We recently posted an article about leveraging Twitter to grow your business that was well-received by our readers. Based on the positive feedback we’ve received about that post, we figure it’s a good idea to further discuss the use of social media to help promote yourself or your business.
Since its inception in 2003, LinkedIn has grown into the premier business networking social site. It has become the online place to be to connect with other professionals, as well as one of the prime places to find and apply for a new job.
In this article, we’ll examine some informative resources to help you build and improve the quality of your own LinkedIn profile. In addition, we’ll look at a few other informative resources that focus on effectively connecting and communicating with a network of professionals who can help you grow your business or find a job. We’ll also take a look at a few great LinkedIn profiles to use as benchmarks.
First Things First: How to Build and/or Improve Your LinkedIn Profile
First, let’s look at how you can improve your LinkedIn profile, which can be either a free version or a paid Premium version. Naturally, the place to go for helpful information is the LinkedIn Help Center where you can learn about building your identity, gaining professional insights, finding career opportunities, sharing your thoughts and expertise, along with how to grow and keep in touch with your network.
In keeping with the spirit of this series about social networking sites and the first article of the series, another place to learn about LinkedIn is the @LinkedIn Twitter page, which has over one million followers. This page has much of the same information that can be found on LinkedIn’s company page on its own network, so you can choose to view there posts on whichever of those two social sites you prefer. You might also want to compare the two pages to discover more about the differences between them, which might provide you with some some insights about using each social platform to your advantage.
Next Up: How to Use LinkedIn to Reach Your Goals
Two other LinkedIn pages that you might want to check out to learn more about how to use this social networking site to your advantage – directly from the horse’s mouth – are the LinkedIn Marketing Solutions page and the LinkedIn Social Selling page.
Okay, so now that we’ve covered the bases of how to learn about LinkedIn from their internal sources, where else can you go to obtain an external point of view about LinkedIn? Of course, there are hundreds, if not thousands, of articles on the web about the subject, so here are just a few we’ve discovered.
HubSpot: How to Use LinkedIn for Business
We’ll keep on the course of social networks, as well as practice what we preach, by referencing HubSpot’s PDF report How to Use LinkedIn for Business. As a marketing agency that needs to keep track of many inbound marketing campaigns for our clients, we use HubSpot to help us post to their websites and social networking pages, as well as to analyze and report back to them about all of their respective online activity. It’s a safe bet that we will eventually expand upon the benefits of HubSpot in this series of social networking articles.
ASME: Tips to Use LinkedIn Effectively for Job Hunting
We frequently write blog articles on behalf of our clients that link out to trade associate websites that feature content based on the expertise within a specific industry. One of the sites we occasionally reference is the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). We found a good article on the ASME site that provides Tips to Use LinkedIn Effectively for Job Hunting. The article mentions that engineers are not always adept at storytelling with their usually-highly-technical writing, but we realize a difficulty with storytelling might also apply to you, regardless of your profession. (By the way, we can also help your company keep up with blogging, which, like social networking, is an important part of effective online marketing.)
Virgin Entrepreneur: How to Get the Most Out of LinkedIn
Most people in business are familiar with Richard Branson’s success as an entrepreneur, but you may not know that his business website has a section in which guest bloggers offer insight, advice, and inspiration for fellow entrepreneurs. In it we found an article that fits right in our LinkedIn discussion, so here are 15 tips: how to get the most out of LinkedIn.
Benchmarks: LinkedIn Profiles to Emulate
To maximize the potential of your LinkedIn profile, you should build it out using all of the sections offered, including a summary of your background, your professional and volunteer experiences, your skills, your projects and publications, your other interests and organizations, the honors and awards you’ve received, and if you speak multiple languages.
Don’t forget to upload photographs and other images to add some sizzle to the page. You may need to go through some trials and errors to learn how to effectively format your profile, but the time you invest will pay dividends for a long while.
Last but definitely not least, make sure your LinkedIn profile picture is professional and appropriate. Don’t use a selfie you shot in the mirror with your phone, because there’s a big difference between your personal Facebook page and your professional LinkedIn page.
Below are just a few profiles that take full advantage of LinkedIn’s tools, which you can use as benchmarks for building your profile. After you’ve built a profile that really tells your story well, and sizzles with colorful images, you can use the platform to start connecting and communicating with other members by using the best practices you learn through this article and the many others out there.
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