Tips for Small Business Leaders to be LinkedIn Networking Experts

When you have the right LinkedIn networks, you can leap forward with many prospects as the leader of a small business, from fundraising to the first big sale.

So how do you look for, draw in, and engage with your target connections? How should you connect and interact with LinkedIn professionals in an efficient, emphatic, and proficient manner?

Here are a couple of great tips from the first-ever LinkedIn Live event, where local business leaders and LinkedIn professionals in Blacksburg, Virginia gathered and shared strategic campaigns for successful LinkedIn networking:

1. Have a direct objective, but think about a long-lasting one. 

LinkedIn networks may originate from the most unexpected sources or places. For example, the content developer you hooked up with at a large networking event may be the close friend of your target chief marketing officer.

Never cross out someone whom you think is directly irrelevant to you. He or she may be a successful and motivating person who may twist doorknobs and open doors for you as your network develops and expands.

linkedin networking experts for small business leaders

LinkedIn Talent Connect Europe 2012. (Flickr / Link Humans)

2. Kick off the discussion and tie up later. 

In case you have found a prospective business contact on LinkedIn, start a dialogue and build a connection. These are key requirements to deliver an invitation to engage with one another. Through LinkedIn, you may make the first move using an InMail, reveal your goals, or remark favorably on their work.

3. Prove your value. 

Showing value to a prospective business contact is important to develop a productive connection. Help the potential contact reach his or her goals first before your own objectives. For example, you may connect the prospect with your current contacts, share relevant and valuable knowledge, or even support a project. This unselfish approach will be compensated when it is your turn to ask for something in return.

4. Quality over quantity. 

Is it wise to have more than 100 LinkedIn connections that you are not familiar with or acquainted to, or only 10 business contacts that are really eager to help you reach the pinnacle of success? Even though LinkedIn is successful in preserving weak connections, the real worth of a LinkedIn network rests on having strong relationships to allow economic connections and collaborations.

5. Leave the desk every so often. 

Although LinkedIn provides a sprawling network of millions of prospective business contacts, proximity is still a key advantage. The person you are searching for may be right at the next building.

Leave the office building and start to network in the flesh.  Seal the circle after you gather the new contacts and extend on LinkedIn, and then gain access to their shared networks.

6. Pinpoint network hubs. 

Only a single connection is enough to unravel the appropriate group of prospective business contacts. Assess the current network to find contacts that may be considered “hubs”. These people may help provide access to the target network you require to reach your direct objectives.

Author: Francis Rey

Francis is a voracious reader and prolific writer. He has been writing about social media and technology for more than 10 years. During off hours, he relishes moments with his wife and daughter.

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