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LinkedIn for Hedge Funds

According to Hedgeweek, over 90% of hedge funds are using at least one social media platform, with LinkedIn being by far the most popular. However, in my experience the majority of hedge fund professionals have only a basic understanding of how to use LinkedIn - the typical user simply posts their education and experience on their LinkedIn profile, connects with people he/she meets at industry events like Hedgebrunch, and then not much else. Similarly, many hedge funds have a LinkedIn company page but many are simply a company bio and make no effort to engage with their followers.

So here are my top LinkedIn features for hedge fund professionals:

Your profile is not a CV! Unless you're looking for a new job, you should treat your LinkedIn profile as the face of your personal brand and as a marketing and business development tool. Make sure you have a professional photo (not your Facebook pic!) - your profile is 14x more likely to be viewed if you have a photo. You need to write an interesting and engaging summary which gives the reader a reason to want to connect with you - don't just bullet point your career highlights, tell the reader what you or your firm can do for them. You can also upload a firm brochure or other multimedia, making your profile much more than an online CV. Take a look at mine and you'll get the idea - uk.linkedin.com/in/grahamaikin

Even on the free version of LinkedIn, there are some incredibly powerful search features. By clicking on the Advanced button, you can find a specific type of business professional, in a particular industry, within 10 miles of a postcode anywhere in the world. For example, if I run a keyword search for 'family office' within 10 miles of a Mayfair postcode, LinkedIn provides me with 2,152 names! Experiment and you will be amazed how powerful this search tool is.

LinkedIn Groups  are a great way to meet people with a common interest, position yourself as an expert or thought leader and raise your professional profile. Some of the larger LinkedIn Groups for hedge professionals include Hedge Fund Group and Hedge Fund Professionals Worldwide Network.

Post content - a great way to stay on the radar of your LinkedIn connections, posting content on LinkedIn once or twice a week takes just a couple of minutes. Obviously, any of your own content needs to be client-facing and signed off by Compliance, but you can also post articles from the likes of the FT or Bloomberg that you think is going to be of interest to your contacts.

A LinkedIn Company Page for your firm gives people choice - they may prefer to follow the firm as a whole rather than connect with a specific individual. Again, you need to be posting content on a fairly regular basis (at least weekly) to build a following,

As you can see, LinkedIn is so much more than an online CV and somewhere to store your contacts. With a little tenacity, you can utilise LinkedIn as a core element of your marketing and business development activities.

Results of my client survey 2015

As many of my contacts know, I have trained hundreds of wealth management professionals on the use of LinkedIn as a business development and lead generation tool, and I am often asked how many of my clients actually get business from LinkedIn. So I decided to conduct a random survey of 200 of my workshop attendees to find out whether they can evidence any tangible business results. I was shocked!

See the infographic below for the detailed results, but here are the highlights:

·         84% of those surveyed said they have seen tangible business outcomes as a result of their LinkedIn activities;

·         Within 1-4 weeks of attending the workshop, 42% had seen results e.g. a meeting or conversation they wouldn't have had without LinkedIn;

·         A total of 345 additional meetings or conversations have been held, which otherwise would not have happened but for their LinkedIn activities;

·         As a result of this activity, 79% of respondents said that it had either resulted in new business or was likely to;

·         And here's the number everyone is interested in - a total of just over £42,000,000 in new assets under management has been acquired by advisers due to their LinkedIn activities over the 12 months. That is an average of £210,000 per adviser!

As you can see, there is no reason why you shouldn't be using LinkedIn to generate business. Please don't use compliance as an excuse - your competitors aren't!

Survey Results 2015

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