In a remote bedroom back in 2003 a guy called Reed Hoffman launched LinkedIn probably never dreaming that 10 years later it would have over 200 million users across the globe, however despite this it appears that LinkedIn is still one of the `sleeping giants` of the social world.
So how come LinkedIn is not as popular as say Facebook or Twitter?
Spend a bit of time and you will be rewarded
In my experience from delivering training courses on LinkedIn the common theme seems to be that many create a profile and then just forget about it or cannot be bothered with it, after all it`s just another time-consuming social media platform to schedule in to our day-to-day schedule isn`t it?
However also in my experience I see the real value of spending a bit of time updating your profile and optimising it for Google too, spend a bit of time on your profile and you will be rewarded!
Get your profile right, get your keywords in and you will be found in not only LinkedIn`s search for your industry but in Google`s SERPS (Search Engine Results Page) too. Use it regularly and you can position yourself as an authority or expert within your industry and who knows where that could lead to!
Your Profile Photo –Make sure you have a good quality image for your profile picture, not a logo but a good headshot of you the person behind the profile. A happy, smiley face that hopefully people will want to connect with and do business with. For me it is simple…no photo, no connection
Your Profile –Make sure that your profile is completely filled out, be different and add your personal touch to it but at the same time make sure you get your primary and secondary keywords in to your profile without stuffing it with keywords but so it makes sense. Add your education, employment history, your skills, awards and so on.
Get Connected – Ask people you know to connect with you on LinkedIn, you can do this in a number of ways…approach clients or suppliers directly and ask them to connect, send out invitations to people you know toconnect through LinkedIn itself, ask existing connections to introduce you to others in your industry or area.
Recommend Others – LinkedIn allows you to recommend those that you have done business with and have had a good experience with. Recommend them and then ask for a recommendation back. I find these are very useful to use as a Testimonial on my website or other promotional material and of course also share them on Facebook, Twitter and Google+ too. Nearly every business will appreciate a recommendation and may even automatically recommend you back without the need for you to ask.
Links to your Website – I am amazed at how many do not bother placing a link back to their website or other social media profiles. Make sure that you add the link which will make it easy for those viewing your profile to go straight to your website.
Endorsements – Others can now endorse you for particular skills, you have to set up those skills in your profile in the first place and then when others login to LinkedIn it will randomly ask if they wish to endorse you for a particular skill. It is okay but I do find that I am getting some very random endorsements for skills that I do not even have, but people will soon start to take notice with, for example, 90 endorsements for `Social Media`, it gives some credibility with 80+ endorsements for `Web Design` and certainly outweighs my 2 endorsements for `Sheep Shearing`!!
Create a Company Page – These are beginning to have massive potential and are similar to the way Facebook business pages work. In effect anyone connecting with your company page are in effect subscribing to what you do and are genuinely interested. However much like any form of social media avoid the blatant sales-pitch and provide genuine, helpful and interesting content on here or you will soon see your followers drifting away.
Check out or create a Group – Groups on LinkedIn can really work, they can be a hive of activity for your particular industry with discussions and topics on the very subject that you have good knowledge of and can participate in, again showing that you are an authority within your industry. So my advice is to check out the Groups on LinkedIn, join various groups relevant to you or consider creating a group and inviting others along.
So there it is for what it`s worth, let me know how you get on and please leave a comment below telling others how you find LinkedIn works for your business and even feel free to leave a tip that you think others may find useful.
Until next time…
Martin offers effective social media training, 1-2-1 consultancy and strategies to help your business to benefit from the power of social media. If you would be interested in a 1-2-1 consulation or social media training with Martin you can contact him on 01603 263206 or e-mail him here