My Linked In


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My tips for using LinkedIn and the rules I follow maximize the return on my time investment.

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My Linked In

  1. 1. Introduction to •Profile •Contacts - Connections •Home •STATUS UPDATES •RECOMMENDATIONS •GROUP UPDATES •Inbox •Groups •Applications •WHAT, WHO, HOW, WHERE, WHY? 1
  2. 2. Introduction to – WHAT?  Useful for networking with  Sales  Clients  Prospects  Vendors and suppliers  Job hunting  Filling job opening  Fund raising  Reconnecting with friends, schoolmates and colleagues from your past – expanding your network  Getting answers to questions from “experts” and others  Having discussions with others that share a common interest  A place to host your blog and build your personal brand 2
  3. 3. Introduction to – WHAT?  To find people and be found by others  You have to put the effort in to get benefits out  If you don’t see value in networking, then you won’t see value in LinkedIn  The power of the system lies with the quality and quantity of you own connections  Look at other people’s profiles and see what works for you and apply those same techniques to your profile (e.g. bullets, sentences, quantifiable results, name dropping, applications, etc.)  Recruiters use “key words” to find candidates and hiring managers, so be sure to include words that identify your skills and specialty – combinations count 3
  4. 4. Introduction to – WHO?  There are many ways to use LinkedIn and generally no right or wrong – Decide how you want to use it and stick with that – Determine your own “Netiquette”  Should I share my connections with others?  Should I include dates in my profile?  Should I invite this person to connect with me?  Should I accept his invitation?  What should I show in my public vs. private profile?  What does all this connecting do for me?  Should I ask for an introduction to someone 2 degrees separated from me? 3 degrees? What does that mean?  Should I join this group?  Should I add my LinkedIn profile site to my email signature? 4
  5. 5. Introduction to  My Rules  I only connect with people I know, usually fairly well (plus recommended recruiters I don’t know well)  My profile is 100% complete includes a picture and mirrors my resume in more of a sentence style  Someone’s profile included a story in the summary about how she started her own business by patenting a new kitchen product that she needed  You can include hobbies, passions and volunteer work as well. It’s up to you how you want to be seen and found.  I keep my profile up to date and fill in “What are you working on?” if I have something meaningful to show  When you update your profile, the people you’ve connected to will see that through LinkedIn updates emails the same way you see it when they update their profiles, join a group or make a recommendation (see Profile Updates > Account and Settings) 5
  6. 6. My Rules (cont.)  My Rules (cont.)  I don’t use LinkedIn messaging for “regular communications” because I use Outlook to store that but I use LinkedIn messaging for communications that relate to something I see in LinkedIn – for example  I like your new picture  I see you’ve changed jobs  I didn’t know you were working in Philly  I see you’re connect to Joe Smith, how do you know him? We used to be neighbors.  After I respond to something in my Inbox, either through LinkedIn messaging or email, I Archive it to keep my Inbox current  I usually follow through when someone asks for an introduction  I only join groups that I belong in  I usually write to people when they change their profile in a significant way 6
  7. 7. My rules (cont.)  My Rules (cont.)  I voluntarily recommend people that I have been very impressed by and don’t like to recommend someone when they ask me to although I do anyway. I also don’t ask for recommendations but try to earn them.  You get what you give – don’t barrel in asking for leads, sales and jobs; offer ideas, referrals, recommendations and help to others and in time, you will get back what you need 7
  8. 8. Building Your Network – HOW?  How do you build your connections and network?  Export you Outlook contacts into an Excel file, edit the columns and save as a csv file. Import that into LinkedIn as a mass mailing invite list.  LinkedIn will provide list of people that share your employers and schools that you can look through and select people to invite to connect with - People you may know  This requires an up to date profile  LinkedIn Toolbar for Outlook 2007  When someone has accepted your invitation to connect, you’ll get the following email: 8
  9. 9. Building your Network – HOW?  Click on the Continue building your network link  Click on Add Connections to get to these options 9
  10. 10. Building your Network – HOW? (cont.) 10
  11. 11. Groups Are Everywhere! – WHERE? 11
