Getting the most out of LinkedIn

LinkedIn [LinkedIn.com] is a social network (social media site) for professionals. It connects people, builds connections and provides industry information to its users. On the site, relationships are important, but it’s less personal, and more professional. Where Facebook can, let’s be honest, allow its users to fill your newsfeed with Farmville and other distracting or irrelevant apps, LinkedIn does not.

LinkedIn users create a profile by uploading their resume, adding skills and interests and even importing contacts through your e-mail, if you choose to do so. On the website, you are prompted to vamp up your resume, add connections, provide work samples, join interest groups and follow other companies.

If used properly, LinkedIn can be a powerful source for industry professionals, such as our PR and marketing teams and our clients.

  • LinkedIn is made for networking. You can add friends, family members and coworkers. Say you meet someone at a professional event that will be a good contact – add him or her. Say you see someone that works at your company – you can add him or her, too. LinkedIn is not the same as Facebook, so adding people you do not know simply for business and professional purposes can be a good strategy. Why? Because the site is professional. On LinkedIn, users do not post photos of their children doing adorable things (there’s nothing wrong with that, you Instagram users) because that’s not the purpose. Instead, the purpose is to connect. It serves as an online networking event by suggesting and connecting people that are in similar fields, have similar jobs or have similar backgrounds.
  • LinkedIn is also made for job searching. If you are a professional looking for a new job, it is a great way to search for job postings or contact others in your field of interest. It’s a professional way to connect, so if you have a profile, you are already on the right track. Many businesses and companies turn to LinkedIn to fill positions, and searching for open positions is a fast, efficient way to see what’s out there.
  • LinkedIn is made for professionals to post about what they do. If you are an industry professional, post items relating to your company, your customers or clients or stories pertaining to strategies in your industry, for me it's the public relations world. Sharing information on LinkedIn is effective because users take it seriously, so you trust those posting are posting things worthwhile. Industry leaders constantly share information regarding their company, strategies or news pertaining to their industry. It is an informative way to learn about what is going on in your industry or outside of it.

Do not hold out on utilizing LinkedIn to its full capacity. Business professionals and industry leaders are joining daily, creating an instant network that travels across the globe in a matter of seconds. Find it here LinkedIn.com. Why not join?