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Over the years I’ve read countless LinkedIn blogs but have usually been less than impressed with the quality of tips. I’ve concluded that there are lots of tipsters out there who re-cycle the same tired, old advice which really doesn’t do much to boost your networking efforts. I think you deserve better!

 

(1) Form a Group. The numbers tell the story: 175m members and ‘only’ 1m groups. 0.57% of LinkedIn members have created a group. That represents a tremendous opportunity but know that there are challenges and hard work along the way. There are 3 major reasons why you ought to start your own group on LinkedIn:

 

  1. You will be seen as a Thought Leader by not just members of your group but far beyond the LinkedIn space. Building a great LinkedIn group is the quickest and most effective technique, I know to give weighty credence to your social community chops.
  2. You will gain a broadcast and a listening channel which will be useful in your real-life and other virtual endeavors. Think about having the ability to send weekly Announcements on the subject of your choosing. Think about 1,000s of people receiving that message, wanting more of the same and sparking new conversations in hundreds of different ways.
  3. Social Media is a relatively young and still emerging discipline. Nothing says “I understand how to leverage Social Media” better than founding and running a popular LinkedIn group. Multiple skills are necessary to run a LinkedIn group well including IT, marketing, communication, PR, sales & moderation to name a few.

 

Subscribe to linkedinsights.staging.wpengine.com and watch for my forthcoming post on how to build a great LinkedIn Group.

 

(2) Get a PersonalPlus LinkedIn account and leverage the 2 best features of a premium Business account for a fraction of the cost:

 

  1. Who’s Viewed Your Profile? It’s essential to know who has been checking you out. Information is power. Knowing ALL of your browsers provides you with more opportunities, it makes your networking more effective, it qualifies your prospects. No brainer.
  2. OpenLink. OpenLink is an ‘Open for Business’ sign that you hang on your Profile. It is the equivalent of giving ANYONE who may wish to contact you a stamped, self-addressed envelope. People will appreciate it and you will be doing more business than those folks who prefer to make it harder to get in touch on a professional social network.

 

See my previous post on how to get the ‘off-menu’ option of a delightful PersonalPlus account.

 

(3) Design a Poll. Not just any Poll but a timely, thought-provoking, kick-ass survey that will get you noticed and your name in front of decision-makers. LinkedIn Polls are one of the least utilized features on the LinkedIn platform and one of the easiest to execute. One Poll (“Has your job security been impacted by the current economic conditions?”) generated nearly 28,000 votes. LinkedIn makes it insanely simple to run a Poll and once you’ve created it, they rather helpfully provide you with numerous ways to distribute it far and wide (you can embed it in your own blog, share it on twitter or facebook).

 

Watch for my forthcoming post on how to design a kick-ass LinkedIn Poll. Subscribe to linkedinsights.staging.wpengine.com now to ensure you don’t miss it.

 

(4) Grab your Vanity Profile URL. Which of these looks better to you?:

 

  1. www.linkedin.com/pub/andy-foote/1/661/309/883/9944
  2. www.linkedin.com/in/andyfoote

 

If you can take control of how other people search for you – why wouldn’t you? [Grab your unique URL in the ‘Edit Profile’ screen]. This is not just about vanity, it’s about being the master of your universe (and making it easier to find you on the web).

 

(5) UPPERCASE your NAME. This sounds a tad trivial but trust me on this one. Less than 1% of professionals on the LinkedIn platform have their entire name in UPPERCASE. Go bold or go home. You absolutely need to do everything to make yourself stand out from the crowd and be noticed on LinkedIn. This deceptively simple technique [which can be done in seconds in the ‘Edit Profile’ screen] provides you with the crucial extra noticeability factor wherever your name crops up i.e in searches, browsing history, groups etc. etc. Going UPPERCASE has no downside and the only reason we don’t do it online is the stuffy habit of convention. By doing this, you telegraph to others that you understand the importance of differentiation on a busy, high noise to signal SM channel.

 

LINKEDIN CONSULTING
If you liked this article, you’ll love my customized consulting service. I’ve helped many professionals to achieve their full potential on LinkedIn. LinkedIn is not somewhere you paste your resumé, sit back and wait for things to happen. It’s a complicated and nuanced website portal that requires action, insight, branding strategy and marketing know-how. What you don’t know – could hurt you. Whether it’s getting more traffic on your Profile, engaging with a stunningly good Summary or refreshing your LinkedIn presence and brand – share your goals with me and I’ll help you to achieve all of them via LinkedIn.

Contact me now: linkedinsights@gmail.com / 773.469.6600 to get started.

That’s all from me for this week. Please take a few moments to share this article with your network. I read and respond to all comments.

By Andy Foote