6 Ways to Add Value to Your LinkedIn Network
Are you new to LinkedIn or revamping your profile to be more attractive, detailed, and credible to potential employers? On the other hand, are you simply trying to be more active so you stay better connected with your network? If so, it is important to understand how easy it is to add value to your LinkedIn network, and why you should take part in it! This simple, long-term branding, engagement and communication strategy will positively influence your profile and help grow your network.
Individuals often want to stay on the radar of their network and/or share meaningful contributions with their connections, but they often are either unsure what to share and/or how to go about doing so. We have compiled our top recommendations of ways to stay top of mind and add value to your LinkedIn network:
- Share an article. Sharing an article is the easiest and
most common way to provide value. This method is a great way to spark
a conversation and get your connections interacting. Share an article
directly with a connection of yours (maybe you saw an article that speaks to
a common interest of yours – Hi, I saw this article and thought of
you!) or share directly with your entire network, which is what we prefer
to do on LinkedIn. One study we read mentioned that LinkedIn gets the
most visibility between 7-9AM Tuesday through Thursday, so aim to share your
content then! When sharing an article, we recommend adding a sentence
or two of personal commentary at the top. Maybe it is your top takeaway
or asking your followers for their thoughts on the new trend, technology, industry
news, etc. that was mentioned in the article. This small personalization
not only shows that you read the article, but you had thoughtful, personal commentary
to include. Trust us; this step goes a long way!
- Write an article via a published post. Most technology
professionals have meaningful information and insight to share with their communities.
If you want to take “sharing an article” to the next level, try
providing personal content of your own! Maybe you attended a user group
meeting and you want to recap the lessons learned from the key speaker.
Maybe you read an article and it sparked your own thought about a new technology/trend.
Alternatively, maybe you recently started a blog and you have a relevant blog
post to share! All of these are excellent ways to share original content.
- If you are in a role, or searching for a job, where documentation and writing skills are valued, writing posts provides the Recruiter/Hiring Manager visibility into examples of your work! In the cases where it would be beneficial to have a portfolio of writing samples, we recommend doing a published post, even if it is once every 3-6 months!
- Share a video. People love videos, especially short
ones. Did you see an educational video on YouTube that sparked your interest?
Did you watch a Ted Talk about a topic that aided in your personal development?
Both of these are great options to share with your LinkedIn connections.
Our recommendations on videos, like everything else, is to keep them professional.
Ones around training and development, general motivation, and event/conference
highlights are best suited for LinkedIn!
- Relevant technical events/initiatives. Example technical
events may include user group meetings, Meetups, code camps, SQL Saturdays,
hackathons, conferences, etc. Share upcoming events you are attending
and invite your connections to join you! When you share an event say something
like “Really interesting topic at this Thursday’s SQL Server
User Group. Who wants to join me?” Additionally, do not
forget about the events that you cannot join! Just because you are not
able to make it, one of your connections may find interest and be available
to attend. We have heard feedback from a number of technical community
group organizers that one of their top goals is more outreach/members, which
you can easily help with by sharing their meetings/events!
- Technical Trends insights. Did you read an interesting
statistic about the usage of a certain technology? Did you see the latest
ThoughtWorks Technology Radar and noticed a key trend with a skill you are interested
in achieving? Did you just take an online course in a hot new technology/tool
that is being widely adopted? Share anything that is interesting and applicable
with your LinkedIn community!
- Skills-based volunteering opportunities. People often
want to volunteer and give back to their community, but they do not know where
to start! Skills-based volunteering offers individuals the opportunity
to use their skills and talents to aid nonprofits and other worthwhile initiatives.
Whether it be the annual Data Science Bowl, a Humanitarian Toolbox event, a
local Tech Soup Tech4Good group (i.e. labeled ‘NetSquared’ via MeetUp),
STEM program/nonprofit like Year Up, a charity hackathon, or Operation Code,
there is no shortage of STEM and technology for good events happening in our
communities. As you discover them, share the details of the effort and
how people can contribute! What if you were the catalyst for someone to participate,
how powerful would that be?
- Start somewhere. Try sharing one meaningful, relevant article bi-weekly or monthly. If that is no issue for you, work towards one per week! Keep in mind that LinkedIn is a professional network, so articles and videos should follow suit. Take it further and personalize each article/video you share with a few sentences recapping the article, sharing a thought, or asking your audience a question/their opinion on the content you provided.
- Contribute original content. Share a personal blog post/published post, tell a compelling story, recap a workshop you attended at a recent conference, etc.
- Share upcoming technical and community events or trainings that your network would find interesting, even the ones that you are unable to attend!
- Trends and more trends. People love hearing about the latest and greatest, and reading interesting or compelling statistics.
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