Linkedin is one of the most important online networking sites for professionals, with 175* million members worldwide. If you’re not a member yet, please check out my Linkedin profile and join today.
I’ve been actively using this networking site for just over two years now. Today I can safely say that my business would be significantly different without it, as I use Linkedin to generate about 20% of my business income. About half of that is comes from existing clients, and the other half represents new business coming from new clients.
Although Linkedin can be used for job search, or simply to join alumni networks and groups, I will share some of my tips and strategies on how to use Linkedin to boost your business, especially if you’re a self-employed service professional.
Part of my business here at the iBizAcademy is teaching and coaching and as many who have attended my live workshops and seminars testify, I teach social networking in plain English, so that even technophobes can apply the new skills immediately.
How To Use Linkedin Polls to Help You Make Better Business Decisions
There are many ways to use Linkedin to grow your client base, but today I will focus on one, lesser-known “application” called Linkedin Polls.
As I always do in my workshops, I will use a real-life example of how I used Linkedin Polls to leverage the collective wisdom and experience business professionals to help me make my own business decisions.
When I started hosting my live training seminars, I thought that weekdays would probably work best, and I picked the 10am-1pm time slot. I figured by 10am people can finish their morning chores, such as driving kids to school, and be ready for business. However, when I started promoting my seminars, occasionally I’d get a reply from someone who is interested in attending but the time didn’t work for them, so they asked if I did any evening classes.
Well, this got me thinking that perhaps my own preferences may not be the same as other peoples’. So how can you figure out what other people think? Ask them! I used the Linkedin Poll application and asked them one simple question: If you have 3 hours to invest in a training seminar to help you boost your business, WHEN would you be most likely to attend? I then sent the link to this poll to my connections and received 58 responses (20% of my connections responded). I was relieved to learn that 48% of respondents did in fact prefer the weekday 10am-1pm time!
So next time you need to make a business decision tap into the collective wisdom of Linkedin members.
To learn more about how to use Linkedin to get more clients subscribe to my blog, or join me at the next Linkedin to the Max! workshop.
*As of Aug. 2012