Social media strategy: Using linkedIn to increase sales

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Read the blog here: http://www.o2-v2.com/en/blog/social-media-strategy-using-linkedin-to-increase-sales Are you looking to get more leads and sales for your company? If you said 'No,' then stop reading! Most people in China dealing with foreigners often have the same issue: They don't know where to pick up more foreign leads, and so can't get enough sales. Perhaps you use: Alibaba Global Sources But beyond them, where are you looking for new foreign leads for your company? In this blog I'm going to show you how you should be using LinkedIn to increase sales as an important part of your social media strategy! WHY USE LINKEDIN? Whereas the use of Facebook, Twitter, and Google Plus may be difficult in China, as these channels are blocked and require a VPN to access; LinkedIn is 100% available as a marketing tool for you! Why you should be on LinkedIn: 300 Million+ members around the world 2 Million+ interests groups Top 5 countries with the most active users are: USA (93 million), India (24 million), Brazil (16 million), UK (14 million) and Canada with 9 million As you can see, LinkedIn is very much a legitimate player, and as such should be a part of your social media strategy. "ISN'T LINKEDIN BORING THOUGH?" Define boring. LinkedIn is the professional network, and so whilst you will not see pictures of your friend's cat or baby there, you will be able to find and connect with colleagues, people in your industry, and, more importantly, people who may be interested in your products or services. Get more help with your social media strategy for LinkedIn here: http://www.pinterest.com/Oxygen_2Point0/linkedin-tips/ Pin this information for later here: http://www.pinterest.com/pin/447474912949678709/ Start blogging in English in order to get more foreign leads and sales with this FREE E-book on business blogging in English: http://www.o2-v2.com/better-business-blogging-for-chinese-companies-masterclass-ebook

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  • 1. o2-v2.com http://www.o2-v2.com/en/blog/social-media-strategy-using-linkedin-to-increase-sales Social Media Strategy: Using LinkedIn To Increase Sales Are you looking to get more leads and sales for your company? If you said 'No,' then stop reading! Most people in China dealing with foreigners often have the same issue: They don't know where to pick up more foreign leads, and so can't get enough sales. Perhaps you use: But beyond them, where are you looking for new foreign leads for your company? In this blog I'm going to show you how you should be using LinkedIn to increase sales as an important part of your social media strategy! Why Use LinkedIn?
  • 2. Whereas the use of Facebook, Twitter, and Google Plus may be difficult in China, as these channels are blocked and require a VPN to access; LinkedIn is 100% available as a marketing tool for you! Why you should be on LinkedIn: 300 Million+ members around the world 2 Million+ interests groups Top 5 countries with the most active users are: USA (93 million), India (24 million), Brazil (16 million), UK (14 million) and Canada with 9 million As you can see, LinkedIn is very much a legitimate player, and as such should be a part of your social media strategy. "Isn't LinkedIn boring though?" Define boring. LinkedIn is the professional network, and so whilst you will not see pictures of your friend's cat or baby there, you will be able to find and connect with colleagues, people in your industry, and, more importantly, people who may be interested in your products or services. Using LinkedIn To Increase Sales As we've mentioned at the start of the blog, your issue is finding more customers from abroad. Guess what. They're on LinkedIn. So the question now is: How do you take advantage of LinkedIn and start finding more leads, and then selling to them? 1. Set Up Your Own Profile Get started by actually using LinkedIn yourself! That means setting up your profile...don't worry, it's free! Here are a few tips to get you started:
  • 3. Use a nice picture that shows your face clearly. Try not to use something that's too wild, or funny. Give details about yourself as an employee, and what you like to do in your free time. This helps people to understand who you are, and is more interesting. Include as much professional experience as possible in your 'experience' section. You'll be found by interested people more. Don't forget to include your responsibilities and your successes. You can include much more information here than on your CV, so use it to show how you made an impact professionally. Talk about yourself in a more casual way, as LinkedIn is a social network after all. For instance, you would say, "I went to Cambridge University," Rather than, "Ms. Zhang attended Cambridge University." Ask a former employer, or co-worker, to write you a reference. Join groups related to your interests and, more importantly, your company's industry. You can join up to 50, so the more you join, the more contacts and info you will be able to gain. Now you're an active member you need to connect with as many colleagues, friends, and former co-workers as possible to grow your network. Over time you'll meet new contacts who are suggested to you through knowing them, and these people may be helpful for you in future. However, you MUST connect with current foreign customers. LinkedIn can find users from your email address book, so be sure to allow it to do so from your company mail account! 2. Create A Dedicated Page For Your Company
  • 4. Above you can see the Oxygen 2.0 LinkedIn company page. Why not connect with us? You have added your personal profile, and let everyone know who you are working for, but did you know that your company can also have a free business page on LinkedIn? A good company page will have: You only have 2,000 words to explain what your business is and what you offer, so make it as brief as possible, as traditionally social media users have a short attention span. Once you have your page set up, you should: Ask other co-workers to add it to their LinkedIn accounts, or at least add it to your own. You just need to go to your profile and select: "Edit Profile" > "Edit" next to the position at your company > Start filling in the name, which will now automatically attach your new company page and its details! This should actually only take perhaps 20 minutes, and gives your company a presence on LinkedIn that potential customers can see, and learn more about your products and services. 3. Share Interesting Updates On Your Company Page One of the most effective ways of making LinkedIn work for you is to start sharing information there that current, or potential customers will find interesting and useful. LinkedIn is a great place to share: Just be sure that whatever you're sharing is interesting, or useful, for your customers! Showing that you're an expert in your field by offering high-quality, and detailed information will earn you trust; and this is where creating blogs in English will really help you. Always focussing on showing how your company, or its products or services can solve the customer's problem or fulfill their needs. You could also share (the occasional) link to your promotions, as then you're making people aware that you have products or services that may be useful to them, and that are on offer. You're generally not making a hard sell though, so instead focus on offering people useful free content (such as blogs or E-books) that will delight them, and then make them enthusiastic to go through to your website, or contact a sales representative, where they can then buy something.
