertise, and leverage their network. Check out the B2B Lead Gen Roundtable Group on LinkedIn. I started this group, and it’s all about sharing ideas that focus on the many aspects of B2B lead generation. The group has grown to 19,100 members, but I’m even more excited about what’s not happening. I’m learning a ton from members because we have rules about what can and can’t be posted, and it’s 100% discussion only. If you are going to do this, be ready for the time commitment this will need to be a successful group. I’ll be writing more on this later.

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The LinkedIn Profile Checklist Every Job Seeker Needs

Don Goodman

Job searching has taken a new direction. It’s not about going to the job boards, finding the job opening you like, and then applying to it. That method will only have you waiting by the phone for a call that’s likely not going to happen. Today’s job seekers need to take a more proactive and interactive approach called job networking – and LinkedIn is a resource to help you do it.

When you’ve created an effective LinkedIn profile, it’ll help you get in front of the right contacts (recruiters, hiring managers, professionals in the field, etc.) who can lead you to the path of the next job opportunity. However, in order for it all to happen you do need a LinkedIn profile that communicates and displays the right information. Take a run through the LinkedIn Profile checklist below:

1) Present a Headline that talks to your target audience.

The Headline is what shows up for your LinkedIn profile when it comes up in search results. It’s also what shows up when others look at you through their contacts’ Connections. By default, your LinkedIn profile Headlines reads your current job title and employer, but if you want to grab the attention of others it should say more than that.

4) Offer your value statement through the Summary section.

Like the resume, your LinkedIn Profile should have a Summary at the top that highlights what it is that you have to offer and how that translates to value for the potential employer. While pronouns like I, me and my are not advised on the resume, on your LinkedIn profile it needs to take on a more conversational tone, so they are okay.

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5 Tips for Creating Shareable LinkedIn Posts

By Amanda Walgrove

Publishing a post on LinkedIn is easy. Effectively putting money behind it can be hard.

According to the Content Marketing Institute’s report “2016 Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends—North America,” 94 percent of B2B marketers use LinkedIn to distribute content. But only 51 percent pay to promote their posts on social platforms. And of those who do, only 45 percent say those ads are effective.

Evidently, there’s a big disconnect. Almost every B2B brand is on LinkedIn, but they’re not so sure how to make the most of LinkedIn’s paid options, which are rich with opportunities to hyper-target B2B audiences.

Just like regular LinkedIn updates, LinkedIn Sponsored Updates are posts published by your account. These posts can include links, images, videos, or just text. The difference is you can put money behind your Sponsored Updates to target a specific audience outside of the people who follow your company page.

To help marketers make the most of their Sponsored Updates, LinkedIn studied the top-performing sponsored content of 2016 so far. These sponsored posts targeted an audience in Europe, the Middle East, or Africa; garnered at least 25,000 impressions; and were ranked by engagement rate (clicks + social actions).

Here’s what marketers can take away.

1. Directly address the reader

The most shareable posts use language that directly addresses the reader. Some of the easiest ways to do this are to ask questions to your audience and use the second-person point of view. For instance, this sponsored post by ProOpinion, an online community of business professionals, does both, inviting the reader to click on the link and even answer the question in the comments.

The company could’ve asked, “What warning signs indicate an employee is thinking of leaving?” Instead, it posed a more personalized question: “In your opinion, what other warning signs have you noticed that indicate an employee is thinking of leaving?”

Additionally, don’t be afraid to use industry-specific language, especially for B2B audiences. As LinkedIn’s report notes, address your audience like a friend or business partner. Would you use certain terms or colloquialisms? If you’re unsure how to personalize your posts, you can always experiment with different types of questions and language and optimize based on how readers respond.

5. Repurpose content

Understandably, you may only want to promote posts that link back to your brand site. But remember: Anything that helps your customer can, in turn, help your brand. Even if it comes from a different source.

According to a study by SAVO Group, 74 percent of B2B buyers chose a company that provided useful information and helped them during the purchasing process. So if you found a new report from another publication that might be helpful to your followers, find a way to share it. If you saw a cool video that speaks to your audience’s interests, sponsor an update about it, and maybe even link to a relevant blog post from your company.

No matter where the content comes from, if it educates or entertains your audience, they’ll be thankful for it.

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10 Ways to Strategically Grow Your LinkedIn Connections

2. Use the Who’s Viewed My Profile feature to connect with relevant professionals.

On the lower right of your banner, you will see the “Who’s Viewed Your Profile” tab on LinkedIn.

