Sushant: Hey TREPS! This is Sushant, founder and host of Treptalks. Joining me today is Karen Yankovich. Karen is a business and social media consultant and strategist and she does something that she calls conversational marketing and we’re going to learn more about that during the interview. Basically she helps individuals and businesses better leverage social media find their voice online and use social media to find more professional and business opportunities. I wanted to talk to her specifically about LinkedIn and how individuals and businesses can use leveraged LinkedIn to find more professional and business opportunities online. I’m recording this introduction separately today because I was talking to her before the interview and the conversation was flowing very smoothly and so I did not want to break that flow and so this is an unedited conversation and I hope you’re going to enjoy it. Thanks, have a good day. Bye.
Karen: Great, I love it, I love (indiscernible 0:38:52.8). There’s a part of me that always says, and I’m going to start doing interviews too, but there’s only enough hours in the day. But that’s on my short list. Because I do think that there’s so many people that have such great stories to tell to encourage other people that don’t understand that they really can have a business with what they’re passionate about.
Sushant: Yeah, definitely, I mean, it’s not just a way to get the strategies and tactics but getting the stories of other people is quite inspirational as well. So you have a full time job yourself and this is like…
Karen: I do, I do. I’ve done consulting for most of my life and I owned a business and closed a business, I’ve owned businesses that did consulting that helped other businesses. Mostly in technology. IT. My background is mostly telecommunications. I worked for the phone companies and things like that. And then, when I started to do consulting, and doing more on my own, I started doing a lot of work with other businesses and one of my clients hired me full time, or part-time, which it then developed into full-time, but I’ve always had this entrepreneurial spirit. And then, I’m on the other side of you, my kids are grown, and I found out I had more time on my hands again, so I started delving into online marketing because technology’s always been my thing, I’ve always been very social, so social media and online marketing is really my wheel house. It’s really what works best for me. So I started to develop, just do some stuff with it, and then people started coming to me and saying, “How did you know how to do this?” So I started to develop my business around it and realized that there’s so many people that, for me a lot of the people that I see are frequently they’re women that may have left their careers to raise a family and now they’re trying to figure out how to make money. Should they go work at the mall? Or what should they do? And I love to help them find a way to take their passions and create businesses with it. And what has worked best for me, and this is where we’ve talked, is LinkedIn. LinkedIn for me, it’s social media but it’s a way to portray yourself as a professional in social media. So whether you are looking for a job, or looking for client, your LinkedIn profile comes up pretty high in Google search. If I search your name right now, I bet your LinkedIn profile is going to come up. So even if you’re not paying attention to it, other people are looking at it. So I love to help people use LinkedIn to help grow their businesses. And that’s kind of how I got into this little niche that I’m in right now. I really love working with it because it’s a way to be social without being creepy. If you meet somebody on the street, and start talking about business, it’s a little creepy to send them a Facebook invite right then next day, but it’s not to send them a LinkedIn connection. So it’s a way to connect with people and have conversations with people. And when you’re on LinkedIn, you’re in social mode, you’re not worried about getting your project done or your phone’s ringing. You’re in social mode. So that’s a place where you want people to, you know, where you can interact with people on a business level and really develop your business. So that’s kind of how I ended up here.
Sushant: Okay, so, we haven’t started the interview yet although…I was actually very curious, I went on your website and I saw you had a lot of posts previously that dealt with stuff like energy and things like that. Is that something also like your side business?
Karen: That’s when I started using online marketing. I was doing some, I’m a Reiki Master, so I started to do some online stuff with other people that I do locally. I was doing in person workshops in my local area.
Sushant: So you do like, you practice Reiki?
Karen: I don’t practice Reiki as much as I have a lot of clients that are Reiki practitioners. I practice Reiki, but I don’t really have a business for that right now. For me it’s a passion. Just learning about energy, medicine, I’m also a certified dream coach, so a lot of that stuff is really intriguing to me, so I was doing in-person workshops on all of that and I took courses in online marketing to learn how to market that, and what ended up happening was, again, everybody started asking me “How did you know how to do this stuff? How did you know to have a Facebook page with thousands of people on it? How did that all happen?” So, that’s when I realized that my business background and my technology background really could benefit a lot of the heart based entrepreneurs that don’t know how to do all that stuff, that are Reiki practitioners and I did a workshop, I guess in February, called “How to make money with your Reiki Practice”, had 800 people sign up for it. Like instantly. So, there’s a lot of people that are, and that by the way, is a way if you’re looking to make some money, and you’re home with your kids or whatever, Reiki’s a great way to do that. You can get certified for a hundred bucks and take a level two class for another few hundred dollars and now you have a way to start developing income. I like to help all those people build their businesses around those passions that they have. So those are my passions, but somehow my business turned into helping other people with the same passions build their businesses.
