How to use LinkedIn to promote your services and NOT sell!

You survived the pandemic and you’re feeling grateful. If there’s one thing, we’ve all learned over the last couple of years, it’s not to take anything for granted. And, the second thing is the benefits of having another income stream! Maybe that’s why you have begun looking into starting a ‘side hustle’ and you want to learn more about how to use LinkedIn to build your ‘side hustle’.

You might just be curious about whether you can generate extra money, or you feel it’s a sensible thing to have several income streams just in case! Whatever your reason, LinkedIn is one of the best social media platforms to achieve your career goals and side hustle aspirations. LinkedIn literally has millions of members across hundreds of sectors and industries, so your ideal customer is most certainly on this platform.

What’s the right ‘side hustle’ for me?

If you have just started exploring the options available, you’ll probably already know you are pretty much spoilt for choice. You may even be feeling overwhelmed with the choices available.

There are lots of different platforms you can use to help you market and get closer to your ideal customer. People Per Hour and Fiverr, are great places to be to find your ideal customer and you can promote these on your LinkedIn profile.

However, if you’ve been listening to the ‘experts’ on side hustles, they will tell you to focus on things you are good at. What experience, skills, or knowledge do you have that you could convert into a product or service and turn your passion into profit!

Consider what you enjoy doing and have an interest in. Generating income from a side hustle takes time, dedication, and most importantly consistent action. At first, you may not generate any revenue. This is one of the main reasons for picking something of interest and something you enjoy doing even if you don’t earn any money. Otherwise in the early days, if you don’t make any money, the going will get tough as they say!

If you have a full-time job and a long commute, then factor this into your decision-making. Decide on the best side hustle that fits in with you and your family.

Here are some side hustle options to consider:

  • Dog walking or pet sitting
  • Match betting
  • Blogging
  • Private tutoring
  • Mystery Shopping
  • Survey sites

If you are looking to earn an extra income and don’t want the hassle of generating tons of traffic to your social media accounts and website, click here!

Side hustle dog walking

“Everyone is not your customer” – Seth Godin

Who is your ideal customer?

Getting to know your ideal customer or creating the perfect customer Avatar, is an essential first step in using LinkedIn to build an online presence. Building an online presence is important to attract and network with your ideal customer.

Your ideal customer needs to Know, Like, and Trust you can solve their problems and challenges, or help them achieve their goals and aspirations.  The more questions you ask about your ideal customer, the more targeted your marketing and networking can be on LinkedIn. When you know who your ideal customer is, you’ll know where to find them too.

There are literally millions of members on LinkedIn, you don’t need to attract or network with all of them to have a profitable side hustle.

Ideal customer demographics:

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Marital status
  • Children
  • Location
  • Occupation

What are your customers goals and values:

  • Find out what their goals are and what do they want to achieve?
  • What are their characteristics?
  • Discover their beliefs and values?

What problems are you solving:

  • Are you saving your clients time?
  • Do you help your client budget or save money or reduce costs?
  • What are the features of your product or service?
  • What are the benefits of your product or service?
Side hustle
I was chatting to a friend of mine the other day and she informed me that her fixed-term contract had just come to an end.  She’s found herself back on the job market. Even though there was always the possibility that the contract would come to an end, it was still disappointing.

Despite being disappointed at the outcome, she’s taking the opportunity to review ways of generating an income while she’s looking for the next full-time job.

Previously, she’d worked as a teacher and decided this was a good option to fall back on her teaching experience and skills.  She confessed, that she didn’t want to return to teaching full-time however, she did like the idea of offering tuition to students to help them achieve their specific academic goals.

Even though she has excellent experience to offer students, she was apprehensive about using LinkedIn.

  • Where do I start?
  • How do I use LinkedIn to get to my customers?
  • What do I post?
  • I don’t want to be salesy!

LinkedIn is the ideal place to attract her ideal customers; busy, time-starved parents that work full-time and value their children’s education and would be happy to pay for private tutoring. These parents have busy and often have demanding careers.  These people are on LinkedIn!

