This episode is a must for you if you want to grow your business with LinkedIn! I talk to LinkedIn expert Joshua B. Lee to find out exactly how you should be setting up your profile and pictures, and what kind of content you need to create to boost elusive SSI scores on LinkedIn.
Adam: Something you’re really good at is you can help anybody not only advance their reach via LinkedIn, but also use it to become an influencer, generate more sales, and grow their business. Could you maybe talk a little bit about how you discovered that?
Why you’re a big fan of LinkedIn and a little bit about your story with LinkedIn?
Joshua: Yeah man, of course it’s those things, right? All the things that you just mentioned are not so much around algorithms and platforms, right? One of the biggest things I’ve learned to be able to help these individuals is overall, I’m not trying to game an algorithm.
I’m not trying to come up with a new product or service that someone’s got to rebuy or adjust in six months.
It’s more going in and looking at the human beings on how they actually connect and engage online. That’s why it doesn’t matter what vehicle, platform, vertical that you’re working in, or the clients that I get to work with because I’m truly teaching marketers how to be human online again.
It’s being able to adjust and to remind them of how you and I are having a conversation. We’ve forgotten how to be able to do that online.
Being able to provide them these skills and go, “Look, let’s adjust. Don’t speak at people, connect with them, engage, have conversational writing, which will then have people go, oh wow, let me respond to this because I’m not getting talked at.”
That’s what we’ve been able to do on LinkedIn. A platform where so many people are just speaking, pitching, spamming, and selling, it’s like, how do we be the unicorn?
Start with Appreciation
Let’s start with appreciation. Let’s go in and look at the human condition on how it is online. Let’s appreciate people for these little things that we’ve forgotten through all the automation and all the AR marketing, all of the B2B to B to C and let’s go a hundred percent H to age human to human.
Adam: I love that and I think that’s why you are so appealing to these experts, like the Dan Sullivans and Jay Abrahams of the world. One of the big things that I love about this is I find that when it comes to any kind of social media platform, you’ve got your early adopters and then you’ve got the followers and it’s the early adopters that end up being the big influencers.
The ones that are the most successful and you were not only an early adopter of LinkedIn, but you became a master of it very quickly.
I think that speaks volumes and is why so many of these experts are reaching out to you because they understand the power of being an early adopter. If you can dominate the new platform before anyone else, everyone’s going to end up following it and coming to you.
The only risk is whether you believe this platform’s going to work, but LinkedIn isn’t really a risk because not only is it backed by one of the largest companies in the world, but it also is a place that has some of the most affluent and influential people already.
Yet the masses haven’t come yet, the masses are still fighting over Facebook, not realizing that Instagram is already where it’s at. And actually LinkedIn is secretly where it’s at.
Joshua: That’s the thing, right? The masses have tried to come before. When I first started it, I was in a different space. Like you said, I’ve had many different successes in different careers, and in different verticals. I’ve had a lot of failures too, let’s just be a hundred percent real. I haven’t always been successful in my life. Each time I have success there’s always a downside and upside.
In our world, starting companies, you’ve had the same stuff, right? But on LinkedIn, some of the stuff I did was in online advertising. So I went in early many years ago, not realizing originally what the opportunity was and I would manipulate traffic. I would promote articles and help people get views.
It would be like, “let me get you an article.” If someone sees an article that has 30, 40,000 views, where people aren’t getting that, you can actually become that influence from the space. But like, “oh, look at me, I’ve got 40,000 articles. You should, did you read an article? No? Oh man.”
Learning from that was great, but again, I was selling people. I wasn’t engaging, connecting and educating individuals and I didn’t like that. That’s where I made that shift with what I do now. It’s all about engaging with the audience, connecting, educating, and never selling because I’d rather help my clients and myself on a platform like it is right now, build advocacy. So many people like the masses, they’re getting all these other quote, unquote, LinkedIn experts.