Sushant: No, I think that’s how a lot of people do start. They are doing something, and they realize that, and of course they’re already passionate and people, other people realize that when someone is doing something with passion, other people notice and then they’re like, “I want to get to know them. I want to learn something from them.” And then that develops maybe into a business.
Karen: And so that’s what it’s all going to come back to. It’s all going to come back there at the end of the day no matter what you’re doing. What you’re passionate about is going to keep popping up. If you don’t develop a business around it, it’s going to keep popping up in your world anyway. Go there first.
Sushant: So then I also read, let’s just continue, this is great. I know we don’t have to repeat yourself again.
Karen: Whatever you want is fine by me.
Sushant: I also read on your blog that you did I believe Marie Forleo’s B School.
Karen: I did.
Sushant: I was very curious to know, what was that experience like?
Karen: You know what? It was a fabulous experience. B School is a, I’m going to do a qualified statement here that says I’m an affiliate for B Schools. Just so people know that I love it so much that I have become an affiliate for it, so my clients can join B School, and then I help them go through B School. So B School, Marie Forleo has put together this program and she runs it once a year, she actually, it is starting again I believe in February, registration maybe starts in February, so pre-registrations start in January/ February. And it’s basically, I think it’s a six week or eight week course where each course takes you finding your ideal client, finding your…
Sushant: And is this like an in-person course or online.
Karen: It’s online, it’s very intensive. You take it thinking that at the end of the six weeks you’re going to have all this knowledge, but to do it right, it probably will take you a year to go through all this stuff, cause there’s so much information in it. So she’s created this community around that as well. So you take B School, and one you register for B School, which is nineteen ninety nine, so it’s not ten thousand dollars, it’s two thousand dollars and you can do it on a payment plan with her and there’s other ways to do that, and she hasn’t raised the price of it in three or four years, so it’s been consistently two thousand dollars. Not only do you get all this training, but you access to the community, the B School community, which is full of people that are so freaking smart and if it’s three o’ clock in the morning and you’re working on your website, and you just can’t figure out how to get something to pop in the middle of something, you just can pop on the B School group Facebook page and say, “Who can help me with this?” And you probably get ten people that say, “Here’s my number.” So it’s a lot of solo preneurs, entrepreneurs that don’t have a big support system around them, it’s become a support system for me and for a lot of other entrepreneurs that don’t have maybe the resources to pay for it. It gives you so much support. And everybody’s that’s involved in it are so willing to be helpful. Doesn’t matter what the topic is. Whether you need help with PR, you need help with your website, or you need help with a picture or you’re doing a video and you can’t figure out where to put the lighting, there’s somebody that can help you with that. So it is invaluable, it’s an invaluable course. But the course itself takes you through how to identify your ideal client, how to identify your market, how to do your marketing, what tools are available to do your marketing. It takes you straight to how to set up your website. Or best tools to set up your website on. WordPress or, mostly on WordPress she goes through, but it takes you through everything you need to know to either start your business, run your business, or grow your business. And the stuff doesn’t get old. I can go through like, there’s an exercise she goes through and it’s called the Ideal Client Avatar, and basically it’s ass kicking exercise where you really have to get deep into the soul of your ideal client. And you can do it over and over as your business changes you can do it again for a new avenue of your business. Now who’s my ideal client for this? I mentioned earlier that I did a workshop called “How to Make Money with your Reiki Business” basically the workshop was how to, you know the free tools that are available to how you can get set up on Facebook, how you can have an inexpensive website. If I offered you a workshop that said how to make money in your business, nobody would have signed up. But when you’re really specific about who you’re targeting it to, you get people signed up. So it might be ten million people that would have been more interested if I had said how to make money in your business, but the half of a million people that are Reiki practitioners saw my advertising and said, “That’s for me. I need to know about that.” So she teaches you how to do that. How to be really specific with who your target audience is and how to develop your product, and then your marketing around what that target audience really needs.
