LinkedIn: A Crash Course In Professional Networking
Do you dread the idea of networking groups? Does the idea of being asked “what do you do?” make your skin crawl?
You might not be a professional networking guru, but that’s okay! Social media has dramatically changed the way we connect with other professionals. There are tools out there that allow business owners to network and build connections without throwing them in a room with a funky little plastic name tag.
One of our favorite tools for networking is through the largest online professional networks, LinkedIn. LinkedIn allows business owners of all shapes and sizes find leads, employees, promotional partners and much more.
Ready to start connecting and making game-changing connections? Then check out these 3 steps for LinkedIn success.
Step 1 – Getting Started
At this point, you may have a LinkedIn profile that needs some love, or maybe you haven’t created an account yet. If you haven’t registered, it’s a quick and easy process. With just a few clicks you can have your profile up and running.
Once you have that out of the way, LinkedIn will walk you through the remaining steps. It may be tempting to just create your page and worry about filling out all the details later. But why wait? Take care of all the nitty details, so that you don’t miss any of the important elements of your profile later on down the line.
Pet professionals are selfless people. They are compassionate and put their clients, pets and everyone first. So sometimes it can be a little hard for them to talk about themselves. But don’t be afraid to brag a little on LinkedIn. Be proud of your accomplishments and skills!
Step 2 – Finding The Right People
There are a few avenues you can take in order to start finding contacts. The easiest is to import your email contacts. Doing this will send a quick email saying “I’d like to add you to my professional network on LinkedIn.” From there, you can personalize your message or keep it short and simple.
Looking for even more contacts? Use LinkedIn’s search tool and look for previous colleagues or co-workers, classmates, or find new contacts by joining one of the thousands of LinkedIn professionals groups.
Step 3 – Start Building Connections
Try writing a recommendation, or a short blurb about someone else’s work on their LinkedIn profile. They may just return the favor. This is an excellent profile booster because it shows up under the position for which the person is writing the recommendation. You can also be direct and ask for recommendations. But you need to have a relationship with the person you’re asking.
This kind of support can really impress connections, especially as our LinkedIn “online resume” takes shape. You know how the best publicity is word of mouth? The same goes for LinkedIn. When someone endorses you or recommends you for a certain skill, the whole LinkedIn world gets to see just how talented you are!
I’m just really getting into LinkedIn, and it’s probably harder to work with than other social media sites, but it’s worth it. Customized request messages are an absolute must!