My article on inc.com has been enthusiastically received so I think more detailed discussion than what I outlined, on each of the 8 ideas, is in order.
Make it easy to get in touch with you, in all communication media.
Be sure that all links to your Twitter, Facebook, email, blog and website actually work.
You did list a phone number too, right?
Everyone has a preferred method of communication and be ready and accessible in any or all of them.
The phone rings once in a while. Not like the old days when it was the primary means of communication. Perhaps in your industry, your firm, the phone is still important, but think of the emails, texts, tweets, etc. that have supplanted oral communication in business.
There are so many ways to communicate.
- Everyone has a preferred method.
- Embrace them all.
- Some methods aggregate around age brackets, industries, educational levels, nationalities, etc.
- Learn the best practices in using them all.
Make yourself approachable in every method by succinctly naming and listing all of them: email address, phone number, Twitter handle, Facebook name, blog name, website URL, etc. in your Contact Details subsection.
Note that some are only visible to your LinkedIn connections (a privilege of your connection agreement):
And some contact details are visible to everyone, connected to you or not:
Do not make getting a hold of you difficult, even/especially if you are not connected to the other person on LinkedIn.
Now let’s take a look at what to do when that phone rings.
Quick! Get that name, type it into the search box on LinkedIn and while speaking to that person, review their LinkedIn profile.
What can you learn around their expertise, background, past history or education to make the conversation warmer and deeper? It’s ok if they know you are looking at their profile. They are probably already looking at yours.
And before a meeting, do the same, review for clues about how to make yourself more interactive, bringing down the unease that is so prevalent in any new meeting between strangers.
Start with a question or two about how the target knows your common friend(s). When did you last see or work with that colleague, etc. It is amazing how the fast ice melts with small talk at the beginning well beyond the weather or other tired topics.
Research the speaker’s LinkedIn profile ahead of the presentation. Use your smart phone LinkedIn app to refresh your memory just before you step into a meeting.
The fact is a meeting or conversation with both parties interacting in a more personalized way will make for a more efficient and effective outcome. Memorize the headshot just in case you have an unplanned meeting ahead of time.
It’s all about familiarity and comfort. You have the tools, so using the right one(s) is just a matter of practice and prior planning to reach out and/or be sought.