How to use LinkedIn for business development

Semiu Salami
Semiu Salami

One of the most untapped social networks is LinkedIn. It’s not as sexy as Facebook, Twitter, or Google+. It’s not as fun as YouTube, Instagram, or Pinterest. But it’s wildly effective, when it comes to business development.

Whenever someone wants to hear about social media, they automatically think about Twitter and Facebook, but the fact remains that it’s pretty difficult to generate leads from the social media darlings. LinkedIn, though, provides a business reason to connect with people.
Following are five tips to do exactly that.
Link to your Web properties using keywords
 The default words LinkedIn uses in your profile are “your website” and “your blog.” Those can be edited to fit the words people actually search.
Activate the apps
 If you don’t have a blog, don’t panic! There are several applications you can activate to move content to your LinkedIn profile. You can add presentations, polls, your Twitter account, your reading list, events, your travel, and more. Just like anything else, the more active your profile is, the higher it ranks when someone searches on LinkedIn.
Find connections through search
 Are you a member of a national or international organisation? By doing an advanced search and entering keywords for those organisations or associations, you can find members around the world. Having something in common already gives you a reason to invite them to connect…and potentially do business together.
 Browse your connections’s connections
 This is so easy and completely underused. It’s the same philosophy of saying, “Gini, I’d really like to meet your friend Simon Says. Can you introduce me?” You can give me a reason to connect you with Simon Says and then I send a quick email introducing you. The rest, as they say, is history.
  Set up searches for specific questions
 And then answer them. You can search for questions about your industry, your product, your service, or even your competitors. You can also set up an alert so that, any time anyone asks a question about your topic of expertise, it comes to you. This allows you to stay top-of-mind and build credibility around your expertise.
By following these five easy steps (take just one a week if it’s too overwhelming), you’ll grow your pipeline in just more than a month and money will begin to grow on trees.
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