There are many reasons to use LinkedIn, including the fact that this is a great way to drum up new business. Even though this may not be your primary objective, over time you will find that people are connecting with you in hopes of forming some type of business relationship. In the event that somebody reaches out to discuss a business opportunity.
there are five steps you should take when it comes time to respond:
1. Make sure the person and opportunity is legit. Just the same as any online service, there are spammers and scammers who will reach out to anybody and everybody in an attempt to make money. Don¹t be duped!
2. Do some research into the person¹s background. Since you received the message on LinkedIn, this is a great place to start. What is their current position? Where are they located? Which companies have they worked for in the past? From there, you can do a quick Google search to see what else you can find.
3. Answer any questions that were asked of you. This is when you will dive into the opportunity that has been presented, letting the person know if you are interested or not. Tip: while answering questions, don’t be afraid to interject your own ideas, explaining why you are the right person for the opportunity. Despite the fact that the other party reached out to you, there is nothing wrong with selling yourself.
4. Be quick and to the point. LinkedIn is not a place to hold a long conversation. You should be as quick and concise as possible, sharing the necessary information and providing the person with everything they asked of you. If you drag on too long, you take the risk of your note not being read in its entirety.
5. Setup the next action. At the end of your response, suggest the next action, such as a time for a phone call or face to face meeting. If you are truly interested in the opportunity, no matter what it may be, you need to take the initiative in setting up a time for you to take discussions to the next level. Every LinkedIn business inquiry is unique, however, you can take these five steps to ensure that you are on the right path.
As the biggest professional networking site in the world, the more time you spend on LinkedIn the better chance there is that somebody will eventually reach out to discuss a business opportunity.
Peg McDermott is an award-winning marketing communications expert,Internet marketing specialist, and public speaker. Peg is the founder and president of COGO Interactive, an innovative Internet Marketing firm specializing in helping small to mid-sized businesses increase revenue and awareness by leveraging Social Media Marketing and Search Engine Optimization. She can be found on Google +, LinkedIn, Twitter, and thecogoblog.com