Today’s post is written by Charles Dearing. Charles is a blogger and contributor to various marketing and business blogs around the world. Today he is focusing on how you can manage and develop a team from people coming from different cultures.

Are you generating leads from LinkedIn for your business? Targeting leads via social media is perhaps one of the most frustrating aspects of Internet marketing; however, the rapid rise of LinkedIn is quickly changing the game.

Generating Leads from LinkedIn

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LinkedIn represents one of the fastest-growing social platforms, but what separates LinkedIn from other social networks such as Facebook and Twitter?

  • 45% of LinkedIn’s user base is made up of professionals in administrative positions
  • LinkedIn is more focused on B2B communications versus B2C relationships, making it the ideal platform for marketers looking to expand their reach
  • Boasting over 450 million members, LinkedIn provides marketers the opportunity to target professions in incredibly specific niches and industries

Marketing with LinkedIn versus other social platforms is comparing apple and oranges; therefore, you’re going to need a solid strategy in place to grab the attention of professionals. Consider the following three-pronged approach to finding laser-targeted leads quickly and efficiently.

Hone Your Search

With such a massive user-base, searching for leads via LinkedIn can seem overwhelming at first; however, the platform’s robust search functions cut down on a lot of our legwork and research.

Regardless of industry, you can find potential leads through the following channels on LinkedIn:

  • Search keywords related to your niche using LinkedIn’s Advanced Search to discover users with skills and job titles related to your business (remember, the most targeted your keywords, the more specialized users you can find).
  • Filter your searches by location to target geo-specific leads
  • Take a look at the discussions within LinkedIn Groups related to your niche to find potential influencers in your space

Whether you’re looking to get in front of VPs and CEOs or simply want to raise awareness for your brand, you’re going to need to know your targets inside and out. While there’s a lot you can learn about your potential leads at a glance, you’re also going to need the perfect pitch to seal the deal and make new connections.

Perfect Your Pitch

Perhaps the most common mistake that marketers make on LinkedIn is treating it like every other social network. That is, they add everyone in sight, blast their pitches blindly and hope that something sticks.

LinkedIn and its user-base are incredibly sensitive to spam; likewise, networking represents one of the platform’s primary purposes. Therefore, it’s important to have strong networking skills to make your presence known on LinkedIn.

In order to make the best first impression possible, make sure that you personalize your connection invitations rather than using LinkedIn’s generic message. Think of this as cold-calling: give your prospects reason to remember you (such mentioning them by name) and explain why you’re reaching out. The more connections you make with influencers through Internet marketing; the more potential leads will flock to you.

Curate Your Content

After making connections, both big and small, you have to ultimately seal the deal by solidifying yourself as a resource. Thankfully, LinkedIn’s publishing feature is gaining steam and represents a great way to get more mileage out of your existing content marketing efforts. By publishing on LinkedIn, you contribute to the conversation of your niche and funnel new visitors to your site in the process.

Whether writing new posts through LinkedIn Pulse or repurposing your old content, keep the following best practices in mind:

  • LinkedIn users prefer long-form content, so consider relying on educational pieces of more than 2,000 words
  • Include plenty of images and screenshots, at least one image per every 400 words or so
  • Content should be broken up by headers and bullet points, making it easier to read for LinkedIn’s massive mobile user-base

Content marketing through LinkedIn is arguably one of the most underutilized aspects of marketing today with a potentially massive ROI, especially if you’ve already got plenty of content on deck. Publishing to LinkedIn not only expands your business’ reach, but also builds up your brand’s expert appeal.

Sooner rather than later, LinkedIn will become a staple of just about any business’ marketing strategy. By knowing how to build your presence on LinkedIn to generate leads, you’ll be a step ahead of the game.

Question: What do you say? How do you use LinkedIn? Please share your thoughts, you ideas, and how-tos to the comment section!