7 Actionable LinkedIn Tips You Can Implement Today for More Clients
It’s the platform to focus on right now, here’s why and how
Right now is an overwhelming time for many people. Not only are people caught up in the fear and uncertainty of the coronavirus, but even more so people are having to deal with the uncertainty of their job, their business, their livelihood and not knowing when things will improve.
It’s a lot to take on.
It’s understandable that people are feeling overwhelmed, fearful and even a little defeated. However, there is only so long you can allow yourself to sink into this mindset before you realize it isn’t going to get you anywhere.
If you want things to change, then you have to be proactive, which means actively seeking to find the opportunity amongst the negativity. To find the treasure amongst the rough.
I already wrote an article on a simple question I asked myself when I started to find myself feeling overwhelmed with everything that was going on. And how incredibly effective it was for helping me shift my entire perspective surrounding the coronavirus.
Of course, I am not here to say that LinkedIn and what I am going to be sharing with you in this post is going to solve all your problems or will work for everyone.
If you have a retail store, barbershop, or gym, you will have no doubt had to shut your doors and pause your business. I am not here to tell you that getting on LinkedIn is going to get clients for your business.
That is just not realistic.
You may have a skill or expertise that you could start utilizing.
And by applying some of these strategies, you could very well start bringing in some clients and income.
For example, you could start consulting people on how to start or run a business, or if you’re a gym owner, you could even start offering your expertise in health and fitness.
People are very open to learning right now and if you are able to provide real value to people, they will be more than happy to pay you.
You just have to think outside the box a little bit.
I’ll leave that part up to you.
Of course, if you’re a freelancer, a coach, or a consultant, then getting on LinkedIn and applying these strategies is going to be extremely beneficial for you.
OK, so now that I have piqued your curiosity a little bit, you may be wondering…
“What’s so good about LinkedIn? Isn’t it just a glorified resume platform?”
Well, yes, five years ago, LinkedIn really was nothing more than a “glorified resume platform.”
However, in the last few years and especially in the last 12 months, LinkedIn has changed considerably and stepped up its game.
Let’s take a quick look at why LinkedIn is so powerful.
The Power of LinkedIn
LinkedIn is hands down the most powerful platform for entrepreneurs, professionals, and business owners. And it is only going to grow over the coming years.
Well, for starters, LinkedIn has now become its own social media platform with over half a billion users and growing.
In fact, LinkedIn is one of the most powerful lead generation platforms for business owners, coaches, and consultants.
In a study of over 5,000 businesses — conducted by HubSpot — the traffic in LinkedIn is 277% more effective when it comes to B2B lead generation — its conversion rate has outranked Facebook and Twitter.
What’s more, is that LinkedIn is home to the largest number of high earning individuals compared to any other social media platform. Meaning you’re largely dealing with people who will be more than willing to pay good money for your services.
There truly is nowhere else that you can access so many other business owners or professionals all in one place.
What’s more, because it is still relatively new to the social media space (it wasn’t always a social media platform) it is much easier to start building a brand and growing an audience than Facebook and Instagram. In fact, video is now being given massive precedence on LinkedIn and it can be very easy to reach people right now if you do it right.
And because LinkedIn is a platform made solely for business professionals, you are literally marketing yourself to people who are there for the purpose of networking, connecting and doing business.
Put simply, people don’t go to LinkedIn to be entertained, they go there to learn, to be inspired, to network, and most importantly to do business.
What’s more, LinkedIn isn’t full of the typical negativity and pointless content that is so rampant on the other platforms. Scroll through it and you will really only find inspiring, educational, professional, and uplifting content.
In fact, LinkedIn is now the only social media platform that I frequently visit because of this reason.
The problem is that most people are doing LinkedIn completely wrong and are still treating it like a resume platform. I know I certainly was for a long time, too.
That was until I started diving deep into LinkedIn and started to realize its incredible power.
Now I’m the first to admit I am not a trained LinkedIn specialist, (neither would I want to be), I am just another service provider who was struggling to find clients, feeling the constant stress and pressure to land a client, and feeling like I may never find one. (Anyone else been there? Yeah, not fun.)
