LinkedIn is a popular professional tool that currently has more than 380 million members. That’s a lot of people to connect with! Of course, you can’t connect with everyone, but there are certain people who you should be making an effort to network with. Clients and people you know professionally are a good place to start. Next look for people who own or work for businesses you want to work with, or companies that can help you grow or advance your business.
Below are 4 steps you should be taking to build your LinkedIn connections, and stay in contact with other professionals who can help you or your business.
1. Be Active On Your LinkedIn Account
Most people know that they should be sharing frequently on their LinkedIn account in order to reap the most benefits, but only 19% of Canadian social networkers actually LinkedIn daily? The other 81% are missing out!
You may not want to share an update everyday, and that’s fine; there’s no need to bombard your connections. But when you do share updates, make sure they’re relevant and engaging to your industry, and people will naturally be interested in you and what you have to say. Also try commenting on updates from companies you follow, and share links that you genuinely find interesting, not just what you think people want to see. The best way to increase your profile is to put your name out there.
2. Send LinkedIn Invitations To People You Know Or Want To Know
Unlike other social networking sites, LinkedIn is not a popularity contest. Don’t abuse the system and rack up your LinkedIn connections just to show that you “know” people. You don’t need 1,000 connections (in fact, after 500 connections, LinkedIn won’t even show your exact number of connections!) A good rule of thumb is, don’t connect with someone unless you know or are interested in speaking with them.
It’s recommended that you mainly stick with sending LinkedIn invitations to people who you’ve met in person before. Some exceptions may apply, such as connecting with people at a company you’re interested in.
3. Personalize Your LinkedIn Invitations
When you find someone you want to connect with, and send out a LinkedIn invitation to, make it a little more personal. Don’t send the standard canned invitation, which can seem lazy or disinterested.
Instead, make it your own and personalize it a bit! Explain who you are, what you do, how you know or met the connection, and the reason behind your invitation. You don’t have to be forward and tell them you want to connect because you want a job – dig deeper! Maybe you want to know more about their career, or maybe you want to do business with them? Regardless of the reason for the invitation, give a little insight before you hit send.
When you give potential connections a reason to connect, they’re more likely to look on your invitation favorably and accept.
4. Promote Your LinkedIn Account
What good is a social media account if you’re not being social? Tell people about your LinkedIn account so they’ll know they can find you there. Some ways to do this include adding your LinkedIn profile to your email signature or personal website, or adding it to your business card.
Also, if you have a business page for your company, make sure to let clients know they can stay in touch through LinkedIn. Don’t forget to include social links at your business’s physical location (on posters, point of sale flyers or other marketing materials) and in digital marketing (emails, website, etc.) so customers know to find you and connect.
At Print Three, we believe that a strong digital marketing strategy is key to building a strong online presence for your business. Contact your local Print Three today to get started on developing a social media campaign for your business.