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June 25, 2013

If your summer is slow, focus on marketing & sales for a competitive advantage; part 2 – get active on LinkedIn

man working with laptop on a rocky beachThis is the second in our series of blog posts outlining some ideas for taking advantage of the summer slowdown to work “on” your business.

Last week’s post was on planning for the fall conference season.  This week…

Summer tip #2: Spend some time on LinkedIn

From my perspective, LinkedIn should be the #1 social media site for firms in the MR industry… it’s ideal for connecting, promoting and engaging.  This summer, while you’re lounging by the pool, consider the following:

    • Reach out and connect; focus on two places on the LinkedIn site to help: LinkedIn Groups – connect with people who are in several of the same groups as you are – the groups they belong to are listed on their profiles; scroll through ‘People You May Know’ and look for those with whom you share a lot (50+) of the same contacts.
    • Join LinkedIn groups… not just our MR industry groups, but focus on those where your clients and prospective clients might hang out. For example, if you do a lot of CPG-related research, you should join the CPR SuperGroup! (yes, it’s a real LinkedIn Group).  Note: you can join up to 50 groups.
    • Ask for an “introduction.”  Do you want to target a certain company as a sales prospect, but don’t know anyone there?  Use the “friend of a friend” connectivity within LinkedIn.  Get a mutual contact to make a formal LinkedIn introduction for you… and see what happens.
    • Post content.  Do you blog and tweet a lot?  Maybe publish articles, white papers or eBooks?  Then make sure you are also posting them on your personal profile, your firm’s profile and within those LinkedIn Groups where it’s appropriate.
    • Engage in conversations.  Scroll through the groups you belong to and look for those threaded conversations to which you can contribute.  I didn’t say ‘sell,’ but contribute… share your knowledge, show off your expertise.  Your informative comments can not only help those who participate in the thread, but can help position you as a subject-matter-expert and will encourage others to connect with you.  Even better… start a really thought-provoking conversation!

Remember the old adage: If you keep doin’ what you’re doin’… you’ll keep gettin’ what you’re gettin’.  The summer is the perfect time to try a few new things to help grow your business and gain a competitive advantage before you get busy again in the fall.

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