Having 5000 LinkedIn connections is of no use if they are not your target audience. Even with a fully optimized LinkedIn profile and being credible on LinkedIn you may not generate sales if you do not have the right people in your network.
Having a small network of course limits you to appear in the search results too and adding non relevant people just to appear in search is not a wise idea too. So this article will help you with the best possible strategy to build most targeted Linked network.
1- Join industry related groups; search for groups within your industry, but do not join them blindly, because LinkedIn allows you to join only 50 groups, so choose wisely. Visit the groups before joining and see the activity and decide whether or not you should join a particular group.
2- Join local groups; by local group I mean, groups focused on the country or city where you want to do business. This will help a lot if you are looking for faster user acquisition in an emerging market.
3- Join active groups only; A group with 5,000 members if didn’t have any discussion held during last one week is not worth joining. Similarly a group with 500 members if has 20 discussions in the past week only is the best one for you.
4- Be active in the discussions; you will learn, will share expertise and find relevant people to connect to as well. Post your queries, answer the questions that you can also use LinkedIn groups to generate and promote lead generating content.
5- Get connected to the refined people from groups you have joined. Do not sent a connection request to just everyone in the group, but take time to skim through the profiles and send an invite to the people who can be beneficial to your business in one way or other
6- Get connected to the 2nd connections, i.e. connections of the people you recently connected to. Again do not send blind requests, rather analyze profiles before sending request.
7- Use a personalized message; rather than using the LinkedIn default, draft a template (why you want to connect to that person) and add receiver’s name to make it personalized.
8- Now comes the LinkedIn people search, as it will show you a bigger network now. With a free LinkedIn account even you can add highly targeted people. Use the Industry, Location and event Company filters to refine your search.
9- Do not send out bulk invitations; even if you find all 500 targeted people in a single day, do not send all the requests in one day. It is important, because doing so may let LinkedIn block your access for system abuse. Do not send more than 100 invitations a day!
10- Once you reach a certain number, i.e. sending out 5000 requests in total, you must take a break. Let people approve you as a connection. Some people just take more time.
11- Do not forget to add link to your LinkedIn Profile in email signature for your all outgoing business emails!
12- Follow up with New Connections; have a follow up template ready, spare an hour every week, and send a personalized follow up to all new connections this week!
Being found on LinkedIn is not difficult but being found by right people is tricky and you must remember that you need to connect with right people only if you want to generate business from LinkedIn. Just take time to understand your industry on LinkedIn and strategize accordingly. You will have the most targeted LinkedIn network!