“When you stop collecting connections and start building relationships, you increase trust and credibility; you are able to attract more clients.” That’s Melonie Dodaro’s opening sentence in “LinkedIn Unlocked.”
Every real estate agent I know has a LinkedIn profile, and each month as we mint more new agents, I get dozens of requests to connect on LinkedIn. Yet few, if any, agents have learned to convert LinkedIn connections to offline customers!
The three great truths that Melonie shares about LinkedIn are: Very few people take the time to build a compelling LinkedIn profile; Few learn to engage in a way that builds authority, credibility and trust; Nearly none have learned to convert the conversation from online to offline.
While there is a ton of real estate activity online, the real business is conducted offline in real estate offices, at listings, and in living rooms!
The first order of business is to “transform your LinkedIn profile to attract clients.” In Melonie’s mind, your LinkedIn profile is more important than your website!
That thought is clearly one for debate. Considering that the majority of agents have a website that is provided by their broker who may have 5 to 1500 (or more!) agents using the identical template, there is reason to ponder the point that LinkedIn is a place where very few agents have chosen to standout.
Google is very friendly to a well-built LinkedIn profile. Do this informal test: Search your name on Google to see if your LinkedIn profile comes up on the first page of results. For many agents it does. What is your LinkedIn page saying about your business?
Knowing that LinkedIn is the most used business-to-business social network in the world, your LinkedIn profile is especially important in the luxury market — where your executive clients are likely to be regular users of LinkedIn for recruiting of talent, and doing due diligence before business meetings.
If you’re looking for local examples of agents with awesome LinkedIn profiles, check out the profiles of Jean Pickett, Christina Welch and CC Underwood.
Melonie also recommends a vanity URL to direct business to your LinkedIn profile without the need for someone to search for you. My favorite example is www.WallyConway.com.
Engagement on LinkedIn is similar to engagement on Facebook, with the exception that LinkedIn is about business; not what you had for lunch or sharing your favorite cat video.
Liking, commenting and sharing are the same on LinkedIn as they are on Facebook. The opportunities to create or curate business content on LinkedIn far exceed what can be done on Facebook. LinkedIn is about building authority, credibility and trust; the platform makes it simple and straightforward to do so.
In her book, Melonie spends much time on how to make the comfortable and professional transition to taking the conversation offline to a phone call, video conference, or in-person meeting.
She constantly cautions about the risks of direct selling on LinkedIn, and focuses on the importance of building the relationship for transition offline before selling can begin.
At the dawn of the 21st Century, it was cheap and easy to capture business on Google. A decade ago, Facebook replaced Google as the place an individual agent could stand out in the crowd. That space is now quite crowded, and LinkedIn is emerging as the new frontier.
“LinkedIn Unlocked” provides a clear path to outpace your competition on LinkedIn. For a fast and fun look at LinkedIn from a local business building prospective, I’d be happy to bring the training to your team or office! Email firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 904-268-8211.