Sushant: First of all, I would like to say, I think that’s a great testimonial for Marie Forleo.
Karen: It is. Well she knows that I’m a believer.
Sushant: Number two, I think the point about the customer avatars, I think that’s a great point with any business. If you’re trying to be everything to everyone, you’ll be nobody to no one. So it’s very, very important to identify your ideal customer or your specific customer niche. The other question I wanted to ask, I know that Marie Forleo her community is more women based. Does she also take men in her B School?
Karen: Completely. And you know, if you’re a man, you should take B School because you stand out so much more, and you have all these women that want to help you. I would say it’s probably ninety percent women, if I had to guess, might even be ninety five percent, but there are men, and those men are very visible and get a lot of help. So I would definitely, if you’re looking to market your business, B School’s the place to do it, if you’re a man or a woman.
Sushant: Okay, that’s great. Let’s talk a little bit about what you do. On your website, you write something about conversational marketing and that was interesting to me. That was a new word that I had come across. So, very interested to know what your definition, although I saw your blog, I think you made a blog about conversational marketing. What is conversational marketing and how is it different from other forms of social media marketing?
Karen: Marketing’s changing in 2013. It’s changing. Nobody’s really buying newspapers anymore. You can buy a billboard on a highway, but you have no idea who’s seeing it, so conversational marketing is about finding those ideal clients and then how do you talk to them, and how do you get them to talk to you so that you can find out more about them. And social media is the tools that I use to teach my clients about conversational marketing, but when I put a marketing plan together with my clients, we put together a conversational plan, but it’s got to be two ways. Right? So, I don’t really want a client that wants to hire me to write all their tweets or their Facebook posts or their LinkedIn posts, because I want you to learn how to do. Because if you learn how to do it, there needs to be another person at the end of that conversation. So if you post something on LinkedIn and people reply to it, you need to reply back. And that’s conversational marketing. That’s how you draw people into your business. So I teach businesses how to use these tools, and they’re mostly free. So how to use these tools that are free to them, whether it’s LinkedIn or Facebook or Twitter, how to use them to bring people into a conversation that then can help them become your clients, and then you can help them get more clients on their end. Using conversation. And using the free tools that are available to everybody.
Sushant: So basically engaging people. I have a question around that topic. So I started this project very recently. To make a confession, I was not even on Facebook. I never used Facebook and I’m just starting to learn Twitter. So when you talk about conversational marketing, I see on Twitter when a person favorites your tweet or when a person re-tweets your tweet, of course if they make a comment I can comment back and say thank you, or reply in a good manner. But if a person re-tweets, do I have to do something like, how do I engage them in a conversation? If a person re-tweets or favorites my tweet?
Karen: You know what? You probably won’t. Twitter is about you. So Facebook is a little different. If you’re talking about Twitter, Twitter is you, it’s you the person. Right? So when I tweet I’m tweeting as Karen Yankovich, I’m not tweeting as my business. So it’s however you want to reply. You can say, “Thanks for favoring the tweet,” whatever is comfortable for you. And if you see some people are favoriting, like maybe the same person is favoriting things over and over, you can reach out to them and try to start that conversation. Whether it’s on Twitter or personal messages. I personally think that, why not just tweet it to the world? Twitter is short, succinct conversations. There’s no one real answer to that. The biggest part of that answer is to reply. To do something to continue to stay engaged with these people. And it doesn’t have to be every time somebody favorites a tweet, but for sure if they retweet something. It would be fine if they favored a lot of your tweets, then you might want to reach out to them. So, it’s whatever you feel comfortable doing. Absolutely use it to start the conversation and you can’t over-tweet. People are always seeing your tweets that you tweeted in the last twenty minutes, so if you tweet once every half hour, chances are people aren’t going to see almost any of them. Just the ones that they see when they’re on. Tweet, tweet, tweet. Keep going! I use tools, and I teach my clients to use tools to set up your tweets in advance, so you don’t have to be on Twitter constantly to be tweeting, you do have to then go on and be the other side of that conversation. If they reply, or if there’s something that you want to say to people. You need to go back on and engage with them. The beauty about setting it up in advance is that then you can just have fun. You can just go on Twitter and just talk to people and engage them in conversation, and you don’t have to worry about, “It’s Noon and I have to get a tweet out in a half an hour.” It’s all pre-set up. It’s all going to go out in a half an hour whether you’re sitting in front of your computer or not. You just have to go on and engage.
