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The Power of LinkedIn

Valuable tools for today's business owners and salespeople.

By Brian O'Neil

As the founder and president/CEO of Sales Empowerment Group, I have had many opportunities to provide sales training to business owners and salespeople working in organizations of all sizes, including Fortune 500 companies and mom-and-pop businesses. A portion of the training my group offers is dedicated to teaching business owners and salespeople the skills that are necessary to take advantage of free, readily available resources. These resources can easily be used to access tools, and people will increase the sales organization’s activity and future revenue.

As an entrepreneur, I realized that by using LinkedIn, my company quickly could double its activity, connections, and research of products and services. I also was able to eliminate cold calls, and no longer had to go through the gatekeeper. Every call became a warm call, due to my connections on LinkedIn.

I find it surprising that only 5 percent of the people we have trained understand how to use social media to increase business opportunities. The statistics are very high when it comes to the number of people who are connected on LinkedIn. However, there are only a few people who actually are using this tool to develop business relationships, connections, and accessibility to people who may be interested in their services.

I predict that in two years there will be two categories of business owners and salespeople. One category will contain the sales organizations that will be trying to play catch-up, and the other will be made up of business owners and salespeople who currently are using LinkedIn, and, because of their foresight, will be consistently beating their competition in the future.

I plan to be in the latter category. What about you?

Brian O'Neil is president/CEO of Sales Empowerment Group (www.salesempowermentgroup.com). Connect with him at

www.linkedin.com/in/segbrianoneil.