LinkedIn is among the most effective resources for networking available to sales consulting professionals and sales teams. Here are tips for leveraging the power of this popular social media site to make online connections and to promote your own skills and talents.
Refine your profile. Since this is the first place prospects go to check you out, shouldn’t your profile page be as stellar as you can make it? Completed (100 percent full) profiles generate the most page views, so be sure to include:
- A professional photograph
- Relevant, keyword-optimized copy about your background and skills, i.e., (“Top performer with sales recruiting company”, “Sales consultant with focus on lead generation”)
- A range of enthusiastic LinkedIn endorsements
- Uploaded PDFs, videos, SlideShare presentations and other examples of your work
- Recent articles about your company and industry
Aim your content at the audience you seek to attract. (You can’t be all things to all people.) Also, look at LinkedIn profile pages of others in your network, or those you’d like to invite to your network. There are plenty of outstanding examples you can emulate on your own page.
Update your status — continuously. People naturally want to know what you’re up to. Get in the habit of regularly updating your status, at least once or twice a week), with news that reinforces the appeal of your personal brand. Talk about presentations you’ve given, compelling sales books you’ve read, industry events you’ve attended, etc.
As long as your updates relate to your skills and career — as opposed to a blatant sales pitch (avoid at all costs!) — connections will respond favorably to these notifications.
Ask for endorsements. Don’t be shy about soliciting testimonials for LinkedIn endorsements, since they are frequently read by prospective clients. Approach satisfied clients, as well as others whom you may have assisted in some sales-related venture. Be sure to specify the types of skills you’d like highlighted in their testimonials.
Get active in LinkedIn groups. Here’s where you should spend much of your “quality” LinkedIn time. Some experts suggest joining at least 10 LinkedIn groups, where you can regularly comment on topics under discussion, initiate a topic to discuss yourself, and in general strive to be active with groups three to four times a week.
This is how you steadily build credibility with others in the LinkedIn community, especially key influencers (you’ll know who they are either by reputation or because of their extensive following). Carefully select and share content of genuine value, so that readers grasp your awareness of their pain points, and may turn to you when it’s time to purchase your product or service.
Through LinkedIn, there are exciting ways to sell yourself and to find new ways to enhance the “sales ecosystem” for your organization.