LinkedIn is a platform that focuses on careers and is designed to grow your professional network. It offers a wide range of tools to help you find and connect with people across a variety of industries. You can also use the platform’s publishing options to share and promote your expertise in your field. Use LinkedIn to exhibit your credentials and tap your current network to expand your prospect pipeline.
Here is a 4-step guide to LinkedIn:
■ Step 1: Set up your profile
Much like a resume, your LinkedIn profile highlights your work history, education and skills. Take time to write it well as it will advertise your professional expertise. Often, LinkedIn profiles appear at or near the top of search results for a person’s full name. An incomplete profile could indicate lack of professionalism and drive away a prospect.
■ Step 2: Add connections
Some LinkedIn users see their network as an opportunity pool and prefer a broad and open approach to adding connections, while others see their network as a reflection of themselves and prefer a more discerning approach. Decide which feels best for you based on your goals for using the site.
■ Step 3: Engage at your desired level
Each LinkedIn user will have a different engagement strategy, based on their bandwidth and goals. You could use the platform in any or a combination of the following ways:
- Responding to inquiries
- Researching and requesting introductions to prospects
- Joining groups and participating in discussion posts to boost engagement in your professional community
- Posting links and updates to stay on top of the mind of people in your network
- Authoring articles to showcase your expertise and reach out to new prospects through shares
- Connecting your contacts with one another when relevant opportunities arise to bolster your community
■ Step 4: Managing your time
If you choose to use social media to build your brand, be mindful of the time you are putting in and whether it matches the reward you are receiving. Make sure you are not allowing it to monopolise your time. Used proficiently, tools like LinkedIn have the potential to add substantial value to your brand and practice, particularly when it comes to connecting with your next generation of clients. However, they are best used as additions to your online marketing efforts, not the foundation. To make the most of your social media efforts, make sure you have first established a strong website you can direct people to.
We spoke a few advisors active to understand what advisors should do to get maximum out of LinkedIn profile.
Vishal Dhawan of Plan Ahead Wealth Advisors believes that LinkedIn is the best social platform to reach out to professionals. “Today, many professionals check LinkedIn profile of the advisor before approaching him. So, make sure that your profile highlights the work that you do and how will it benefit your clients. Also, make it a point that your LinkedIn profile is complete,” says Vishal.
Suresh Sadagopan, Ladder7 Financial Advisories says that LinkedIn is a business social media platform. “Your LinkedIn profile should showcase your credibility. In addition, you can engage with your connections by putting articles and blogs to show what you are doing. Make it a point to keep updating your profile at regular intervals by sharing updates and articles on personal finance,” says Suresh.