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4 Ways to Use LinkedIn for Lead Generation9 min read

LinkedIn is the world’s largest professional social network. Designed specifically for the business community, the platform boasts over 500 million users (and counting!). This makes LinkedIn the perfect environment for lead generation!

Some of the benefits of being a member on LinkedIn include having the ability to leverage the network to connect with past business associates, form new connections with influencers and research both individuals and companies.

The channel is also a supremely popular tool for online recruitment – with an almost universal usage among social recruiting forums.

LinkedIn provides access to a hugely interactive audience and – when used correctly – can generate incredible results through creative engagement.

LinkedIn is all about building networks and forming connections. It’s not only about who you know but also very much about who your connections know.

This encapsulates the power of LinkedIn. The platform provides individuals and businesses with the ability and opportunity to tap into first, second and third-degree connections, and expand their brands through word-of-mouth marketing.

First Degree Connections. People you know personally. These members have a direct relationship to your account, and they make up your immediate network.
Second Degree Connections. People who know at least one member of your first-degree connections. In other words, these are your friends of friends
Third Degree Connections. Friends of your friends of your friends. These members are connected through your second-degree connections.

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If that wasn’t enough, thanks to the professional nature of LinkedIn, it’s also the top-rated social network for lead generation.

In fact, a recent study of over 500,000 businesses found that traffic from LinkedIn generated the highest visitor-to-lead conversion rate, at almost 3 times higher than both Twitter and Facebook.

With its influential and affluent membership, LinkedIn represents a supremely valuable demographic for marketers. A user can easily source the people employed by a specific company, or the various types of businesses that an individual has worked for.

So – you don’t need me to spell it out (but we will). If you’re looking to connect with industry professionals and generate leads for your business, then LinkedIn should definitely be an integral part of your social marketing strategy.

Here are 4 great ways that business marketers can use LinkedIn to generate leads.

Optimize Your Profile

linkedin on mobile next to notepad

The primary aim of LinkedIn is to build business relationships. Unlike other social networks whereby you can become ‘friends’ with anyone, LinkedIn is focused on building strategic relationships that benefit your company or career.

Indeed, the platform has been designed to facilitate professionals in finding and maintaining contact with one another. Through LinkedIn, you can connect with past colleagues, follow influencers in your field and form new connections with others in your industry.

  • Professional Photo
  • Informative Headline
  • Detailed Summary
  • Completed Work Experience Section
  • Up-to-date Contact Information
  • Recommendations

As you are using LinkedIn to connect with people that you do not yet know, your profile needs to be optimized so that you make a positive first impression.

A professional headshot, articulate summary and a completed profile can make all the difference. It’s vital that your profile clearly defines who you are and who it is you want to meet. Who is your target audience? Is this apparent from your profile?

Your profile must also include elements that encourage your target audience to choose you over others in the same field as you. After all – the better your profile, the better your chances are of making the right impression on your audience and generating leads.

Join LinkedIn Groups

Beyond simply sharing updates, there are thousands of LinkedIn groups out there on a wide range of topics. LinkedIn Groups present a fantastic opportunity for businesses to put themselves right in front of potential leads and engage with them directly.

But…what are LinkedIn Groups?

LinkedIn Groups are hubs on the platform which provide a space for professionals with similar interests or within the same industry to:

  • Share content
  • Post/find jobs
  • Make business connections
  • Find answers
  • Establish themselves as industry experts

Whether you’re the owner of a LinkedIn Group or a member, these networks have many benefits. Being an active participant in a Group can help you to connect with other professionals and businesses within your field – particularly those outside of your immediate circle of colleagues, employers and classmates.

If you are a business, having an active LinkedIn Group will help you to connect with potential customers. LinkedIn Groups also help to aid interactions and generate discussions around your brand, product or services.

Basically, LinkedIn Groups provide the perfect platform for reaching a targeted audience and establishing authentic relationships. This means that it is possible to significantly boost the reputation of your brand by participating within Groups.

To get started, simply search for Groups relevant to your industry. Once you’ve joined, you can engage with members and posts within the Group.

As soon as you’ve engaged within the community, you can build your credibility and share content related to your brand. This is a fantastic way of driving more prospects to your website.

Joining Groups on LinkedIn will ultimately help you to expand your reach – which is essential for lead generation.

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Improve Your Page Visibility

Search Engine Optimization isn’t just for Google. It’s totally possible to make yourself more discoverable on LinkedIn and boost the number of opportunities you must sell yourself, your products or your services.

Here are some tips:

  • Ensure your profile is 100% complete. Fill out every available section in as much detail as possible.
  • Incorporate popular keywords into your profile. Your keywords are what would be left if you tried to boil down everything on your page to a couple of simple phrases. They consist of what you would ideally want your search engine user to have typed into the search box, for your site to pop up on the search engine results pages. (For inspiration, you can determine relevant keywords for your business or industry and check out how other leaders in your field are using them on their profiles)
  • Connect with as many people as possible. When you conduct a search on LinkedIn, the results generally vary based on your specific network. You will see first-degree connections first, followed by second-degree connections, then third. This means that a great way to broaden your reach is to add more connections. The more connections you have, the more searches you will appear in!
  • Add a link to your profile to your email signature and other social media accounts, alongside your business cards and the bio on your website. Expand your network however possible and enjoy improved search engine rankings!
taking notes next to laptop

Post Regular Content Updates

Behind every great brand or business is a wealth of relevant and valuable content that connects with the company’s audience.

First Degree Connections. People you know personally. These members have a direct relationship to your account, and they make up your immediate network.
Second Degree Connections. People who know at least one member of your first-degree connections. In other words, these are your friends of friends
Third Degree Connections. Friends of your friends of your friends. These members are connected through your second-degree connections.

Importantly, your content allows you to shape the perceptions attached to your brand or business. In our digitized world, effective content marketing positions your company to perform better in the marketplace, to enjoy increased sales and stronger customer loyalty.

This is very much true for LinkedIn.

The content you post on the network allows you to tell your brand story and generate interest, alongside informing your potential customers or prospects about your products and services.

The content you post on LinkedIn also humanizes your brand and provides a supremely valuable insight into your business identity and company ethos.

Even more importantly – your content serves to engage and entertain your network in a meaningful way.

Creating content that is both informative and valuable can ultimately provide a wealth of new value for your business.

It encourages trust between your brand and your customers, positions you as an expert in the field and can boost your Search Engine rankings. What’s more, regular and relevant content can attract new leads and drive people to your site.

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Effective content can be used to both attract and retain your audience, whilst ultimately driving profitable customer action.  Of course, to see results you’ll need to produce content that accurately suits your target audience and demographic. 

That’s because the more relevant your content is to your target audience, the more likely it is that they will take an interest in your business and explore your services.

The list of content opportunities that you can use on LinkedIn is huge. There’s no shortage of ways to make content work for your business on the channel, whatever your industry. Here are some ideas:

  • eBooks
  • Infographics
  • How-to-guides
  • Whitepapers
  • Blogs
  • SlideShares
  • Videos
  • Case Studies
  • Third Party Articles

Closing Words

So, there you have it. Follow these steps and get ready to start driving more valuable leads to your business using LinkedIn.

Let us know how you get on and feel free to check out our popular LinkedIn Blueprints for even more valuable tuition on leveraging LinkedIn for yourself, your brand or your business.

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