Tag Archives: Linked IN

5 “Linked In” Keys To Stay At Home Sales And Business Development

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Image: Salespop.net

“WASHINGTON TECHNOLOGY” By Mark Amtower

Here are a few things you might not be doing on LinkedIn that can help you stay active, in the loop, and maybe get closer to winning that deal you’ve been working on.

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First, and always foremost, make sure your profile is up-to-date and fully represents what you do and who you do it for. An out-of-date or incomplete profile will probably cost you business instead of helping you win business. LinkedIn is the top venue for vetting professionals in our market, so present yourself well.

Second, find things to share. As you’re reading the GovCon trade media, listening to podcasts or reading blogs, find things that are worthy of sharing, things that your connections will find interesting and useful. I share events, podcasts (like Nick Wakeman’s Project 38 or Amtower Off Center), contract updates and more. And of course I will be sharing this article when it runs.

Third, reach out to key accounts. Touch bases with all of your connections and look for new connections to make in those accounts. When I am reaching out to new people in a company I am working with, or want to work with, one thing I always do is see who our “shared connections” are. If you share twenty+ connections with someone; that may be worth noting when you reach out. I have people with whom I share over 1,000 connections. Steve Cooper (yes, that Steve Cooper) and I share 1,328 connections.

Fourth, there are a lot of soft touches that you can make through scanning your Notifications page. There are always people who have changed companies, moved up in their current company, have birthdays, and more. For each of these I look at their profile before I send anything. I look to see who else I know at the company and glean anything I can to help me formulate a more personal message rather than simply send “Happy birthday” or “Congrats on the new job.” The more personal it is, the more memorable you become.

For example, a friend of mine just got a new position with a government contractor and I happen to know five other people at that company. So in my congratulatory message I referenced knowing these people and offering to do an introduction. In normal times this might not be necessary, but during the stay at home situation, she may not meet these people for a while. I’ve worked with this woman before and I know she’s extremely competent in what she does so in my introductions to the other people I know I have a high degree of confidence in saying “you just added a great person to your team.”

Fifth, scroll through your homepage to see what other people in your network are doing. This is like a Twitter feed and the more active your network is the more information will be there in real time. So scroll through and look for things that you can comment on, or congratulate people for, or otherwise acknowledge in some meaningful way.

LinkedIn offers you a 24/7/365 way of staying in touch with your 1st degree network. In our current stay-at-home environment this is extremely important.

These are some tip of the iceberg social selling techniques that I have been using and coaching my clients on for several years. They are especially effective at helping you stay top of mind in difficult times.”

https://washingtontechnology.com/articles/2020/04/21/insights-amtower-stay-at-home-bd.aspx

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Mark Amtower

Mark Amtower advises government contractors on all facets of business-to-government (B2G) marketing and leveraging LinkedIn. Find Mark on LinkedIn at http://www.linkedin.com/in/markamtower.

5 Tactics That Will Help You Win In 2018

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Winning Tactics

Image:”Linked In” Mark Amtower

“WASHINGTON TECHNOLOGY” By Mark Amtower

“What is your fiscal 2018 Strategy?  If you are a smaller government contractor, are your plans in place? Do you have goals supported by a strategy?

If not, are you just going to continue to tread water by looking for bids to go after, or are you going to map out a strategy that gives you a better chance at winning more business?

For over 30 years I have watched smaller businesses struggle to grow from fiscal year to fiscal year, including those who won spots on coveted contracts alike SEWP, Alliant, CIO-SP3 Small Business, VETS, 8(a) STARS and others. There are always under-performers and many of these wonder why.

So I would like to offer a few things for you to think about.

1. If you own a spot on any of the IDIQs or MACs, like the ones mentioned above, are you fully exploiting the value of the contract? If you are on an IDIQ or MAC and are simply responding to RFQs and RFPs but not winning a significant percentage, perhaps your bidding strategy needs to be revised. There are a number of reputable firms that can help you improve your bidding process.

Or perhaps you need to partner with other companies that bring different strengths to the bid, still using your contract.

These contracts are coveted and there are many ways to grow your business if you are a prime.

2. Are you looking at other IDIQs to see if you can bring something to the primes on those vehicles that would make them more attractive in the bidding process?

If you bring a unique skill set or strong agency relationship to the table, you may be able to open the door to better sub-contracting opportunities.

3. Have you looked at your top government clients to determine if you need to focus more on fewer agencies?

Account or agency based marketing can be quite effective. Selling in an agency where you are known is much easier than attempting to break into new agencies.

4. Are you looking to better utilize LinkedIn and fully develop your social selling skills?

Social selling is the art of leveraging social networks to find key influencers and get on their radar, and it works. There are 1.6 million feds on LinkedIn representing all agencies, and more than 15 percent have IT titles. Another 30 percent to 40 percent have program and project related job functions. Odds are the people you need to reach and influence are on LinkedIn.

5. Are you developing and sharing content that helps define who you are and what you bring to the market?

Content marketing is an increasingly valuable tool in government contracting. Saying you are an expert is one thing, but developing and sharing content to support the claim helps you establish your company as a legitimate player.

These are just a few of the things you may want to consider as you move into what promises to be an interesting year in government contracting

So ask yourself, what are my goals for fiscal 2018? I hope you have an answer.”

https://washingtontechnology.com/articles/2017/09/21/insights-amtower-fiscal-2018-strategy-tips.aspx

About the Author

Mark Amtower

Mark Amtower advises government contractors on all facets of business-to-government (B2G) marketing and leveraging LinkedIn. Find Mark on LinkedIn at http://www.linkedin.com/in/markamtower

Is LinkedIn Trying to Protect Your Data — Or Hoard It?