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Clicking this tab will lead you to a more detailed chart showing your exact number of profile views for the last 90 days .

Who_s_viewed_your_profile___LinkedIn

On the lower left area, you can find the “Viewers” section where you can see the list of users who visited your profile. You can click the tiny dropdown arrow on the right side to show only either “Members with full names”, “Semi-private members”, or both, in the selection.

Who_s_viewed_your_profile___LinkedIn_filter

Note that not all users who viewed your profile can be identified as some may have chosen to activate their privacy settings.

View those people who visited your profile and see how relevant they are to your industry or your profession. If it’s a hit, connect.

If you are an accountant and most of your profile views are coming from recruiters, high-ranking decision makers, or other professionals from the financial services industry, then you are optimizing your LinkedIn profile correctly. If your viewer results are disparate, then you need some more optimization to do.

5. Use LinkedIn’s search tools.

It’s not enough to wait for people to visit your profile; you should also actively take part in searching for professionals to connect with. In this case, you can use 3 techniques: LinkedIn’s basic search, advanced search, and boolean search.

Refine basic search by using name, company, job, etc. filters.

Basic search is simple. You just go to the basic search tab and input your search keywords. For example “Senior Sales Manager”. LinkedIn will then show a dropdown listing “Jobs for Senior Sales Manager titles”, “People with Senior Sales Manager titles”, and “Groups about Senior Sales Manager”.

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You can narrow the search further by clicking the filter for Jobs, Companies, People, Groups, Universities, Posts and Inbox.

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Clicking on any filter will list relevant results containing your keyword. Clicking the People filter, for example, will list all the user profiles containing your keyword.

Make use of LinkedIn advanced search.

Advanced search lets you add more specifications such as years of experience, function, seniority level, and school or past company.

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Let’s say you are looking for a seasoned sales manager with at least 6 years of experience. This person must have graduated from a certain Ivy League school and has worked for a company like IBM or HP. You can enter exactly those values into LinkedIn’s advanced search tool and LinkedIn will produce a more refined list.

Boolean search saves time.

Here is a pdf file containing Boolean search tips for LinkedIn.

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Image source: talent.linkedin.com

Using boolean search techniques lets you save time in that you can narrow your search down by entering search strings and modifiers straight to the LinkedIn search tab.

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10 Ways You Didn’t Know LinkedIn Could Find You a Job

by James A. Martin

Most job seekers know it’s important to add a recent, professional-looking photo to their LinkedIn profile. But did you know that not posting a photo may prevent recruiters from finding your LinkedIn profile in a job search?

LinkedIn is unquestionably the social network for job-seeking professionals—or even if you’re not looking right now. Ninety-two percent of recruiters use social media in their work today, and LinkedIn is the social network they use most, according to Jobvite.

And yet, many job seekers don’t maximize LinkedIn to help them find jobs. Instead, they copy and paste their resume and hope the right employer finds them. Compounding the problem: Some professionals in their mid 40s and up may not be as social-media savvy as younger colleagues and don’t know how to leverage LinkedIn, says Sue Gresham, a Milwaukee-based LinkedIn consultant.

Here are 10 LinkedIn strategies, tools and tips you might not have known about, each of which can put you one step closer to a new job—or new career.

2. Focus on where you’re going versus where you’ve been.

Professionals at mid-career are often looking to reinvent themselves after years of working in a specific type of job or industry, Gresham says. But too often, their LinkedIn profiles only reflect where they’ve been. Instead, focus your profile on where you want to go.

Find your ideal jobs, then build your profile around that, Gresham advises. For example, while it’s tempting to list tons of skills from all your years of experience, keep your focus on what’s relevant to the job you’re seeking. And by all means, remove skills you no longer want to use in a job. Gresham says she once listed Facebook consultant among her skills on LinkedIn but deleted it when she decided she no longer wanted to do Facebook consulting.

3. Keep it fresh.

A LinkedIn profile should be a “living, breathing document” that clearly represents what makes you “unique and worth hiring,” Gresham says, not a static set-and-forget online resume. One way to keep your profile alive: regularly share updates on topics related to your field, just as you share updates on Facebook.

Posting long-form content, such as LinkedIn blog posts, is “another great way to catch a recruiter’s eye,” says LinkedIn’s Career Expert Catherine Fisher. You can “share thought leadership advice, insights on the day’s top stories or industry trends to reinforce your experience,” which helps position you as an expert in your chosen field.