Sushant: You have to be consistent and use the tools out there to create that flow of consistent conversation.
Karen: Exactly. And by the way, Twitter is my number one referral source that’s my website. So a lot of people that don’t get Twitter, get Twitter. Figure Twitter out. Twitter is the number one source of referrals to my website.
Sushant: When you say referrals, does that mean traffic?
Sushant: Okay. Let me ask you a few questions about LinkedIn, which I was very interested to know about. I know of LinkedIn and I think that’s the general perception out there for people is that LinkedIn is a professional social media tool where you can connect with your fellow employees or employers, or professional circle. But on your website you say, “LinkedIn brings more traffic to my website when I pay even the minimum attention to it than any other social media site I hang out on.” So I want to know, how do people leverage LinkedIn to find their ideal client. I know you said that Twitter brings a lot of traffic to your site, but LinkedIn, I guess would be more of a targeted professional circle. What is it that I don’t know about LinkedIn in terms of business?
Karen: What you probably don’t know about LinkedIn, is how much Google likes it. LinkedIn in searchable by Google. So your headline, your summary, your job titles are all searchable by Google. So if I Googled you right now, probably your LinkedIn profile is going to come up. So whether or not you’re paying attention to your LinkedIn by updating it, some people haven’t looked at their LinkedIn profile for a year, I actually have a friend who just recently messaged me and said, “You need to do my profile, because I keep getting these things and it’s terrible.” So whether or not you’re paying attention to it, other people are paying attention to it So if you’re on a job interview, or people meet you at a tradeshow or a soccer field, and they Google you later on, you LinkedIn profile is going to come up. So it’s important that it looks like the way you want to be portrayed. It is more about you than any of the other social media sites. Your Twitter account, it’s not as much of a profile there. Even Facebook, if you have a business Facebook page it’s about your business. LinkedIn is how you tell the world what a rock star you are. So you tell them that in your headline, and then you support that in your summary and your experience. I’ll give you another example of LinkedIn. The more connections you have on LinkedIn, the more search power you have Because you can only search within your first, second and third level contacts and you will only come up for people that you are one of their first, second and third level contacts. So somebody recently, it was in Marie Foleo’s b School group, asked if anybody had connections to Hillary Clinton’s campaign site. So I replied back and said, “I don’t, but search Twitter. Go to Twitter and put Hillary Clinton’s campaign and see if you have any Hillary’s campaign connections,” and she did, and she realized that she had a couple of levels of connections that had connections to Hillary Clinton’s campaign. Now, I don’t even know this person, so I don’t even know if she actually followed up to connect with them, but it’s a way to connect to things that you are looking to get connected to. Whether it be for job, whether it be for business or whatever your purpose is. So it’s a way to get connected. But again, if your profile’s not optimized, then people might be hesitant to connect you. So you want to have an optimized profile, a professional profile. You know, most of my clients are entrepreneurs or small businesses. They have maybe up to twenty employees. They’re not looking to get fifty thousand customers, they’re looking to get one customer at a time. LinkedIn is a way to get one customer at a time. LinkedIn is a way to build the sales funnel and to grow your sales funnel. Because you can connect with people, you can search for things that you’re looking for, you can even set up notifications to be notified for you by you if people have actually added certain things to their profiles. So it’s a way for you to build your sales funnel. Whether you’re looking to sell a product, or yourself, you’re looking for a job, you still need a sales funnel cause you want to sell yourself to people. So whether you are a yoga teacher, or owner of a Fortune 500 company, you have a LinkedIn profile and you are on equal grounds on LinkedIn. You can look as professional as you wanted to. And even if, let’s say you’re an energy practitioner, and you’ve got some client. Or you’re a coach, or health coach and you’ve got some clients, maybe your client has a spouse or wife that’s like, “Who is she spending or he’s spending money on now?” They’re going to Google you, your LinkedIn profile is going to come up. Even if you feel it’s not the place for you to get business, it’s the place to establish yourself as an expert. So whether it’s getting your business directly or indirectly, it’s important that you have a professional LinkedIn profile.
