So maybe you’ve heard the term “LinkedIn” but don’t really know what it is or how to use it? Well you are not alone. LinkedIn is not new (it started in 2003) and it is one of the most popular social media platforms with 476m + global members, but despite this many people still have no idea what LinkedIn is supposed to be used for or how they might benefit from being on it.
“LinkedIn” is an online social network for business professionals. Unlike other social networking websites it is specifically designed with professional networking in mind and if the perfect tool to compliment your Business Networking. LinkedIn is a fantastic networking tool which is why we have chosen LinkedIn as our topic for the upcoming A to Z Challenge. Not only that – we are starting with the basics.
What is LinkedIn?
LinkedIn is a social network for professionals. LinkedIn is for anybody who is interested finding new opportunities to grow their careers and to connect with other professionals and build their network.
LinkedIn allows you to connect with “connections”, message your connections and maintain a public profile and CV. It also shows you content include job suggestions based on your profile and your interests. And it is not just for professionals with 40m+ student members, it is also has a growing community of students and fresh graduates.
So, what can you use LinkedIn for?
If you want to get started on LinkedIn or have created an account but not used it, you may be pondering what can I use LinkedIn for, and why do I even need to be on it? So here are some tips for beginners to get you started as a pre-challenge warm-up…
- Get back in touch with old colleagues and contacts. You can use the My Network section to find old colleagues, people you went to school with and anyone else you might think is worth having in your professional network.
- Use your profile as your CV. You don’t have to be actively looking for alternative opportunities, but your LinkedIn profile can be used as a more up to date CV. It can also add credibility to your “brand”.
- Find and apply to jobs. If you are looking for alternative opportunities, LinkedIn is a great place to look for job postings online. LinkedIn will also give you job recommendations.
- Find and connect with colleagues, clients and customers or business partners. LinkedIn can be a great way to connect with your current professional network – whether you are connecting with peers, clients, customers or other contacts.
- Participate in relevant groups. A great way to meet new professionals to connect with is to join groups based on your interests or current profession and start participating.
- Share and Publish Content. LinkedIn allows users to publish blog posts. Published posts will also show up on your profile, which will increase your credibility in related fields that are relevant to your professional experience.
So, why do you actually need to be on LinkedIn?
Most professionals and businesses have a LinkedIn Profile. LinkedIn allows you stay connected with your network. It also allows you to raise your profile and be visible to your network. From a Company perspective it can again help raise the company profile, but it can also help hire new employees and generate sales.
Finally, the majority of people do business with those that they know like and trust. Therefore you need to be where people already are. LinkedIn is a great example of this. So be there!