7. Think of LinkedIn as a search engine.

LinkedIn is as much a search engine as Google, one focused on finding professionals, recruiters, companies and jobs, says Lori Bumgarner, a career and passion coach. Use it to search for recruiters in your industry. Example: If you’re in advertising, you might do a search on advertising recruiters.

On the flip side: Recruiters search for candidates using keywords, so it’s important to build out your Skills & Endorsements section with relevant keywords for which you want to be found.

“Most people think this section of their profile doesn’t matter,” says Donna Svei, a retained search consultant and executive resume writer. But hiring managers and recruiters use LinkedIn Recruiter, a premium plan designed for recruiters, to search for possible job candidates. And LinkedIn users who “build out their Skills & Endorsements section with the keywords that internal and external recruiters use to find people like them are much more likely to be featured in recruiters’ search results,” Svei explains. “That increases relevant profile views and the chance you’ll get the nod for a first interview.”

Bumgarner suggests putting a short keyword phrase in your profile’s name field too. Though unconventional, this tactic can help recruiters immediately understand what you do and will help your profile rank higher for that phrase in keyword searches. You can see how Bumgarner incorporated keywords in her name in her LinkedIn profile.

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5 Free Ways to Build Your Personal Brand on LinkedIn

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Do you want to build your visibility on LinkedIn?

Wondering which LinkedIn features can help?

LinkedIn can help you build a professional presence that showcases your work to the people you most want to connect with.

In this article, you’ll discover five free ways to help you build a personal brand on LinkedIn.

#1: Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile

Your profile is the key component of your experience on LinkedIn. A complete profile shows you’re actively participating in the LinkedIn ecosystem.

Did you know that you can make your profile seven times more likely to be found in searches by adding a profile photo? Or that you can make your profile twelve times more likely to be found by showing your two most recent employment positions?

The following tips will make a difference and help your LinkedIn profile pop:

To start, add a professional profile picture. Your picture is your virtual handshake, so pick a friendly profile picture that aligns with your role.

linkedin profile photo example

Use a photo that’s friendly, professional, and approachable.

Choose a square profile picture, recommended at 400 x 400 pixels, and stay under 10 MB in file size. If either width or height exceeds 20,000 pixels, your photo will not upload.

Next, create a distinctive LinkedIn profile headline. By default, the headline is your current employment position; however, you can customize it to demonstrate your expertise or vision for your role. Think of your headline as your brand’s tagline. It’s the first description many people will see, so make it count!

linkedin profile headline example

Make your headline count.

Headlines should call upon the words and phrases your friends and colleagues use to uniquely describe you. For example, “trusted Mac expert” or “experienced admin assistant who never misses a deadline.”

In addition, use your LinkedIn background to communicate more about who you are and what you do. Think about blank billboards along the highway. Those are missed opportunities. The same could be said for your LinkedIn background photo (the photo that displays above your name and headline).

Many LinkedIn members use stock photos, nature snapshots, or city skylines for the background image. However, you can use that space to do much more than show off your hometown.

linkedin background image example

Robert Rose puts content front and center in his background image, showcasing highlights from his content library.

Use the background space for content stream promotions, miniature portfolios, credibility-building, publications, photos of you influencing others, and more. Identify your personal brand by using a photo to express an interest secondary to your résumé, but which points to your personal life or work ethic.

Next, customize your LinkedIn URL and share it everywhere. For personal branding, attach everything on the web to your full name, and climb as high as you can in the search rankings.

LinkedIn’s vanity URLs can help you do just that. As a major website, LinkedIn has a high Google PageRank. Using a URL like this, linkedin.com/in/yourfullname, means you’ll likely see your name rank pretty high, too.

linkedin profile custom url example

To climb in search rankings, customize your URL.

Tip: Add your personalized link to all other social streams, like your blog, email signature, online résumé, Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn SlideShare.

Finally, tell your story using the Summary and Experience sections. Your LinkedIn profile should be more than a quick copy-and-paste of your résumé. The Summary is where you can share a bit more about your vision for your role or company. You can also include personal anecdotes about activities you enjoy outside work.

linkedin profile summary example

Shama Hyder, CEO of the Marketing Zen Group, makes her profile come to life by featuring published content and a keyword-rich summary.

Your Experience section should include a tidy list of the key positions you’ve held, and briefly explain your roles. You can also detail your educational background. Uploading rich media (videos, images, and presentations) and content you’ve created or produced as part of a team is a great way to bring your description to life.

Tips: Use a keyword-rich approach that makes your profile easier to find. Take out overused words like motivated, passionate, responsible, creative, and driven. And add multimedia content to your profile from written posts on LinkedIn Publisher.

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