I've made 7 figures selling on Linkedin so I definitely have a tip or two for you! I took a different route than the popular advice to grow as big of a following as possible. Instead, I focused on quality over quantity. My decision to ignore vanity metrics and focus on my audience has paid off.
My following is big enough, but what truly matters is that most of them will work with me at some point or give me valuable paid and unpaid opportunities. I also have grown into a known person on LinkedIn and am frequently tagged, mentioned, and invited to speak at live shows or on recorded podcasts as well as virtual and real-time events.
It's time for real talk. Vanity metrics don't pay the bills.
Enjoy this podcast and please share with anyone who runs a business and wants to tap into the power of Linkedin as a lead generating machine.
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A Framework for Small Business Owners, Consultants, or Coaches Who Want to Use the Power of LinkedIn As a Sales Funnel
I used to look at LinkedIn as a job search tool for companies and candidates, and for sales people as a lead generation platform. When I sold my digital agency to go solo as a B2B marketing consultant and business and mindset coach, it took me almost 2 years to understand the real power of LinkedIn for coaches, consultants, affiliates, freelancers, side hustlers, and small business owners. Once I did, I was able to create a steady pipeline of new clients and generate 7 figures in revenue from LinkedIn alone. I did this all organically without using paid ads or automation tools. Now everything is almost on autopilot and I have a steady flow if incoming business directly from LinkedIn and 100% organic, using my personal profile instead of my business page. I don’t have any help as it is manageable on my own. My system takes me about 30 minutes daily. And, as I already mentioned, it costs me nothing.
Today I want to share how I did it as well as make an announcement that will interest small business owners and consultants trying to use LinkedIn as a sales funnel like I do, without using a team nor paid advertising.
Facebook and Instagram are primarily good if you use advertising and paid services or tools designed to help business owners on those platforms. Facebook groups also do well, particularly for B2C niches, but groups require a lot of effort, time, and often money to grow, especially since people often join multiple Facebook groups all fighting for their attention. Other main online platforms (TikTok, Clubhouse, YouTube, Snap, Twitter, Quora, Reddit, and Medium, to name a few) can build awareness and drive traffic for businesses, but I chose LinkedIn because it is the best of all to achieve a lot with less effort and all organically.
The audience of 740 million users in 200 countries on Linkedin is in full business mode, as opposed to other platforms like Facebook or Instagram, which are primarily casual or recreational. Your customers are going to be much more open to business solutions and services on Linkedin due to the professional state of mind they are in while using Linkedin. Today I will show you just how powerful Linkedin can be to develop your B2B sales efforts and how to do it.
WHAT I’VE ACHIEVED AND HOW LONG IT TOOK
From 2017 to 2019 I was in transition from selling my shares at an 8-figure digital agency in San Francisco to building a solo online consulting and coaching business. LinkedIn was the natural place I gravitated towards to set up a LinkedIn company profile and make my announcement via my personal page that I was open for business. I also started applying to gigs via LinkedIn, as well as using InMails for an outbound strategy to offer my B2B services. During the first year, my success at using LinkedIn was very low. I made many mistakes on LinkedIn, mostly by not having a clear strategy and following bad advice.
Slowly, I started experimenting with different efforts on LinkedIn to drive organic inbound traffic and combine it with my outbound sales efforts. After months of failure, I started to experience some success. In 2018, things started to take off and in 2019 my system generated 7 figures income for me alone. I knew I had cracked the LinkedIn code. However, in 2020 the global COVID-19 pandemic impacted my life personally, and I was forced to take a break from my business and LinkedIn. Despite my almost non-existent activity on LinkedIn for almost six months, I still was getting a ton of inbound leads and when I returned to my business, it was almost as if I had never taken a break. In fact, my business doubled in the second half of 2020. I found this quite amazing that LinkedIn was working for me even in my absence. Now in 2021 business is great, and I’m hoping to teach others how to harness the power of LinkedIn that allowed me to grow my small business.
A BREAKDOWN OF HOW I DID ITThere are five phases to my 7-figure system.
Set Up Shop Like a ChampThe basic requirement that you mustn’t skip is to build a stellar profile. In the beginning, I mistakenly kept my profile quite plain because I wanted to convey that I was a serious business professional. After all, LinkedIn isn’t Facebook. This backfired on me and led to people scrolling past my profile, looking for someone more interesting. When I understood this, I made some small yet important changes, and almost instantly, I doubled my following. Your profile is your first impression, so make it count. A small yet powerful step is to add a colorful background behind your profile photo. In this short video, I show you how. You may consider enlisting the help of a LinkedIn coach. Here is a quick overview of the basic LinkedIn profile elements you’ll want to consider. A good LinkedIn coach will take this to a much higher level of detail, as well as teach you best practices.
Build The Right Audience and NetworkIn the beginning, I connected with anyone and everyone. I thought this was the right way since it is business networking. After six months, I was not getting any traction on my content nor converting the people in my network to clients, so I did something drastic: I deleted connections. I first created a LinkedIn Connection Policy to identify the types of people I wanted in my network. Then I exported my entire contact list and decided whom I wanted to keep. Then I deleted the ones who no longer fit into my more targeted profiles. This was time-consuming yet worth it since removing the people who were not my target audience doubled my engagement. Here is a detailed explanation about getting the right followers.
Produce Amazing On-Brand ContentThis is why I love LinkedIn: it is a platform where you can post content in so many ways, like short posts, articles, videos, white papers, live streams, and more recently newsletters and stories.
The secret to turning LinkedIn into a strong sales funnel is to really learn how to produce content that delights and converts. I often write posts about content and especially Dos and Don'ts. People don’t generally invest enough thought into building a solid content strategy. Here are some typical content mistakes I regularly encounter on LinkedIn. I consult with small businesses to write scripts for video as well as copy for sales pages, blog posts, and LinkedIn profiles and I sometimes produce videos to teach the public some of my content secrets, such as Storytelling and Intent, so I definitely have a lot to say about producing content very intentionally. Lastly, you must show your sales offers. If a person doesn’t know exactly what you are selling, how can you expect to convert them?
Social Selling Outreach and Regular Follow-UpsIf you nurture your audience, they will continue consuming your content and over time, they will begin to trust you. If you want to convert them to clients, you must go one step further with outreach. Build relationships with your audience by engaging on their posts and replying to their comments. Send direct messages to introduce yourself and build rapport. When it seems like a good fit, offer friendly calls or let them know you do free discovery calls. Show up for others, and they will remember and appreciate it.
Social outreach is key to conversions. What one must not do is point-blank sales pitching. People never enjoy spam and unfortunately, it just positions you in the wrong way. Social selling is not difficult. You build relationships and they lead to trust.
Cross-Promotions and CollaborationsOne of the great things I did on LinkedIn in 2018 was to get involved with Linkedinlocal. This was a global movement non-affiliated with LinkedIn company to host real-time meetups in different cities and countries. It was an amazing way to collaborate and network with other LinkedIn thought leaders.
My advice is to build into your business strategy ways to cross-promote and collaborate with others who have high visibility and thought leadership in the circles you want to become known in. This could mean live stream, virtual, or real-time events, podcasts and Clubhouse moderation, joint workshops or courses, and regular promotions to help each other out.
That’s essentially the story of how I achieved success on LinkedIn for my business. Anyone who isn’t using the power of LinkedIn to its fullest should try some of these strategies. For those who prefer to listen, here is the podcast episode where I share my LinkedIn tips.
If you are using LinkedIn to get clients, then this training has your name on it! In it, I'll walk you through the personal strategy I use to get my consulting clients. Check out my LinkedIn Bootcamp below.
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