Posting lots of content alone won’t generate leads on LinkedIn. But doing this will.
Here’s what one of my contacts, a freelance writer, posted on their LinkedIn feed:
I’ve been posting more regularly on this platform (every day) and I just checked my analytics.
🚀 Things are on the up and up.
But the metric I want are the leads…leading to work.
👎 I’ve gotten inquiries but no gigs since I started posting.
Now, despite what some “LinkedIn experts” might tell you, i.e. the ones that don’t seem to have any real job experience other than trying to sell you a course or membership, posting content alone won’t get you more leads for your business.
How to generate leads on LinkedIn (what actually worked for me)
In the past two weeks, I’ve had sales calls with two prospective clients for my fractional CMO service.
Interestingly, both mentioned they had looked at my LinkedIn profile and my weekly newsletter before they reached out to me.
One was a referral from a previous boss that I worked with, and they emailed me directly.
The other sent me an LI connect request before Christmas, saying they saw me commenting on a mutual contact’s post, noticed I had “fractional CMO” listed in my headline/title, and thought they’d reach out for a chat.
Here’s what has worked for me in growing my LinkedIn following and generating leads for my business.
1. Optimise your LinkedIn profile.
Think of it like a landing page rather than a CV. Does it clearly express:
- Whom you serve
- The problems you solve for them
- Proof of what you can do (testimonials, case studies, your portfolio), and
- How to get started with you if they want help?
2. Make sure that you’re talking to the right people (your ideal customers)
Going back to that freelance writer that I mentioned earlier, I saw her responding to a comment that somebody else had made. What she wrote highlighted a major issue with her LinkedIn efforts.
She had written, “I believe most (of my) followers are writers.“
I told her that this is a huge problem if writers are not the type of people who either refer prospective clients to her or pay for her work. (She confirmed that they’re not)
Use LinkedIn Audience Insights to see who you’re actually talking to
A quick way to see who is looking at your content is the audience insights.
- Go to Analytics > Audience > Top Demographics (Job titles) and
- Filter for the past 90 days.
- You’ll see some data like below.
4. Do any of the job titles match your ideal client’s job title? (Ideally, you want #1 to be a match)
Note: You can also select [industries] to see if the people who are reading your content are from your target industry.
Now that you’ve seen the data, you can identify whether or not you’re, in fact, talking to the right audience.
If your ideal client (job title and industry) is not showing up in the top 1-2 results, then you’ve got work to do to proactively build your connections with the right type of individuals.
3. Proactively search for and connect with ideal prospects for your services.
I make a conscious effort to find (using LinkedIn’s free search function) and connect with 5-10 new people daily. I encourage you to do the same.
An awesome pro tip I got from Brynne Tillman is to take a look at who you know who is connected to folks who fit your ICP. Then, ask your first-degree connections to introduce you to second-degree connections who fit your ICP. Warm intros always work better than cold pitching.
Now, once they’ve accepted your connect request, what’s next?
You know how you’ve just accepted someone’s connect request, and immediately you’re getting a DM that pitches their service to you?
Yeah, don’t be that guy or gal.
Your goal instead is to build a real relationship with each new connection.
I’ve covered how you can go about this in my article How to ask someone to share something (without being annoying).
4. Post regular LinkedIn content that sells your service.
Show you have an opinion, display your personality, and answer prospects’ qs (the same ones in point 1 above).
5. Actively comment on other people’s LinkedIn posts.
Engage with people in your industry (who are likely connected to your ideal clients) by:
- Adding thoughtful comments to their posts,
- Answering questions/solving problems, and
- Genuinely caring.
Oh, and for heaven’s sake, DO NOT post AI-generated comments. If you care about your reputation (the cool kids are calling it “personal brand” these days), then you’ll avoid doing this at all costs.
Final thoughts on how to Generate Leads on LinkedIn
So there you have it, a proven 5-step process for generating leads on LinkedIn. Give it a try for 90 days and let me know how you go.
If you’re a freelancer, you might also find my post on How to Sell Your Services as a Freelance Writer useful.
Let me know how you’re doing – are you finding LinkedIn useful for lead generation? Did you learn anything useful in this post? Comment below.