How to grow your LinkedIn network to 10,000 contacts in 30 days
LinkedIn growth hacks for the impatient
On LinkedIn, as in life, “your network is your net worth”.
Your success on LinkedIn is directly proportional to the size of your network of professional connections on the platform. The more people you know and are connected to, the wider your professional network of leads, prospects and — if you work with me — high-value customers.
As such, it’s imperative that your grow that network. However, in these hyper-frenetic days, there’s little time for gently coasting, picking up a few connections here and there largely by accident with no strategy or direction.
As I advise all my students: grow your LinkedIn network as quickly as possible.
So, whether you are a LinkedIn veteran or new to the platform, here’s practical guide to growing your network to 10,000 contacts in 30 days:
1) Import your email contacts
You know when you get an invite in your inbox and it says, “Jeremy would like to connect with you on LinkedIn” and you have no idea who Jeremy is or why he’s emailed you a connection message? Well, Jeremy has just decided to “Import” all of his email contacts onto LinkedIn so they each receive a connection message.
Annoying? Perhaps. Effective for fast LinkedIn network growth? DEFINITELY.
Add as many email addresses as possible: your work email, your personal email, your side hustle email, your college email.
Why? Because across all of those email you’ve probably got hundreds — if not thousands — of contacts that you have emailed in your life. Every one of them (if they are not a LinkedIn) will receive an email from you asking you to ‘Connect’ with them on LinkedIn.
Better yet: if you’re worried about sending your weird Great-Aunt Leslie a LinkedIn request, LinkedIn gives you the opportunity to prune/moderate the list of individuals that will receive your “Connect with me on LinkedIn” email.
2) Connect with LIONS
L.I.O.Ns stands for “LinkedIn Open Networkers” — these are professionals on LinkedIn that are open to random people who they do not know adding them to connect. In short: these are people that will definitely accept your invitation to connect.
Now, the quality in the LIONS you add may vary but that doesn’t matter. The reason? Because if you grow your 1st connections (whoever they may be) you will get access to their 2nd connections. Put another way: even if a particular L.I.O.N is of no use to you at all, the people that LION is connected to (that you are not) may be very valuable to you.
So, how do you find LIONS? It’s simple: they put it in their profile. So, use that search bar, type in “LIONS”, “L.I.O.N”, “Open Networker”, etc and start connecting with these people.
Bonus tip: Make sure you put LION in your profile so that people looking for open networkers also find — and add — you!
3) Add people who look at your profile
The great thing about LinkedIn is that it has a ‘Who’s Viewed Your Profile’ section that you can check. This gives you a list of LinkedIn users that have recently visited and read your profile.
Now why did those people look at you? Most likely because they are interested in you or by something you wrote on your profile that enabled them to find you. Perhaps, LinkedIn made your profile show up under their ‘People You Should Follow’ tab. Whatever the reason, these people have shown a slight interest in you — and that’s enough for you connect with them: crack open that ‘Who’s Viewed Your Profile’ and start pressing that ‘connect’ button next to each profile.
Bonus tip: This also works in reverse. If you view people’s profiles, you will show up in their ‘Who’s Viewed Your Profile’ section. If you click on enough people’s profiles, a fraction will connect with you.
4) Complete your profile, keyword optimise it
LinkedIn right now is like Google in the early days: the more you write a particular keyword in your profile, the greater weighting the LinkedIn algorithm gives to your page when people are searching for that. Learning: fill your profile page with a popular (make it relevant to you, not random!) search term that people on LinkedIn are likely to be searching for.
Also, complete your profile. Everything — summary, skills, work history, recommendations, education, etc — everything. LinkedIn makes it very easy to know what to do and basically spoon-feeds you the instructions for how to make sure your profile is 100%.
This acts like an ‘always on’ inbound strategy. A well-optimised profile on LinkedIn makes you more findable: so whether you do any proactive activity on the platform or not, your profile will rise to the top of keyword searches made by other people, who have a high likelihood of adding you if you fit what they’re looking for.
5) Post your LinkedIn profile URL in the right Facebook groups
With this being an article about LinkedIn, you’d probably expect me to talk about the pros of LinkedIn groups…wrong! Facebook is where all the best professional networking goes down nowadays.
Facebook groups such Traffic and Copy, Badass Marketers & Founders and Growth Hack World are all filled with thousands of proactive, dynamic individuals and entrepreneurs that are looking to connect and build their networks. Most importantly: they often have roll call posts where moderators ask members to post their Linkedin profiles with the explicit purpose of getting people in the Facebook group to connect over Linkedin.
Find groups like these, post your Linkedin URL and watch your connections blow up!
6) Automate tactics 1, 2 and 3 with software
So, despite me explaining above exactly how to get to your first 10,000 contacts in one month on LinkedIn — it’s still a lot of manual effort. And, in 2018, who really has time to do anything manually anymore? That’s for schmucks!
Fortunately, LinkedIn is starting to get a really interesting ecosystem of software plugins and apps that can automate a lot of the regular
LinkedIn Helper — Get thousands of targeted contacts by sending personalised invitations to 2nd & 3rd contacts
Dux Soup — Automate profile visits on LinkedIn (up to 1000 profiles a day) and increase your chances of finding great prospects AND accelerating tactic no. 3
GPZweb — Automate connection messages and personalise messages at scale (message 100s of connections in one go)
There are scores of other ways to build your network on LinkedIn, however the above six tactics are the fastest way to do this and to growth hack the process in 30 days.
What next? Make money!
So, once you’ve grown your LinkedIn network to 10,000 contacts — what do you do next?
Growing your network is only the first part of the process of winning at LinkedIn.
The next part is being able to sift through those contacts, identify the high-value targets and then knowing when and how to message them so that they convert into a sales meeting and a closed deal.