I saw one the other day, you hit me up with a message and I responded, I said, “Dude, you’re sending mass messages, I call it spam.” A year ago you were like, “I think this guy was selling insurance and now he is a LinkedIn expert?” That’s where the masses are getting thrown off with him because of the fact that they’re getting these guys coming in, and they’re like, “I’m going to teach you automation. I’m going to teach you how to be able to pitch to a thousand people and hope to get that one sale. It’s okay if you off 999 people, you got that one sale.”
That way throws people off. But the influencers are going, “I’m not going to do this. I’m going to connect, engage and educate on a platform and be different.” That’s how we help our clients too.
Adam: I love this. I’m going to share a little personal story that I think relates to this. I run a number of Facebook groups where I communicate with potential clients before they sign up. I received a number of complaints from one of my best Facebook groups, people saying, “Hey, there’s a guy who’s spamming us.” So I reached out to the guy privately and it turns out that he paid $5,000 to learn how to steal clients from groups.
Apparently he was a big fan of mine, so he is like, “Oh my gosh, I’m so sorry. This wasn’t my intention. I can’t believe people complained, I feel so bad.” I was like, “Dude, why don’t you just sign up with my other company and let us teach you how to be a real influencer, how to generate good content and make sales from it?”
He was like, “Look, I like the idea of it, but I’ve been so successful doing it my way that I want to keep doing it.” And I said, “Okay, I just want to challenge you for a second. Could you define success for me? Let’s just put this in numbers. How much money have you made and how long have you been doing it?” He’s like, “Dude, I’ve made $10,000 doing this, and I’ve only been doing it for four months.”
I was like, “Okay. But have you ever thought about dividing 10,000 by four months to see what your monthly salary is?” And he is like, “Well, I’d never thought of that before.” I was like, “Bro, because you’re only making two and a half grand a month, and while that may sound good, let me just ask you how many hours a week are you working on this?”
He goes, “You don’t understand. I love it. I love what I do.” I’m like, “Okay, I get it. How many hours?? He’s like, “Well, I’m probably spending 12 hours a day, six days a week.” So I’m like, “Dude, are you aware the amount of money you are working for is really not that impressive? Like if you think about it, you are averaging maybe 10 bucks an hour doing that.
There are so many other jobs that would pay you more than 10 bucks an hour if you just did the other job. But more importantly, you’re destroying your brand. People are complaining about you. They’re going to remember that as you try to build and scale, if you want to earn more than $10 an hour.”
Joshua: And that’s what they’re looking for, Adam. I mean in the online advertising space, back before anyone knew about it, in like 2002-2003 that was okay. You would see these guys go in and they would game the system and make as much money as possible in a six month timeframe.
Then they’d change their name and they’re okay with that. I’m like what? You have to kill your company, change your name, start up a new company and then see how much more money you can steal from the next person? That’s exhausting! Why do people think that’s okay?
Same thing on LinkedIn. I had a guy reach out to me, he was like, “Hey Joshua B. You ever thought about using LinkedIn for leads?” I was like, “You know what I have. But you know, you’re just kind of mass spamming doing this. There’s a better way. You don’t have to off 999 people to get that one sale of a thousand.” And he goes, “Yeah, but I find that when I do this, it just works a lot better because most people don’t respond to me.”
I’m like, “Do you hear yourself? What you’re saying? There’s probably a reason why most people are not responding to you.” People don’t get it, they’re fine with playing this long game. As I tell everyone, the guys that I work with, they’re selling a lot of high end products and services that add value to this world first and foremost. They’re not looking for that next person to get them a thousand $10,000 sales.
If that’s what you need to do, number one, LinkedIn’s not the platform for you, and number two, I’m not the guy for you. There are 10,000 people lined up behind me that are willing to take your money. So you can possibly take money from somebody else. But if you’re looking to be able to change this world, add value, connect, engage and educate your audience so they choose to be with you and you don’t have to sell them in the first place. I can help you do that.
