In the previous article, you learnt how to use LinkedIn to connect with your audience. However, it would be a pity if you stopped at that. You can use the growing power of LinkedIn to develop your online freelance business by networking with your target market and building strategic partnerships with other writers and editors.
The first step is to change your approach towards LinkedIn – think of it as a professional business-building tool instead of just a social media site. In order to connect with your target audience on LinkedIn, you first need to identify your target audience. Don’t try to connect with everyone; figure out who your ideal client is.
Next, focus on your LinkedIn profile. Choose keywords that are likely to be used by your ideal clients so that they can find you. Most important, complete your profile, including the various descriptions and the summary. The fastest way to lose credibility on LinkedIn is to have an incomplete profile.
Do make sure that your profile is well-written and attracts and engages your ideal clients. One way to do this is to write in the first person. So instead of writing “Jane Doe is a freelance writer and professional blogger…” you may write “I’m a freelance writer and professional blogger…” Then explain to your prospects how you can help them and solve their problems.
One of the most effective ways to make your LinkedIn profile stand out is to add a video to your profile. To add a video to your LinkedIn profile:
- Create a free SlideShare account
- Add your SlideShare account on LinkedIn
- Create a professional video explaining who you are and what you do and upload it to YouTube
- Create and Upload a PowerPoint presentation to your SlideShare account in which the link to your YouTube video is the first slide
- Add the SlideShare presentation on your LinkedIn profile to enable the video to play within your LinkedIn profile.
(However, if creating video is too intimidating at present, you can upload a PowerPoint presentation to your SlideShare account and add it to your LinkedIn profile.)
Finally, always include a clear call to action, that is, let your prospects know what you want them to do next. You could ask them to email you or click on your blog URL. One way to get them to take the next action is to give them an incentive such a free report or e-book.
There are a number of other LinkedIn applications you can choose to add to your profile such as “Events” which informs your LinkedIn contacts of your product launches, giveaways, etc. and “Reading List by Amazon” which lets you share the books you’re reading.
The best way you can optimize the growing popularity of LinkedIn is by regularly adding new connections, updating your profile, sharing your blog content, adding videos or slide presentations to your profile, recommending your contacts, and adding new books to your Amazon reading list.
Free resource: Exclusive report on how to create a compelling and optimized LinkedIn profile: www.linkedinchecklist.com (opt-in required).
(16 October 2013)
Rohi Shetty is a medical doctor, Vipassana meditator, writer, editor, translator and blogger. His short stories and articles have been published online and in print. He blogs at http://rohishetty.com.