LinkedIn’s millions of users leverage the professional social networking site to share their content with business-minded peers and connect with decision-makers of companies they might never get to meet in the “real world.” Indeed, an infographic from Imbue Marketing described the site as “the Facebook for grown-ups.”

Research conducted by LinkedIn, in partnership with FTI Consulting and Cogent Research, found that financial advisors can leverage LinkedIn for business and generate considerable success. Specifically, more than six in 10 surveyed financial advisors actively prospecting on the site over the past year were able to convert new prospects to clients, approximately one-third (32 percent) of whom had $1 million or more in new assets under management.

Reaching out on LinkedIn

When you’re looking to establish contact with new clients, LinkedIn’s Advanced Search feature is a good port of call. Enter your office’s postal code, then plug in a realistic radius based on how far you would be willing to travel to meet with a client and vice-versa. Once the site has generated a list of names, parse through it to determine your best prospects. Up until now, the process has been fairly rote, but this step involves a strategic element – namely, you will need to determine whom you have common connections with, as well as who fits your ideal client profile.

Although LinkedIn can be an excellent tool in the process of targeting future clients, there comes a time to step away from the social networking site and get more personal. In a recent blog titled “Managing and Navigating Client Relationships Via Email,” we called email an “art form.” Financial advisors often use the channel to make preliminary contact with clients, but in our high-tech, fast-paced world, don’t disregard the value of engaging in phone conversations – or even arranging face-to-face meetings with prospects.

How are you using LinkedIn to help build your business and expand your circles of influence? Do you focus on getting your name out there, or are you taking a back seat when it comes to self-promotion? Don’t hold back any longer, start to leverage LinkedIn for business by using the site to target prospects, engage clients, demonstrate thought leadership, or zero-in on potential future employees!