LinkedIn is one of the biggest social media sites on the Internet. It’s usually in the top five, depending on how you measure size. But in terms of B2B activity, sales, professional networking and careers, it’s arguably No. 1. That’s because LinkedIn was built from the ground-up as a social media site for work, not play.
Many LinkedIn users are very active – posting updates, participating in groups and building their networks. But many aren’t. Too many users treat LinkedIn simply as a place to keep their résumé and virtual Rolodex.
But an active LinkedIn presence can do so much more: It can lead to career opportunities, help build your professional network and even tech you new things about your field. But only if you use it.
Here’s how you can boost your LinkedIn presence and get much more value out of it in just a few minutes a day.
1. Grow your network. When you meet people send them LinkedIn invitations, and spend time every few weeks going through LinkedIn’s suggested “People you may know.” Over time you’ll connect (and reconnect) with people you might have otherwise lost touch with. When reaching out to link in with someone, don’t use the generic message. Personalize it a bit to let the person know why you want to connect.
Time needed: One minute per person that you add.
2. Update your LinkedIn status once a day. You can do this more often, but once a day is a good place to start. This is good way to share interesting articles about your field or, if you’re generating content on a blog or have a company website with periodic announcements, post that. Don’t be too pushy here, but share information in the spirit of helping other people.
Time needed: Three minutes.
3. “Like” or comment on one or two status updates from other people in your LinkedIn network. The idea here is to acknowledge their activity and touch base so they remember you the next time they have a problem you might be able to help them with.
Time needed: Two minutes.
4. Choose one group (just one, to start) to participate in regularly. Choose a group that’s active and relevant to your goals on the site. You can take part in conversations, start new threads and connect with people in those groups. This is networking, not sales, so the goal here is to be helpful. You don’t need to sink a huge amount of time into this, just pop into the group, review the discussions and see where you can quickly add a comment of value.
Time needed: Five minutes.
5. Respond to people who reach out to connect with you, comment on your status updates or otherwise seek to interact. This doesn’t need to take a lot of time, but it demonstrates that you are friendly and responsive, which can open the door to future interactions.
Time needed: One minute.
This is a small investment of time – 12 minutes a day, five days a week. Over time, this can lead to new professional relationships, career opportunities and business deals.
What else could you do on LinkedIn in 12 minutes a day? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.