  12. 12. Joining a Group If you check the boxes like those in this example, you will get email updates of activity in the group. You can also allow other members of the group to contact you directly, although they will still not know your email unless you connect with them. This is a key way for you to contact others through LinkedIn, that you share a group with but do not know yet. 12
  13. 13. Creating a Group Creating a group is easy but it does come with responsibility if you want the group to grow. The name and logo of your group is critical to attracting new members. Use your imagination. 13
  14. 14. What Else About – WHY? • Why pay? – Who’s viewed my profile? – I want to send a message even though we’re not connected – Use Profile Organizer to organize people’s profiles with notes 14
  15. 15. What Else About (cont.) – WHY? • LinkedIn Jobs • Answers – becoming an “expert” • Other social networking sites – Plaxo – business and social – Xing – European focus – Jigsaw – “pay for” business cards – Facebook – younger profile, way more social – Twitter – short bursts, options, expertise, “Iran!” – Spoke, Visible Path, Ryze, Meetup, WAYN, TeeBeeDee… Here’s a site dedicated to social networking: 15
  16. 16. What Else About (cont.) – HOW? • Building your credibility, your own personal brand • “How can I help you?” • If you give to others, they will give to you. What can you give? • Contacts • Job leads • News stories • Answers • Knowledge, discussion, opinions, presentations Email example… 16
  17. 17. Other Social Networking Sites – What? Here’s an interesting chart I found last year. I think Twitter and LinkedIn are much bigger now. The point is about overlap. 17
  18. 18. LinkedIn – WHO? There are now over 50 million LinkedIn users. Compared to other social media options, LinkedIn has the highest concentration of business people, movers and shakers and people with influence. 18
  19. 19. More on Social Networking and LinkedIn – WHY? Large corporations are using social media to promote their brands, their corporate image and dispel rumors and bad press. LinkedIn can be a source of free, quality marketing research: 19
  20. 20. LinkedIn strategies Copied from Are You a LION, Turtle, HoundDog, or Alley Cat? What's Your LinkedIn Strategy? LinkedIn is a fairly harmonious place. People tend to act professional and when there are opposing opinions they typically become a case where people “agree to disagree”. Things change though when you began discussing LIONS. Suddenly the conversation isn’t so rosy. LION’s, for those who don’t know are open networkers. They connect to just about anyone. They see opportunity increasing as the number of connections increases. Those who disagree see LIONS as simply driving their ego’s by counting the connections, as if the purpose of LinkedIn is to proudly claim to have 1,000’s of connections. For the record I don’t consider myself a LION, yet I’m an open networker. When writing my first LinkedIn book I identified three LinkedIn connection strategies. This year I added a fourth to define how I now connect. How you choose to connect will impact how you use LinkedIn and in the end your chances of finding success. Before we look at the four connection strategies I want to make one point. How you choose to connect on LinkedIn should be of no concern to anyone else. It’s your network and your strategy. As long as it works for you that’s all that matters. The Four LinkedIn Connection Strategies: 20
  21. 21. My Rules on LinkedIn The LION As stated above LIONS are completely open connectors. They seek to increase their connections through actively sending out and accepting connection invitations. While I’m sure there are a few who take pride in touting the specific number, the majority simply believe that large networks lead to more opportunity. Steve Burda is a LION with over 30,000 connections. I don’t know Steve but I’ve seen countless references to his taking time to help others. So yes he has a large network, but no its not about the number. Its about having the opportunity to help a significant number of people. If this leads to new business for him, more power to him. The Turtle Turtles are the opposite of LIONS. Turtles primarily only connect to those they know well. They see value in having a tight network made up of individuals that they completely trust. Their networks tend to be highly selective and can be counted on to pass on introductions, much like a private networking group. I don’t know many Turtles but the ones I do know are like Steve interested in being a productive resource for those they choose to connect to. LinkedIn is a way to enhance their offline networking making their existing relationships a little more connected. The Hound Dog When I first joined LinkedIn I was only aware of LIONS. I knew right away that LinkedIn added an additional layer of connectivity to those I knew. I also realized that it could help me meet other local business professionals that I did not know. At each Chamber meeting they would pass out copies of everyone’s business cards. After each meeting I would see who was on LinkedIn and then invite them to connect. At the next Chamber meeting the connection provided a great ice breaker. It also established connections with those people who only attended a single meeting. 21
