You know that social media is one of the best sources of leads for your business. That’s why you’re running Facebook ads, creating pretty pictures for Instagram, and tweeting every single day.
But you’re not using LinkedIn to generate leads.
Many business owners view LinkedIn as little more than a business platform that makes hiring new talent a little easier. Sure, you can find some interesting content on LinkedIn too. However, you’ve never tried to use it to generate leads.
That’s a mistake.
LinkedIn is an absolute goldmine of B2B leads. Right now, 80% of all B2B leads generated via social media come from LinkedIn. By comparison, only 13% come from Twitter, with a measly 7% coming from Facebook. Of course, having a lot of leads doesn’t mean much if those leads don’t convert. But that’s not a problem with LinkedIn as a B2B lead from the platform is three times more likely to convert into a sale than an equivalent lead from Facebook or Twitter.
LinkedIn is such a powerful marketing tool that 97% of B2B marketers use it in their work.
The platform’s growing too.
LinkedIn advertising reached 808 million people in the fourth quarter of 2022. That’s an 80 million increase over the numbers from the same quarter in 2021.
The fact is that LinkedIn is one of your most powerful sources for B2B leads. So, why aren’t your tactics working when it’s clear that LinkedIn is such a great source?
Your Profile May Be the Problem
When you think about lead generation, ads and content are probably the first things that come to mind. Your ads get you in front of a larger audience, many of whom may not be active connections. And your content helps you to establish yourself (or your business) as an authority in your niche.
This is all true and you should absolutely focus on ads and content.
But think about it from the prospect’s perspective.
They’ve just seen an ad or piece of content that exposes them to your business for the first time. Do you think they’re going to buy from you immediately? It’s unlikely. Far more likely is that they’re going to do a little research. And the first step for that research is to check out your LinkedIn profile.
If the profile doesn’t show them what they need to see, the prospect is lost.
Alternatively, let’s assume that you don’t have the budget for ads and can’t create any content right now. That means your LinkedIn profile is the only major presence you have on the platform. If your profile isn’t optimized to ensure it gets in front of as many people as possible, you lose out on potential leads.
The Top Tips for Optimizing Your LinkedIn Profile
Your LinkedIn profile isn’t generating the number of leads you want it to. That means you need to make some changes so that visitors can find your profile, and so the profile stands a better chance of converting visitors into leads for your business.
How do you do that?
With these helpful tips, you can optimize your LinkedIn profile to turn it into a lead generation goldmine.
1. It All Starts With a Picture
They say that a picture speaks a thousand words. When it comes to your LinkedIn profile, all of those words have to scream professionalism to every visitor your profile page attracts.
What does that mean?
Unprofessional pictures taken during a night out or while you’re lounging around at home won’t cut it on LinkedIn. This is a business social media platform, which means your picture needs to show people that you’re a professional. Appropriate work wear is a must, as is a clean background and a shot of you looking into the camera. Ideally, the picture should be of a high enough quality to ensure there’s no blurriness.
Your profile picture is the first impression visitors have of you. If you don’t look the part, potential leads may bounce off your profile before they read its contents.
2. Get the Headline Right
Your profile’s headline is supposed to give people an at-a-glance idea of who you are and what you do. Most visitors will read your headline to figure out if it’s worth their time to read the rest of your profile.
The problem with headlines is that most people use them incorrectly. They assume the headline is supposed to showcase their own success, which means they talk about their job title and business venture.
That’s not what a potential lead wants to see.
Anybody who lands on your profile only has one question:
What can this person do to help me with my problem?
The nature of the problem depends on your industry. But whatever that problem may be, you need to make it front and center in your headline. The headline has to show visitors that you understand what they’re looking for and, most importantly, have a value proposition that directly relates to the problem they want to solve.
For example, let’s say that you’re a business coach. By taking the self-focused approach, you might end up with a headline like this:
“Joe Bloggs – CEO of Blogg’s Business Coaching. Business-minded entrepreneur with extensive corporate experience.”
That headline says a lot about you but doesn’t tell a visitor anything about what you do. Now, try this alternative headline on for size:
“Joe Bloggs – Helping business owners and entrepreneurs to develop consistent processes, generate leads, and make sales.”
Now, the headline is all about the results you generate, meaning it tells a visitor exactly what they can expect if they work with you. Any potential lead can see what problems you solve, meaning they know immediately if you’re the right person for them to contact.