  • 5. Finally, you could share, or curate, useful information about your industry. For instance, if there is a thorough white-paper that someone has created that you think your customers would find beneficial, share it with them! Even though it is not your content, you are helping your customers, which is worth a lot! 4. Make Even More Foreign Connections Since your goal is to sell more to foreigners, the more of them that you can add on LinkedIn and expose to your company's information, the better! You now have a good profile allowing people to see who you are and what you do, and you also have a company page where you are sharing useful information about your products and services. You have already imported any foreign clients (or potential clients) from your email address book, but you will want more. A good starting point is to search for them using LinkedIn's excellent search function. Below I did a search for "mobile phone distributors in the telecommunications industry in the USA," and the search returned 254 results and took 5 seconds!
  • 6. Admittedly, the search tool gets much more detailed and focused if you pay for a premium account, but nonetheless, you could take a look at as many of these potential prospects' accounts as you like, learning more about them, their industry, their companies, and which groups they're members of. Are any of them in an industry who'd benefit from your products or services? Which groups are they in? If they look like they have potential to be a customer, you need to add them as a contact. However, you can't send strangers contact requests on LinkedIn. But once you know which groups they are members of, which will often be on their profiles, you can join the same groups. This is good for 2 reasons: 1. You start to get an understanding of the groups in which your ideal customers might be found on LinkedIn and can spend more time liking, or replying to posts there, or even posting your own questions or links (but make them VERY useful). More activity from you will get your profile and company page seen more by the people that matter, so be consistent. 2. People are much more likely to accept a request from someone in the same group, especially if you have contributed to discussions there. When you do send the request to connect, make sure that you don't use the boring, impersonal default message. Instead make it personal, friendly, and perhaps drop the person a compliment too!
  • 7. PS. Don't be offended if people ignore your request...there are plenty more contacts out there! By getting more foreign contacts who are likely to be interested in your company and its offerings into your network, they're going to be exposed to your company's products and services a lot more as you post regularly on LinkedIn. Now I'm Using LinkedIn, What's Next?
  • 8. The key with any social media strategy is to be consistent. This means making using LinkedIn a daily part of your work. I suggest that you can: Research possible customers Join relevant groups Send connect requests to those possible customers within the groups you join Like posts in groups Comment on posts in groups Post your own questions, or content in groups Post a blog, or other content, on your company page Share your company's content (blogs etc) with your personal account How much of each of these tasks you do is your decision, but keep trying to be active each day, and then over time you will start to get results. Had you not followed any of these steps, then you wouldn't have the chance to get in front of Millions of potential foreign clients on LinkedIn! It's free to use, so what have you got to lose? My final tip to you would be that you must remember that you are using LinkedIn to increase sales, but you're not just posting links to products or services and asking people to buy. Rather, you're putting your time and effort into becoming an industry expert, sharing useful information, helping others, and making polite requests to connect. You need to be patient, but in time you will start to see people going to your website from LinkedIn, asking you questions, and buying your products and services.
  • 9. Your Turn... Are you using LinkedIn to increase sales, or are you going to start now? Do you follow the above steps, or do you use other techniques? Tell us all about your successes by leaving a comment below please! Pin for later how to sell on Linkedin. One of the best types of useful information that you can be sharing on LinkedIn (or any other social media channel) are your own company blogs! But how do you write a blog in English that will attract foreign customers to become leads and customers? Our FREE E-Book "Better Business Blogging For Chinese Companies" will guide you through setting up your new blog, writing excellent blogs, and sharing them in the right places to get leads and sales. Click below to download yours and improve your business results from foreign customers who will love to learn more about you from your blogs: Posted by Adrian Leighton on Sun 21 Sep, 2014 Adrian has been in China for 7 years! He is experienced in all things social media, blogging, and SEO. When not working he enjoys weight-training, reading, watching TV shows with his wife, and baking! Find me on: LinkedIn Topics: Online Marketing Social Media Lead Generation