The social media scene is dominated by blogs, Facebook and Twitter. They tend to be the heart of the typical publicity mix. However, there are other social media sites that are frequently overlooked, sites that can help boost visibility and reach new audiences.
One of the best sites to add to your social media lineup is LinkedIn. You’ve probably heard of it. Over 100 million members worldwide represent a tremendous social media community. It’s widely known as a site for business professionals to network, and a great place for job-seekers. It could be an excellent opportunity for you and your business, organization or whatever.
LinkedIn helps you network with everyone you know—people with whom you have worked, acquaintances or to whom you are directly related. It avoids the personal drama of Facebook. You won’t be “friending” people; rather, you add them to your network. A network that can be very powerful if you take the time to build and nurture it.
As an example, suppose you have 600 people in your network. That’s 600 people who may know someone that you want or need to know—an expert in a subject you’re researching, or perhaps another person who can move your project forward or influence other helpful people in positions of power. It’s also 600 potential consumers. Those 600 people may share your announcement, introduction or launch throughout their networks, which means that you have the ability to tap into potentially 7 million plus people that are “linked in” through those 600 people. You just can’t turn your nose up at numbers like that!
And there are other ways to leverage the power of LinkedIn, too.
- It’s a credible place for people to learn more about you and your company, business, organization or effort. You can share as much as you want. Your profile can include links to your Website and other social media channels (Twitter, Facebook, blog, etc.)
- Membership boosts Search Engine Optimization (SEO), and building links back to your website. The more links into your site, the more influence you have with search engines. (Hubspot has a very informative video on how to optimize your LinkedIn profile for SEO.)
- Link your Twitter tweets into LinkedIn so that when you tweet it will automatically update your LinkedIn status.
- Link your blog posts into LinkedIn so every time you post it will be visible on your LinkedIn profile.
- Keep in contact with people that are important in your life and career. This can include potential customers, partners, investors, employees, and so on. (Be clear when you send a request to link to explain how you are connected to that person.)
- Use LinkedIn’s introduction feature to utilize your network to be introduced to other influential people.
- Ask for recommendations. This is a great way to have others endorse you and your work. Recommendations help people get a sense of the type of person you are. (A third-party edification always carries a high degree of credibility.)
- Join and participate in relevant LinkedIn groups. There are groups for every type of activity and subject matter.
- Use the Answers section to ask questions, to find experts, to share your expertise or to learn more about a topic.
Building your network and growing your LinkedIn presence takes time and effort. If you haven’t already done so, visit LinkedIn and start your profile and make connections to the people in your “inner circle.” Add the people in the ever expanding rings in your world each time you visit the site and you’ll find that your network will grow exponentially.
After you meet someone new, make it a point to add them into your network.
Social media gives individuals the option to consume information in whatever way they choose and via whichever network they want. Include the 100 million members on LinkedIn and you’ll reach thousands of potential new connections.