Prospects, business partners, and potential hires are all waiting for you on LinkedIn, the world’s largest professional networking platform. With close to 600 million users, having a strong LinkedIn network can be an invaluable resource. The secret to success on LinkedIn is first centered on building up your connections and then leveraging your network. By building connections and then engaging with your connections, you can gain exposure, attract new prospects, inspire partnerships, generate referrals, or set in motion many more possibilities.
Connect With People You Already Know
Start building connections on LinkedIn by connecting with people you already know or trust. These people are likely to be friends, family, and co-workers, but don’t stop there, add acquaintances, friends of friends, people you went to school with, who are in your industry, that you play sports with, or engage with on other social media channels.
LinkedIn makes it easy to connect with people you already know, either by searching for them individually using the main search field or by upload your email contacts. Either way, the first step to connecting is by sending a connection request. Avoiding sending generic connection requests and instead take the time to write personalized invitations. These personalized connection requests don’t have to be long, just taking the time to send something individualized will demonstrate that you are serious and building a connection.
Find New Connections
Once you’ve connected with people you already know, you can continue building LinkedIn connections by utilizing LinkedIn Groups. Joining a group or groups, allows you to network with others who are active in your industry. After you join a group, you’ll be able to see the list of members in the group. Scroll through the members to see those who are both engaged on Linked and not already first-degree connections. Then send those users a personal connection request saying that you’re in the group together and that you would like to connect with them on LinkedIn.
Another way to find new connections is by leveraging your alumni status. Just like being a group together gives you a reason to make a connection; sharing an alma mater also gives you something in common. You can search for your university using the main search bar and then click on alumni. Within the alumni list, you can input a date range of attendance and search by title, keyword, or company to narrow down those you want to connect with.
Finally, you can find new connections by exploring your connections’ connections. People in your LinkedIn network are identified by degrees. 1st-degree connections are people you’re directly connected to. 2nd-degree connections are people who are connected to your 1st-degree connections, and 3rd-degree people are connected to your 2nd-degree connections. While you can send 2nd-degree connections, and sometimes 3rd-degree connections, an invitation to connect directly, you can also ask your 1st-degree connection for a digital introduction to get the ball rolling.
Engage With Your Connections
The value of your LinkedIn network isn’t the number of connections you have; it’s how you leverage them. Once you’ve begun building your network, you must start engaging with those connections. Read through your connections’ profiles to learn more about them and determine how you might benefit each other. Engage in the posts that they share. Engagement can be as simple as a like or a comment on their posts, but commenting with your insights or questions will do even more to increase your exposure.
The secret to success on LinkedIn is building connections. People join LinkedIn because they want to connect and develop their professional networks, so take the time to engage and create relationships. At It’s Simply Digital we are here to help you become successful online. Contact us today to get started.
Download 10 Steps to Leveraging LinkedIn:
- The secret to success on LinkedIn is centered in first building up your connections and then leveraging your network.
- Start building connections on LinkedIn by connecting with people you already know or trust.
- The value of your LinkedIn network isn’t the number of connections you have, it’s how you leverage them.
- Once you’ve begun building your network, you must start engaging with those connections.