LinkedIn is the perfect place for small business owners to grow their business. With over 300 million, well-educated and affluent (average salary is over $100k) members, everyone you need to know are just a few keystrokes away.

How do successful business owners use LinkedIn? Here are some tips to help you use LinkedIn effectively in just a few minutes a day.

1. Create your LinkedIn strategy – people who get results on LinkedIn have a clear strategy and defined goals. Are you using LinkedIn to build your referral network? Are you trying to get sales appointments? Are you looking to hire new employees?

Clearly define your LinkedIn objective and create a daily plan and log off as soon as you achieve your daily goal so you don’t waste time. If your goal is to connect with 5 new prospects, find them through Advanced Search or reach out to them in LinkedIn Groups. Set one goal per day unless you are in sales, where you should spend a few hours a day prospecting and connecting with people.

2. Complete your profile – many LinkedIn members have an incomplete profile which is very unprofessional. According to IDC, at least 68% of business professionals use LinkedIn to learn more about someone they are about to meet. If your profile is incomplete or you have an unprofessional photo, you are going to make a bad first impression.

Think of your profile as your website where people can learn more about you quickly. Make it easy for them to find relevant information about you and tell them how you can help them.

3. Don’t use your job title as your professional headline – at least 90% of LinkedIn members use their job title in the field under their name. Search LinkedIn for accountant or financial advisor and you’ll see what I mean.

Use the professional headline as a way to stand out from the crowd and let people know how you can help them. Use this field as your personal headline which will entice people to click on your profile to learn more about you.

4. Join Groups where your prospects hang out – most people join LinkedIn groups of their peers and competitors. If you are in marketing, don’t join groups which other marketers hang out. Join groups where people who will hire you hang out. Join small business-focused groups where business owners are learning how to grow their business.

Treat a LinkedIn Group like a networking event. What happens when you meet someone who talks about himself constantly and you can’t get a word in edgewise? Do you want to do business with someone like that?

Focus on listening and helping others in groups. Don’t just post content from your blog in the group everyday. Reach out to others and help them. The more you give the more you will receive in return.

5. Be consistent – If you spend 15 minutes a day on LinkedIn posting content, sharing other people’s content and commenting/liking their content, you will see an increase in your profile views which results in more inquires for your business. LinkedIn won’t work for you if you log in once a week or once a month. A little bit each day goes a long way.

Connect with me on LinkedIn at where I share more tips to get more business using social media.

About the author 

Ted Prodromou

Would you like me to help you?

I'm the #1 best-selling author of Ultimate Guide to LinkedIn for Business and Ultimate Guide to Twitter for Business. People call me America's Leading LinkedIn Coach.

I'm the founder of Search Marketing Simplified, LLC, a full service online marketing agency. The SMS team designs and implements advanced LinkedIn and social media lead-generation strategies for small to medium-sized businesses. SMS will set up and manage your marketing funnels using organic, social and paid traffic.

Did you know I've been working with the internet since 1991, long before Al Gore invented it?

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