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Chiefstoryteller thinkbusiness 2009_07_linked_in

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With LinkedIn, you can expand your network both passively (e.g., through a compelling profile and ...

With LinkedIn, you can expand your network both passively (e.g., through a compelling profile and
receiving invitations) and actively (e.g., writing articles and sending invitations). The power lay within the network—how you find connections and how they find you. There are over 20 tweaks and little known ways of expanding your LinkedIn network. Here are three important ones.

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    Chiefstoryteller thinkbusiness 2009_07_linked_in Chiefstoryteller thinkbusiness 2009_07_linked_in Document Transcript

    • Helping busy business executives maintain their competitive edge. It’s Who Knows You Three Little Known Ways to Turn Linkedin into a More Valuable Sales Tool By Ira J. Koretsky July 2009 I f you are looking to expand your business, the question is not, “are you using LinkedIn?” Rather, the question is “are you using LinkedIn effectively?” To maximize the power of LinkedIn, you have to leverage “people bridges.” People bridges are the professionals in your network that introduce you to his or her respective network (second-degree relationships). Then you continue to expand your network with the professionals in the second-degree person’s relationship network (three degrees away). In the end, you are looking to make these second- and third-degree relationships your own first-degree relationships. It is just like the 1970s Fabergé shampoo commercial where the spokesperson says: “I told two friends about Fabergé organic shampoo and they told two friends, and they told two friends, and so on, and so on.” In this case, the shampoo is your profile. With LinkedIn, you can expand your network both passively (e.g., through a compelling profile and receiving invitations) and actively (e.g., writing articles and sending invitations). The power lay within the network—how you find connections and how they find you. There are over 20 tweaks and little known ways of expanding your LinkedIn network. Here are three important ones. Standout with a Compelling Headline The common attribute of the 41 million LinkedIn profiles is that the first thing you see is a person’s name. The irony is that to second-degree connections and beyond, your name in and of itself, offers little to no value. To the untrained eye, current job title and company name come next. In an informal study, I looked at 300 profiles and found that 97% of them listed something like CEO, CFO, Consultant, Director, Analyst, etc. Instead of looking like everyone else, grab the reader’s attention! Make a first impression that screams, “Read me now.” How? Use the Professional Headline field. The secret here is that LinkedIn populates it with job title and company name. As such, few people change it. Click then [Edit] beside your name. Find Professional “Headline.” A compelling headline is the foundation of business storytelling. Headlines make the complex simple while whetting the mental appetite of the reader. You have 120 characters or about 10 words. Try using your tagline or words from a successful advertising campaign. Examples include “Building Business Relationships,” “Online Brand ® Copyright © 2009. ThinkBusiness Magazine and The Chief Storyteller LLC. All Rights Reserved. 1 of 3
    • Helping busy business executives maintain their competitive edge. Coaches,” and “Speaker about Geeks, Geezers, and Googlization.” Recently, an email greeted me: “I got to your link through Person ABC and sure enough your tag line, Chief Storyteller, caught my attention. I work for XYZ on a superb project. I think we don’t always do a great job of getting our message out or placed. Would love to talk to you about your work and our situation.” We had coffee and today they are an active client. Connect to Your Content Take advantage of new eyeballs visiting your profile. View your profile as part information and part advertisement. Together, they should clearly demonstrate the benefits of your products and services. Greet visitors with a content-rich profile that brings you and your organization to life. Show him or her that you are a recognized expert with the great content you have written and presented. Several LinkedIn applications let you show off your expertise. Examples include Blog Link that shows your last three entries and Slideshare that shows presentations you select. Click in the top left. Now locate “Featured Applications on LinkedIn” on the right. Click “Learn more about LinkedIn applications” just below the applications box. Eight application descriptions and an overview video appear. Read the descriptions and see what works for your organization. Setup is easy. Instantly Expand with Groups Do you know how to increase your reach by a factor 10 to 100? Join groups! There are seven categories such as alumni, corporate, and professional. Join groups that your prospective partners, clients, and industry leaders join. You can also join personal and educational groups such as alumni associations, sailing, and photography. Since the members are mostly two degrees away, be deliberate in how you connect. Passively, write interesting articles with the expectation that people will contact you. Actively, initiate discussions or send invitations. With your invitation, it is especially important to personalize your request and explain how connecting benefits the person. Not sure what groups to join? Look at the profiles of everyone in your network and review their group list. Or search the database with keywords to locate groups right for you. Find the link on the top left directly below . The Magic is in Turning Second-Degree Connections into First- Degree Relationships Just like live networking, online networking takes patience and perseverance. To expand your LinkedIn network, online networking must be an active part of your schedule. Passively, you are offering content with engaging blog entries, educational presentations, and a compelling profile. Actively, you are requesting introductions, .adding professionals to your network, and elevating your status as an expert in your field by answering questions and submitting articles. Is your LinkedIn network expanding? Are existing connections introducing you to people bridges, prospective partners, clients, opinion leaders, staff, and consultants? Used well, LinkedIn will become a valuable tool in your sales and marketing toolbox. Ira Koretsky is the president of The Chief Storyteller®, a firm that turns your business stories and messages into results, with keynotes, workshops, and consulting. He can be reached at: tbmag@thechiefstoryteller.com ® Copyright © 2009. ThinkBusiness Magazine and The Chief Storyteller LLC. All Rights Reserved. 2 of 3
    • Helping busy business executives maintain their competitive edge. Not for resale, give-away, display, or duplication. Not to be published in whole or part without prior written permission from ThinkBusiness Magazine™ or The Chief Storyteller®, LLC. Contact ThinkBusiness Magazine™ at: info@thinkbusinessmagazine.com Contact The Chief Storyteller® LLC. at: tbmag@thechiefstoryteller.com About ThinkBusiness Magazine™ The mission of thinkbusiness is to help busy business executives maintain their competitive edge through concise, easy-to-read business articles and management tips. Founded in 2005, thinkbusiness is a media company that provides highly customized business information to business decision makers. thinkbusiness is the publisher of thinkbusiness magazine, a monthly digital, interactive magazine. The Company also publishes weekly custom newsletters on sales, marketing, finance and management and operates the thinkbusinessmagazine.com Web site. Visit www.thinkbusinessmagazine.com for monthly articles on sales, marketing, human resources, management, money, planning, technology, and biz trends. To subscribe for your own free monthly subscription, please visit http://www.thinkbusinessmagazine.com/ About The Chief Storyteller® We turn your business stories into results. Business stories are messages you share verbally, in print, and online. Your answer to “What Do You Do?” (Elevator Speech), presentations, brochures, proposals, position papers, website, and everything in between are all examples. We develop and implement high impact business storytelling and strategic messaging programs. These programs help you achieve the revenue/outreach/development results you want. Charles Schwab, CDC, and the American Diabetes Association have trusted us to help tell their stories. Visit www.TheChiefStoryteller.com for articles, blogs, and tip guides on marketing, business storytelling, communications, and messaging; relationship building and networking; sales, development, and outreach; presentations; human behavior; and a variety of other topics.. ® Copyright © 2009. ThinkBusiness Magazine and The Chief Storyteller LLC. All Rights Reserved. 3 of 3