  22. 22. My Rules on LinkedIn I also used LinkedIn to seek out people I would like to connect with. Doing this allowed me to establish connections with other business professionals who might help my clients, become a referral partner, and some who were prospects. This ability to hunt for specific people led me to define the strategy as a Hound Dog. A Hound Dog is someone who uses LinkedIn to connect to those they know, to connect to those they would like to know, and accepts invitations from those that would be beneficial to be connected to. For the first year that I was serious about using LinkedIn I followed this strategy. Then one day I had a thought, “How do I know whether or not a connection I know could benefit from a connection that I didn’t know?” The answer was that I didn’t know. It was that at this point that I changed my strategy for connecting on LinkedIn. The Alley Cat I still only send invitations to people I know or people that I have a specific reason for connecting to. What changed is that I now accept invitations from just about anyone. There is value in knowing your connections but there are also unexpected opportunities that develop from establishing new connections, known and unknown. This connection strategy supports my overall LinkedIn strategy which is this: I seek to provide value to and help as many people as possible. Much of that value is provided through the Social Media Sonar blog, sharing tips and strategies with others on how to more effectively utilize LinkedIn and social media/networking. Sometimes its through being the hub to connect two people. At other times its through conducting workshops, writing LinkedIn books and guides, etc. The more people I am connected to the more people that I can share with. 22
  23. 23. My Rules on LinkedIn I believe that to create opportunity you have to first be willing to help others. Then, by consistently sharing value over time, you allow people to move through the Process of Familiarity. A process that has to happen before someone will choose to do business with you. What I call the Process of Familiarity likely has been called many things by other people. The three components are: People need to Know You or at a Minimum Know Of You: Often connecting or engaging in conversations will accomplish this. People Must Like You or Have a Positive Opinion: How you interact with others and the value of the content you share will help here. If people like your content they will like you. People Must Trust You: Building trust is dependent upon engaging on conversations or sharing value consistently over time. As people see you on an ongoing basis and are exposed to the value you share the “Like” will grow into “Trust”. Through this process here’s what I’ve seen happen. Each week I write one or two blog posts that show people how to utilize LinkedIn. I then use the tools LinkedIn provides to communicate that there is a new blog post. People visit the blog for the first time or as a repeat visitor. At some point they check out my profile and learn what it is that I do and see how I can help them. If they like the content they begin to have a positive impression of me and this eventually moves to a sense of trust. At this point if they ever have a need for my services I am top of mind and they will contact me. Something else happens as well. People like to share content on other Social Media sites so at some point they become my social media amplification system. This introduces my blog to people outside of the communities I’ve built. 23
  24. 24. My Rules on LinkedIn Wrap Up The connection strategy you choose will depend upon how you want to use LinkedIn. There is no right or wrong choice as long as your connection strategy supports the goals you have determined. For me the change to an Alley Cat has helped generate 3 to 5 contacts per week about my services. Which strategy are you using and why? If you agree or disagree with the post please leave a comment. Your perspective is as important as mine, so share it with everyone. Sean Nelson is the author of the Social Media Sonar blog and has written three LinkedIn eBooks including one of the first books detailing how to strategically use LinkedIn to grow your business. "LinkedIn Marketing Secret Formula". He is a Partner inSONARconnects. 24
  25. 25. My Rules on LinkedIn  More to come – send me your feedback to 25