This week I helped a friend launch a LinkedIn profile. It was interesting seeing how this new social media tool is perceived by someone just starting in social networking for business. Here are some tips that helped her, which I hope can help you, too.
1. Write Your Profile as a Brochure or Website Content
Think of your marketing message, the benefits your product or service bring to customers, and what makes your business unique. It’s basically how I would coach a client to write their brochure copy or website content. Instead of saying “ten years of experience in business organizing,” for instance, I suggested that she has assists “small business owners, executives and home-based entrepreneurs with maximizing their productivity through efficiencies gained from better work flow, time management, and simplified organizing techniques.” Stressing benefits is always the way to go.
2. Add Status Updates that Demonstrate Your Service/Product and Seek Responses
My friend had just been featured in a Hartford Business Journal article on decluttering office spaces. Instead of just saying “I was written up in the Hartford Business Journal,” I encouraged her to include more about the nature of the article, lead visitors to it with a link (read about organizing your workspace here), and ask for feedback. What did readers think of the tips she provided? What organizing challenges are they having at work that she might help with? Etc.
3. Load up Contacts, Then Reach Out
Don’t be afraid to let LinkedIn upload your email contacts. Really. Once they are loaded, you will be able to find your friends and associates on LinkedIn more easily. Go ahead. Load away. Then get in touch with them by inviting to connect on LinkedIn. Stay in touch by encouraging them to think of you when opportunities to promote your services or products arise. And be sure to do the same for them.
4. Seek Out Meaningful Groups, Join, and Participate
Look for groups on LinkedIn that can help you further your business, of course. But also look for those that can help you build your skills. Once you find a group that sounds appealing, is active, has lots of other members (always a good sign!), and will benefit you it’s time to chime in. Join conversations. Participate. Educate others in an area where you have expertise. Be an active part of the community, and others will start to seek you out.
Want some help writing your profile? Get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org.