LinkedIn is the social media site with a difference. Unlike the ‘casual and fun’ feel of other social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest, LinkedIn had a slightly nerdy vibe to it, right from the start. Today it’s the most powerful social media tool for professionals and the world’s largest professional network with over 400 million users worldwide. Obviously, the ways of building a presence on LinkedIn is quite different from other social sites. However, there’s a right way to use LinkedIn—and a wrong way. Let’s discuss both.
Since LinkedIn is where you meet people and communicate with them from a business perspective, it’s always wise to put your professional self at the forefront. Right from the way your profile looks, to what you post, to how you exchange your views with others—you need to keep everything professional. That’s the key.
Spamming, for one, is something you should absolutely steer clear of if you wish to build a healthy, professional image on LinkedIn. As you grow your connections, you need to remember one thing—if you try spamming your way up to get more attention on LinkedIn, you’ll not just fail miserably but you could risk your reputation big time. Having said that, let’s discuss some things you could do to increase your followers on LinkedIn without spamming.
This is so important that it bears repeating that any unprofessional behaviour on LinkedIn could taint your reputation beyond repair. Refrain from posting personal photos or whacky status updates and by all means, do not stalk profiles excessively. When someone sees you check their profile every now and then, they won’t appreciate your persistence—they’ll think it’s creepy.
Sure, we’re all trying to make connections here but avoid directly approaching complete strangers, even if there’s a strong business possibility between two of you. Instead, it’s advisable to connect with someone you don’t know via someone you both know, someone you are both connected with on LinkedIn.
Also, be extra careful when you’re sending out a message to more than one recipients. You could end up offending your connections when you share their contact info in a general message. Respect people’s privacy and always double check your messages before sending to avoid these issues.
Like any social media, LinkedIn allows you the freedom to connect with people the way you want but the most important thing to remember is—just because you can doesn’t mean you should.
Don’t Drown Your Page in Keywords.
Many people make the mistake of using too many keywords to make sure their profile receives more traffic and views. While it’s definitely important to optimise your LinkedIn profile using relevant keywords, any overuse may make you look unprofessional, amateurish, and worse, desperate for attention. Therefore, it’s best to stick to three to four strong keywords relevant to your industry that will help you appear in search results when potential connections type in various related keywords and phrases.
Send Personalised LinkedIn Requests.
LinkedIn automatically inserts a default connection message for every request you send but that doesn’t mean you should leave it at that. Personalising connection messages is a great way of showing that you’re taking time out to give importance to the other person. That’s already a positive first impression you’re leaving on them.
On the other hand, through a personalised message, you can remind the person what value you can add to them or why they should connect with you. This works great when you’re connecting with someone you’ve never met before.
Share Useful Content. Always.
Social media thrives on the culture of knowledge sharing. LinkedIn is not an exception to this rule. Simply having more number of connections doesn’t count, what matters most is how you engage with them. You could initiate and participate in discussions related to your field, contribute to social conversations with relevant content, and share meaningful posts.
LinkedIn began rolling out its content publishing platform, previously limited only to ‘Influencers’, for all users in early 2014. You can leverage this opportunity to publish original content—such as articles, presentations, slideshares, and images etc.—as a way to build your authority and interact with your audience.
If you consistently practise these LinkedIn etiquettes, you can not only build but even double the number of high-quality connections and followers on this platform.
For more useful tips on growing your presence on LinkedIn, connect with us!