LinkedIn: A Proven Lead Generation Tool For Mike Parkes
One of the most common statements I hear when speaking with sales managers and business owners is ‘I don’t really know what LinkedIn does and how it can be of benefit’. This is then usually followed by ‘can it generate me sales?’
The answer to this is Yes- it can definitely generate sales for you if you know what you’re doing.
In a recent LinkedIn Like A Pro Advanced workshop, I was fortunate enough to meet Mike Parkes. We started chatting about what LinkedIn has done for our respective businesses and I was impressed when Mike mentioned to me that LinkedIn dramatically improved new sales in his company, Mike Parkes and Associates. Over the last 4 years Mike has generated over $180,000 of business from LinkedIn. I was blown away! Here is Mike’s story on how he did this…
For the last 15 years, Mike’s business is brokering bridging loans from local to international individuals who have been declined by banks or other lenders. Mike has his own suite of Private Lenders. Most of the business came from referrals from other mortgage brokers. In 2008 the global financial crisis hit and, like other businesses, Mike’s business was affected as the industry softened.
It is during this time that his friend, Rod Philson suggested to Mike that he should investigate LinkedIn as alternative source for new clients. After an initial familiarisation period Mike adopted LinkedIn and started to uncover a goldmine. “I decided to go for volume” says Mike. Mike was able to change his focus from a traditional lead acquisition channel via approaching mortgage brokers to directly targeting individuals on LinkedIn. He was able to connect and communicate with professionals such as lawyers and accountants and business owners who gradually became a new source of leads.
Today, Mike has one of the largest connections in New Zealand (about to hit 10,000 first degree connections) and was credited as the most viewed profile in New Zealand in August 2015. LinkedIn has even certified Mike as the top 1% most viewed profile worldwide.
Here’s what Mike has shared about his LinkedIn strategy:
- Brand yourself well on LinkedIn.
- Develop a “Content” strategy. This way you will stay visible and top of mind.
- Set a target to reach 5,000 people within 3 years. LinkedIn allowed me to be visible to my connections and also an easy way to stay connected with them.
- Make both a time and cash investment. “I paid for the Premium LinkedIn version and dedicate up to 3 hours a day, personalising emails for connection requests” says Mike. This might sound a lot, but when my other sources of leads was drying up, this proved to be the best investment of my time. Even today, I am still getting ongoing leads from my connections.
- Reach out and communicate with your connections after they have accepted the invite by way of interesting updates and posts. Change the flavour and the mix on a regular basis.
It is wonderful to hear how Mike managed LinkedIn and also how he has uncovered a new and successful approach for his business. He has been instinctive with his approach and as a LinkedIn trainer, can say that he has done many of the foundation steps right. Congrats Mike!
How about yourself? Have you discovered what LinkedIn can do for you?
If you’re interested in mastering LinkedIn here are the training courses available:
Note: Customed and online training is also available. Your company may also qualify for NZTE subsidy with these workshops. Email us for more information now.
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