On today’s episode of The Engaging Marketeer, Darren talks to Helen Tudor, who is a LinkedIn coach and platform expert. Here, Helen gives honest advice on how to run a successful business without having to spend hours DMing people who simply aren’t interested. Instead, she teaches people how to grow their business organically, with no hidden costs, no soul-destroying sales emails, and no premium accounts necessary.
Below are some of the highlights of this week’s eye-opening interview with a LinkedIn legend.
Darren: I believe you have a similar background to myself in that you were involved in the dark, boring techy stuff of SEO some time ago.
Helen: I was Darren. My very first job in the online space was as an SEO link builder, so pitching and finding blogs that would take our content. This was in the old days of paid links, but a lot of my role was relationship building. I was trying to reach out and connect with bloggers who’d do a sponsored post for the business. It was a lot of fun – as long as I was selling, I was happy.
Darren: That’s quite interesting, as outreach is often one of the hardest parts of SEO. You have to build genuine relationships with people and get them to trust you, and what you’re selling.
Helen: It was all very above board, and I think it taught me important skills in making those transactions a win-win for everyone, and positioning it so they understood what was in it for them. It worked really well, and from there, I went on to start my own digital marketing agency. I was on the scene for a while, if you like, and had a couple of different agencies. I had a social media agency to start with, and then we went more into the recruitment side of things.
How Helen began her LinkedIn journey
Darren: So, what made you go from the agency to doing the LinkedIn work you’re doing now?
Helen: I was sat next to this guy at a networking event. We were at a golf club with a picture of the Queen on the wall, eating our seventh full English breakfast of the week. I was working in a branding agency at the time, and he said, “how are you getting all these clients?”. Because, you know, I was working with some big names at the time – Eddie Stobart, Lakeland Plastics – and he said, “what’s your strategy?”. I said, “oh, they just all come to me on LinkedIn.”
He was adamant that wasn’t how LinkedIn worked. I explained to him that all I did was put out content every day, engaging on posts with directors so people would see my headline, and over time people began to reach out to me. All the information was on my profile, the pricing and everything, so people knew what they were getting before they messaged me. This guy at the golf club couldn’t believe it. He was convinced that wasn’t how LinkedIn worked; that it could be that simple. I ended up writing it down on a napkin for him. He came back to me a couple of weeks later, and said it had worked for him, too. He said “Helen, you’ve got to teach this. No-one is doing this”. I thought, “maybe I will”. 2,000 paying students and 3 million in sales later, here I am.
Darren: That’s a fantastic story. The fact that you explained it in such a simple way, and he took it away, did it, and got results immediately.
Helen: Yeah, and you don’t need anymore than that. That’s still what I teach today, like the exact same thing. Nothing has changed in six years, it’s just the basics of growing your audience. Engage with your audience, and get in front of them. Once I started teaching that, everyone started raving about it. Suddenly everyone understood it, and could see how it would apply to their business. That’s when I knew I was onto something special. Quite often, you can be really good at doing something yourself, but it can be quite hard to teach it, whereas this was working for people all over the world. I started working with businesses in New Zealand, Australia, big corporate companies, local businesses – it didn’t matter who they were. I’ve never met anyone I couldn’t help.
Darren: It’s interesting how you started out in essentially outreach, which is hard work and time consuming – you have to kiss a lot of frogs – to the complete opposite, where everything is now inbound.
Helen: Don’t get me wrong, DMing works. If you DM everyone you add on LinkedIn, you’ll get leads. It’s like approaching people in the street – you may get one in a hundred, but most people won’t want to speak to you, and they’ll ignore you, or be rude to you. It’s the same with DMing; if you DM everyone you’ve connected with on LinkedIn, maybe you’ll get a response one out of a hundred times, but that’s just not my kind of odds, and it doesn’t feel nice.
People hate to be sold to, but they love to buy. So, all I’ve done is, I’ve created an ecosystem around my personal profile, where people can come to me when they feel like they’re ready. This makes them feel like they’ve found me, in a way, so they’re a lot more excited to buy. It’s a lot less mentally draining than DMing. All I do is post about who I am, what I do and why I do it. I make sure there’s plenty of stories, plenty of social proof, plenty of videos, and plenty of selling. It’s as easy as that.
Darren: It’s interesting what you say about engagement there, as a lot of digital marketing agencies in particular focus on traffic, rankings, followers and that kind of thing, and less so on the results.
Helen: The only metric I ask people to follow, and the only one I care about, is profile views. They matter, because if you get people clicking on your headline and making that micro commitment to you by visiting your profile, you’ve got a commitment of interest. They might not buy from you, but they’ve still made that commitment of interest.
