Business Networking 101: LinkedIn Edition

Posted by Factor Funding Co. on August 15, 2014

Social networking has proven to be a valuable business asset. No longer websites use it just for posting silly pictures or playing games, social media websites let people network and engage with each other in broader ways than ever before possible. The website LinkedIn particularly has enjoyed renowned success in bringing people in the business world closer together. When business professionals want to join this site and begin networking with others on this site, they should use these strategies when creating their accounts.

Set up and Maintain an Active Account

After they set up their LinkedIn accounts, it is crucial that people keep them active. Letting an account go unattended without any recent postings signals to others on the site that this person perhaps lacks interest and does not care about the site's intended purpose. Even if that person tries to log in later and update his or her account, it might be difficult to join others' networks because of that initial inactivity. For that reason, people who want to use their accounts to their advantage should keep their accounts open, active and updated regularly.

Avoid Self-Promotion

People who join LinkedIn often find themselves in the online company of some of the business world's best and brightest thought leaders. For that reason, they should realize the opportunity that is presented to them in being able to network with and learn from others who could have a great impact on their careers. This website ideally should not be used as a venue to brag about one's accomplishments or show off for others with the vain belief that doing so will somehow bring them new contacts and leads. Vanity and bravado are eventually revealed and ultimately do little but cause others on the website to block such false friends. People who join should be genuine, if not even a little humble, when they set up their accounts and reach out to new contacts.

Avoid Spamming

Few online behaviors are met with scorn and disdain than spamming. Newcomers to LinkedIn should avoid spamming their networks with useless links, videos and other content. Spamming someone inevitably will lead to that person being blocked and perhaps even removed from the website altogether. If a person genuinely feels that a message, video, or link pertains to his or her network, that person should explain it and provide some background information so that others can try to find the value in the post.

Engage and Contribute

One of the primary purposes of the website invites people to engage with each other in meaningful ways and contribute to posts with helpful and straightforward information. Just as when a person is holding a conversation with someone, it is polite to listen, to acknowledge, and then to contribute to the dialogue without veering off topic. In the same manner, people should avoid using big words and posting overly wordy comments in a bid to impress or detract from the conversation. Being straightforward and genuine can help them stay engaged and contribute in a meaningful way.

Join LinkedIn Groups

People who genuinely want to cultivate the benefits that their LinkedIn accounts can offer would be well advised to join in the many available groups. A person can foster his or her interests, learn new skills and network with others by joining one or more LinkedIn groups. However, people should remember that these groups are not designed to be popularity contests or venues to hoard contacts. They would fare better to join groups that genuinely interest them and can provide the most benefits to their business goals.

LinkedIn has become a valuable asset in the business world. People can reap its advantages by keeping these tips in mind when joining the site.

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