KRISTY OPENING SUMMARY of what we are going to cover and why (MNCREW connections). ASK RACHEL if she wants to do fun opening questions they did at SMPS. Today we’re going to talk about how to network using social media. We’re going to discuss two of the most popular ways to network using social media – LinkedIn and Facebook. Part of the reason we decided to host this event here for MNCREW is because we believe that there is real value in connecting to our fellow MNCREW members. We see social media as another way we can get to know each other better – and turn to each other FIRST when it comes to our business choices.
KRISTY Before we begin let me tell you a little bit about who we are and why we’re here. We work for ING some of you may know us, some may not. The important thing to know is that we are a marketing, communications and training firm that specializes in professional service firms such as law, real estate, accounting, architect and engineering. Which means we get the privilege of working with people like you every day….people that have to sell themselves and their services – not products!
KRISTY As for me, I am a growth consultant at ING. In that role I am in charge of developing relationships, networking, and pursuing growth opportunities for the firm. When this social networking trend hit I was all over it. Mainly because I’m a social butterfly. I like social networking because I’m a woo and a communicator (define Woo & Communicator. WOO – I enjoy the challenge of meeting new people and COMMUNICATOR – I like to explain, describe things and speak publicly). So to me, social networking is a great way for me to hone both strengths. While my main job at Ingenuity is to create, foster and develop new relationships – I still hate cold-calling as much as the next person! So to me, I see Linkedin and Facebook as a great way to help “warm up” my contacts. I like to find common ground with people before I talk to them so I can mention those items during our conversation. It puts people at ease! I also find these social networks as another way to stay in front of my contacts without having to contact them each individually all the time. So – it’s another “tool in my networking” or business development” toolbox. I have some great examples of how I’ve used social media to develop business later in the presentation.
KRISY: Rachel is totally different from me – and so is her use of social media. Two of Rachel’s strengths are Input which means she is very inquisitive - and Strategic which means she can sort through clutter and find the clear way out… so she has been the ideal person at Ingenuity to help make some sense of the more technical side of social media.
RACHEL Reference Web 2.0 Social media: Any media you can use to interact with people
KRISTY Besides the fact that social media not going away any time soon, there are three main reasons you – as real estate professionals– want to embrace social networking. 1 – Brand awareness & credibility 2 – Networking 3 - Business Development opportunities By simply having a profile and connecting to others you will increase your brand awareness . So make sure your profile is complete and contains appropriate key words so people can find you. Don’t just create a profile and add connections. Interact with it. For instance, LinkedIn has a way to pose questions and answer questions. You can also recommend people and they can recommend you. Any time you do any of these, LinkedIn posts updates online or in weekly updates to everyone in your network. Social networking is an easy opportunity to get key messages out and humanize your profession – which leads to more credibility. This allows you to communicate your brand in a way that focused on communication that is transparent, inclusive, authentic and vibrant. Networking – is the core of social media… and is easy to do once you get the hang of it. But the main point about this is the you actually HAVE TO DO IT! When I first started on Linkedin early last year, I was a bit overwhelmed by the amount of contacts I had to input into LinkedIn. EXPLAIN HOW IT DID 5 A WEEK AT FIRST. Business Development – There are lots of ways social media can help you develop business. 1) Intelligence on prospects: Can research the background and career experience of prospects. Know interests before you go in to meeting. Find common ground. Helps build rapport, trust, camaraderie faster. EXAMPLE: Dawn found common ground with a big prospect this week in our meetings in Madison (Wegner & CPA America). Also – a prospect I was attempting to set a meeting with has on her profile that she breeds and shows Cocker Spaniels. 2) Accelerate sales cycle: Find out job descriptions, what role they have – especially as it relates to the decision making process. If there is a company you want to get in to, you can search the company name and see what pops up in your network. It might not be the decision maker, but you can ask your contact who may be the decision maker and they may even be able to make an introduction. 3) Lead generation – In LinkedIn you can search your network (your connections’ connections) by title and company If there is a certain person or type of company you want to target, search in your profiles – and you automatically get a “warm” list v. a cold list. 4) Keep in touch: As we all know, it’s more beneficial to keep an existing client happy and keep them than it is to get a new one. Social networking helps you keep those people happy by keeping in touch with them. Social networks remind you who you know and provide a way of keeping in touch with them. It will create opportunity and most importantly keep you and your firm top of mind over competitors.
KRISY LinkedIn is the world’s largest professional network with over 40 million members and growing rapidly. LinkedIn connects you to your trusted contacts and helps you exchange knowledge, ideas, and opportunities with a broader network of professionals. LinkedIn gives you the keys to controlling your online identity. Have you Googled yourself lately? You never know what may come up. LinkedIn profiles rise to the top of search results, letting you control the first impression people get when searching for you online. Your searchable network is your connections, plus two further levels of people who link to your connections. Ex: I have 236 contacts, but my network is 6 million people. LinkedIn there is a specific search page where you can type in anything – by keyword, etc. You can search LinKedin by PEOPLE, JOBS, COMPANIES, ANSWERS AND GROUPS Give example of Kolb meeting in Milwaukee and common connection at Wipfli here in town. Also give example of wanting to get to know someone in Mansfield and searching linkedin and getting an introduction to a partner at that firm through one of my connections. Also talk about Gretchen Milbrath example. Get clear on how you create a firm profile and an individual profile.
