Making connections in LinkedIn
Your first order of business is to use the LinkedIn Service Providers directory to start identifying potential partners. You can look for service providers that may be two or three degrees away from you, or you can target people you want to meet at specific companies by seeing who in your network can arrange an introduction. Ideas to keep in mind during your search include
Pay attention to people’s titles.
In the past, you may have told somebody, “I need to talk to someone who works in advertising sales for a major radio network.” Today, with LinkedIn, you can look for an Advertising Sales Manager at Clear Channel Communications. Search for who you need to know, specifically, and LinkedIn will show you whether that person is connected to you by one, two, or three degrees.
Join the LinkedIn groups that would appeal to your business.
One of the quickest ways to signal your interest and find like-minded businesspeople is to join a LinkedIn group that’s relevant to your industry or niche. You can then search group members to find potential partners. Also, because your groups are listed on your profile, joining a group means that you’ll have a lasting reference on your profile that will let people know that you identify with this group.
Search LinkedIn Answers for people with similar situations as yours.
You might find someone at a similar company who looked for an SEO expert and asked the community for help. The people who respond may give you insight on whom to choose and to add to your network.
Getting help with your SIM campaign plan using LinkedIn
Odds are, you won’t have all the answers when it comes to your SIM campaign plan. LinkedIn is an online community that lets you tap into its collective knowledge, enabling you to get real- time answers without involving think tanks or putting out thousands of dollars in fees. And what started out as a brainstorming session can even develop into a SIM campaign of its own!
Keep the conversation open and continuous
Try to leave part of your question open-ended so that the people answering it can discuss their theories and you will have a more natural reason for follow-up with them individually
Set up a LinkedIn Group that speaks to your target audience and your company’s (or your) capabilities
For example, say that you’re trying to reach accountants for financial services companies. To get the ball rolling, you could start the Financial Services Accountants Group, spread the word to your target audience, and stay in touch with that audience via this group whenever you want to know more about your target audience.
Participating Four Rules of the Game
Many different factors can make or break a SIM campaign, and sometimes it’s even just a matter of luck. But four rules matter above all else when it comes to SIM campaigns.