100 million members on LinkedIn – Time to get on board!

LinkedIn is celebrating their 100 millionth member worldwide. This milestone means there has been a steady growth of roughly one million new LinkedIn members every week- which amounts to one professional joining the site at least every second!

LinkedIn CEO, Jeff Weiner, said “We’re making great progress toward our ultimate goal: to connect all of the world’s professionals to make them more productive and successful.”

Our company was lucky enough to be profiled in LinkedIn’s ‘100 success stories from around the world‘ campaign.

There is already a great deal of media interest and press coverage.

Naturally this will add to the already significant number of business people joining LinkedIn.

It is a great time to get your business professionally networked on LinkedIn and start connecting with clients.

If you would like help getting your business LinkedIn, please call or email info@michaelfield.com.

Contributor:

Michael Field, Director at Michael Field Pty Ltd.

 

LinkedIn Groups – How to harness the power of LinkedIn groups to grow your business

As an active user of LinkedIn, I find LinkedIn Groups to be one of the most powerful ways to connect with peers, industry experts, prospective clients, suppliers and new recruits.

For the purposes of this post, the focus is on business growth and connecting with prospective clients.

Here are a few tips to get you started:

-Join groups that are populated by prospective clients. Don’t limit your group membership to your own professional industry organisation ? unless you only want to speak to your competitors.

If your business services the hospitality or catering industry, join the groups where the restaurant owners, chefs and food service people are.

If you are an accountant and you specialise in medium sized business-to-business clients, you probably won’t find them in your CPA group, but you might find them in a business network group.

-Once you have joined the group, get involved:

  • Start discussions
  • Post news articles. If you are a member of more than one group, and your article is RELEVANT, cross-post your articles across all groups. This simple strategy can increase your reach to tens of thousands, rather than a few direct contacts.

-Review the people who engage with your content, and (if suitable and relevant) invite them to connect. It is (mostly) free to connect if you share a group together, allowing you to save InMails for more targeted connections outside of your network.

-Search groups through the ‘advanced search’ function and narrow down members to connect with based on your specific need or circumstance (industry/role/company size etc…)

-Connect with relevant people and build your connections

-Treat each post as a marketing ‘touch point’ that communicates your unique value, interests and expertise

-Be patient with the process and accept it takes time to build a genuine network

-Be helpful, decent and non-judgmental

-Remember to respect the individuals privacy and connection settings, do not spam or bulk-post marketing messages

Once you have mastered group membership, you may wish to consider starting your own group. Before you do, take a look at this (article coming soon)

Contributor:

Michael Field, Director at Michael Field Pty Ltd.

What is LinkedIn and how can I effectively use it to advance my business?

For most people, LinkedIn is used as an online CV, online address book or a research tool on companies and individuals. Others join groups, post articles, or publish status updates across multiple platforms- such as Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

But it’s simply not enough if you want to grow your business or your personal online brand .

I use LinkedIn for all of the above; but most importantly, I use it as a community builder and value generator.

If you’re after quality- it’s not about the numbers. Many pursue as many connections as humanly possible, showing little discretion in who they connect with. Others may limit their connections to only people they’ve known for sometime, or met face-to-face.

There are two ‘value drivers’ that are key to making connections meaningful.

1. The calibre of the connection

2. The quality of the conversation

Your LinkedIn strategy is not a set-and-forget approach. It necessarily is organic, dynamic and ongoing. So why not take action today with these nine steps and watch your profile grow.

1.Develop a personal and organisational LinkedIn strategy

Determine what you want to achieve through your LinkedIn profile.

2.Establish and/or update your LinkedIn profile to 100%

A completed profile is 40 times more likely to get found. If that means uploading your resume- do it. If that means requesting colleagues to write you a recommendation- do it. Remember to upload a professional quality photograph.

3.Invite friends, employers, suppliers, collaborators and influencers to connect

Remember to be selective in the people you ask- but at the same time, don’t narrow your search down to only friends and colleagues. Connections can be from your industry, groups you share or connection of connections.

4.Ask for testimonials

Ask for a variety of testimonials- from past and present jobs, suppliers and clients. It’s important to have recommendations from people you have reported to, and clients you have worked with. A raving review from the Director of the company you work for is going to carry more weight than a review from someone who worked for you.

5.Join relevant groups

Be selective in the groups you join. Make sure they are groups that relate to your industry/career/business/interests. For more information on LinkedIn groups, go here.

6.Consider starting your own group

Read our blog post on starting up a LinkedIn group for more information.

7.Post relevant, newsworthy links and articles

Encourage discussion and debate, and get involved! Express your point of view in the articles you post, and encourage others to do the same.

8.Ask and answer questions

The more active you are with your network, the more potential you have to form meaningful online client/networking relationships. Importantly, this also provides you with an opportunity to showcase your skills and build credibility as a subject matter expert in your field.

9.Promote your LinkedIn profile on your website, email, blog etc

If people don’t know you have a LinkedIn account, it makes it harder for them to find you. Make sure people are aware- and always let a new colleague/client/friend know that you want to connect with them.

Contributor:

Michael Field, Director at Michael Field Pty Ltd.