Tips: Using LinkedIn to Attract Your Ideal Clients

Today, I have the great pleasure of being the host on DAY 13 of the Virtual Blog Tour for Melonie Dodaro, author of the brand new book,The LinkedIn Code: Unlock the Largest Online Business Social Network to Get Leads, Prospects & Clients for B2B, Professional Services and Sales & Marketing Pros.That book will be celebrating its official launch on Tuesday June 3rd, 2014.

MELONIE DODARO is the founder of Top Dog Social Media, a social media agency that helps brands, businesses, professionals and sales teams use social media marketing and social selling to boost their visibility, attract new customers and increase their revenue. Dubbed by the media as Canada’s #1 LinkedIn expert and social media strategist, Melonie trains corporate sales teams on how to use LinkedIn and speaks worldwide at both industry and corporate events and conferences.

Yesterday, Melonie visited Kathi Casey’s blog at http://healthyboomerbody.com/kathis-blog/ where Melonie shared her top tips for building relationships on LinkedIn.

Today, I’d like to share with you a recent interview I had with Melonie where I asked her to share her expert LinkedIn advice for service-based solopreneurs.

*** INTERVIEW ***

TAI: How can service-based solopreneurs find leads on Linked In?

MELONIE: With over 300 million members and over one third of all professional in the world as members, LinkedIn is an excellent platform for service-based solopreneurs to find leads or prospects.

There are two great ways for you to find leads on LinkedIn. The first is to use the Advanced Search, with fields such as location, industry, title and company to narrow down the results and help you find a list of leads within your existing network.

Creating Sales Pages: Lead Pages vs Optimize Press

Last week, one of the brilliant women participating in the 15/15 eCourse Challenge, Sherrell Martin, asked a question about the tools for creating landing and sales pages.

Q: Do you prefer Lead Pages over Optimize Press?

A: It depends.

I tested Lead Pages and really like their platform. But there are two other tools in my arsenal that I already use and have a system for: Hybrid Connect and Optimize Press. Between the two of those, I don’t have a need for Lead Pages right now.

My Lead Pages Review

It’s a great tool for beginners! The beauty of Lead Pages is that if you are brand new to creating sales and landing pages, their templates make it super easy to get started. First, you don’t have to figure things out from scratch: their templates include text and layout for over 20 different landing pages. They’ve also tested which ones convert more. I highly recommend LP to my clients who want to get up and running fast and want a proven tool that integrates very nicely with WordPress.

Optimize Press templates too, but they are not as straightforward as Lead Pages where you can just turn sections on and off to hide them fro your published page. If you are new to creating pages and want something that looks good, I’d definitely start with Lead Pages. The downside is that there is an ongoing monthly fee and the lack of flexibility. I don’t like not being able to change the sales page design other than turning sections on and off. This is fine if you just want to be able to change the copy, but if you want to get more creative with the layout, without knowing any code, this won’t work best for you.

optimize pressWhy Hybrid Connect and Optimize Press works for me

Optimize Press, can be used as a full blog or plug-in for your existing WordPress site. In addition to just landing and sales page templates – there are content templates that are perfect for membership sites like the 15/15 eCourse Challenge or The Brand Your Own Brilliance Toolkit – both sites I’ve created using Optimize Press. Optimize Press (2.0) gives you more flexibility because you can add lots of different elements and rearrange each page using their PageBuilder. Both systems have a sales funnel option – which means you can have multiple video landing pages that lead to an ultimate sales/opt-in offer. You can see the OP sales funnel in action at ProfitableOnPurpose.com.

In addition to being able to create landing and sales pages, OP can be used for your entire site. And if you don’t want need a new theme, you can just use the plug in. The most recent version of the theme also has a membership option, but in my estimation it is not as robust as WishList or Digital Access Pass. If you have plans to build an empire of products and programs, I highly suggest investing in Optimize Press.

