Archives for November 2009

Growing Your Business with LinkedIn (part 9 of 10)

Two months ago I started this series asking the question “Can LinkedIn work for you?”. Today we come full circle and look at expanding on the four keys of success that I listed in the original article:

1.  The Right Purpose = The right Activities
2.  More Reach = More Opportunities
3.  Provide Value to Others = Know, Like, & Trust
4.  More Activity = More Success

Get these four right and LinkedIn will work for you. The components of each of these have been covered throughout the series so if you’ve followed along this should put the icing on the cake.

The Right Activities
There is the ideal and there is reality. Reality is that most of us first joined LinkedIn and begin to explore it over time. Most people get that LinkedIn is about connecting to other people so the first step is that people invite those that they know. After those first connections are made, though, is where most people hit the wall.

My kids love movies and there is a scene in “A Bugs Life” where the ants are carrying food in a neat and orderly line…one after another. Each one is simply following what the other is doing. Suddenly a leaf lands between two ants and the one in front keeps moving but the one behind has no clue what to do. The leaf is the ant’s wall.

After some coaching the ant simply changes directions to go around the leaf and the line continues moving.

On LinkedIn the ability to move around your walls is dramatically increased if you have taken the time to develop goals and a strategy for reaching the goals. Because if you don’t know what you hope to achieve (purpose) how do you know which actions you should be taking.

You need to think about why you are on LinkedIn and develop a strategy to make it work for you. My purpose for being on LinkedIn is to make money. Actions such as connecting, starting discussion posts, posting news articles, joining groups, asking and answering questions, posting status updates, etc. are all done with this purpose in mind. [Read more…]


Another Case of LinkedIn Spam?

I recently wrote about receiving a spam message on LinkedIn from what appeared to be a fake LinkedIn account.  You can read that post and decide for yourself if I received a spam message from a fake account.

Today there was another spam message in my LinkedIn inbox.  Why do I say it’s spam?  Because the message I received was an unsolicited sales message in the form of a “hey, check this out” message.

The one common thread in the two cases is that the name Carl Doppler appears to be associated with both.  In the first case he was listed as the VP of operations with PMA Desk.  In this case Doppler Internet , Inc. is listed as the Registration Provider.  Once again I’ll present the facts you make your own decision in regards to what’s going on.

The message:

sandi scotti message

Notice the link to [Read more…]


5 Ways to Communicate Your Message on LinkedIn (Part 8 of 10)

When I first joined LinkedIn my thought was that this would be a good place to network and connect to other business professionals.  What I’ve learned since is that LinkedIn is a great place to communicate your message to millions of business professionals.  Most often through indirect methods.

Most people think in term of communicating directly, but that’s a traditional perspective.  Social networking/media has its own rules in regards to sales related activites and most often using a direct sales pitch will fail and potentially cause damage to your brand.

There are a few ways to communicate directly on LinkedIn.  The most obvious is to send a direct message to your first degree connections.  Personally when I receive a direct sales message I immediately archive it.  Most often it’s from someone I’m connected to but do not personally know.  If I receive several I simply remove the connection.

If you want to sell to me you have to first introduce yourself and then start a conversation.  It all starts with the three requirements necessary for someone to choose to do business with you.  First they have to know you, second they need to like you, and finally they need to trust you.

Connecting or interacting within LinkedIn groups can accomplish the “getting to know you” requirement.  Moving to like and trust requires time and interaction.  You’re going to have to share value over time for this to occur.

Here are some of the ways that I communicate my message to tens of thousands of LinkedIn members each week. [Read more…]


A Case of LinkedIn Spam?

I’ve been on LinkedIn for over three years and I’ve been amazed that spam related content has not been a huge issue.  Rarely do I see, or maybe its that I haven’t recognized it, this type of activity.  Compared to Twitter direct sales messages rarely work.

Today I received a message from a fellow group member that at first I assumed was legitimate.  Now I’m not so sure.  I’m going to leave the final decision up to you.

First here’s the message I received from Bradley Mitchell which included a note apparently sent to him from Mr. Brad Kenzie.  It includes a link to which advertises a social media product called PMA Desk.

the spam message

The message is pretty straight forward.  Since I work with clients helping them with their social media strategies, and having written a blog for the past two years that discusses LinkedIn and social media, I was curious.  I clicked on the link to check it out. [Read more…]


Prospecting with LinkedIn (part 7 of 10)

Last week I discussed New Opportunities, New Hires with LinkedIn that discussed using LinkedIn to advance your career and for companies to find new employees.  Todays conversation addresses using LinkedIn to prospect.

Most people use LinkedIn to connect to other business professionals that they know or meet while networking.  It definitely can help put an additional degree of connectivity to these folks.  But limiting your use to simply networking leaves a significant opportunity out of your monetization toolbox.

The tool that most people fail to take advantage of is the ability to prospect for potential opportunities.  Let me be clear, prospecting is not sending sales messages to your direct connections.  It’s not posting sales messages in groups.  It’s simply identifying potential people or companies that could eventually become clients.

LinkedIn, like other social networking sites, are not great places to overtly sell your products and services.  Can doing this work? Sure, but you’re more likely to turn people off than to turn them on.  A better approach is to connect and engage in conversations so that people first get a chance to know and like you.  Then you can begin converting the “like” into trust.

I recently received a message form someone stating that they had looked at my profile and read my blog.  In the message they simply asked if they could follow up with a question.  I said sure and then next communication was an offer for me to use their services.

Bad strategy.  I’ll talk about how they could have approached things later.

The two ways you can prospect on LinkedIn are People and for Companies. [Read more…]


New Opportunities-New Hires on LinkedIn (part 6 of 10)

Last week we looked at Building Credibility on LinkedIn, which factors in today’s discussion of finding new opportunities, specifically in regards to advancing your career.

In early 2001, when the internet bubble was exploding, my wife and I decided to move from Chicago back to Atlanta. Even with the internet sky falling I could still look in the Chicago Sunday paper and find several pages of online and offline marketing jobs. Not so in Atlanta.

Prior to our move I did some looking on, Career Builder, and several other sites but didn’t see much listed. So I assumed that I would have to get down to Atlanta to press the flesh. This turned into a 5 month search that only ended because I agreed to take a position that was 100% commission based.

If I were to make that same move today the process would be completely different. While the job search sites did a great job of aggregating job posts, there was nothing to help me to the same from a networking perspective. LinkedIn has changed the equation.

With LinkedIn I could quickly identify people to connect to, begin building my brand, and search in the jobs section for opportunity. Before stepping foot in Atlanta, I would already have a handle on networking, having identified the right people to reach out to.

So within this discussion there are several keys to focus on if you want to effectively utilize LinkedIn in a job search. [Read more…]