By Bob Speyer, Web Success Team
We all know Linkedin is a powerful social media marketing tool. What is often overlooked in building out profiles, joining groups and connecting with people is what I call the “passive” sell — Recommendations.
Usually getting people to give you or your company a recommendation is relatively easy. However getting the “right” testimonials and the ones that are the most effective is another matter. Too often, when asked, colleagues will give some generic fluff that sounds like many others. The trick is to get them to give you a recommendation with “teeth.”
So what is a quality recommendation and how to obtain one. First, a quality recommendation is one that shows how you were a problem solver, how you saved the client money and were not only reliable and dependable, but delivered on time and in budget. Simply asking for a recommendation won’t do. Provide them with some guidance. It’s worth a few minutes to orient them as to what you would like it to contain and explain the importance of their testimonial. An effective trick is to ask if you can write it and they can endorse it. Some will welcome this solution because they don’t have to spend time and energy and you get the type of recommendation you want. Believe me, it will be most appreciated and takes it from a task or obligation to a more motivated and helpful person.
Now back to Linkedin. Simply ask colleagues, clients, managers and employees to endorse your work through Linkedin. When asking your Linkedin connections, you can easily manage the recommendations you’ve received. And follow the guidelines above. After they have endorsed you, do stay connected and show your appreciation. You can even ask them if they want your recommendation as well. Give to get!
Growing Your Reputation through Recommendations
Customers want to be reassured that you are selling quality products and services. By reading your endorsements builds confidence and it’s an indirect way of getting to know your work and what others think of it.
Another question is how many recommendations are too many? My answer is always quality over quantity. Obviously some carry more weight than others, particularly if the endorsement is from a sizable company from a Fortune 1000 or recognizable ones in your industry. However, don’t discount the “little” guys. Sincerity can trump a matter of fact testimonial. My rule of thumb is to have a minimum of ten to twenty. You can even segment them into categories, and also add them to your website.
Finally, remember that in order for a recommendation to be effective, it needs to be specific, believable and placed in a credible location.