Build Powerful Value Relationships on LinkedIn

As we navigate the interconnected digital world, we’ve come to appreciate the profound impact of social networking in shaping our professional lives. It has redefined the marketing landscape and ushered in a new era where it’s no longer just “What’s In It For Me” (WIFM), but rather “What’s In It For We“. Amidst this evolution, LinkedIn stands tall as a powerful tool for fostering business-to-business (B2B) and business-to-consumer (B2C) relationships, as well as accelerating career development.

Now, do you aspire to broaden your influence by nurturing authentic, sustainable relationships within your LinkedIn communities? If so, read on as we dive into a detailed guide on how to optimize your LinkedIn account to fortify your professional network.

Establish Your Brand Identity with Your LinkedIn Profile

Let’s start at the very beginning – your LinkedIn profile. It is your digital business card, your online resume, and most importantly, the first impression you make. But to utilize it effectively, you need to answer these crucial questions:

  • Who do you want to connect with and why?
  • What is your professional “title”?
  • What services or solutions do you offer?
  • What problems do you solve?

Just like a meticulously written CV, the top third of your LinkedIn profile carries the most weight as it’s the section most viewed. When crafting your profile, remember to incorporate a professional photo, your website link, endorsements, blog posts, industry-related readings, possible SlideShares, and your contact details.

Pro Tip: Keep an eye on your profile views and search appearances. These metrics serve as an excellent gauge of whether your LinkedIn brand is drawing the desired audience.

Nurture Your Network Intentionally

Renowned motivational speaker Tony Robbins often says, “Your network is your net worth.” But to build a network that truly adds value to your professional growth, you need to be deliberate about who you connect with. Start with your immediate circle, the people you know personally or have worked with, and then extend your reach to others in your industry.

For instance, as a leadership development coach, I find it mutually beneficial to connect with Talent Management Leaders, Sales and Marketing Directors, and startup CEOs. They often need the expertise I offer, and in turn, they might refer other companies to me that could use my services.

Pro Tip: When inviting people to join your network, move away from the generic default message. Instead, personalize your request with an introduction and a thought-provoking question, such as, “How can I know if someone I’m connected with is a good prospect for you?”

Harness the Power of Endorsements

Endorsements can be powerful tools to showcase your credibility and expertise. Be open to writing genuine, thoughtful endorsements for your colleagues, employees, and clients, and don’t hesitate to ask for them too. A well-written endorsement paints a vivid picture and sets you apart.

Prioritize Giving Back

LinkedIn hosts hundreds of discussion groups that you can join to share your insights, participate in intelligent dialogues, ask thought-provoking questions, and offer resources. Approach these groups with a spirit of generosity, aiming to give more than you take.

Keep in mind that for job seekers, recruiters often evaluate your group activity to gauge your expertise, collaborative competencies, and communication style.

Pro Tip: Avoid using these groups solely for promoting your services. Instead, view these connections as valuable relationships that you want to cultivate by asking, “What can I do for you?”

Cultivate Trust Through Consistency and Accountability

Just like in-person relationships, online networking requires trust to thrive. This trust is earned through consistent engagement and accountability.

Cultivate Trust Through Consistency and Accountability

Just like in-person relationships, online networking requires trust to thrive. This trust is earned through consistent engagement and accountability. Keep your profile updated with fresh content, regularly check your LinkedIn messages, and stay connected with your groups — ideally once a week.

Show up fully in your network by sharing your ideas, resources, blog posts, and asking how you can support others. You’ll be surprised at how many meaningful phone or in-person conversations can stem from a simple LinkedIn connection.

Pro Tip: If maintaining a dynamic LinkedIn profile and network feels like a daunting task, remember that it’s all about developing a habit. The efforts you put in consistently will soon become second nature, and the benefits will be well worth it.

Gauge Your LinkedIn Pulse

To understand how well you’re leveraging LinkedIn, ask yourself:

  • Do you have a compelling summary profile and an accurate, catchy title that describes the problems you solve?
  • How many groups are you active in?
  • How many viewers open your profile?
  • How many phone or in-person conversations have resulted from LinkedIn connections?

If your LinkedIn profile needs a makeover or if you wish to unlock its full potential, don’t hesitate to reach out to me. I’m here to help you thrive professionally!

About

Shera Sever is a leadership consultant, empowering professionals and organizations to reach their peak performance.

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