LinkedIn is, without doubt, the largest professional network on the planet. The latest stats from the social network state it has over 630 million users representing over 30 million companies.
If you are a finance broker, the sheer number of people on the service means it can be a great place to target prospective clients.
However, for those who aren’t yet active on the platform, it can be difficult to get your head around exactly how to make the most of the service.
While becoming familiar with LinkedIn may take time, once you have optimised your profile and put in place a solid strategy, it can be a good way to generate leads.
Here is a look at how finance brokers can utilise LinkedIn to get more clients.
How LinkedIn Works
The first step is understanding how LinkedIn works. While even those who haven’t used the site before may have a decent idea of how the platform works based on their knowledge of other social media sites, there are some things that make LinkedIn unique.
People who use LinkedIn are categorised as either first, second, or third-degree connections.
First-degree contacts are those you have direct connection with on LinkedIn. Second-degree contacts are people who know people you are connected with. Third-degree contacts are people who know your second-degree connections. Beyond this are people you have no connection to.
This connection system means that as you connect with more people on the service, your network will become progressively larger. This will significantly open up the number of people you can connect with.
On your LinkedIn timeline, you’ll see content your connections have shared or interacted with. Being active when it comes to commenting and sharing content essentially works as a form of networking that can help increase your profile on the platform.
LinkedIn users can message any of their first-degree contacts. To message people they aren’t connected with, they will have to have a premium account.
Profiles are used to tell others on the service a little bit about what you do. Each profile is made up of several parts, including a summary, profile picture, experiences, and skills. If you want to use LinkedIn to get clients, it can be a good idea to think of your profile as a landing page.
How Finance Brokers Can Use LinkedIn
Now you know how LinkedIn works, you need to come up with a strategy that can help you generate leads. The three basic steps you can take are:
In the first part of this article, we’ll focus on how you can optimise your profile. The second part will cover engaging in the community and creating an outreach strategy.
Optimise Your Profile
When designing your profile, you need to focus on two things:
Here are four steps that can help you do both.
One: Write a Headline that Clearly Says What You Do
Along with your profile picture (more on that later), your headline is the first thing potential leads will see when they see you on LinkedIn. Because of this, it’s crucial that you get your headline right.
At a minimum, it should consist of your role and what you do. When writing your headline, you need to aim it at the people you are targeting. Also, don’t be afraid to be specific. For example, instead of just saying “Finance broker,” you could say “Business finance broker,” or “Commercial finance broker” so people who see you know exactly what you do.
Some people choose to use a descriptive headline on LinkedIn. For example, you could say “Finance broker helping small businesses achieve their financing goals.” Doing this will ensure prospects know exactly what you do when you first contact them.
Additionally, headline text is searchable on LinkedIn. Think about what your ideal customer would search for when they are looking for someone with your role and adjust your text to suit.
Two: Choose Professional Images
Choosing a great LinkedIn image doesn’t have to be hard. A simple headshot with a plain background will suffice. Having a professional take your picture can be a good idea, especially considering you can use the same photo across multiple platforms.
The other picture on your LinkedIn profile is the background image. While many people forget about this, it can be a great place to add more visible information about your business due to its prominence on your profile. Think about including your logo, company slogan, or information about what you do.
Three: Fill Out Your Summary
When a lead clicks on your profile, the summary is the first thing they will see. Because of this, you should think about your summary as landing page text. You need to effectively display the benefits of your brokerage service and how you can help.
Keep the text targeted at your ideal customer, so they are likely to find what you have to say interesting. Also, remember that LinkedIn only shows the first three lines of the summary above the “Show More” button. Because of this, you’ll need to put the most important information at the top of the page.
Further down your summary page, you can also add a call-to-action and an offer. This could be directing customers to your website, asking them to get in touch for a consultation, or pointing them towards marketing material on your profile.
Four: Showcase Experience, Skills, and Recommendations
The next part of your LinkedIn profile is experience. Here you can highlight not just where you have worked before, but also achievements in your role.
You can add many experiences to this section, although doing so can take up a lot of space. Think about only adding the most recent, relevant, and impressive things you have done.
For finance brokers experience with blue-chip companies, successful deals and relevant qualifications are all well worth including.
After the experiences section comes education, then skills and endorsements. Here you can add your skills and then ask people who you have worked with to endorse your ability.
Finally, you can showcase recommendations. Both the recommendations and the skills section of your profile are great ways to show social proof of your professional ability.
That’s the end of Part One of our article on how finance brokers can use LinkedIn to build sales. Using the tips in the article, you should be able to set up a profile that can be used to effectively generate leads.
In Part Two, we’ll look beyond your profile at how you can build your presence on LinkedIn and master LinkedIn outreach. To discuss a loan between £50,000 and £1m, please get in touch with one of our commercial lending team on either 0161 451 5710 or firstname.lastname@example.org.