Using LinkedIn to Network

The other day I found an interesting article on what college students should post onto their LinkedIn accounts.  Although the article was very insightful, I was disappointed to see that it was only referring to the college person persona. I believe this list is not only important for college students, but for anyone that is trying to master the tips of networking on LinkedIn. Listed below are some of the tips I got from the article with some incorporation of my own opinion on how to network successfully.

1. Include a bio, but make sure to use key words that will give you a better change of being searched on LinkedIn. Example for a career in social media would include this-

” As a recent graduate from Minnesota State University, Mankato my objective is to obtain a challenging leadership position applying creative problem solving and lean management skills to enhance the company’s productivity and reputation. My focus is on four core areas: listening, content marketing, community management and crisis management solutions. I am a hybrid social media PR/communications person who is interested in the digital age of social media/marketing strategies.”

-As you can see from the above example, I incorporated some tag words to go along with the biography. This allows you to have a better chance of standing out, compared to other profiles that may not have those tag words. 

 

2. Do not add people for meaningless reasons. LinkedIn is not a place where the amount of friends you have matters. Authentic relationships are key to networking. Also, make sure you do some research on a person before asking to friend them. It will add a personal connection if they choose to accept your add. 

 

3. Always connect. If you are on LinkedIn it is important to put yourself out in there. Join groups that hold meetings. Respond and add the people you meet in those connecting boards as you never know when it will come in handy. Be available and visible to your followers. It will make them interested in what you have to say.

 

4. And last but not least, make sure that before an interview you try to “investigate” your interviewer. Learning as much as you can about a company shows that you are prepared for the job at hand. It also gives you more to discuss, and to add a personal connection to the interview. One thing I personally enjoy is the fact that the people I am “investigating” can see that I have looked at their page. I do so in hopes that it shows the interviewer that I have gone the extra mile in researching the company. 

 

*Clearly every experience is different, but these four are what I find to benefit me the most as I network myself on LinkeIn.  So now that my tips are out, feel free to utilize them to your own experience and become that super-connector we all know you are 🙂