Sushant: One thing that you mentioned is that the profile has to be optimized, does that mean that it has to be up to date, or does that mean something else?
Karen: If I Google somebody right now and their LinkedIn profile comes up, and it has their picture, their name, and it has their headline. If their headline says owner, I don’t know anything about them. But if the headline is really descriptive and it has descriptive words in it that are going to make me really interested in cooking on that, that is a way for it to be optimized. I actually just finished up, you’ll see it in the next couple of days, I just finished up a short two minute video on how to change, how to claim your personal URL. So if you have LinkedIn, if you want to find me and connect with me on LinkedIn, and I want all your viewers to do that, you can find me on LinkedIn.com/n/KarenYankovich, when I signed up, it was slash all these crazy letters and numbers. You can easily claim your personal URL by just going in and editing it and it instantly takes you to a more professional status. So those are some of the kinds of ways you can optimize your LinkedIn.
Sushant: Yeah, I think that is very important. If you have a LinkedIn profile and if you want to mention it on your business cards and things like that, that is very important to do. Rather than having like a bunch of numbers and letters.
Karen: Right. And you know, people aren’t doing that. I actually did, I poked through LinkedIn just today to see how many of my contacts had claimed a personal URL and more than half didn’t. And I have mostly connections in the social media world. So people aren’t doing that. Your name is probably available or your name’s probably available. My name was available. It may not be available if it’s a really common name, but the sooner you do it, the better chances your name will be available, because people aren’t really doing that yet. And that’s a way, if you’re looking for a job, or you’re looking for clients, to realize that you pay attention to your LinkedIn profile. So that’s a way to optimize it.
Sushant: Now, if you talk about in the context of business, and you talked about it before a little bit about finding one client at a time. If a business is looking for clients using LinkedIn, what is the best way to go about approaching that?
Karen: Well, it depends on what your goal is. Everybody’s got a different goal. But LinkedIn does have an upgraded premium package. I actually have not upgraded my LinkedIn account because I like when I do LinkedIn consulting to be able to say, “I’m doing all this on my free account.” So I haven’t deliberately upgraded my account so people that I teach this stuff to don’t think, “Yeah, well she can do that because she’s got the professional version.” But I think that I actually am going to upgrade it to the sales version upgrade, because that gives you more sales funnel strategies. So upgrade to the sales professional edition, you’ll some more strategies where you can put together a sales file. So that’s one way of doing it. But you can just search, you can join groups. Okay? So if you join groups, you can find a group for pretty much anything. When you join those groups, find groups that you can be a resource to, not necessarily a group that you’re just chatting in. Find a group that you can be a resource. And before you ask for a single favor, make sure you’ve answered twenty of these people’s questions already. You’ve already been a resource over and over. So it establishes yourself as a professional, when they’re looking for business, they’re going to remember you. Especially if you know they’re looking for business. If you connected with them, it gives you a way to stay in contact with them. It keeps your contacts warm. Let’s say you meet someone at a tradeshow and you know they’re going to be a good connection, it’s a little creepy to go back and Facebook friend them, but it’s not creepy to go back and connect with them on LinkedIn. So then maybe a couple of weeks later you might run across an article about something you were talking about. You can go on LinkedIn, and you can message them and say, “You know I just found this article I thought you’d be interested in because this is what we were talking about.” It’s a way to keep your contacts warm without interrupting their day. Without being a pest and constantly calling them on the phone or constantly emailing. So that is the biggest advantages. It’s a way to keep your contacts warm. From there, depending on what your goals are, you can set up sales funnels, you should certainly set up a business page, you have an option side of a business page and that business page should be, you can have all of your products and services listed, so there’s different strategies depending on what your end goal is. But it all can be done on LinkedIn, and it all can be done for free.
Sushant: Now when you say establishing a sales funnel, let’s say that I joined a LinkedIn group and it’s a LinkedIn group that is in my niche, and there are people who are in my niche and who may be my prospective clients, I joined the group, I started posting useful content there, that is useful to other people. Other people start noticing me. When you say about creating a sales funnel, what does that mean in terms of actually getting a client from there?