Adam: Yeah. I just absolutely love this. Okay, so people are going to be listening to this and they’re going to be like, “Okay, I’m sold, I get the idea. I’ve got to be a better person. When it comes to being online. I’ve got to get my message inline and LinkedIn might be the right way to go about it.” Could you share three get started tips for someone who is like, “I want to jump into LinkedIn. What should I do?”
Your LinkedIn Profile is the Tip of The Spear
Joshua: Yeah. First and foremost, the easiest way. So your profile is the tip of your spear. You mentioned earlier LinkedIn was purchased by one of the largest companies in the world, Microsoft about two years ago for $24.6 billion. One of the biggest things was they had products all over the place. With them being able to go in, it was the largest purchase and they saw their largest return, so they’re really doubling down on LinkedIn.
They’re going to be using all the information that you have on your profile first and foremost, across all their platforms from Outlook to Skype, to Excel, to all the other thousands of programs that Microsoft owns. This is where most people have forgotten. They went in and they did what most people do, they set up their profile, they use their resume, and they walked away hoping they’re cool.
That’s what I say is their profile, but if you do what I’m teaching and I teach my clients to do, that’s your tip of your spear. That’s what you really need to start with, one easy enough, everyone can do this. Find a nice solid background and take a professional picture of yourself. A headshot. It’s not Instagram, it’s not Facebook.
I don’t need to see you surfing or riding your four wheeler or anything like that. It is a professional platform. We are going human to human, but they want to be able to see we’re dealing with a higher, more educated audience. The average income on LinkedIn comparably to companies like Twitter, I think is like $58,000 a year. Right now Facebook’s around $61,000 a year. Average income on LinkedIn is around $118,000 a year.
Adam: All of those numbers, by the way, blow me away. They’re significantly higher than I expected.
Joshua: Well, I think the median household income across the United States is $63,000 a year.
Adam: So this is household income, not individual users.
Joshua: Right, so think, that’s household. But think about that though. The average incomes on those are below the median household income.
Adam: Yep, that makes sense.
Joshua: So it’s those different pieces of what you’re looking at, I want to make sure I can target an audience. So first and foremost, have a solid picture. Number two, after someone sees your picture, we all connect with people visually, so you want to be able to have that right picture. Number two is your title. Most people go in and they’re like, “business owner, sales rep” or whatever their title might be at their company.
They’re still thinking in the mindset of, this is a place that I put my resume. But this is your first opportunity to be able to connect with someone. So what I go with, that I believe allows people to understand because I’m working with a human condition. So I’m trying to work within those parameters of how does someone interact and connect with other human beings?
“I help X to achieve Y so they can do Z.”
So my title starts with, and I recommend everyone. “I help X to achieve Y so they can do Z.” The reason why we do this is X is our avatar, it’s our client, it’s the ideal person we want to work with. So we’re polarizing.
We’re telling people exactly who we can help, X and Y are basically what we do for those clients, and Z is why they buy, it’s the outcome. People don’t realize they sell on what they do and who they are. They don’t sell on what their results achieve for that person. This is why people buy a decision on emotional decisions. This is your opportunity to be able to get in their face and be able to draw them in.
Adam: I just think that’s amazing, man. There’s something similar I use when I do marketing, we’ll often be like “How to get ABC without the pain of X” and I love anytime that you can summarize a message that simply.
Joshua: And that’s it, right? You’ve got to be able to say what you do, talk about who you do it for, and evoke an emotion, which is the result. People buy an emotion. You look at things in emotional standards. This is why when I’m talking about posting too, you need to be polarizing. The next thing I want to be able to go on, people are like, “I’m going to try to be indifferent towards everyone. I don’t want to affect anyone. I’m just going to make statements that don’t push-” No. People buy because they love or hate something. They make decisions because they love or hate something. If you are indifferent towards everything, you’re not only wasting your time, but they’re wasting theirs and they’re not going to be able to move forward on anything. So you have to be polarizing with your audience, same thing with your headline.
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