And out of sheer necessity, I forced myself to learn everything I could about LinkedIn.
It paid off.
And eventually, people ended up asking me for advice and even consulting. I’d accidentally become a LinkedIn expert, which was never my intention.
But still...kind of cool.
Anyway, with everything that is going on in the world right now I have realized that this information is very important to get out to people. This is why I wrote this article and why I am currently working on an ebook.
I want to help people realize they are not powerless during this challenging time. And that with the right attitude and the right understanding of LinkedIn, in particular, the right profile set up.
You can not only start gaining clients and bringing in an income. But done right, you can literally have clients start reaching out to you and wanting to use your services.
And that’s exactly what I’m going to be sharing with you.
Let’s get started.
1. Professional Profile and Header Image
A professional profile and header image are the foundation of standing out on LinkedIn. Without this foundation, none of the other strategies I will be sharing matter. Therefore, it is important you get this one right first.
Luckily I am going to walk you through both.
Let’s start with the profile image.
The anatomy of a professional profile image
It’s amazing how many people overlook this.
It’s so simple and basic, yet so many people aren’t doing it correctly (including myself at first). As much as we all say “you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover.”
Well sorry... people do.
Especially on LinkedIn.
Save the casual and laid back photos for Facebook or Instagram. This is LinkedIn, it’s a place for business owners, entrepreneurs, and employees. If there is one place where you want to make sure you have a professional-looking photo, it’s on Linkedin.
Here are a few of the essentials you need
- Clear headshot.
- Professional attire.
- Clean background.
The easiest way to get a good quality professional headshot is to go to your local photographer and get it professionally done (maybe not possible right now).
If you’re looking for a slightly less costly alternative you can always use (or hire) a professional camera and take it yourself.
Or if your camera on your phone is good enough (which most are these days) you could even just use that.
The anatomy of a professional header
The header image is another overlooked aspect of a LinkedIn profile. Most people either don’t have one at all or use some generic image (still better than nothing I guess).
However, like your profile image, you want something that stands out, that looks professional, and makes people think wow, I want to get to connected (and maybe even hire/do business) with this person.
Get yourself a graphic designer to help put one together for you. Sites like Fiverr, have hundreds of graphic designers who will be able to design you a nice professional header.
You can also use a site like Canva to create a header yourself. Regardless of what option you choose, here are some best practices that will ensure you have a powerful and professional-looking header.
The keys to a professional header
If you have an image of you speaking at or running an event, that’s even better. This will help provide “social proof” for what it is you do and will well and truly help you stand out and build credibility with your client.
Adding some kind of phrase or words to your LinkedIn header will help make your profile stand out and look professional.
Don’t go overboard though.
Again using words that are relevant to your client’s needs or pains can be very powerful. For instance, on my profile, I have:
“More Sales, More Clients, More Impact.”
These are three things that my clients want more of. You can apply this same thing to any industry or service. Just find the three things that your clients want more of and add them to your header image.
It will not only look professional, but it will also instantly tell your clients what you help them do. Again, you can hire someone to make one for you or use a template on Canva to create your own.
2. Client-Orientated Headline
Everyone knows they need a headline for LinkedIn.
However, most people are doing it completely wrong. I know I certainly was guilty of it.
Here is what most people have in the headline:
“CEO at (company).”
“Founder at (company/business).”
Or worst of all...
“Sales rep at (company).”
Yeah, good luck with getting anyone to want to do business with you with that headline.
That’s not a dig at sales professionals.
But having that as your title certainly isn’t going to make things easier for you. I mean, can you blame people?
You see, I am about to say something that may offend you a little, but I am only saying it because I care about you and want to see you succeed.
No one cares about you, your title or your business.
That hurt your ego a little, didn’t it?
Well, I am sorry but it’s true. Saying that you are a marketer, a coach, a founder, a CEO or an employee at some spectacular company or business means nothing to your potential client.
Although it might sound impressive. In the eyes of your client, it means absolutely nothing.
So what should you have instead?
A client-orientated headline.
