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Getting the Most Out of LInkedIn

When used effectively, LinkedIn can be a great tool for building a strong network of contacts and staying top of mind as an expert in your field. Probably one of the most important aspects of LinkedIn is that this is where most potential clients will go to find out more about you. Also note that your LinkedIn page is often the first result that will show up in a Google search of your name. 

I frequently give workshops on how to get the most out of LinkedIn, and I thought I would share some valuable tips and strategies: 

 Optimize your profile   

    • Professional Headline: this is visible everywhere your name appears on LinkedIn. So don't just use your job title. Instead, highlight your expertise. Good example: "Seasoned family law attorney delivering positive outcomes for clients."  
    • Use a good professional photo. Enough said. 
    • The Summary section is your elevator speech, your personal introduction. Emphasize the benefits that you deliver, convey your specialty areas, feature the industries and types of clients you serve, and highlight what sets you apart from the competition.  
    • Populate the Skills and Expertise section with a representative selection of your skills. Example: family law, mediation, divorce, child custody disputes, prenups.

Build your network

    • Build the biggest network you can, but don't invite complete strangers to connect.
    • Research your contacts' connections to see whom you might invite to connect.

Use for research 

    • Be better prepared for meetings by learning more about the participants beforehand.
    • Identify new prospects and study the competition.

Share your expertise

    • Once or twice a week provide status updates that demonstrate your professional insight. The ratio should be 5 -1 educational vs. promotional updates so you're seen as a resource and not a promoter. 
    • Now all members are permitted to publish long-form posts on LinkedIn. These longer entries are even more effective in establishing your expertise, and this original content becomes part of your professional profile. 
    • Expand your reach by joining groups that line up with your professional interests and key referral sources. 

Ask for recommendations

    • Recommendations show that others are endorsing your expertise.  
    • The best time to ask for one is immediately after you have delivered great results for a client or power partner. It's good form to reciprocate by giving a recommendation in return.
    • Take advantage of the Endorsements feature. This is an easy way to endorse your contacts for their skills and expertise, and it's likely that they will return the favor.

This social networking site can serve as an invaluable business tool for professionals. So take the time to flesh out your profile, build your network and get active! If you are interested in an in-house LinkedIn workshop for your team, please give me a call.