LinkedIn is a fact of business life. When you meet someone, the first thing most people do is check out that person’s LinkedIn profile, see if there are any mutual connections and do a quick scan of their ‘business life’. Here are some essential LinkedIn tips:
Don’t make that first impressions a ’tilt’
The first thing you’ll notice is the person’s head shot. If it’s a photo of them and their cat, dog, etc. it’s a bit of a tilt. If they self-describe as a ‘guru’, ‘wizard’ or ‘world’s best*’, tilt again. (Harry P. is a wizard.)
You have control
LinkedIn is the world’s largest professional network, more than 259 million people and counting, and it is where other business people go to find out something about you. What’s really powerful about LinkedIn is that you get to control the information; it’s not what Google finds about you!
Here are 7 easy tweaks to maximize this awesome tool for connecting:
- Fix that profile picture, now!
- Describe yourself without hyperbole.
- Make it a habit of asking at least one person a day to join you on LinkedIn and customize that greeting. When someone asks you to join them, if you choose to accept, say something nice, gracious, or interesting in your reply. If you want to connect face-to-face, ask them.
- On your profile page say something about the company you work for beyond your title. Often you will see the title, VP Human Resources and then have to go back to the top of the profile to find the company name. If you are looking for some copy to describe your company look on your company’s LinkedIn page for a description, or see what senior people at the company write on their LinkedIn page. “Senior VP of Over The Edge Travel, the largest eco-adventure travel company in the world, winner of Green Award in 2013 for sustainable travel adventures.”
- Start following companies associated with your industry where you can get more information, including competitors.
- Join Groups where you can add value, and then participate in discussions. Add content of value, show your knowledge and expertise, avoid commenting just for the sake of commenting — I agree. Happy to join this group. I like this comment. (just ‘Like’)
- Contribute something on “share an update” (see graphic below) You’ll find this notification when you log on to your LinkedIn page. Don’t think you have anything to contribute? Does your company have stories that they want shared? For example, if you work for a construction company and you’ve just received the go-ahead for a large airport project are there people in your LinkedIn network who would find this interesting. You can choose who in your LinkedIn would be interested in receiving this information. Before you send, ask yourself, “Is this going to contribute anything to this person’s busy day?”
*You’ll remember we said avoid “world’s best” unless it’s true. We do say we have the “world’s best definition” of networking because that’s what Guy Kawasaki has said about Positive Networking®.
– Gayle, Judy and Darcy, co-authors of Work The Pond!
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WANT MORE INFORMATION ON LINKEDIN FROM EXPERT SHANE GIBSON?
Check out his excellent video.