This is the secret sauce of success on LinkedIn, and once you get this right, finding and landing clients becomes a lot easier.
Here’s how to apply it.
The client-orientated headline
Instead of touting to the world what you are or what your business is, you should instead have a headline that speaks directly to your ideal client’s needs, pains or desires.
You also want to make it as interesting as you possibly can. Something that makes people want to learn more.
Let’s take a look at some examples.
Let’s say you’re a marketer.
Instead of saying “digital marketer”, instead say what it is you actually do for your client, the desired result and the type of person you work with.
For example, the primary role of a marketer is to help businesses grow and scale, therefore you want to design your title around that.
Here is what could put:
“ I help businesses dramatically grow their revenue using proven marketing strategies.”
See how much better that sounds?
You can even go one step further to get specific on the results you deliver.
“I help businesses generate $100,000+ in revenue using proven marketing strategies that get results”
How much more interesting is that? Also, notice the wording I used?
The words “proven” “results” and “fast” are all power words and words that are persuasive. This is called good copy or “copywriting”, which is essentially persuasion through the written word.
Words are powerful and there are certain words that hold more power than others.
Here are some examples of power words that get people to take action
Use these words and come up with your own client-orientated headline. Here is just one more example of what you could have if you were, say, a health coach.
“ I help entrepreneurs fully optimize their health so they can have unlimited energy and focus all day, every day”
“ I teach entrepreneurs how to prioritize their health and still crush it in business”
Now you may be thinking “OK, well this all makes sense. But can’t I still have my title somewhere?”
Yes, if you really must have your title, you can.
Just make sure that you add it after your client-orientated headline.
For example, you could have:
“ I Teach Entrepreneurs How to Prioritize their Health and Still Crush it in Business | Health Coach & Author”
Also if you happen to run a podcast or something similar it can worth adding that into your headline to help build authority and credibility.
Here’s how that might look:
“ I Teach Entrepreneurs How to Prioritize their Health and Still Crush it in Business | Health Coach & Host Of Exceptional Health Podcast”
3. Client-Orientated About Section
The about section is another thing that most people get totally wrong.
Again, most people treat the about section like it’s a resume or a chance to talk about how good they are. Or even worse, they write their entire about section in the third person.
This is something many “experts” used to recommend back in the older days of LinkedIn. But now that LinkedIn is essentially a business social media platform, the old third person “John Smith is a successful business owner who has created 5,000 companies, flown to the moon, met Oprah and won an award for being amazing” just doesn’t cut it anymore.
People want authenticity. They want to feel like when they connect with someone that they are speaking with a real person.
When you use a third-person approach, it cuts you off and makes you seem less approachable and therefore people will be less likely to seek out what you have to offer.
However, you still don’t want it to just be all about you. You can talk about yourself and what it is you do. But only after you have first spoken to your client's needs, wants, desires, and pains.
You can do this in four simple steps.
Step 1: Calling out your ideal client and their needs
This is where you directly call out your ideal clients.
Because then you don’t waste time with people you don’t work with or you can’t help.
Let’s take the example of the health coach again. Here’s what you could have:
For the entrepreneur, business owner or executive that is burnt out, overwhelmed, and stressed.
Again, I called out who I work with and their common needs and or pains.
If you know your clients well this first part will be very easy.
Step 2: Listing your client’s typical pains or needs
The next thing that you want to do is list your clients most common pains or needs. These should be the things that your clients continually come to you for or complains about.
Let’s keep following up from our example with the health coach. Here is what you could potentially have:
“Do you want the energy to match your ambitions?
Do you want to keep laser-sharp focus?
Do you want to end your day feeling accomplished instead of burned out?
Do you want to have the energy to be able to enjoy time with your family?
My guess is you answered yes to most (if not all) of these things.”
Notice how I finished my questions off with these questions? By having a sentence like “my guess is you answered yes to most (if not all) of these things”, it wraps up the questions and also helps your client feel like you know them and care about them (which you should).
Step 3: Call out the problem
The next thing you want to do is call out your client’s problem.
Let’s take an example again for the health coach. You could have something like this.
