LinkedIn is one of the most powerful social sites for business. Learning how to use LinkedIn effectively can be a little overwhelming at first. Don’t worry, we’ll break down some of the best places to start.
Complete your personal profile
This may sound obvious, but you would be surprised at how many people have outdated and/or incomplete profiles. Make sure all your information is up-to-date and correct. Include important details about your current position and company. One important thing to make sure you remember is adding links to your website and blog in your profile.
Create a group
When businesses ask me how they can use LinkedIn effectively, one of the first questions I ask is if they have a LinkedIn group. LinkedIn groups are a great way to open up communication between you, your brand and other industry professionals. Groups enable you to share recent blog posts, create discussions, add job postings, network and more.
One great strategy is adding your blog posts to the discussion area. This gives your members an opportunity to read and discuss your content. It gives you an opportunity for additional traffic to your blog.
You weren’t thinking of stopping with only your group were you? Joining other industry relevant groups multiplies the benefits of creating your own group. Joining other groups will enable you to enter discussions, link to your recent blog posts and network with other professionals in your industry. Submitting your blog posts in the discussion area to other groups will dramatically broaden your reach, exposure and new site visitors.
LinkedIn Answers is another powerful tool. You can post and answer questions. Where is all the power you ask? Answering questions related to your industry gives you credibility, shows you as a knowledgeable resource and can be a great lead generating tool. Just be sure to not “over sell” yourself or your company in the answers section. People are there for help, not for sales pitches. Providing help, answers and direction can be enough for people to reach out to you if they want to hire you professionally.
Make new connections
Believe it or not, LinkedIn was created around making professional connections (I’m being sarcastic of course . LinkedIn makes it easy to network with those in your industry. Reach out to co-workers, clients and even people you have talked to in one of your groups. You never know what your next connection could do for you professionally.
There are a wealth of useful tools in LinkedIn. You can research companies, competitors, potential job candidates and more. Recruiters and sales teams rely heavily on the data they get from LinkedIn.
There are many other ways to use LinkedIn effectively, the best advice I can give you today (outside of what I mentioned above) is to login and spend some time on the site. Keep your account active and current. I know this sounds cliche’, but get involved. The more time you spend the more you will learn. The more you learn could present you more website traffic, leads and other potential life changing events.
Reach out, get involved and be active.