So you’ve joined LinkedIn, now what? Virtual networking on LinkedIn can seem daunting. Check out these four tips from LinkedIn writer, Kiran Prasad, to begin to network like a pro:
1. Connect with people you know on LinkedIn
My number one piece of advice for networking on LinkedIn is to make sure you’re connected with people you know, including friends, family and colleagues. These are the people who likely know you best, can speak to your work ethic and who you are as an individual. Check out the “People You May Know” feature on the “My Network” tab on LinkedIn as an easy way to find and connect with people who went to the same school as you, who work in similar roles or industries and based in the same city.
2. Reconnect with contacts you’ve lost touch with
Reaching out to people you may not have spoken to in a while can feel uncomfortable, but there are easy ways to break the ice. Consider reaching out via a message on LinkedIn acknowledging the time gap with an introduction like: “It’s been a while since we last spoke, I hope you’re staying well in light of the current circumstances.” You can also engage with their content on LinkedIn by “liking” or commenting on their posts to show your support.
Maintaining relationships is a critical component of networking, so it’s a good idea to make time to stay in touch with your close contacts. For example, put a reminder on your calendar every six weeks to check in and ask what they’re working on. Send an email on birthdays or to congratulate a recent achievement. Making a habit of consistent communication in a genuine way will be beneficial in the long run.
3. Share your insights and stories by posting
A great way to network on LinkedIn is by sharing your experiences and ideas, and you can do this in a few different ways. Consider re-sharing a connection’s LinkedIn’s post with one or two of your key takeaways. A manager and need virtual team-building ideas? Share a few learnings based on your experience and ask your network for their tips which can kick-start a conversation in the comments section of your post. If you’re on the creative side, host a short video interview with a colleague on your company’s LinkedIn Page. Need a quick gut check? Run a Poll to get insights and perspectives from your network and use responses to start up a conversation.
Try to post on a regular basis and include relevant hashtags on your content which will extend reach beyond your first-degree connections. If you’re job seeking, this could prompt hiring managers or other professionals to reach out to you directly. For more tips to share your insights on LinkedIn, read on here.
4. Ask your network for help
By connecting with people you know on LinkedIn, you’ll not only see more relevant conversations in your feed, but you’ll also have visibility into your connections’ professional networks you may not have known about. You might discover, for example, that your cousin’s college roommate runs HR at a company you love and can facilitate a conversation with a hiring manager. Asking your connections to introduce you is a great way to expand your digital network.
Remember, your career coaches are here to help you further and you can schedule an appointment with us by emailing CPD@mercy.edu. For more tips and expert advice, check out this free LinkedIn Learning path, including ways to engage your professional network digitally and for more information and tips for job seekers, visit opportunity.linkedin.com.