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Linked In Data

(David Paul Morris/Bloomberg)

“WASHINGTON POST”

“When you create a public profile on a social network such as LinkedIn, it isn’t just your friends and contacts who can see that data. For better or for worse, other companies can legally download that information and use it for themselves, too.

That’s according to a federal judge who ruled Monday against LinkedIn, the professional networking site, in a case that has big implications for corporate power and consumer privacy in the tech-driven economy.

LinkedIn had claimed that another company, hiQ Labs, was illegally downloading information about LinkedIn users to help drive its business. The issue was a concern for LinkedIn, which is owned by Microsoft, in part because many of today’s tech companies depend on customer data to compete and even outmaneuver their rivals. As a result, being able to control that information and determine who else can see it is of paramount importance to firms like these.

“Microsoft is further transforming LinkedIn into a data-driven marketing powerhouse that harvests all its data to drive ad revenues,” said Jeffrey Chester, executive director of the Center for Digital Democracy.

Where LinkedIn and hiQ clashed was over hiQ’s product, which almost exclusively depends on LinkedIn’s data, according to U.S. District Judge Edward Chen. HiQ essentially helps employers predict, using the data, which of their employees are likely to leave for other jobs. While this HR tool might sound relatively boring to you and me, it’s key to industries whose success depends on recruiting and retaining the best talent. A Gallup survey last year found that 93 percent of job-switchers left their old company for a new one; just 7 percent took a new job within the same organization.

HiQ has raised more than $12 million since its founding in 2012. LinkedIn itself is making moves to develop a similar capability, Chen said, meaning that LinkedIn’s attempt to block hiQ from accessing its data could be interpreted as a self-interested move to kneecap a competitor. If hiQ can’t get the professional data it needs to fuel its analytic engine, its business could “go under,” Chen said.

To allow hiQ access to LinkedIn’s data would be a gross violation of LinkedIn users’ privacy, LinkedIn argued. But Chen didn’t buy it, saying that LinkedIn already chooses to provide data to third parties of its own accord. What’s more, he added, people who make their profiles public on LinkedIn probably want their information seen by others, which undermines LinkedIn’s claim to be protecting user privacy.

Allowing LinkedIn to selectively block members of the public from accessing public profiles — under penalty of the country’s anti-hacking laws, no less — “could pose an ominous threat to public discourse and the free flow of information promised by the Internet,” wrote Chen in his ruling.

LinkedIn vowed to keep fighting in court.

“We’re disappointed in the court’s ruling,” it said in a statement. “This case is not over. We will continue to fight to protect our members’ ability to control the information they make available on LinkedIn.”

The case raises deep questions about who truly represents users’ interests. From one perspective, LinkedIn is duty-bound to protect its customers’ data and prevent it from falling into the wrong hands — perhaps all the more so if, as it appears with hiQ, the information could give employers more leverage over their workers.

But LinkedIn’s position requires that it have a tremendous say over how users’ own information can be used and distributed. Concentrating power in this way benefits not only LinkedIn, but also the owners of other platforms such as Facebook, Google and other sites that host user-supplied content.

“If LinkedIn’s view of the law is correct, nothing would prevent Facebook from barring hiQ in the same way LinkedIn has,” said Chen.

That’s why this case is so important: How it turns out could set a precedent for the entire Internet, and a global economy that depends on data.”

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-switch/wp/2017/08/15/is-linkedin-trying-to-protect-your-data-or-hoard-it/?utm_term=.9d95e9c0d196

 

5 Ways to Tilt the Playing Field in Your Favor

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“WASHINGTON TECHNOLOGY”

“Small businesses rarely take the time to come up for air when it comes to trying to see how they are perceived in the market.

Those doing the vetting need to quickly understand who you are and what you do.

There is no such thing as a level playing field in government contracting, so what can you do as a small-to-mid size contractor to tilt the field in your favor, t get those vetting you the quick answer they seek?

Here are five factors that can either level the playing field or tilt it in your favor.

First and foremost, determine what your major skill area is and where you stand in the list of firms that do the same or similar work. Your niche can be technical, a process, deep knowledge of a particular client organization, having a leading subject matter expert on your team, and more.

It can also be a combination of elements, but it has to do three things: be true, resonate with buyers, and be demonstrable.

For companies that don’t have a specific area of expertise, focusing on a specific agency is a viable tactic. But it has to be a deep knowledge of that agency and the agency personnel.

Second, clearly define your skills in terms that will resonate with buyers and influencers, both feds and primes. Frame the differentiator in a way that is clear and concise. It has to be a short, clear message, not some lengthy diatribe that leaves people confused.

Third, make certain your message is central on your company web site, truly front and center. Instead of some nebulous tag line about customer satisfaction, deploy a clear, concise positioning statement. One of my favorites is from Reliable Integration Services in the 1990s. The CEO, Valerie Perlowitz, came up with “Networks, nothing but networks” and it was big and bold on the front page of their web site. Simple and direct.

Fourth, deploy it on the LinkedIn company profile and encourage all employees to use the message on their individual profiles. LinkedIn is probably the top place for being vetted, so your message must be clear and easy to find here as well. If you are engaged on other social platforms, the same applies.

Fifth, follow any news concerning your niche. It is easier to post news links and comment on them (content curation) rather than try to generate fresh content. This does not mean you won’t generate your own content, it just means that you have more content available.

Perhaps the best way to tilt the playing field in your favor is to focus on one agency and your technical strength, a combination that makes you attractive to both the agency and potential partners and primes.

The downside to not positioning your company well is that a few of your competitors are likely to, and that will leave you on a playing field skewed against you.”

Mark Amtower advises companies on all aspects of marketing to the government. His next workshop is Dec 6: Creating Your Subject Matter Expert Platformhttp://blog.federaldirect.net/2016/10/dont-miss-creating-your-subject-matter.html