Karen: It depends on how you like to manage your contacts. You can do it on paper if you want. If you’re in a group and somebody’s asking, let’s say you sell phone systems, and you’re in a group that’s specific, you sell Sysco phone systems or Toshiba phone systems, you want to join very specific groups, you want to be a resource, but if people come in there and say, “What do you guys think? I’m the market for and I need this.” Okay, that goes under sales call. I can write their name on a card, I don’t care if it’s an index card, you’ve now gotten some indications that these people might be interested in buying things. You can find out what people are searching for. You can see who their titles are. You can even just find their titles and profiles, if you know that they’re a buyer for what you’re selling by what’s in their profile, you can put them in your sales funnel. And again, it might be just a warm way of staying in contact with them from the group cause you know what they’re asking about. I use Zoho, as a contact manager system, and there’s a Zoho group in there, and one of the things that I wanted to do was, I wanted to have an automated way for people to set up appointments with me that automatically imported them into Zoho. That I didn’t have to do anything manually. And I asked in that group, “Who’s doing this and how did they do it?” And I had a few people reach out to me saying, “I can help you with that.” So now I’m in their sales funnel. You have to just pay attention. And again, it’s all about conversations. What you say in the conversations and one customer at a time you’ll be bringing people into your world, and you bring them into your sales funnel. And you manage them. I manage them with Zoho but, you can manage them with whatever you want. You can manage them with index cards.
Sushant: That’s a very good point. I don’t know exactly what Zoho does, but my question is that, you have different social media now. You have Twitter, there’s conversations going on there, you’re engaging people on Twitter, there’s Facebook, there’s LinkedIn, now there’s Google+, without spending eight hours every day, are there tools that help you to manage those conversations? Or do you have to go specifically on LinkedIn to see what people are saying? How do you manage those conversations?
Karen: There are tools, and I’ll talk about them in a second. But first of all, you just have to know what works best for you. We talked about having really specific to your clients. Most of my work is done in LinkedIn. So most of the work I do is helping people use LinkedIn to leverage their businesses. So for me, I’m on LinkedIn a lot. I’m also on Twitter a lot and Facebook. For me those are the things that I’m on mostly. My business doesn’t really lend itself that well to Pinterest, Instagram, there’s just not enough hors in the day. So pick what you think works for you and stay focused on that. But Zoho as well as some other automated contact management systems has a plug in, a social media plug in. So if I add you for instance to my Zoho as a contact in my Zoho system, underneath your profile, I can link your Twitter profile, your LinkedIn profile, however we’re connected. So if I know I have a call with you at two o’clock, or I want to reach out to you, or I’m just following up with you to see what you’ve got going on, I can go right to your contact in my contact management system, and I can see what you posted recently on all those sites. And I can see that you recently posted about the fact that you bought a new car. So when I talk to you I’m going to say, “I hear you just bought a Mustang.” So it gives you a way to aggregate their social media activity before you talk to them. Again, it’s all about paying attention and again, I’m not looking for five thousand clients, I’m looking for one client at a time.
Sushant: That sounds actually very interesting, I did not know about that. I will probably be using some of those tools later on to listen to those conversations. It seems like a very good way to manage your conversations because otherwise you’ll be spending six to eight hours a day just to do that. What other ways can you recommend using LinkedIn that you may not have mentioned up until now, that can leverage a person, how they go about finding their jobs, or they go about finding their clients. Are there some other things that you haven’t mentioned?
Karen: I haven’t mentioned number of contacts and there’s a couple different schools of thought in social media, whether you want to have a million contacts or quality contacts. So it is better to have a thousand contacts or a hundred really quality contacts? In LinkedIn, it’s important to have a lot of contacts, because the more contacts you have, the more you can search and the more powerful searches. The more you’ll come up in LinkedIn’s algorithms. The other thing I would say with LinkedIn that’s really important is that you spend some time before you put together your profile, or after you put together your profile, spend some time on key words. Think about what key words you want to be found for. So because most of my customers are using, I’m actively looking for business of customers that are looking to develop their LinkedIn profiles, I have social media and LinkedIn scattered throughout my profile quite a bit. It’s certainly in my headline, it’s in some of my titles. Think about what key words you want to use and you want to be found for. If you search social media LinkedIn right now, my contact should come up pretty high, because I strategically use those words in my profile. So once a month, spend some time looking at your key words that you use in LinkedIn, and you can take those same key words and use them in your other social media profiles also. See if they need to be adjusted and strategically use the right keywords, and you will come up higher in searches and you’ll rank higher in LinkedIn’s algorithms. The other thing you can do with LinkedIn that a lot of people don’t realize is you can add links back to your website in so many places. And links back to your website, especially if you’re a business, is important for my Google Algorisms. So I add my blog posts as publications, you can now add media, you can add YouTube videos, you can really make LinkedIn a really dynamic place that you link to all of your other stuff. And all of that can happen through LinkedIn. So those are things that you should be looking at when you look at your profile.