As long as you can get people clicking though to your page and consuming your content, it just keeps people in your world. If you keep connecting with people every day, and commenting on other people’s posts with messages of support – basically, just being a good LinkedIn citizen – you’re going to increase traffic to your profile, and those profile views translate to cash in the bank.
Darren: That’s interesting – I hadn’t thought of it that way. Profile views are more important, because that’s someone making a commitment to you, whether it’s a click through, or someone searching for you in Google.
Helen: That’s it – the more content you produce, the best possible chance you have for your headline to be seen by your ideal customer. The more people see your headline, the more people click on it, and the more people you get viewing your profile. The longer they stay consuming your content, the more inquiries you get, which leads to more sales. Promoting yourself in that subtle way is really the “pro” move. You do it by supporting other businesses, commenting on their posts with things like “congratulations on your award”, or “this event looks amazing, I hope it goes well for you.” There’s a limit on how many LinkedIn connections you can make, but there’s no limit on the amount of comments, which is what LinkedIn ultimately want – an engaged platform. So, you’re effectively stamping your headline out, and it’s cause and effect. The more comments you leave on people’s profile, the more you will see your own profile views go up.
I’m never going to run out of people to help with this kind of stuff. I know it works, and the best part is that it’s free. A lot of people I have helped have been broke. They come to me, because my story is that I was once broke, too. I was 90 grand in personal debt, and a single mum. LinkedIn really did save me. It allowed me to get clients without spending any money or going anywhere. I had really bad mental health problems when I was younger, and couldn’t have stood up and spoke in front of people, so it really helped me on a lot of levels.
The opportunity with this platform really is huge. If you are struggling with your business, or just want to create another revenue stream, it’s literally there for you. All my training is completely free. I have a LinkedIn program that’s a lifetime access program, and once you pay, you’re in forever. It’s not for everyone, but it helps to keep people on track, because you find that people do get bored. The program keeps people motivated, and we have community chats and live calls, and I talk about all sorts of things related to business. But with the LinkedIn stuff, that’s all open source. I try and give away as much information I can, on every podcast that I do, so people can go and try it out for themselves.
Helen lets her audience on LinkedIn take control
Darren: So, what do you do when someone clicks through onto your profile?
Helen: Absolutely nothing.
Darren: I love that.
Helen: If you let people view your profile and come into your world, they can have full control over whether it’s right for them or not. They can decide whether they want to be my friend on LinkedIn, and I won’t try to sell to them. I don’t DM them, I don’t thank them for connecting, I don’t do anything. I put out as much content as I possibly can, and there’s no more strategy past that.
Darren: So, the advice you’re basically giving is that people need to spend less time doing stuff.
Helen: Yeah, and less time thinking. Something I wanted to mention briefly was about mindset, and this is something that comes up over and over again in my programs.
People are so worried about what other people think, and how they show up on LinkedIn, and whether they’re posting too much or not enough. It paralyses people. The thing is, people are more interested in themselves and their own business, and they don’t really care about you. People get very caught up in overanalysing, and if they don’t get instant results, they start to doubt themselves. It becomes very personal and emotional. I think everyone has that fear of visibility, and it’s been my kind of unexpected purpose over the last few years to say “look, let’s go, it’s going to be fine. Don’t worry.”
Darren: Well, it looks like we’re nearly out of time. If people are out there and thinking, “oh my god I need to connect with you”, what’s the best way for them to do that? I’m suspecting it might be LinkedIn.
Helen: You can follow me on LinkedIn, Facebook and Instagram – I’m actually maxed out on the amount of connections and friends I can have, which drives me mad, but you can still follow me! Just DM me and ask for free stuff. I have hours and hours of webinars and training at my fingertips. There are always masterclasses coming up too, as well as free five-day challenges.
Darren: Fantastic. Thanks very much Helen, I’ve learned so much.
Helen: Thank you for having me.
More about Helen:
Helen Tudor is a successful LinkedIn coach who has sold over £2.5m worth of workshops, Mastermind classes, business coaching and other products online. For more information about the amazing work she offers her clients, click on the below links:
LinkedIn – https://www.linkedin.com/in/helenpritchard
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/LinkedInLeadGen
Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/helenpritchardonline
Website – https://helenpritchardonline.com
About your host:
Darren has worked within digital marketing since the last century, and was the first in-house web designer for video games retailer GAME in the UK, known as Electronics Boutique in the States. After co-founding his own agency, Engage Web, in 2009, Darren has worked with clients around the world, including Australia, Canada and the USA.
Engaging Marketeer: https://engagingmarketeer.com
Engage Web: https://www.engageweb.co.uk