LinkedIn, aimed at professionals and businesspeople, is a unique social network. Primarily for business networking, it can also be used to enhance your company’s online marketing strategy.
While establishing a profile for you and your business is important, as it is across any of the top social networks, there are a surprising amount of people who aren’t using it to its full potential. Ultimately, this means that their business may consequently not see as much revenue or activity as it could be. With occasional homepage redesigns and changes to functions like notifications, endorsements and how company pages are displayed, according to changing business trends, you can’t afford to not exploit LinkedIn’s resources.
In order to get the Premium service you will need to spend out a little bit of cash each month, but you will get what you pay for, especially if you plan to boost your business’s online visibility and be able to see exactly who is viewing your profile.
See below for our LinkedIn power-user tips:
Update your LinkedIn profile regularly
As soon as you stop updating your profile on a regular basis, the amount of people who search for you and actually stay on your page once they’ve found it will dwindle. You’ll need to keep it updated for two key reasons. The first is because LinkedIn, as mentioned above, keeps reviewing itself according to what it sees as being relevant for individuals and businesses.
You’ll need to keep a close eye on everything it updates so that you aren’t left behind when other people and companies are adding new features to their profile. Remember that feeling you got back in school when you daydreamed for just 10 seconds and consequently had no idea what the teacher had in store for everyone? Exactly the same principle with LinkedIn applies.
The other reason is you’ll have people contacting you with out of date information if you don’t regularly update, and you’ll have to give them the bad news that they have been misinformed by your own LinkedIn profile. You’ll find that embarrassing and they’ll not feel inclined to work with you anymore. Make sure your profile photo is up to date, your work history and current situation is accurate, and you post relevant and interesting material every now and then which links up to other content across the web.
Place links to your other social media networks
Hopefully you’ll have done this, as it’s given to you as an option to do when you set up a LinkedIn profile. If people can see that you or your business has a Twitter, Facebook and/or Google+ page, you won’t just get more viewers and followers on those sites, but people who are visiting those sites will also be able to link up with your LinkedIn profile, as long as all those sites have a link to it.
Also remember that the nature of LinkedIn is very different to other social networks and it’s there to showcase both yourself and your company as professionals. With that in mind, do keep personal updates to sites like Facebook and ensure that everything you share on LinkedIn is relevant to your industry, of a high quality, informative and useful.
Consider a bit of SEO
You may find that whenever you update your profile headline or anything else on your page for that matter, your number of profile views increases. This is because many people will receive emails whenever you have updated something, and if you update regularly these people will assume you’re hot material. But you could also research popular (and relevant) keywords in Google Adwords’ Keyword Planner and add them into your profile. You should then rank higher in LinkedIn and Google whenever the relevant keyword you’ve chosen to use is searched for.
Expand your connections
This might sound a little obvious, as it’s exactly what you should be doing anyway, but the more connections you have (and the better connections you have) the more people will be excited to be a part of your network. With every new connection you make, you have a higher likelihood of showing higher in search results and consequently impressing people. This isn’t to say you should start linking up with anybody and everybody – you should have a reason for connecting with someone, be it because they have similar interests or because their business operates in the same line of work.
A further recommendation would be to use LinkedIn’s endorsements feature. You can ‘endorse’ people for particular skills and the more endorsements they have, the better at that skill they’ll appear to be. Don’t endorse people for the sake of it though, or endorse people for any old skill in the hope that they’ll give you one back. There’s nothing more annoying for people than finding out that someone is actually pretty rubbish at something that they’ve been endorsed for multiple times.
Engage in LinkedIn groups
This is an unmissable opportunity for your business to engage with potential clientele and business partners. You’re only allowed to be part of 50 (which is actually quite a lot) so make sure you root out the best ones. There are many groups which aren’t well maintained or buzzing with vibrant conversation, so avoid these if you can. You should answer people’s questions, propose your own questions, engage in conversation, start a topic for discussion and basically make people interested in finding out more about your business whilst also giving them something to think about.
Ask for recommendations
Don’t forget to ask for recommendations from previous clients, employers and partners, you can do this for your personal and company page, both of which should be fully fleshed out before you embark on your campaign. Recommendations are much more personalised and honest than endorsements, so get as many as possible.
LinkedIn is an invaluable resource for businesses of all shapes and sizes and you should ensure that your personal profile is kept completely professional. This means leaving the photos of you and your partner or child (or worse, you in a compromising position) at home and using a decent head and shoulders/portrait shot of yourself.
Photo Credit: TheSeafarer