Why Branding Your Business Is an Inside Job

Choosing the right branding can be hard.

Names, tag lines, colors, logos, unique selling points, values, key words, language, style, tone, focus, reputation – there is so much to consider when it comes to branding your business. And we are desperate for branding that is catchy and cool. A special combination of branding elements that will surely make us stand out from the crowd and magically cause prospects to fall under our spell and sign up for our services. If we could just get the right wording, the perfect WordPress template, the most unique graphic styling – then our marketing would be easy – or so we think.

I’m embarrassed to think about how much time I used to spend comparing myself to other people on line. It used to happen to me every time I came across a website with someone that had a catchy title, or a stand out tagline. Or when I would come across a cool layout or design that someone was using for their blog. All of a sudden what I had come up with wasn’t as catchy or cool to me and off I would go to sulk until I came up with something cleverer or more cutting edge. What a waste of time, money and energy.

Some of my clients have pretty clever names that they spent lots of time and money having someone help them come up with. Others are struggling in a sea of over-branding and hype to find the perfect title or tagline. Then some are caught in a perpetual cycle of rebranding. In all cases, branded and unbranded, they are still having a hard time:

  • Finding and connecting with their ideal paying clients
  • Offering the right services at the right price point
  • Marketing their services to their ideal audience with confidence

They think the problem and the solution is in their branding. They think if they change their colors, get a name and tagline that “pops,” or get a newly designed blog or business card that looks unique enough, that all the paying clients they know are out there will suddenly come running to their website.

What to Include in a Sales Funnel for Your Service-Based Business

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One of the first questions I ask in my Content Into Cash Flow calls is, “Where will your new product fit into your sales funnel?” If the person I am working with takes more than 10 words to give me an answer, I immediately know that they don’t have a sales funnel. And more than likely haven’t thought through what their audience really needs and even more importantly what they are willing to invest in. The are not ready to sell information products.

There are lots of “gurus” and “experts” who promise to guide people through creating six-figure products. They tell them how to create a high-ticket offer, like an e-course with videos, expert interviews, and worksheets and price it for $1500 or more. That might be a good product. But if you struggle getting people to opt-in to your list, don’t have an entry level product that establishes trust, and you have no cross promotion partners to help you sell your product – you will be disappointed and out of money.

Can you create an information product that will help you earn six-figures? Absolutely! If you have the right things in place. One of those things is a well-designed sales funnel.

Think You’re Ready to Create Infoproducts? Answer These Five Questions

content ideasJust because you have content and some ideas, that doesn’t mean you are ready to create infoproducts.

Once I tell people what I do, this is the typical response I get: “You know, I’ve got all this content – I need to create an ebook or something. Do you have a card?” While it would be easy to give them my card, take their money, and help them create an ebook, that would be something I could not do in integrity. Why? Because 7 out of 10 of the people that sign up for my free Content Into Cash Flow consultation are not ready to create a product.

So many coaches, consultants, practitioners, and speakers that like the idea of being able to sell information products have bought into the hype. They’ve heard somewhere that all you have to do to generate passive income is create an ebook or online course. While there are a number of people that have turned their experience and expertise into a six-figure infoproduct system, they all had certain things in place to help them get there. In fact, many of them will tell you that they failed and stumbled along the way to six-figures more than once.

If you are serious about turning what you know into products and programs you can sell. There are five questions you need to be able to answer with an unwavering “YES”:

  1. Do you know your target audience?
  2. Are you clear about their problems and how you help them get results?
  3. Do you have a sales funnel mapped out for your target audience?
  4. Do you have a marketing system that you execute consistently?
  5. Do you have partners to help you promote your products

I’ll be going through each one of those questions in this blog series. First up – let’s talk about your target audience.

Do you know your target audience?

And by know I mean do you really know them? This goes beyond being able to say, “I work with women in corporate America between the ages of 35-50.” If you are going to create an infoproduct that sells there are so many other things you need to know about your intended audience.