Social media is increasingly considered a key marketing, communications and resource tool for businesses, with many seeing LinkedIn as an obvious starting choice.
LinkedIn is solely focused as a business social networking tool. Despite this, there are still many people on LinkedIn who are just collecting business connections, unsure of what to do next.
Here are six ways to help you get more from using Linkedin:
1. Update your Personal Profile
- Ensure your personal profile is updated with key information about you, your role and your business.
- The key areas to update are your photo, job role, contact details, summary (with industry key terms) and skills.
- The activities you undertake on LinkedIn will drive people to your profile; it can appear in search results within LinkedIn and in Google too.
2. Post Status Updates
- This lets your connections know about the different activities, tasks and projects that you and your business are involved in.
- You can also post blogs, videos and articles relating to your industry that you have read and found informative. This helps to share expertise and provide content that will be of interest to your connections.
- It is a good practice to post updates several times a week – the more often you post the more often your connections will notice your updates.
3. Message Connections
- This is like emailing, therefore LinkedIn can act as a second address book.
- Through messaging you can email connections without requiring their email addresses.
- You can also filter your connections for example by location and industry, which can be useful if you target businesses using either of those criteria.
4. Request Recommendations
- LinkedIn enables you to request testimonials from connections that you have undertaken work for. A relatively non-intrusive way to do this is by asking more than one connection for a recommendation in one go.
- Once a connection has given you a recommendation, you can preview it first before making it live on your personal profile.
- More and more businesses are checking people out on LinkedIn before doing business. This is a good way to showcase the good work you do.
- If people know one of the connections that has given you a recommendation, it will further re-enforce you in their eyes. This can be handy way to collect testimonials for use on your website and other marketing material.
5. Participate in Discussion Groups
- Search the group directory on LinkedIn to find groups that you already have existing connections with.
- Start engaging and reaching out to your existing connections and a wider targeted audience.
- You can also participate in existing discussions and kick off your own. This can be a good way to promote and drive traffic to any blogs you have.
6. Advanced People Searches
- Utilise existing connections to introduce you to shared connections – people you don’t know but that your connections do.
- Search by keywords, job role, industry, location etc. (This is why it is important you update your profile with key information as it increases your chances of appearing in other people’s search results.)
- The results will show existing connections that meet these criteria (1st degree connections) then connections of your connections (2nd degree connections). You can ask your existing connections to introduce you to the latter.