But let me guess.
You know you should eat healthier, you know you should exercise more, but you just don’t have the time to exercise and definitely don’t have the time to think about eating a healthy meal every day.
Maybe you have tried eating healthy before, maybe even enjoyed it and saw some benefits from it. But then it became too much effort. You didn’t have time anymore. So you quit. Sound familiar?
If you do it well enough you will have the person saying, “wow, that’s exactly the problem I am facing.”
And that’s what you want.
Step 4: Provide the solution
Now that you have addressed their problem it is time to provide them with the solution. Which, of course, is your product or service!
Now, this is when it’s OK to start talking about yourself, your expertise and why you’re the right person to solve their problem.
This is where you’re selling people on you.
You want to show the person why you’re the right person for them.
I can’t really provide too much help here as it will be different for every person but here are a few things that might be worth adding:
- Any accomplishments.
- How many years of experience you have.
- How you have helped others in similar situations.
- Your background or story (this works very well).
- Interesting or noteworthy clients you have worked with.
Basically, anything that is going to help you stand out in the eyes of your client and build credibility and trust (without coming off arrogant or sleazy).
4. Detailed Experience and Education Section Using Key Words and Phrases
Most people just list their experiences. But this isn’t what gets your profile boosted on LinkedIn.
Instead of just listing your experiences, you want to be adding relevant keywords and phrases that are applicable to your industry and people will be searching for.
For instance, if you’re in the marketing industry you want to be using keywords and phrases that are relevant to that industry i.e lead generation, social selling, sales funnels, digital marketing, copywriting, etc.
You then want to integrate these into both your experience title and your experience description.
Doing this will increase your chances of being found and potentially landing a client.
5. Adding Videos or Content
This is one of the most powerful things you can do for your profile. Especially adding a video. In fact, adding videos to my profile is exactly what has allowed me to land the clients I have. They told me that watching those videos is what convinced them to work with me.
Never underestimate the power of video.
If you don’t have a video, do yourself a favor and go out and get a professional video made for your business or service, it will make a massive difference. Trust me.
But video isn’t the only thing that you can add to your profile. Here is a list of the things you can add to your profile that will help convince people to want to do business with you.
Links to your website.
6. 500+ Connections:
This is something that is often overlooked but extremely powerful. Not only does it look cool when you get the badge, but it also makes you look a lot more professional and well connected when you have over 500 connections.
It always amazes me when I see people with only 30 or a couple of hundred connections. Even if you have a very good product or service, if you only have a few connections it automatically makes you seem less credible.
Think about it.
Who are you going to want to do business with?
Someone who has 20 connections or someone who has over 500 connections?
If you’re one of those people with less than 500 connections go out and start connecting with more people.
Don’t just connect with anyone though. Connect with people who you want to be connected with and are relevant to your industry.
7. Publishing Articles on LinkedIn:
The final and one of the most powerful strategies for standing out on LinkedIn is to publish an article directly to the platform.
Focus on writing an article that is actually valuable for people and specific to your industry. Doing this will instantly build credibility and authority and will help you start to be perceived as an expert in your industry.
If you’re thinking, “but I’ve never written an article, I have no writing ability!”, don’t worry.
You don’t have to be a professional writer to have a post become successful on LinkedIn. All you have to do is write something that is valuable.
Whatever industry you work in, there is no doubt that you will know something that other people don’t know or are looking to learn more about.
Even just sharing your story or lessons you learned can be extremely powerful.
Just write from the heart and focus on adding value.
Well, there you have it.
Now you know not just why you should be on LinkedIn but also how to stand out.
If you really apply these seven keys for yourself and begin to engage with the LinkedIn community, I have absolutely no doubt that you will begin seeing results.
Of course, there are even more things you can do, but these will give you a very good start.
So if you’re finding yourself in a difficult spot at the moment with everything that is going on, then I would ask you to give LinkedIn a try.
You may just be amazed at what it brings for you.
This article was originally published by Isaac blencowe on medium.
I write about topics surrounding health, personal development, business and life. - Writer and Copywriter. https://medium.com/@isaacblencowe