When I first created a LinkedIn Profile over 10 years ago, I began with the intention to only accept connections or invite connections for those in my industry or who I knew personally. That was a shortsighted and self-limiting way to get the most from LinkedIn. Fast forward to today and I have over 9,000 followers. I have made powerful connections around the world.
Why did I change my plan and get more engaged in LinkedIn? Well, initially I must admit it was selfish (kinda) I became a Director for the ACE Mentor Program and needed volunteer mentors to help me in the classroom to speak and expose students to careers in Architecture, Construction and Engineering. I first began posting strictly to find volunteers to help with my passion for young people. As I shared photos and experiences, we were having in the classroom more and more people became interested in supporting this program.
Now let me share 6 Ways to Make LinkedIn Work For You
1. Complete Your Profile
Fill out all sections of your profile with thoughtful content. Many of us do not like to share our accomplishments because it can be perceived as bragging or boastful. Your Profile is a place to share your amazing achievements with the world. Take time to write a clear and concise paragraph highlighting your value proposition in the About section. Note your roles and responsibilities in the Experience section. Share your qualifications in the Licenses & certifications section. Note all your experience giving back in the Volunteering section. If possible, get the appropriate image for the companies, organizations, and agencies that you are including in your profile.
2. Share Content on a Consistent Basis
First you will need to determine what type of content you will be sharing with your network. Again, take time to think through who your audience is and how they will benefit from the content you are sharing. Pick a day and time that you will post, I began on a weekly basis and have grown into posting daily on workdays. I take a break on the weekends to focus on family. I create content weeks or sometimes months in advanced and then name the image or file by the date I plan to share it; I store my content in a cloud-based server for easy access when I am not near my computer. I call this making it “Brian Proof” Keep it simple.
3. Engage with Your Connections
When you get a connection request look at the profile to be sure this is someone you want to connect with. Ask yourself: Are there synergies that we can both benefit from connection? Once you decide to connect look at their content and like or comment on one of their recent posts. If they haven’t posted anything in a while send them a personal note thanking them for their connection, in fact do both if applicable. DO NOT spam your connections!!! It is rude to make a connection request and immediately follow up with a sales pitch. Establish a relationship and trust and when it is appropriate or If they ask share with them your value proposition.
4. Find Core Connections
I have made some amazing relationships, gotten some awesome podcast guests and international authors who have joined me to write a leadership book. This is your inner circle you can gain so much momentum by focusing on a few trusted partners in lieu of casting a broad net trying to be everything to everyone, that never works. I have decided I am not for everyone, but I am for someone, this helps me when rejected I just know I am not meant to work with everyone.
5. Be Authentic
This is a common theme and maybe even overused however when it comes to making LinkedIn or any social media platform work for you being authentic is a must. Be genuinely you. People want to relate to you and/or see themselves having the successes you have, let them see the human side, share some stories from your early days when you were learning. Let them know you have failed and taken lessons from your failures, show them how you picked up the pieces and tried again. Don’t lie about and exaggerate your accomplishments. Be who you, are where you are.
6. Give Back
If you have had any measurable success, it is no doubt from the help, encouragement, and mentorship of others. Don’t forget where you came from and help others get to where they want to go. Use your platform and posts to give someone a hand on how to do something you struggled with. Introduce someone to your connections that you believe can help them. We are all in this together and the more we give back the better off we will be.
Check out my profile and let me know if you would like to connect: Brian Brogen
Brian Brogen is a Coach, Trainer and Speaker with an emphasis on communication and team building. As a certified human behavior expert, Brian has a knack for developing teams and individuals both personally and professionally. Brian works with organizations and individuals, coaching and training using his experience, knowledge, tenacity, and sense of humor.
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