Perhaps you’re expecting a long read, after all, I just wrote a book on how to succeed on LinkedIn, so this post must include everything in that book, plus more, right? Instead, I can sum up everything I’ve ever learned about how to succeed on LinkedIn in a single word:
If you want to experience dramatic success on LinkedIn, serve others.
But don’t serve mindlessly. Selfless service doesn’t mean serving everyone, all the time, without any strategy or plan. Service is about providing value to others, and if you believe providing more value to others is better than providing less value, then structure your service using The 7 Systems of Influence.
- Vision. Find a purpose worthy of the best service you can provide. “I want to help people,” is a great attitude to have, but if you help people indiscriminately your impact will be less than it could be, because it lacks focus. “I want to help 1 million millennials become debt-free within the next 10 years,” is a focused vision, a powerful vision.
- Genius Zone. You have many expert zones, but just because you’re an expert at something doesn’t mean you have to do it. Just because you know how to fix cars doesn’t mean fixing cars is the best way you can help people. Lots of other people can fix cars, and probably better than you can do it–maybe you should let them. Maybe your genius zone is the fact that you grew up in China, then moved to the US, went back to work in China for 10 years in marketing, ended up consulting with Chinese business leaders, and now you’re back in the US. When you overlap those expert zones (China, US, marketing, business, leadership, English, Chinese, etc.) you can find a niche where you’re truly unique, where very few other people can compete with you. Maybe that should be your Genius Zone, the area you focus on, because you can serve within that Genius Zone like no one, or almost no one, else can.
- Audience. Who is your ideal audience? Hints; 1) they’re like you, 2) they need what you have, 3) they’re willing and able to pay for it (charging for what you do turns out to be a decent way to measure how much value you’re providing), 4) it energizes you to serve them.
- Content. What content will serve your audience best? If you were in their shoes, what knowledge in your head would help them make better decisions? What conversations can you spark? What stories can you tell?
- Action. What’s your plan? Will you post once a day, M-F? Or is TWTh good enough? Video, or text? Do you work better creating content spontaneously, or should you create a content calendar?
- Collaborate. By yourself, you can only do so much. With others, there’s no limit to what you can do. How can you work with others to 1000x your influence?
- Love. It’s more than unconditional positive regard. It’s empathy–feeling what your audience feels. It’s care–caring for the well-being of your audience. It’s an emotion, and if you don’t feel it, try serving, because when you serve someone, you grow to love them. If you don’t love your vision, your genius zone, your audience, your content, and putting it altogether into a plan of action, your influence will be minimized.
Apply the 7 Systems as you serve others on LinkedIn, and you won’t have to worry about what’s in it for you. Others will.Liked it? Share it!