LinkedIn: key business tool

| June 28, 2011

The business focused social media website LinkedIn is a quick, easy and highly accessible way to manage your contacts and business leads.

Tom Skotidas director and founder of B2B social media lead generation agency Skotidas believes LinkedIn is a very effective and efficient way to identify and connect with decision makers.

“Social networks, and in particular LinkedIn, give you almost total transparency of your direct prospects and key influencers such as bloggers or journalists. Any type of business prospect you can think of is probably on LinkedIn. Because of the social nature of these networks, members usually self report [put infomation online personally], in great detail, allowing marketers and sales professional to identify them and approach them in a relevant, genuine – social – way. 

“The emphasis here is on employing a social, genuine approach, because aggressive sales approaches never work in social media. In the worst case, aggressive approaches that lack social networking protocols can damage a person’s reputation.”

According to Skotidas there are several different ways to generate leads using LinkedIn. One of those is the InMail tool, which is the equivalent of an email sent throught the LinkedIn platform.

“InMail often works better than direct mail lists because you know you are reaching the decision makers directly, and in most cases avoid their gate keepers. It is a scalable tool, however the person sending the InMail must own a very rich, relevant profile and the recipient must see the relevancy of the approach. All business development through social networks must use commonsense community protocols otherwise the person could be branded a spammer.

According to Skotidas, LinkedIn groups are another important tool for brand buiding and lead generation.

“There are thousands of LinkedIn groups that professionals can join. Focus on those that your target audience have joined. By joining, or creating your own group, you are able to infuence a targeted group of people that one day might because your clients or business partners. Groups are a great way of showing your expertise on key topics related to your personal brand and company brand.”

Join the First 5000 LinkedIn group or check out Tom Skotidas’ LinkedIn page.