Are You a Consultant? Here’s How You Can Use LinkedIn to Find More Work
Unlike other social media platforms, LinkedIn can help you skyrocket your career if you know what you’re doing.
It’s a shame that not every freelance consultant is into LinkedIn marketing. So many consultants are leaving a lot on the table by sticking to old methods of self-promotion.
Sure, old methods do work sometimes, but remember, LinkedIn has over 740 million users worldwide. The exposure that LinkedIn can give you is huge.
In this article, we’ll discuss how to make the most of LinkedIn and use it to accelerate your freelance consulting career.
1. Start With the Basics
When you roll up your sleeves and decide to take LinkedIn marketing seriously, you might struggle to find a starting point. That’s why you should begin with the very basics. Get a professional profile picture taken and upload it.
Next comes the wide background photo. Be creative and use this space wisely. There are many free sites, such as Canva, that allow you to design an aesthetically appealing LinkedIn background photo. Try not to waste this space by leaving it blank or adding a generic image of some skyline or the milky way - it’s really unprofessional and definitely not the right way to optimize LinkedIn.
Once your photos are sorted, write something catchy for the headline section, for example, “Ex-McKinsey Consultant Open to Freelance Projects” or “Helping You Scale Your Business Through Digital Transformation”. Then, as a general rule, fill in your education and work experience section, and make sure you write a brief description of your job duties for the latter.
Feel free to go through some LinkedIn consultant profile examples for inspiration, but make sure your profile looks unique.
2. Write Compelling Copy in the ‘About’ Section
When it comes to LinkedIn marketing, your About section is like a sales pitch. A lot of professionals, including consultants, write a very simple and lifeless description of their work experiences and abilities. It goes like this, “I worked at XYZ company for 8 years. I have worked on XYZ projects. My professional skills include…..,” and some more sentences that may bore a prospective client and make them click away.
So, how to make sure people don’t click away and read your full bio? Well, you could use the AIDA copywriting method. AIDA is an acronym and it stands for attention, interest, desire and action. Let’s understand all four of these one by one.
- Attention: Start your bio with a headline that draws attention. For example, “My growth strategies have helped small businesses increase their revenue by up to 30% in 6 months.”
- Interest: Write some more details on your achievements and how it benefited clients. The key here is to maintain the reader’s interest.
- Desire: The last few sentences should make the reader want to hire you. For example, “If you don’t want to get involved with big consulting firms, you should hire a freelance consultant like me. I have worked with top consulting firms for more than a decade, so rest assured, you’ll still be working with the best.”
- Action: Always end your About section with a call-to-action, for example, “Get in touch now if you’re a small to a medium-sized business owner who needs expert advice on Scrum.”
Your About section should be written in such a way that it keeps the reader hooked. You cannot fully optimize LinkedIn if your bio doesn’t grab and maintain attention. And remember, you don’t have to write about your job duties in the About section - it may seem really boring and plain. That’s why you should only use the work experience section for mentioning your job duties.
3. Ask Your Contacts to Help You With the ‘Skills & Endorsements’ Part
Social proof: A phenomenon wherein people judge someone (or something) based on how others are judging them.
LinkedIn is a ‘social’ media platform and you must use it to build as much ‘social’ proof as you can. Think about it: If you want to hire a graphic designer, who would you rather hire? The one with zero endorsements and recommendations or the one with more than ten?
4. Post Original Content, and Engage With Your Target Audience’s Posts
A lot of top social media experts recommend that you should stick to one platform and completely nail it - instead of spreading your focus onto different platforms and doing a mediocre job on all of them. It may be worthwhile to ditch the social media marketing strategy and just have a LinkedIn marketing strategy. Rationally speaking, you are more likely to book a meeting with a CEO through LinkedIn as compared to an Instagram story or a Facebook post.
In order to optimize LinkedIn for content marketing, you must post your own original content as well as interact with other professionals’ content on the platform. Make sure that the content you post is relevant to your field of work, such a growth strategy, problem solving, digitalization, etc. And when it comes to engagement, leave likes and comments on the posts of other users - especially the ones who are likely to offer you freelance consulting projects in the future.
In conclusion, LinkedIn may be the best social media platform to build connections, establish yourself as an industry expert, and find new clients - if you know how to optimize it. Use the tips mentioned in this article and let us know how it goes.