LinkedIn is the de facto standard business social network. As such, it’s very clean, focused, and easy to use. Sure, it doesn’t have a lot of facilities for easily sharing photos, videos, and other multimedia. That’s part of the charm. It’s pretty much strictly business.
Without a lot of clutter from non-business-related posts, you can really see what’s going on. Users of the network tend to update their information less frequently too. Another bonus! You can really see what’s going on with someone by browsing down their profile just a bit. All the highlights and not much fluff.
If you want to dig in, you can explore the Answers section. I’ve experimented with that in the past, with some good results. There can be some real gold in the Groups section as well. Find an interesting and lively group or start one of your own.
Update your profile!
But, if you do anything today on LinkedIn, let it be a quick update of your own profile. Add a photo (yes, that’s the standard now on LinkedIn; if you don’t have one up, your profile looks odd and outdated), update your experience (even if you’ve not changed jobs, tweak your summary and specialties areas), and put up a new status update (you must have at least one interesting thing to share).
Connect and Re-connect
Find five friends and invite them to join your network. The “People You May Know” feature keeps getting better and better at finding those you should be connecting or re-connecting with.
Do you and I know each other from this blog, Twitter, or Facebook? Let’s connect.
Another good exercise to run through periodically on LinkedIn is to go through your list of existing contacts. Find those you’ve worked with recently, or even a while back, and consider writing a brief recommendation (if you’ve got good things to say). And, if you come across someone who might be able to write a good recommendation for you – ask.
A good place to visit regularly
Don’t let this “other social network” be left out of your loop. Visit LinkedIn regularly. You may just find that it’s as engaging and rewarding as the more “hip” social networks. Or even more so, particularly for business.