For many Net Socialites LinkedIn is one of those “also-ran” sites. It’s reputation as a job-search site causes many to overlook it in favor of more sexy, pure-social sites. But for both individuals and businesses that want to establish a business presence online or build their reputation, LinkedIn should be included in their social toolbox. Here are a few reasons why:
- Recommendations – Client, customer, or co-worker recommendations are Internet gold, regardless of the platform. Savvy businesses and consumers are learning to include LinkedIn when vetting contractors or other businesses. Always invite your customers to give you a recommendation on LinkedIn.
- Q&A – With a site full of over 20 million experts, one quick way to stand out is to be a regular in answering questions. It builds your reputation for being a “giver” and heightens your credibility. Don’t forget that asking good questions can also make you look good–and get you good, quality answers!
- Groups – Joining LinkedIn groups both helps define your online personality and can put you in touch with potential customers. Being an active, helpful participant can lead to business contacts, even if the group is completely unrelated to what you do. For example, if you contribute regularly in the Charlotte Bronte discussion group, people in that group will come to like and trust you. They will also see what it is you do for a living. If they happen to be looking for what you offer, chances are they’ll come to you first.
- Social Media Aggregation – Integration with several of the top social media sites are already in place on LinkedIn, and you can set up live feeds one your profile page. You can update your LinkedIn status from other platforms. You can keep your LinkedIn profile fresh with constantly changing content–with very little effort!
- Research – It’s easy to look in on what your competition is doing with LinkedIn, and you can find a lot of information that way. You can also look up potential clients, employees, or collaborators. The power of LinkedIn as a business directory, though not directly social in nature, should not be underestimated.
It takes very little effort to set up and maintain a LinkedIn profile, and provides one more line in the water to catch clients. Why not add LinkedIn to your social media mix?