3. Use the Right Keywords
Imagine that you’re searching for your own services on LinkedIn. What keywords would you type into the search bar?
Whatever the answer may be, those keywords need to find their way into your profile. If they’re not there, your profile isn’t going to appear in the search results when people search for those keywords.
If you’re able to fit a keyword or two into your headline without making it sound unnatural, you’re off to a good start. If you can’t, don’t force it. Instead, use your profile’s About and Experience sections to include any keywords you think people will use to find somebody in your industry.
The key here is to incorporate keywords naturally rather than trying to write content around them. Copy that’s written solely for the sake of keyword searches reads poorly and will only dissuade a lead from contacting you, even if the keywords made it easier for them to find you. Balance is key. Only include keywords when they make sense in the context of your copy.
4. Tell a Story With Your About Section
Stories are effective.
They’re so effective that they may lead to more engagement than stats, figures, and information about your technical prowess. There are several reasons for this. Stories make your brand more memorable when compared to those that don’t have stories. People engage on an emotional level with a good story, meaning they’re more likely to relate to you. Your story also allows you to communicate your brand’s purpose and to share that purpose with others.
Your LinkedIn profile’s About section is the perfect place to tell your story.
Talk about what inspired you to set up your business or work in the industry that you work in. Talk about the problems you’ve faced and relate them to the challenges your potential clients have to deal with. Use your story to highlight your credentials while always bringing the tale back to how your experiences put you in a position to help the people who visit your profile.
A dry and dull About section that simply tells people the technical stuff isn’t engaging. But a good story that showcases how your skills and experiences help others engages and leads to more people trusting you.
5. Incorporate Social Proof
Social proof is any evidence that comes from third parties that tell people that your brand delivers on its promises. That means it covers user reviews, testimonials from existing customers, and feedback from your LinkedIn network.
What other people have to say about you matters to your potential customers.
And the stats demonstrate it.
The average customer reads 10 online product or business reviews before making a purchasing decision. Those reviews don’t even have to come from somebody the customer knows. In fact, 70% of people trust recommendations from people they’ve never met, with 88% stating they trust user reviews as much as they trust the personal recommendations they receive from family and friends.
The message is simple – social proof is powerful.
It’s also something you can leverage on your LinkedIn profile.
Your profile contains a Recommendations section that other LinkedIn members can use to talk about how great you are. If you have current or past customers who use LinkedIn, ask them to provide a recommendation for your services. Your profile also has a Skills section where you can showcase your key business skills. Other LinkedIn users can endorse your skills to show people that you can do what you say you can do. Again, encourage your connections to endorse your skills if they have direct experience of benefiting from them or working with you.
All of these recommendations and endorsements show prospects that you’ve delivered for other people. And if you’ve kept your promises to other customers, your prospect will believe there’s a good chance you’ll keep your promises to them too.
6. Get Your Skills Right
You’ve probably amassed a ton of different skills during your career. Naturally, you want to showcase as many of them as possible on your LinkedIn profile. The more skills you have, the more authority you hold, right?
While having a good list of skills is important for your profile, the key is that they’re relevant skills. In other words, every skill you showcase needs to relate directly to the problems you solve and how you help your clients.
For example, let’s say you work in digital marketing.
Skills such as search engine optimization, social media, and content marketing are all valuable in that niche. But those public speaking skills you’re so proud of? Your clients don’t care about that skill because it doesn’t help them to achieve their goals.
If you want to use your LinkedIn profile to generate leads, you need to focus on your clients. Trim your skills list so it highlights those most directly related to the service you offer. If you can get endorsements for those skills from other people, you ensure they land at the top of your list, which makes them the first skills a potential client sees.
Convert Your Profile Into a Lead Generation Machine
Your LinkedIn profile is so much more than a recruitment tool for other business owners to use.
It’s a lead generation goldmine.
By optimizing your profile so it speaks directly to your audience, you can use it as a valuable tool for building trust, demonstrating your authority, and encouraging prospects to get in touch with you.
The key is to switch your focus.
Your LinkedIn profile isn’t about you. It’s about what you do to help your clients overcome their challenges. Sure, your qualifications and experience are important because they help you to build authority. But any information you share about yourself needs to be in service of what you do for others.
The tips in this article help you to optimize your profile so it appeals directly to the people you serve. And the good news is that many of these steps take a matter of minutes to follow. Make some changes today and you’ll end up with a more effective LinkedIn profile that generates more leads than it ever has before.