So you are a self-employed professional Interim and like many others, for now, you are totally immersed in and committed to your current client. You have parked those time-consuming activities, that is developing your sales pipeline, at least until you can summon up the right mindset to venture back on to that head-spinning merry-go-round again. But it’s an itch that needs scratching and a necessary evil; baggage that comes with self-employment – a gentle reminder of the less exhilarating side of life as an interim. The harsh reality is you know at some point you will need to devote some time to securing your next assignment and this will mean taking time out to hit the market with a flurry of prospecting calls, pulling out the old faithful list of regular contacts and hopefully set some hares running.
And then there’s Linkedin.
Linkedin can considerably lighten the load with your Sales, Marketing and Branding agenda as well as build a credible and trusted online professional reputation. But like most things in life, the more effort you put in, the more you can get back out. Linkedin can considerably develop your network; showcase your business and expertise – which is effectively your “personal brand” and amplify your competitive advantage – how you can add value and why potential Hirers should engage you over others.
Here are 15 reasons why Linkedin can help you develop your interim business, build your personal brand and strengthen your sales pipeline.
- Are you a Pusher or a Puller? Do you push out to your market and select where you push out to – or do you let Linkedin pull in new business, allowing searchers to seek out your brand? Make it as easy as possible for potential Hirers to understand what you have to offer; why they should engage you over others and most importantly, easily get in touch with you directly.
- Times are changing – be seen to change with them. You could of course try and swim upstream, against the tide or alternatively, you could swim in the same pool as your Clients. In order to be found, you need to be where people are looking. And where your competition is active too. Linkedin is the world’s biggest professional networking platform and as a self-employed interim professional why wouldn’t you be active within this community? Accordingly to a recent Linkedin study, 45 million profiles are viewed daily and 49% of buyers research vendors through their Linkedin profile.
- Demonstrate your expertise – create a positive noise and draw attention to your competitive advantage and value-add proposition, as a thought leader and a credible Interim provider within your sector. Get well known in your sector and build an audience of followers. Amplify your knowledge and expertise, beyond your existing network of contacts, through informed discussion, debate and rich content.
- Be active and visible in your market – easily engage with your market within seconds and expand your reach, raise your online presence and get noticed by a new audience. Start conversations, trigger discussion and build rapport.
- Our buying habits and the way we buy products and services are evolving and in some ways, the rules are being re-written, particularly in the digital age where information is so much more accessible. Hirers will research your brand, do their due diligence and want to get to understand who you are and what you have to offer. And most importantly – how good you are – why buy from you? People buy from people they know and
- Pick up warm leads, those that have shown some subtle interest in your business and follow up interested observers who have shown interest in what you have to say. Make it as easy as possible to be contacted.
- Build a concentrated database of highly relevant industry contacts which allows for focused and targeted discussion, providing you with the opportunity to showcase your expertise, position yourself accordingly and be in the same space as your next potential hirer. Reach and build professional relationships and brand familiarity with Strangers, Hirers you don’t know yet.
- Be close to your Get inspired even – learn from them , monitor trends and industry developments, get inspired . . . keep ahead of the game.
- A free vehicle to publish content – articles and attach brochures and promotional material/activities and circulate amongst your network. Directly sell your products and services. Showcase accomplishments, success stories and genuine recommendations, skills and areas of expertise, as well as be seen to be associated with others successful and influential industry professionals.
- In a recent Global Recruiting Trends report*, the most popular hiring source for employers is via employee referees. This channel trumps job-boards, agencies and internal hires – reiterating the power of networking and the importance of leveraging your presence in your sector.
- Find and permanently connect with attendees at events, conferences and networking events (once connected, this cannot be lost – unlike a business card!)
- Customise your URL for your public profile – your Linkedin URL can be used for branding and increase the searchability of your profile.
- Research and discover new companies, communities and contacts and re-discover old acquaintances and former colleagues.
- Timing and Convenience – sales and business development are continuous, 24/7 – no longer is it a 9 – 5 process. Your profile and content will always be available and within reach of your network (although of course, the more active you are the more you will get noticed). Your sales, marketing and branding are all managed and developed in the one place, at your convenience, where-ever you are.
- Develop and promote your own, authentic brand personality, and provide insight into your brand values and how you operate so Hirers can “get you”.
Build your professional interim business on Linkedin via a 5 stage process:-
Get Noticed → Become Familiar → Gain Trust → Engage → Build and Nurture
Ginnie Riley is a job search strategist and CV Writer. If you would like further details on how to maximise your Linkedin opportunity, contact Ginnie for further details:
(m) 07881 631686
“Build something 100 people love, not something 1 million people kind of like.” (co-founder of Airbnb)
“Social media is about the people. Not about your business. Provide for the people and the people will provide for you.” (Matt Goulart, digital marketing executive)
“Marketing is really just about sharing your passion.” (Michael Hyatt, virtual business mentor)
“Embracing social media isn’t just a bit of fun, it is a vital way to communicate, keep your ear to the ground and improve your business”. Sir Richard Branson.
*According to Global Recruiting Trends, 2017, published by Linkedin