Originally published on Elephant Journal in 2012, revised and republished here in 2019.
Here are 5 tips on how to effectively use LinkedIn to create revenue opportunities:
1. Put an hour or 2 into developing your profile. From a clean head shot to setting your public profile address to a concise and accurate summary to the interesting details that make it easy to connect with you. Think of this as creating the best business card of your life, it is the card that lets you stay in front of your network with minimal effort and conveys more information about who you are than ever possible before. Think of of your LinkedIn profile as your living bio. It must be accurate, honest and detailed!
2. Build a Large Vibrant Rainbow – Add Connections. Who should you add? Friends, family, co-workers (past and present), alumni, people you have met in class or at conferences, etc. Start by spending 2 hours looking for every single person you have ever known. Your connections are like the colors of the rainbow, they are vibrant unique and potentially leading you to a pot of gold. Yes, you should know or have met or have engaged with your connections. The bigger the rainbow, the more likely their is a larger pot of gold.
Should you connect to people you do not know? 10% of your network should be fat, people you don’t know that you want to know. When you invite someone you don’t know to connect on LinkedIn, it is a best practice to personalize the invite and give them a reason as to why they should connect with you. For people you know, just invite them! Letting LinkedIn check your email list for people you know who are on LinkedIn is a great way to jump start your network (Tip – do NOT let LinkedIn invite every single one of your email contacts to connect-only invite the people with a blue IN next to their name indicating they are already on LinkedIn).
3. Participate in the conversation. Practice the 2 Minute Drill. Take 1 minute a day and scan your newsfeed, look for new potential connections and content within your network you can comment on and/or like. At the top right of your newsfeed is a search button, you can search your newsfeed for words like yoga or asana or meditation and see who in your 2nd degree or 3rd degree of connections is talking about or promoting something you are interested in. When you Like or Comment on content in your newsfeed, that content is promoted to your network. Like your Facebook newsfeed, this is the most local and interesting news around!
Use the 2nd minute to look for new connections. If you do this 5 days a week and find one person every day your network will expand by 250 people a year!!! This is you creating potential, expanding your artificially created limitations. You want a strong vibrant network of interesting people improving the life of others and creating revenue. It starts with your network, build it daily!
4. Share content with your network. This may be once a week or twice a week or every day, do a status update and promote something you are working on – remember this is a business network! Promoting your business, research, company or blog is a great way to increase the quality of search of your content on Google and the general internet. More important it is a gentle way to touch your community and share part of your life. You can also Share your content in Groups you belong to on LinkedIn. Video content is favored in the newsfeed on LinkedIn in 2019! Follow the loose guideline of 1/10th of your energy creating content and 9/10ths of your energy distributing that content!
5. Schedule real world meetings with people from your network. This is how you find the pot of gold!!! You decide how committed you are to growth. At the minimum once a week or as frequent as your schedule allows. Combine your passion for business with these meetings and you will forge stronger relationships within your community. These meetings are not sales calls, these are opportunities to be an active listener and figure out how you can help your connections accomplish their dreams. Yes, you should tell your friends what you are doing, but focus your energy on how you can contribute to their lives.
This is a great community of hundreds of millions of people for you to communicate with, are you sharing your world on LinkedIn?