Why LinkedIn needs to be part of your content strategy
Part 1 of my LinkedIn Series. 30% of our business comes from LinkedIn.
It’s an astounding figure. And yet so many people still don’t get power of LinkedIn for business development. It’s the top rated social network for lead generation and probably the biggest B2B social network and B2B search engine in the world.
When people want to buy something, they tap into their networks.
If you want to go to the cinema, you look for recommendations; if you want a good lawyer or accountant, you ask your friends. LinkedIn gives you the power to ask your friends and search your network. If I want an accountant or lawyer, I see whom I know in my LinkedIn network.
We like to buy from people we know, like and trust. By being connected on LinkedIn, we start ticking some of those boxes already.
When I do LinkedIn training, one of the first things I ask is: “who do you connect with? Nobody? With just people you’ve met? With everyone? What do you base your connection on?” I put myself in the ‘LinkedIn tart’ category. I connect with anyone, and – if I’m honest – base it purely on their profile picture. If you don’t have a picture, I don’t connect. If you do have a picture, there’s a very high chance I’ll connect with you.
I have over 7k connections. I believe bigger networks have more power. I wouldn’t say I’m a serial networker offline, but the principle of getting out there and networking remains true. It’s the same online as offline: going to lots of events, swapping business cards etc. The reality is, the more people you connect with, the more people will be in your network.
LinkedIn classes your network as people in your 1st, 2nd and 3rd degree connections. This isn’t about degree classifications by the way, as delegates in one training session thought! This is about how connected you are with the person.
- 1st degree is a direct connection
- 2nd degree is a connection of theirs
- 3rd degree is one step further than that
- Groups – if you’re in a group then anyone else in that group would be in your network too.
I took this screenshot back when I had just over 1100 connections:
You’ll see that even then, my 1182 connections gave me a network of over ten million people. That means ten million people could see my profile and content (depending on privacy settings of course), and I can access ten million people’s profiles and content. If you think the average person might have 150 friends, LinkedIn offers a comparatively astounding network reach.
When I do a search, LinkedIn searches the network. So while I might not know Bob (I might not want to know Bob), you never know who Bob knows. I might want to know one of Bob’s connections at some point; they might be my target audience.
Then at a later date when I want to contact the marketing director of ABC Limited, and Bob knows them, I can go to my network, see he’s friends with Bob, and say, “Hey, we’re friends on LinkedIn…” (he might assume we know each other!) “…I’m trying to contact Danny at ABC Limited, please can you put me in touch?” There’s a fair chance that he might. Worst-case scenario is I go to Danny direct and say “Hey, we both know Bob on LinkedIn” …it’s a conversation starter; an opener.
So the power of LinkedIn, for me, is massive.
But how do you grow your network on LinkedIn? Come back soon as I’ll cover this in the next article.
In future articles, we’re going to look at:
- Part 2: Growing your network on LinkedIn
- Part 3: Pimping your LinkedIn profile to be loved by LinkedIn and found on Google
- Part 4: Rocking your LinkedIn content and getting to grips with groups
- Part 5: Exploring LinkedIn Premium and tools like Sales Navigator and LinkedIn Advertising
What aspects of LinkedIn do you find most useful? What features would you like to know more about?
If you want to upskill our team on using LinkedIn for business, why not check out my LinkedIn training.