If you’re concerned about being ‘salesy’ on LinkedIn, then keep reading!  You have lots of opportunities to educate your connections on LinkedIn that don’t include a sale post!

How to set up your LinkedIn profile

Now that you have a good idea of your ideal customer, you know their goals and values, and you know their potential challenges and problems, you can start to consider what information you need to include when setting up or updating your LinkedIn profile.

Customize your Headline

Your LinkedIn headline is the most seen component of your LinkedIn profile. It appears everywhere your name does and gives your ideal customers or your prospects a quick overview of who you are and what you can do for them.

The Headline is like your mini digital business card, so spend some quality time crafting a compelling sentence or two. You have 120 characters and more if you use the App.

Use your Headline like a ‘hook’ to encourage people to view your profile in more detail or screen out people that are not interested in what you are selling and marketing. Your Headline needs to ‘speak’ to your ideal customer.

About section (your ‘shop window’)

The About section on LinkedIn is a text field summary that sits beneath your name and profile picture. It’s your professional ‘pitch’ to your ideal customer to show what you offer, using no more than 2,000 characters (approximately 250 words).

This is a great place to showcase and highlight what you do for your clients.  Don’t make the mistake of ‘showing off’ about what you’ve achieved.  Setting up LinkedIn for your side hustle isn’t about you, it’s about your clients and what you can do for them.  Honestly, if your client doesn’t know you, I’m sorry but they don’t care about your qualifications or how much you’ve earnt in the last year.  They want to be confident and re-assured you can help with their problems!

This is the section to showcase what you can do for your customers, what problems you solve and the benefits of your product or service.

LinkedIn profile photo

Professional Photo

Professional profile photos don’t have to cost a fortune and you don’t need to be stuck in a studio!  Anne Thomas is the only professional photographer I would recommend.  She’s an incredible photographer.

When we met at a networking event we talked about updating my profile photos for LinkedIn, and I said how I hate my photo being taken, how I always look uncomfortable when the camera is pointed at me, and how I always look washed out in a studio with the bright lights and white clean backdrops!

She listened.

She asked lots of questions.

And, she got it right.

We talked some more and Anne booked the date, the time, and the place.  We had such a great morning together in the A-Canteen in Chelmsford and didn’t stop laughing.  It was such a lovely experience and it didn’t stop there.  Anne booked another date to go through the many photos and I selected a couple.  Later, much later I bought a couple more including the one above!  It’s my ‘Zen’ pose!

According to LinkedIn, profiles with photos are 14 times more likely to be viewed than those without a profile picture. So, having a photo is really important. People do business with people. They like to know who they are corresponding with so make sure your headshot is clear and professional, and it’s only you in the photo.

What do you post on LinkedIn if you’re building a side hustle?

A lot of my clients ask this question when they start using LinkedIn.  They’ve set up a profile, they’ve liked and shared a couple of their colleague’s posts, but what do they post?

Everyone has different fears about posting other than what to post, they might fear no one being interested in what they have to post, what if no one reacts to the post, what if it doesn’t get many views, likes, comments, etc?

Share your knowledge:

Sharing what you know and how you can help your customer is really important when you are asking people to hire you! They want to be confident you know your subject! What better way to share your knowledge than on a free social media platform like LinkedIn?

Share tips:

Be generous about helping people without charging a fee. Again, this is a great way of demonstrating you can help people with a range of issues.  There are people that will never pay for help, there are some people that will, some will, some won’t, so what!

Provide sector updates and share news:

If you are part of professional membership, then every month you’ll have new news and updates to share!  There’s literally an inexhaustible supply of content!

Share Regulation updates and share news:

No one likes reading regulations and legislation…it’s dull! But if there’s a new piece of legislation, it needs to be understood and implemented.  You could share the snippets that people need to know and why they are relevant.  You could help people understand why it’s relevant too.