Amongst the asset management and investment community, the most widely used social media is LinkedIn. Since its early days as a platform for job seekers, it has grown into a content sharing platform with a wide network of engaged professionals. With over 610 million users in total, and a large representation in investment management it presents an opportunity for asset managers to grow their presence and build relationships with investors in a highly targeted digital channel.
Here are strategies that I use, to meet relevant parties in both the asset management and startup/tech community. The same strategies can help you with fundraising.
Identify investors and build relationships
With LinkedIn, you can look up investor profiles, their job description, the number of connections they have and plenty of other information about them (employment history, education, etc.). This can help you identify what their interests are, what content they interact with and if they’re ultimately a potential fit for your fund.
By looking into the connections and company an investor works for, their work history, and their background, you can begin to understand who else may be involved in their investment decision. With that in mind, you can start to share content and build relationships with those individuals as well. The familiarity bred through your individual connections and relationships will prove invaluable when building internal consensus and momentum should you proceed beyond the first meeting.
Another useful way of leveraging LinkedIn’s network is to research investors before attending an industry conference. This way you can introduce yourself beforehand and open a door to a friendly conversation. You will find that most investment professionals are open to being contacted ahead of conferences, and it makes the approach all that much easier when you do see them at the coffee stand.
Build your brand with a professional profile
On the other side of the coin, investors will be using LinkedIn to learn more about you as well. For that reason, it’s important for you to manage your LinkedIn profile as a digital asset akin to your website.
A LinkedIn profile may be the first impression an investor has of you or your firm, so it’s worth developing a professional profile that speaks to your strengths and links to your website. Your compliance team may suggest limiting what you can include on LinkedIn, however a safe bet will be to use what exists on your company website.
Once you’ve created a professional profile, go ahead and include a custom URL to your profile in your email signature. This is a great way to relay your work contacts to your profile and keep in contact with them outside of your day to day emails.
Post articles and take part in groups
Posting articles is one of the best ways a firm or individual can use LinkedIn to gain attention and build up a reputation. Providing helpful content to your connections is by far one of the best ways to demonstrate expertise and add value to your audience. Ideally this is unique or original content, but reading an extract or a thoughtpiece where your insight recognises its value to others is a good way to get started.
There are numerous hedge fund industry groups on LinkedIn, each with its own area of focus. Within them, you can share your articles, read others and take part in discussions. By joining a group, you can connect with other professionals in the hedge fund industry and reach out to them directly.
Another similar way of targeting people with similar interests is with hashtags. The key difference being, that you don’t have to be a member of a hashtag. Anyone can post content using a hashtag and the most popular articles circulate towards the top of the newsfeed within that hashtag. This is a great opportunity to join conversations around relevant and current topics.
Attempt to write thoughtful and engaging comments that could lead to discussions. Online debates are great ways to attract like-minded individuals, and earn the respect of others, especially when on polarising topics. Be brave!
Digital marketing to leads
For today’s digital networker, having a professional LinkedIn profile is an essential tool. There are plenty of other digital tools you’ll want to add to your fundraising arsenal, such as having a website that easily captures investor interest straight to your inbox. I use our very own FundPortal for this and it allows me to easily maintain comms with hundreds of investors with very little effort.
If you’d like to find out more about developing a framework for your marketing strategy, check out our other blog post on marketing strategy for asset managers. Enjoy your journey!
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