LinkedIn has come a long way over the last few years, developing into a useful social & networking tool for a wide range of sectors including those in the creative world - it's no longer all grey suits!
Previously dominated by job searches and CV building with a sprinkling of dull posts, it's transformed into a vibrant space with an increasingly human feel and it might be worth creating a strategy to use it for your business.
Here are some simple ideas to help you navigate LinkedIn to help raise your profile and connect to potential customers or networks.
Set a goal - as with all social platforms it's important to understand why you're there and who you're targeting. It might be that you want to raise your personal profile or develop new networks to help fulfil your business strategy. Maybe you simply want to find key decision makers in a particular organisation or business. Be clear about what you're trying to achieve before you get started.
Optimise your profile - although you can create a business page (more of that later), LinkedIn is all about you! Here's a quick run through (& I think that doing this on a desktop works better than mobile):
Choose a great photo - clear, that says something of you and is a great likeness.
Add a 'cover image' that sits behind your profile image. You can include maybe a business logo, a lovely quote or images of your products.
Create a great headline that says more about you than just a job title.
Write a great 'About' section. Combine information about you as a person as well as some of your achievements, interests & business details.
Edit your profile URL so that it says your name rather than just the LinkedIn auto number
Add your 'Experiences' which includes your education, work positions & business information. It's ok to include volunteer positions & multiple current ones.
Don't forget your licenses and certificates - it's time to show off!
Plan your content - LinkedIn is a great place to share your 'behind the scenes' content pillar as well s your option or perspective on your sectors. Here are some options that work well (remember to think about what your target audience might like best):
Simply image posts that share your activity, including tagging those you met, where you were and any highlights.
Create a simple poll to gauge reaction or opinion on a topic. This could be market research or perhaps understanding more about your sector.
Write an article (like a blog) to showcase your expertise, area of focus or opinion on a topic.
Share an inspiring quote that you think your audience will align to
Grow your connections - avoid worrying about numbers and simply find your existing face to face networks on LinkedIn - why not start with Simply members...you can always ask in the forum who is on LinkedIn.
Gain a recommendation or two by heading to your profile and 'Recommendations' then hitting the + sign. It can feel awkward but it is the done thing on LinkedIn. Maybe choose one person you have done work for or maybe worked for to say some great things about you.
Be consistent - like all socials, LinkedIn needs some perseverance, so decide how you're going to keep going. You don't need to post everyday but you do need to be regular in your activity.
Be generous with others - this is thankfully a positive place where folks say nice things about each other. You could offer a recommendation, tag someone you met that impressed you or another business that you loved.
Create a business page - head to the 9 dot grid at the top of your home page, scroll to 'create a page' and follow the steps. It's important to show that your business exists, has a brand profile and that your'e connected to that business as it grows and evolves.