CONFERENCE — March 24, 2015 at 4:42 pm

LinkedIn: Beyond the Basics

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man in suitIf you really want to turbo charge your professional profile, LinkedIn is powering up the platform with the following tools and tricks:

Know your audience.  Don’t just know who looking at your profile, but understand why. With LinkedIn analytics, you can see what actions lead to increased activity and profile views. Actions such as endorsements, shared content, and comments can lead to more visibility for brand YOU.

Dig Deep. A new LinkedIn tool allows for a database download for sales and marketing professionals to use as a relationship management tool. Downloadable data includes first-degree connections, comments, endorsements and shares. This was added as a way for users to manage privacy. Ironic.

Use your network to open the door:  Newly launched, the LinkedIn Sales Navigator promises to be a sales prospecting tool like we have never seen before. I believe them. According to Techcrunch, the new tool will open the door to “social selling,” (queue the hot new buzz word) which consists of:

• Establishing a presence on social networks, finding the right people, engaging with those people, and building trust.

• Then of course comes the cold (ish) call. Perhaps then it is more of a warm and fuzzy “how are the kids” kind of call instead? Ok I’ll bite. Note that this is a paid for tool outside of what LinkedIn currently offers. There are other paid LinkedIn premium tools that include Job Seaker Premium, and LinkedIn Premium Business Plus.

• Become a publisher on LinkedIn: Expand your reach even further by publishing content on LinkedIn. Active LinkedIn users and influencers can now publish content on LinkedIn. As an example, I have started publishing content and my have opted to allow “follows” of my content, and can now be “followed” as a content contributor outside of my regular networks: https://www.linkedin.com/in/aliciawhalen. In essence, this allows consultants, experts and writers to distribute their content to both their networks, and also to be “followed” by those outside their network. It works kind of like a Blog, but within the LinkedIn platform. If you do go this route, I recommend always posting full articles and posts to your own blog, and customizing LinkedIn posts for that audience. And always link back to your blog and contact information of course. I have been using LinkedIn to publish, and it has definitely expanded reach for my content outside of what I can get by blogging alone.

LinkedIn has become the career network. Beyond the obvious, LinkedIn is a connector, content distributer, door opener, and brand-YOU builder. In a business world where YOU are our own currency, invest some time in making sure you are making the most out of your experience, connections and knowledge.