So, you’ve spent some time working on your LinkedIn profile. You have the professional photo, the catchy headline and an impressive set of skills published. Now what? If you want to go all in on LinkedIn, the next steps you take will help you become more engaged with the people in your network, which will in turn help you get noticed.
Read Part One of Going All In on LinkedIn.
Work Your Connections
Think of LinkedIn like the Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon game. When you start adding (and accepting) connections you’ll likely be surprised at how interconnected your professional network actually is. How does Janet from your first job out of college know your current boss? And, Bob from finance used to work at that same company? Who knew! With a bird’s eye view of how your network is connected, you have a great reason to reach out and strengthen professional relationships!
Staying connected with the people in your network is valuable for a variety of reasons, even if you’ve already found your dream job. But, when you are searching for a new position—your network is essential. If you’re looking to get your foot in the door, don’t be afraid to ask for a referral! According to LinkedIn, nearly 50 percent of recruiters say referrals are the leading source of quality hires. Let LinkedIn show you the best way to reach out.
And don’t forget about new connections. Gone are the days of exchanging business cards. Recently, LinkedIn announced LinkedIn QR Code. The next time you meet someone new that you’d like to add to your network, just open the LinkedIn app and scan their QR code to connect and stay in touch. Learn how to make it happen here.
Join Groups and Conversations
If you have fully completed your profile, you should have already found some relevant and interesting groups to join. But don’t stop there: Participate, participate, participate! Yes, it takes some time out of your day, but allowing yourself 15 minutes to scan conversations and contribute will earn you some visibility, and more importantly, credibility.
It’s not all about providing expertise and thought leadership. Sometimes you have a career question that you’d like some input on. Late last year LinkedIn launched the Career Advice feature to help facilitate these types of questions. Career Advice helps members connect with each other for lightweight mentorship opportunities. Everything from general career path advice to best practices for a project you’re working on are fair game, and Career Advice can help you find the right people to help.
LinkedIn has also launched a few other tools to help you make an impact in your online conversations. For those of us who are fluent in the language of emojis, LinkedIn has integrated GIFs directly into Messaging. And for those of us who prefer old-fashioned voicemail, you can now send a voice message via LinkedIn Messaging.
Update Your Status
Perhaps the most simple and effective way to gaining that visibility on LinkedIn is being diligent about sharing content. In fact, LinkedIn itself has found that members who share content on LinkedIn at least once a week are nearly 10 times more likely to be contacted for new opportunities than people who don’t share. But, what should you share?
Keep your eye on your news feed for ideas. Seeing what others are sharing may spark something. It only takes a moment to comment on someone else’s update and that counts! When you’re posting an update or sharing an article, try asking a question to invite others to weigh in with their thoughts and opinions. For more inspiration check out these top 10 LinkedIn influencers.
Another easy way to get your feet wet is to say thank you. LinkedIn Kudos is a feature that allows you to recognize others for their work. It’s a great way to build relationships and most definitely opens the door for future conversations.
If you’re feeling especially creative, posting your own video is a great way to get some eyeballs. While this may seem intimidating to some, the video you create doesn’t have to be Academy Award winning! Post a short video of yourself at an industry event or posing a question to spark a conversation. Get some video tips here.
LinkedIn has created many features and tools to help you make the most out of your experience. Just like any other social media platform, these tools are ever changing. For ongoing tips and announcements, follow the official LinkedIn blog here and continue to elevate your presence on LinkedIn.
Want more tips on how to maximize social media for your career growth? Join now and get access to our guide, How to Use Social Media to Get an IT Job.