Gitomer April 17, 2013

By Jeffrey Gitomer
April 17, 2013
 

title=I am NOT a LinkedIn expert, but I do have more than 15,000 LinkedIn connections. Do you?

I may have more visibility and notoriety than you do, but we are equalin exposure and linking possibilities. And 98.5% of my LinkedInconnections are the result of people wanting to connect with me.

I do not accept everyone. I click on everyone’s profile beforeconnection. Many are impressive. Most are average or less. Some arepathetic.

How’s yours? How many connections do you have? How are you communicating with your connections? How are your connections helping your sales oryour career?

Your LinkedIn profile is one more social media image. And you chooseexactly what it is. When others search for you on Google, LinkedIn isone of the first links they click on. You have a chance to make apositive business and social impression.

THE GOOD: When I realized the business significance of LinkedIn, Iimmediately sought professional help. I hired Joe Soto at One SocialMedia to help me with the keywords, layout, and what to include on myprofile page. He also recommended what and how to post.

It must be working. In the two years since I hired him, I have addedmore than 9,000 organic connections. Or should I say, more than 9,000potential customers. Huge opportunity. At an acquisition cost of ZERO.

REALITY OF LINKEDIN: I receive requests to link and I also get messages. Some are very nice, some are self-serving, some are insincere, and some are stupid (very stupid). And ALL messages are a reflection of theperson sending them. That would be you.

Here are some THINGS about LinkedIn to make you think, re-think, and act:
• Your picture is NOT an option. Show a professional, but approachable, image. Be proud of who you are.
• Have a LinkedIn profile that gives me insight, not just history. Notjust what you’ve done, but also who you are. Your profile is yourpathway to connection.
• DANGER: DO NOT USE stock LinkedIn messages. It shows your laziness,lack of creativity, and overall lack of professionalism. StandardLinkedIn messages need to be replaced with your own. EVERY TIME.
• If you’re looking for a job, or working a lead, tell me WHY I should connect. (Where’s the value?)
• If you’re looking for leads, use the keyword feature (rather than thejob title option) in the “advanced search” link to the right of thesearch box. It’s free, and you’ll find hundreds of people in yourindustry or in your backyard that you never knew existed.
• Why are sending me an e-card on Easter? I’m Jewish, not a good move.Three words to ask yourself with any message you send or post: WHERE’STHE VALUE? E-cards are a total waste, unless it’s family.
• If you’re asking me (or people) to join your group, TELL ME WHY I SHOULD.
• If you’re asking me to connect you with a 2nd level connection, DON’T. The only way to ask is from 1st to 1st. And tell me in a sentence ortwo WHY you want to connect.
• Asking for a recommendation or endorsement is BAD. If you’re askingyour connections for a recommendation: DON’T. It is perhaps the dumbest, rudest thing on LinkedIn. Think about it, you’re asking people to“please stop what you’re doing and tell me about ME.” Two words: GOAWAY. If you have to ask, it’s probably because you don’t deserve. Think about that.
• Don’t tell me you “found something interesting” in your group message, especially if the link is to join your MLM down-line or attend your“free” webinar.
• Allocate 30-60 minutes a day to utilize this vital business social media asset.

THE BAD and THE UGLY: Here are some examples of MESSAGES and INVITES Ihave received on LinkedIn. Hopefully they’ll make you think, re-think,and act…

BAD: Hi Jeffrey, My name is —- with —-, a leading —- providerthat helps organizations connect with their customers through email,mobile, and social networks. I would like to connect about a potentialpartnership to help Buy Gitomer, Inc. increase their interactivemarketing ROI.
This is a typical self-serving (and deleted) message. Why not give me atip, and ask if I’d like more like it? And stop using dead sales wordslike “ROI,” and “helps organizations.” Help me, don’t sell me.

DUMB: Hi All, As I continue to work on building my network, can I ask that you do me a huge favor and endorse me here on LinkedIn? I would be more than happy to return the favor and endorse you as well. Thank youfor your support! (name withheld to avoid public embarrassment)
Scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours. Give me a break. Spare me. Beg someone else.

BAD AND DUMB: I got this in my message box (I get a few like this every week)
(subject line) Your Opinion please. (name withheld) Supplier Business Executive
If you’re hoping for an endorsement or a recommendation on LinkedIn, or anywhere, here’s the two-word mantra: EARN IT!

LinkedIn is the business social media site of today AND tomorrow.Harness its power, do not abuse its options, and you will reap itsrewards.

Jeffrey Gitomer is the author of twelve best-selling books including The SalesBible and The Little Red Book of Selling. He just published two newsales books, available exclusively on Amazon’s Kindle. Win Now! and TheSale Re-Defined. They will change the way you think and sell. Hiswebsite, www.gitomer.com, will lead you to more information abouttraining and seminars, or email him personally at salesman@gitomer.com.

© 2013 All Rights Reserved. Don’t even think about reproducing thisdocument without written permission from Jeffrey H. Gitomer and BuyGitomer. 704/333-1112

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