We don’t have to go through the stats of the wide world of LinkedIn. That is a subject that has been covered very very thoroughly. Here, Here, Here, and Here. BUT, I will summarize and call the platform a revenue gold mine. It is the fertile ground. It is the watering hole in the desert. It is the heart of the Nile. It works. And, it will work for you. As a way of example, let me tell you the recipe for how it worked for my friend Mr. Smith (obviously, not his real name).
Mr. Smith’s business was KILLING it! Years 1-3 were spent building a network, investing, trying things and failing. In year four, the rubber hit the road and deals were closed. Multi-million dollar deals. Champagne popping deals. The day after Christmas 2019 was the biggest closed deal yet and in January 2020, the company starts looking to invest some of these returns in a beautiful building in the financial district in Houston.
COVID-19 hit. Hard. It took 3 days and suddenly 100% of the pipeline pulled their contracts. “It’s not the right time”, “We aren’t sure”, “Have you met my lawyer?”, all the clients said in unison like in a chorus of human pain and panic.
In the professional services industry, B2B, highly specialized, and high dollar ($1mm+) service item “marketing” was going to lunch, networking, and who you knew. The marketing budget was for letterhead, but really the budget was reserved for wining-and-dining higher-ups. For Mr. Smith, “nobody, agency or employee, could figure out any real marketing practices”. But, the world was changing rapidly, and why not figure something out with the downtime.
A. Small but Quality Network –Mr. Smith knows people. He’s been doing this for decades after all. All those people are now, like right now, sitting at their desk in shorts and flip flops drinking the same cold coffee. Now, Mr. Smith could phone them, but so what? He already knows these guys and knows they aren’t buying his services right now. He knows that his sales cycle means they probably won’t even be interested in the phone call at least for a couple of months. But, maybe 1 in a 100…maybe 200…could be thinking differently.
B. Willingness to Try New Things – Mr. Smith needs to play the numbers. Connecting with all of his current connections in a digital way can open up TENS OF THOUSANDS of potential connections.
C. A Market with Needs – FILTERING those connections into the cream of the crop ensures a Higher Potential Early Adopter.
D. Paying Attention to the Brand – With the help of (us) his branding strategists, his digital marketers, and his communications team Mr. Smith started to digitally connect with A++ preferred connections EXPONENTIALLY larger than his personal connection base. A strategy that incorporates marketing and the brand inc concert, will always perform.
E. A Digital Strategy – On LinkedIn, it was as if he grew 100 hands with which he could introduce himself. With that many introductions, with that specifically preferred lead, Mr. Smith didn’t have any sort of pressure to push a sale.
F. Almost Immediate – He could be natural, he could be patient, and he could be cool in the heat of the moment when the rest of the industry was on fire. All of a sudden, Mr. Smith became “the guy”.
G. Tracking, Tracking, Tracking – You’ll hear marketers talk about “Awareness”. You’ll hear excellent marketers talk about “Attribution”. Healthy tracking, in this case, analytical tools installed, will show, without question, what is performing and what is wasting. A good strategy starts with attribution goals and moves backward. Mr. Smith needs X number of leads which will result in X number of dollars. That means, we can spend some money and when it performs those champagne popping days will come again.
With an amazingly cool calm approach, with amazing personal and authentic language, and with extremely high volume, Mr. Smith started receiving cell phone numbers with “call me now” and “yes, I’ve been thinking I need to talk to someone” or “yep, I wasn’t ready until just this minute. Call me (xxx)123-4567”. Mr. Smith started working again and started putting out some authoritative content just to entertain the audience he had built. Week 1 resulted in a lead that came in around $9k and week two skyrocketed to the $300k level. Now, a little over a month into this program and Mr. Smith and our team are keeping a running total of leads generated. Now, the audience has started reaching out to him. He’s working on shortening the sales cycle, he’s passing several hundreds of thousands of dollars leads on to other team members… and the leads keep coming in. The efforts build on themselves. All of a sudden a quarantine is irrelevant and the future looks much less frightening.