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When the “Does LinkedIn actually work?” question comes up, I have go-to success stories. I think immediately of all the clients we have worked with who have gained the best bottom of the funnel results—revenue.

And, then I recall their amazement when a client receives a response from a message while we are in a coaching session, people who land a new job because the profile we helped them create showcased their talent, experience, and skills in a way the reader (recruiter, hiring manager, CEO) found compelling and understandable. (“Understandable” means that the content is aimed at explaining what someone actually did and not just listing several buzzwords. Check out the link to LinkedIn’s most overused words at the end of this post to learn more).

In a recent coaching session, I provided an outreach exercise that resulted in a 75% response rate for a next step. “This works!” my client exclaimed as we reviewed the people who responded with their availability or interest in talking.

“Yes, it does,” I responded. Why? We have a process that includes one exercise with one call to action or request.

My go-to success stories always bring to mind the people who focus and understand the next step. In chess, my daughter reminds me, it’s often not about the immediate move but the move after that. Ahhh. While I don’t play chess, that makes sense. For more than 11 years, that’s how I’ve approached LinkedIn. And, that’s how we guide our clients.

In the end, it’s all about what the other person takes away from your profile or message that either makes your efforts on LinkedIn fruitful or lackluster.

Would you respond to you on LinkedIn? Would you answer the messages you send? There are a lot of connection requests I disregard because I have no context for the person and they haven’t taken the time to let me know why we should connect.

Over this past year I have, on more than one occasion, learned that the size of someone’s network does not correlate to how much revenue they generate for (or from) their network.

In many cases, social influence is top of the funnel. And, often there is a long way to go to complete a sale, a new hire, secure a speaking gig, land a book deal. You name it; there are steps to accomplish before winning anything. The ultimate goal is to reach the bottom of the funnel with tangible results including new business, cultivating existing business, closing transactional sales, hiring new talent, securing new investors, adding volunteers, selecting board members. The list continues.

Of course, I am not talking about the uber-influencers, industry leaders and speaking rock stars. I am talking about everyone else, the other 98% of us who should be prospecting and building their personal and corporate brands every day. It’s easy for the uber-influencers to get traction, it’s another story when leaders in small to mid-sized businesses do. To me, those folks make much better success stories.

Intero Classics

In this post, I am featuring three of my favorite go-to classics. They feature a CEO, a CFO and a sales leader. When each of these posts was originally featured on our blog and through social channels, they received some of our highest views, comments, likes, and shares.

Why? These pros have strong networks, and people like them. Do people still have to like people? You bet.

Generate Results

Rich Rubinstein, CEO and Advisor, is a former client who now advises and coaches small businesses genuinely focused on intentionally growing their businesses. He serves as one of my key advisors and is a champion of change. Check out his clients’ results.

On to the original post, A Rock-Solid CEO Rocks LinkedIn.


Matt Birkelien, CFO, has a stellar network of former and current colleagues who he actually knows. Matt’s work in the community has also earned him high regard.

Does volunteering make a difference in how someone is viewed? You bet.

Interesting that part of First Financial’s tagline includes the word “belong.” This fits for Matt, no doubt.

Here is my original post on how Matt is utilizing LinkedIn, How a CFO Rocks LinkedIn.


Matt Collins, Sales Leader, is now working in Australia for DDI Worldwide where he, no doubt, is creating a new network that will further his network and enable him to share his expertise and the value that DDI brings to all of their clients.

More great info on Matt and how he uses LinkedIn: 3 Attributes of a Social Sales Rock Star.



Now that you’ve read these articles do you have any takeaways? How are you doing on LinkedIn?

If you are a believer in the value of personal branding, social selling, building influence and developing new opportunities, craft your strategy.

Unplug for a couple of hours and write it down. Check out our resources and plan for success. As Rich Rubinstein often reminds me, “Don’t think small.” That’s true even on LinkedIn. If you have value (and, you do), believe others will want to know what that is. Share it generously.


Need some next steps to generate your own bottom of the funnel results?

LinkedIn’s most overused words, here’s another similar list of overused words on LinkedIn profiles and resumes.

Check out a couple of other relevant blog posts:

Figure Out LinkedIn Before You Join Other Professional Networking Sites

A LinkedIn Plan that Places You In Front of the Right People

If you’ve learned something from this post, visit our blog entitled “IN:form and be among the thousands of others who stay in the know with our insight and tips by signing up for our weekly emails.