How to Approach Potential Clients on LinkedIn

Are you on the prowl for new clients? Have you come to realize that the use of social media, including LinkedIn, could be the best way to generate business?

While the opportunity to use LinkedIn to grow your business is right in front of you, there is a big difference between “saying” and “doing.”

The way you approach potential clients on this professional networking site can be the difference between success and failure. Here are three how-to tips that will put you on the right path to success:

1. Personalize your communication. As tempting as it may be to send a “canned message” to each and every target, this is a mistake you want to avoid. Your recipients will see right through this, subsequently trashing your message before they ever see what you want.

2. The shorter the better. While it is imperative to get your point across, if you take up too much real estate you are going to scare off the recipient. Get to the point, regardless of what it may be, as quickly as possible. This will improve your chance of a high “read rate,” thus increasing your chance of a response.

3. Ask for something, give something. Even though you are reaching out to a particular person in hopes of turning them into a client, you don’t want to come across this way. Instead, offer something in return. For example, a website designer may offer a mockup, showing the person what they have to offer. You will be surprised at how your response rate climbs when you offer something of value in your initial contact.

What not to do

Now that you have those three tips guiding you, here are a few things you should never do when approaching clients on LinkedIn:

  • Brag, brag, and brag some more. Nobody wants to read about your accomplishments in a LinkedIn message. Save this for your profile.
  • Talk down to the person. There is a fine line between explaining what you offer and talking down to the person, making them feel that they have been doing things wrong in the past.
  • Leave it open-ended. Make sure you push for a phone call, email conversation, or in person meeting. You don’t want to leave your message open-ended, as the recipient may not know what to do next.

If approaching potential clients on LinkedIn sounds like a strategy that could benefit your business, the time to get started is now.

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