KRISTY HOW DO YOU SET UP A PROFILE? LinkedIn is very structured sections. All sections relate to work experience….current and past positions. There is a summary area – great place for key messages and specialties you might have. Talk about key messages, how is should reflect your website messages. Use good keywords. Things you must have in LinkedIn Profile: Current and past work experience Education Professional photo Firm website(s) Association involvement Recommendations
KRISTY AS I MENTIONED EARLIER – I USE LINKEDIN THE MOST IN OUR FIRM and mainly for BD and networking purposes. I love to use it to gather intelligence on prospects, update my status to keep in front of my contacts, acceleration of the sales cycle by researching positions/responsibilities But one other way I want to expand on is lead generation through list development. Let me explain how this works. Again, you can search Linkedin for people, jobs, and companies Generates lists – what may have been cold leads, will now be warm leads because you’ll have a mutual connection. Last year I was hoping to connect with business brokers around the cities so I did a search for “business brokers” on my LinkedIn and saw who out of my connections could introduce me to some business brokers. I also used LinkedIn when I was job searching by looking for jobs on it as well as making sure my connections and recommendations were good. It definitely helped me in the hiring process I look at my competitors all the time on LinkedIn. I like to see who they are connected to, how many connections, what type of recommendations they have and also what groups they are involved in on LinkedIn. From there I can determine what their strengths and weaknesses are – and specifically how I can further differentiate my firm from them when we’re up against each other. EXAMPLE: Me using it to target business brokers here in the twin cities. Kurt case study (Rachel knows this)
RACHEL Talk about making your profile more complete. Talk about key messages, how is should reflect your website messages. Use good keywords. Answers module: People will post questions – opportunity to answer questions related to services you offer … brand opportunity through credibility. Also good for visibility if you want to pose a question to get answers you need. Reference the question I posted for this presentation. Kim case study And LinkedIn is indexed on search engines!!
RACHEL Tell Kim’s case study.
Status updates started with Twitter and Facebook asking “what are you doing?” and have recently come to LinkedIn. Remember that you’re speaking to an audience. Design updates that would attract prospects and clients.
What is Facebook? Facebook is a social networking website that is operated and privately owned by Facebook, Inc. [1 . It was started originally by a Harvard Computer Science major along with some of his classmates to keep each other in touch. It later expanded further to include any university student, then high school students, and, finally, to anyone aged 13 and over. The website currently has more than 250 million active users worldwide.  A February 2009 Compete.com study has ranked Facebook as the most used social network by worldwide monthly active users, followed by MySpace .  The website is free to users and generates revenue from advertising including banner ads .  Users can create profiles including photos and lists of personal interests, exchange private or public messages, and join groups of friends.  Facebook has a number of fun features with which people can interact with each other. They include the Wall , a space on every user's profile page that allows friends to post messages for the user to and Status updates which allows users to inform their friends of their whereabouts and actions.  A user's Wall is visible to anyone who is able to see that user's profile, depending on privacy settings. The reason why all of this is so popular for business development purposes is because it helps humanize people. And unlike LinkedIn, you can connect directly to strangers.
KRISTY The less professional thing may be good for some people – facebook allows the profiles to have more of a personality. People will be able to really get a good read on the person, what their hobbies and interests are. People like to do work with people who are like them. If someone lists rock climbing as a hobby, you can click on “rock climbing” and it will tell you who else in your network likes rock climbing. This is a great way to do some research and get intelligence on prospects before meetings.
KRISTY Talk about how its good for first circle of clients. Keep up with colleagues and friends. Talk about birthdays, the wall and IM. It’s an easy way to do a quick touch. Know if something major happened – send a card. Liz’s example of clieint she couldn’t get in touch with…checked facebook and his mother had passed away so she able to send a card and also give him space to get back to her. Prospecting: State that the main BD benefit of Facebook is intelligence and rapport building. Instead of having to remember and take notes of individuals, check their Facebook before meeting and learn from them what they like. Let’s pretend I’m your biggest prospect and you’ve been trying to get in front of me but I just don’t ever take your call … based on our connection via Facebook you could send me a note that says you lived in Colorado too. If I sent you a good lead, you could thank me with a horse related item. If you come across interesting article on marketing or social media – send it to me! SANDY WILEY EXAMPLE: I’ll give you an example of how I used this recently. I met a great referral source recently at a conference in Colorado. I connected with her via FB and quickly noticed that she is the 1 st cousin of a singer that I really like. I shot her a quick privacy FB message to tell her – and a great discussion started! It was fun to follow-up our recent business connection with a great personal connection as well!
RACHEL Touch on apps and IM.
Some of the things you want to do in terms of policies around social media at your firm are Add value – create a profile that clearly and consistently reflects your firm’s key messages. Be professional with your profile. To me, nothing says that you don’t know how to socially network more than a half way completed or inaccurate profile. Be professional – DO NOT put anything other than a professional picture on your LinkedIn page. Also, DO NOT put anything on your FB page that you don’t want the world to see (give example of Kerri’s sister-in-law at Coors giving the presentation with Bikini on FB) Add links to your firm’s website and/or blogs. Keep your profile current. In this time of transition – keep your profiles current and enthusiastic. (give example of friend’s job searching and not having current info on profile or having bland, depressing info) What your opinions – and use a disclaimer if needed.
In conclusion – I’d like to invite you as members of MNCREW to connect with me – and also please join our MNCREW linked group! By doing so, it will give you a great opportunity to connect on-line with other MNCREW members and use each other to develop MORE BUSINESS – which is why we’re all here! Finally, I’d also like to request that you complete the evaluations that are on the tables in front of you. If you are interested in receiving our b-monthly sales and marketing newsletter, please check that on the evaluation and we’ll make sure you get on the list. Next issue of InGenius Review will have article on social networking. Thank you for your time – any questions?
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Face It and Link In The New Frontier of Prospecting