LinkedIn Do’s and Don’ts
If there is any social platform that business owners should be using, it’s LinkedIn. But why? Out of all the social media sites out there, why is LinkedIn the best one for businesses?
With over 300 million members, LinkedIn gives business owners the opportunity to connect with like-minded professionals and potential future customers. It’s a platform that is designed to be a professional network.
Proper utilization of LinkedIn involves many do’s and don’ts. Being signed up, having a profile, and connecting with anyone you think you’ll want to get to know isn’t always the right thing to do. Direct Capital wants to make sure you are getting everything you can out of this social platform and is here to help guide you along the way.
- Don’t connect with everyone: While LinkedIn is a great place to virtually meet new people and connect with industry leaders or potential customers, not everyone will want to make that connection. It’s nothing personal. Some people may feel as though their privacy was disrespected if they see a request from someone they’ve never met. Keep your invitations to those people you’ve personally interacted with or those who are connected with people you’ve met.
- Do enhance your profile: Don’t skimp on this portion. Your profile is the first thing your new connection, or a user with whom you hope to connect, will see. Make a good first impression. Show your skills, explain who you are, what you’re good at, and what your company does. Think of LinkedIn like your online resume. You want to be portrayed as an expert in your field and building up your profile is exactly the way to do it.
- Don’t be spammy: Be influential. Be a trusted advisor. Show your expertise. But do not sell. People – especially those you connect with on LinkedIn – will know when content or posts were designed specifically to sell them something. When you signed up for LinkedIn you may have had an end goal of more sales in mind, but you can’t let your audience see that. They’ll think of your content as spam and will instantly turn away from you and your company.
- Do utilize the groups feature: If you’ve never explored past the home page, you are missing some huge business opportunities. Joining and becoming an active member in industry-specific groups (like “Emerging Restaurant Franchise” or “Print Industry Networking Forum”) or small business groups (like Linked Small Business Innovators) helps you build trust and authority with your audience. When you have something of interest to say, make a new post or even respond back to another users’ to show your knowledge and expertise. For guidance on the best groups to join as a small business owner, check out our post!
- Don’t forget to be personal: LinkedIn’s “I want to connect” message is pretty generic and has the potential to turn some key connections away. This is especially true if it’s a second, third, or fourth degree connection that you’re just getting to know. Instead, make the message personal. Tell the user why it’s important to you that you are connected to them and where you hope your relationship will take you. Starting this new connection off this way will make for a stronger relationship down the line.
- Do remember the importance of face-to-face meetings: There’s data out there that says you are 74% more likely to get a first meeting through a LinkedIn connection. And while a face-to-face meeting may not be what they were suggesting, it’s important to leave this option open. Though not a requirement to use LinkedIn, or one that could potentially harm you in the long run, don’t rule it out. An article writes: “LinkedIn members who do connect outside the platform tend to be more successful than members who operate exclusively in the online world.”
Following these simple do and don’t rules will help you become a LinkedIn small business master. Build your profile, be yourself, and enjoy all the new connections you will inevitably make.
Connect with Direct Capital on LinkedIn to find out more about what we do and how we can help your business, or give us a call at 866-777-0117!