You Have Targeted Connections on LinkedIn...Now What?!
If you’ve been following our line of thinking regarding LinkedIn, then you know how important it is to STRATEGICALLY connect to people in your LinkedIn network. (For more information on this, click here to read about it).
As you grow your network of these awesome new connections AKA: leads, you may be wondering what to do to take the relationship to the next level. Here are several ideas for helping you to “nurture” your leads in a way that is not too pushy, but helps you build rapport and authority.
Share Your Article or Blog
If you are actively educating and informing your audience by blogging or posting articles, pick an article which you feel would benefit your new connection. Think about their problems and pain points. Then share something of value that will help them address their pain. This is not the time to pitch. Just share.
Share an Industry Article or Blog
If you don’t have active original content of your own, select one from your connection’s industry and share that. (Make sure it’s not from a competitor’s site!) You can find helpful articles from industry news sites, clubs, groups and organizations, and from non-competitors in your space.
For example, if I were to share an article for marketing, I wouldn’t go to another marketing company. I would go to a marketing vertical, such as Hootsuite or Kicksta and share a link to their blog. This is not stealing and it will actually be a benefit to said verticals when they see increased visitors to their post because you shared it. It follows the overall social media sharing idealogy.
Share something timely, funny or thoughtful
As I write this, we are experiencing the global COVID-19 pandemic. There is a lot of angst in the world, and businesses, as well as people, are suffering. In this case, I might share something about working from home or how to stay healthy or a link to get financial assistance for business. Be sensitive to the time and what your connection may be experiencing. Be careful about humor and only use it when it is a universal and non-controversial topic.
Share an Event or Recording
If you have a webinar to help educate your audience, it’s perfectly ok to invite your new connection. They will probably expect a pitch during the webinar, but make sure you front load it with a ton of great information that is worth their time. If they come to the webinar, you’re on the right track. Create it around their pain points…did I mention make it full of value? Once the webinar has occurred, share the link to the recording in case they couldn’t make it, or use that for future reachouts.
Comment on Media Announcements
If you use Sales Navigator, you can see when target companies make announcements. Alternatively, you can set up a Google alert to let you know when your targets are in the news. Go ahead and congratulate them on a product launch, earnings milestones, or any other activity that is noted by the press. They will appreciate that you’re keeping up with their business. As an added bonus, if something significant happens in their industry, you can start a conversation asking them if they know about it (include a link to the news) and how it may impact them.
These days it seems like people are more focused on TELLING instead of ASKING. There are many things you can ask which could get you valuable information which could help both you and your connection. Here are a few ideas:
- How's business going for you?
- What's your biggest challenge right now?
- Who can I send your way to help your business?
- How can I help you?
A Special Note About LinkedIn Messaging
When a LinkedIn user is not in their "messages" section, the message chat box pops up wherever they are. This box is small and can be obtrusive on your screen. DON’T send a five paragraph message. Keep it simple and succinct. If you do want to go into more detail, ask for their email. Here is an example of what you might say in the LinkedIn message window:
I have a great case study about X that I’d love to share with you but it’s too long for this message area. Can email it directly to you?
LinkedIn Nurture Strategy Etiquette
Keep in mind the nature of LinkedIn and treat it like a networking meeting. You don’t walk up to a new person, hand them your business card and then say “do business with me.” You ask them about themselves. You discuss relevant topics. And at some point, it makes sense to ask for either a meeting or the next step. Keep these rules of in-person networking etiquette in mind when you create your nurturing strategy.
And remember – people do business with people they know, like and trust. Be likeable and trustworthy and soon they will get to know you better! Happy Networking!
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