Are you on LinkedIn? I mean are you really on LinkedIn? I’ve been on it for a long time but I wasn’t really onto it until a few years ago. I was a dabbler.
In fact, worse than that, I used to actively dislike it. It seemed pedestrian and old fashioned. In fact, it was because I was having a bit of a moan about it to someone who knew much more about it than I do, (Mark White) that I discovered just how useful it is. My thoughts on LinkedIn were:
It’s not especially helpful
I can’t understand what the fuss is all about
I can’t see any benefits
And then Mark asked me: “Are you using it properly?”
Dear LinkedIn, forgive me. I knew not of what I spoke. I was most definitely not using it properly. In fact, all I had really done was upload my details and written a rather pedestrian biography in the third person (why did I use the third person? It’s weird, everyone I know completes their own profile. Be authentic, own your words.)
LinkedIn is a fabulous tool if you know how to use it. I now recommend it to all my RenewYou licensed specialists and even give master (should that be mistress?) classes on it to them. (Mark, if you’re reading this, your work here is done). It can be a really good way to put the word out about what you do.
Here are 8 compelling reasons why LinkedIn is good for you:
1. It’s Huge
LinkedIn operates the world’s largest professional network on the Internet with more than 380 million members in over 200 countries and territories. That’s a whole lot of people and businesses to connect with. Can you really afford not to be there?
2. Google Search
When anyone types your name into Google, your LinkedIn profile is likely to be the the first thing that appears. (Unless you have a successful web site presence and a very high social media profile). Go on, try it. People who may be thinking about doing business with you, or employing you, are now likely to do a search on you. With LinkedIn you can be in control of what they see first. LinkedIn is often your first impression, and we know how important first impressions are.
3. With LinkedIn you can Research (employers or future clients)
If you’re looking for a new job, or have an interview coming up, you can make connections beforehand. You can visit groups where your chosen folk hang out (more on that later), and you can link with the people who work there. For example, I gave a talk at a large corporate company. I hoped at some point to do business with them. After the talk at least a dozen women who had been there connected with me on LinkedIn. They began sharing my posts. Lots of people in that company know about me and what I do as a result. And I am soon to do some work for them which will be great, as I have already virtually networked with many of the employees. It has ‘smoothed’ my path.
If you’re looking for a job with a specific company you can search out the people already working there. Make friends. Find out stuff. Maximise your chance of success.
4. More Words than Twitter
I do love Twitter (my Twitter link) but it can be frustrating only having 140 characters. It’s easy to be misunderstood. And it’s an immediate medium. People only usually see your message or tweet if they are on line the same time as you. With LinkedIn your messages and posts are easily found, weeks and months after you’ve posted them. You can even add articles and links underneath your profile. Check my LinkedIn profile out to see what I mean., (and if you care to connect, please mention this article)
5. You Can Find People Close to You
Once you start to explore LinkedIn you will discover that you can search your contacts by location (drop down menu under ‘connections’, top left). That is brilliant, if you have an event in a specific location you want to promote. My next RenewYou licensing event is in York. I can search my connections list for women with training HR backgrounds in the north and send them an email. I can tell them about things that they might be interested in, via LinkedIn and it will end up in their in box. They do not even have to log into LinkedIn to find it. That is a fantastic facility!
6. You Can Find People Thousands of Miles Away
A lot of my products are virtual (like Speak Up) and can be downloaded anywhere in the world. LinkedIn lets me reach women everywhere in the world. And make friends, too. You can have some fabulous conversations and connections with people across the world.
7. You Can Join Groups and Even Start Your Own
I am in several groups on LinkedIn and I manage two: one for women interested in personal development, or who have done a RenewYou course, and one called Feminist and Feminine Professional Women. Most of my groups are connected with my passion of Gender Equality. I get lots of useful information and I can also share lots of useful information. It helps to build my following and extend my range of connections. Every time you comment in a group you are giving people the opportunity to click on your profile and find out more about you. Groups are an excellent way of reaching people outside of your network.
8. It’s Free
You may find it hard to believe but you can benefit from all the above for no cost at all to you, apart from your time. There are payment options on LinkedIn, but to be honest I have never needed them. There really is no barrier to you signing yourself right up now. And I promise that LinkedIn have not paid me to write this. I just like sharing good news! And LinkedIn is good news for professional women. Powerful, virtual networking any time you want.
Speak Up is my audio course for professional women. Available now, anywhere in the world. For more details, click here.
Picture above is the registered trademark of LinkedIn. And below is the button where you can share this on LinkedIn. That’s another good reason…
Posted on August 17th, 2015 by Jane