LinkedIn: The Stepchild of Social Media
Written by: Dominique Becnel, Communications Strategist
Facebook, Instagram and Twitter have gained a reputation as the darlings of social media. While we all love a Cinderella story, people tend to forget about the stepchild of social media: LinkedIn. Though colleagues and friends playfully tease that I’m obsessed with “The Linked,” I have to admit it’s one of my favorite social sites, and I’m not alone. According to Hootsuite, two professionals join LinkedIn every second.
Known for being an online resume or portfolio, LinkedIn is more than just a place to plan your next career move. It’s a go-to social media network to share personal accomplishments, connect with colleagues and find inspiration. From articles on workplace culture to tips on how to conquer your next networking event, LinkedIn helps educated and professional people connect to find solutions.
Like its brothers and sisters, LinkedIn is mobile in nature. With increasingly busy schedules, users can readily keep up with colleagues, friends and mentors on the go with LinkedIn. After all, 57 percent of LinkedIn use is on mobile.
As a business, it’s the perfect platform to tell your brand’s story to an engaged target audience. At Gambel Communications, we use LinkedIn to do this by celebrating company wins (like a Healthy Business Award from the Jefferson Chamber), marking major milestones (like a brand new website), share our services and promoting upcoming community engagements (like speaking opportunities). Because three million American jobs are posted on LinkedIn every month, LinkedIn is an ideal social media platform if your company is hiring, hosting or sponsoring an event or aiming to land new business prospects. With Hootsuite reporting that 80 percent of B2B leads generated on social media come from LinkedIn and 30 million companies have LinkedIn profiles, it’s getting harder and harder to ignore the fact that small and large businesses alike are benefitting from having a presence on this platform.
If you’re looking to take your personal brand to the next level, optimize your LinkedIn with these tips from the Content Marketing Institute:
Add a professional photo so people can associate a name with a face. Make sure your picture appropriately reflects your personality and industry. Pro tip: 400x400 pixels is the ideal size.
Share on a regular basis. Some great content suggestions include personal wins and milestones and thought leadership posts like conference takeaways. When you post, make sure to include a photo or video. According to Hootsuite, posts with images get twice as many comments, and video posts are five times more likely to get comments.
While writing and publishing original content is ideal, if time is of the essence, sharing third party content is a great back up.
In your summary, tell the story of your work. You have 2,000 characters to do so. Make your profile stand out from the crowd with symbols like bullets or arrows.
While your headline defaults to your current position, update it with keywords that define what you do. Make sure to include the city in which you live or are trying to find your next career.
Add work samples: images, media and documents that support the work you describe in your summary.
Add people you’ve met after networking events and conferences. When you extend an invitation to connect, include details on when and where you met as a friendly reminder.
Make sure your contact information is up to date. This is especially crucial if you’re searching for a new job.
Ask colleagues, clients and vendors for recommendations. The more people who endorse you for a certain skill, the more likely you are to appear higher in the search results when companies are looking to hire individuals in your field.
Add any industry specific certifications and courses completed. For example, the Gambel Communications team is certified in Google Analytics.
Include your education as alumni pride tends to run deep no matter where you work.
Congratulate connections on their work anniversaries, new positions, etc. This is one of the easiest ways you can take advantage of the platform—all with one click!
With these tips, you’re all set to tackle LinkedIn for your business and professional needs.