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CEOs Wish and Hope No More; Use LinkedIn the Right Way

Gaining traction and leveraging LinkedIn for business development or recruiting requires you build interest, influence, and action. It’s on you, not any other person.

A client recently asked me to check their LinkedIn account and see if the person they assigned to manage their LinkedIn outreach was actually sending out connection requests and messaging. Connection requests were being sent out, and there was even a follow-up message, lots of them. And, guess what? No one, not one person had responded?

Of more than 50 messages sent, not one person replied.

So, why on earth would someone continue to send the same message?

My guess ― they were told to, and they followed the directions and could check that to-do off their list.

If someone on your team is handling your LinkedIn account, be careful and be sure they understand this not about checking off an activity on their to-do list.

The mechanics are simple; it’s the relationship-building, the interaction between people that makes business development and recruiting dicey and successful for some and a total flop for others.

It requires a strategy, an understanding of what the intended purpose is and what it will take to create a response.

It’s far more challenging to stand out, make an impression and create a conversation today than it was a couple of years ago. Why?

More people are trying to do the same thing, so it’s noisy and crowded resulting in a small frenzy.

There are more bots and automated tools that turn people off and make them more skeptical.

There’s an “I’ll try it once or for a month or two” not a commitment to understanding that LinkedIn was built to nurture professional relationships over the long term. One and done is no better than going through the Yellow Pages (yes, that was a thing at one time, long, long ago) and making ONE call to every person hoping someone would talk to you.

While LinkedIn continues to add members and grow their membership, what’s important is that you maximize your effort and commitment with a focused process and review of said process as you go. A spray and pray method assumes someone is in a ready state for your products, services or job opportunity and while we expand to 2nd and 3rd level connections which is ultimately necessary to an active outreach campaign, it’s focused and isn’t automated.

I am grateful for all the recommendations and referrals. Anna Kennedy’s recommendation summed up the experience she had with our team; specifically, Sydney Cusick (message her through LinkedIn and arrange a time to talk with her).  I share this to illustrate that Anna captures the essence of what made her engagement work well. It wasn’t a hand-off but a collaboration requiring feedback, modification, and engagement. The mechanics were easy. The intentionality was well articulated. The results positive and ongoing well after our engagement ended.

Give the other person something they need or that at least sparks or launches the next step, a conversation.

So, when the person you’ve handed your LinkedIn account over to someone and they aren’t getting the response you expected, dig a bit deeper and coach them on how to go beyond the superficial.

  1. What observations have you made from your LinkedIn efforts?
  2. Have you observed any patterns?
  3. Are people responding?
  4. Are these the right people to reach?
  5. If not, have you considered changing up your messaging?
  6. Have you tested different messages?
  7. What is the percentage of people that connect with you?
  8. Of that percentage, how much express interest?
  9. If this was a more traditional sales approach, what would you do differently?
  10. What can you do differently to see more significant results?

LinkedIn works when you engage authentically and with a genuine interest. The juice is well worth the squeeze. If you’re committed to figuring LinkedIn out once and for all, need to recruit, find new prospects, and stay in touch with current clients, you should schedule a time to talk with us.

Please, this is not for the faint-hearted, this conversation is for people who understand LinkedIn’s value, know that they are missing out, have a budget*  and need to include LinkedIn more strategically into their sales and recruiting operations.

The key takeaway from today’s post is that you need to get in the game. If you have a CEO or know of one who can benefit from reading this please pass it along to them.

*We have designed our offerings for companies AND individuals.