Leveraging LinkedIn: How to get started

 

As a benefits broker and insurance agent, you aren’t just a commodity pusher, you are a relationship builder. And because you care about building a relationship with your clients, social networking needs to become a part of your routine. With roughly 195 million social media users in the U.S. alone and over 400,000 insurance professionals on LinkedIn, there is a tremendous opportunity for you to make lasting connections online.

LinkedIn

LinkedIn has grown as a reputable professional networking platform and Microsoft’s recent purchase of the platform confirms it’s potential. This platform allows you to join professional groups where you can find tips, discussions and links to reliable and useful information.

LinkedIn also allows you to create a company page where other users can choose to receive updates about your business (called posts or status updates) by following your page. With added features like Lynda and SlideShare you can extend your professional reach beyond traditional tactics, to include training modules and/or slide presentations.

Here are 10 ways you can leverage LinkedIn to develop relationships with other brokers, administrators and potential clients.

1. Enhance your profile.

  • Add a professional photo.
  • Write a compelling headline that will intrigue prospects in your job description or summary box, and use keywords that match terms web users would use to search for someone with the skills they need—and you possess.
  • Add rich media like presentations or videos with SlideShare to show your authority and boost your influence.

2. Participate in groups to start or join discussions with focused, relevant market segments.

  • To find Groups: Locate the search box, select Groups from the dropdown list on the left and type in keywords or group names to search. You can use filters to refine your search.
  • To view suggested Groups: Move your cursor over Interests on your homepage and select Groups. You can request membership by clicking the Ask to Join button.

3. Follow Influencers and thought leaders to stay on top of industry trends and news.

4. Leverage mutual connections as they are more likely to engage with you.

  • You can request an introduction to your 2nd or 3rd degree connections—people you don’t know yet, but who know your contacts—from someone in your network.

5. Dodge a “cold call” by learning about your prospects through their profile and network.

 

6. Stay away from the “hard sell” social media post. Provide value instead.

 

7. Post weekly or more often, if possible.

 

8. Respond to comments and questions quickly and engage prospects and clients where their interests lie.

 

9. Keep your posts visual and relevant.

 

10. Stay positive and professional.

 

LinkedIn isn’t the only social media channel you can use to connect with prospects.

Check out our eBook The Really Simple Guide to Social Media for Benefits Brokers today to learn how you can use other platforms to boost your business!

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