Sushant: So when you talk about having more connections, number of connections, is there a strategy that someone can use to develop more connections. I know that there are open network people who use open networks and who are more open to connecting. So you don’t discriminate who you’re connecting with , you basically connect as many people as possible. Is that what you’re saying?
Karen: I do because strategically that works for me. I find someone that’s annoying me or that’s an uncomfortable contact, then I can always unconnect from them. But for me, I do a lot of work with LinkedIn so, I don’t honestly see why, unless you have a reason to keep LinkedIn really closed fisted, I don’t see why you wouldn’t want to do it. It’s not Facebook, it’s not Twitter, you’re not putting personal stuff up there. It’s business. It’s either about your business or you’re looking for a job, so why would you not want to connect with as many people as possible? I can’t think of a reason. And unless you have a business that lends itself to keeping you more private, but people only see what you put on there, so I don’t see why you wouldn’t want to connect. And there’s strategies to do more connecting. Like I said, you can use groups, and that’s a way to develop more connections on LinkedIn, and when you start to be active in groups, you’ll find that you get a lot more LinkedIn invitations. I ask people, if you put your LinkedIn on your business card or on your email signature, those are ways to attract more. You can even put on your email signature, “Are we connected on LinkedIn?” And then put your, “I’d love to connect.” So people will start to connect with you that way. You can be discriminating. I am probably more discriminating on Facebook than I am on LinkedIn. I don’t really get creepy invitations on LinkedIn. I do get creepy invitations on Facebook, so I really haven’t found it to be a problem.
Sushant: No, I think those are very good points. Definitely makes sense. I can’t even come up with a reason why you would not want to make more connections on LinkedIn. Very good points. If someone wants to connect with you, of course they can connect with you on LinkedIn. What other ways, if someone is looking to get help with you from LinkedIn or some other social media channels, how can they connect with you, how can they contact you? Can you tell us about that?
Karen: The best way to find out what’s going on with me is on my website which is KarenYankovich.com, and that’s pretty much kept up to date with what’s going on and what the different products are that I’m offering now. Got a lot of LinkedIn hands free stuff. But I do have a lot of interesting things coming up in the next six months. I do a quarterly workshop called Get Social, which is a daylong social media workshop where you can kind of just take your small business and get all of your social media sites kind of up and running in one day. It’s a one day intensive, but it’s a group workshop, so it’s affordable. And that you can find at GetSocialWeekend.com.
Sushant: Is that in person or is that like a webinar?
Karen: It’s not in person, it’s online. But it’s live, so I’m live and you’re live and people can interact on the day. You can email me, you can join in. The next one is in October I think. I’m getting ready for that to come up again. My passion is to help people build businesses from their passions. And there’s so many ways you can do that using social media for free. I know how to do all these things, so I like to try to find ways to bring it to more people. So we can certainly talk one on one. My favorite thing to do is VIP days with clients, where we spend four or five hours together just knocking something out. Because I don’t have a lot of patience. I don’t want to spend six months trying to get your Facebook page up. When I work with people, their Facebook page is up by the next day. Then we can start working on how you can market it. If you spend six months on getting your stuff in place, you’re not marketing anything. You can find all that out on my website.
Sushant: Well perfect. I will mention your website in the show notes, so it will be easier for people, anyone who’s watching this to go on the website. Well, thank you very much Karen for all the advice. Hey TREPS, that was our conversation and if you have any comments, questions, or suggestions about this interview or any other interview, please feel free to leave them in the comment section below. And I’m always looking forward to hearing your comments and suggestions. I hope you enjoyed the interview and looking forward to see you next time. Thanks, bye.
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Do you use LinkedIn for professional or business purposes? What are the specific challenges you face when connecting with colleagues or potential leads. Please write any comments, suggestions, or challenges below and I will create another interview to address those issues. Thank you!