LinkedIn is the biggest business social network on the internet with more than 100 million users (as for March 2011) and about one million new users are joining every week. Reid Hoffman started it in his living room (Great example of work from home business) in 2002 and from May it is a public company (Symbol: LNKD) worth about 10 billion dollars.
And if that didn’t convince you to market on LinkedIn, here are more interesting facts: It is currently ranked as the 13 most popular website online (Alexa rank) with more than 6.5 million visitors every day. Now you want to join the party?
The first step is to build an interesting profile that will attract the eyes of users. Take your time and think about how to make it prominent above all others. Here are some suggestions and ideas:
– Combine your keywords logically in your profile. It will help to find you better in search engines and also it will make people understand your business better.
– Don’t be satisfied just with your current position and/or your last one. Fill in all fields that includes your professional experience with dates and companies. Also add your education information.
– The Professional Headline will eventually show up under your name so think carefully about the best sentence that will define you and your online business.
– Take advantage the Summary fields for a colorful original descriptions. You would be surprised how many are reading those.
– Insert your links: You can add 3 links (Website, blog) and a Twitter account.
– Don’t skip about adding a representative photo, this is much more effective than the defaults avatars.
Know that because its a more business professional social network, people in general have more patience to read and to browse through the different profiles, than other social networks!
Building Your Business Network
The friendship formation is sorted according to the connections level. Your own connections are your first (1st) level connections, Your connections connections are second (2nd) level connections, and their connections are third (3rd) level connections. I hope you understood the connection…
So as you increase your first level connections, your second and third level connections will also increased and improve your exposure tremendously. Build up a related niche business network and when you receive a friend request, don’t decline it, it’s a great opportunity to expand your marketing efforts.
Join groups- The groups on LinkedIn centralized people with common areas of interest. Search for the relevant groups for your business and join them. This is where you can share ideas for improvement and strengthen your brand.
Ask And Answer Questions – A great way to increase your visibility and build your reputation is to participate in the Q&A section.
People You May Know – Service that introduce you to people that may interest you and expand your business connections.
Who’s Viewed My Profile? – You can see on your sidebar this feature. Use it to connect with people that might be interested in you.
Your Address – You can change your personal profile address in this pattern: linkedin.com/in/YourName. Use it so it will be easier to find you.
RSS Feeds – One of the link possibilities. I highly recommend using it for marketing and exposing your content.
Export LinkedIn Connections – You can export your connections list to a file for any purpose.
Here is a nice video that introduce LinkedIn and its benefits: