So, networking on LinkedIn, huh? Well, based on the main definition of this word that has been used in most places, including LinkedIn. Your network on LinkedIn is made up of your 1st-degree, 2nd-degree, and 3rd-degree connections, as well as your followers and members you fellow from your LinkedIn groups. But why LinkedIn? Don’t we have lots of social media platforms? What is LinkedIn anyway? why is it so special?
LinkedIn is a social media that was more like an online resume database focused on business and professional relationships between its users in the first years of establishment. Its main goal is to help its members expand their network as much as possible with people and companies in the industry they are active in.
How to network on LinkedIn? To network effectively on LinkedIn, start by optimizing your profile with a professional photo, a compelling headline, and a detailed summary that showcases your expertise and accomplishments. Connect with people in your industry, alumni from your school, and colleagues from past and present jobs, and personalize your connection requests by mentioning shared interests or experiences. Actively engage with your network by liking, commenting on, and sharing posts from your connections, as well as posting valuable content that highlights your knowledge and skills.
LinkedIn is a source for B2B and B2C business connections, finding jobs and hiring qualified candidates, receiving new and reliable news in the industry you are working in, finding partners and investors, prospecting and lead generation, etc.
They always say that LinkedIn is different from other social media platforms, why is it different?
Well, this claim could be quite true, unlike platforms like Instagram, TikTok, Twitter, etc. LinkedIn is specifically designed to create and foster business-oriented relationships.
This network has various restrictions on the people you want to connect with. For example, a limit on the number of first-degree connections, a limit on sending requests in a week, and a limit on sending invitations to people out of your network.
This may be a little annoying, but the goal is to create as relevant and ideal relationships as possible. This network is very similar to our life in real society. Since no one really has millions of real connections in real life, right? and no, we are not counting people you saw once at a bus stop.
Anyways, it is rare to find a person who can claim to have billions of friends in the real world. Our relationships in the real world are usually limited to the people around us, the people we know at work, or the industry in which we are active. That is why networking is more critical on LinkedIn, you are connecting to people whom you might be working with them one day on this platform.
LinkedIn networking: what & why?
Well, LinkedIn is the largest professional community online right now, the platform has more than 870 million members from more than 200 countries and more than 55 million companies. This means an endless number of opportunities (of various kinds) waiting to be discovered. This is a unique opportunity for growth, in sales, career advancement, learning, etc.
You can connect with millions of business owners, recruiters, people with high skills and knowledge in a specific field, mentors, investors, etc. on this platform. However, it does not mean that networking on LinkedIn is easy.
In fact, when I entered LinkedIn for the first time in 2010, I was so confused that it was as if I had entered a country where I cannot speak its language, I was terrified. how should I work with this platform? how to find people? there is nothing like Instagram or even Facebook in here! Do you think this platform is not user-friendly? You should have seen it then!
For this reason, people who are new to LinkedIn may quickly become discouraged from networking on it. Why should we do LinkedIn networking at all?
To answer this one, let’s talk about the benefits of LinkedIn.
1. You build your personality brand.
Well, obviously, it has always been so important to be able to prove yourself to others in any era, but in this era, it has become even more important. These days, all of us look for an expert for everything we have in our heads. We even go to Google to clean our homes and search which cleaning service is better, not to mention the more special affairs like It service, carpentry, electronic stuff, etc.
Well, when you publish a post on LinkedIn that gets a lot of views, more and more connections see it, and when they like your post or comment on it, especially in the first hour of publication, more people will see your post and even visit your profile and some of them may request you. Also, with the right content, you can gradually convince LinkedIn algorithms that you are a thought leader to make them show your posts to more and more people.
This means that people trust you and your brand more, and if you have a product or service to offer, they will buy it from you easier. Yes! This is great not only for your personal account but also for the performance of your company page.
2. Finding a job
No matter how LinkedIn develops its platform, its basic performance has been and always is to find a job. In fact, I can say that most people who enter LinkedIn for the first time have heard that they can find work on this platform from someone.
In addition, many recruiters and of course human resources employees of different companies go to LinkedIn to find suitable candidates for a job vacancy and after reviewing various profiles, they contact the most suitable ones.
If you want to find a job, LinkedIn can be the best way to do it. You can research b about different companies, their field of activity, opinions of different people (current and current employees, customers, etc.), managers, etc. before submitting applications on this platform
3. Market your services and find customers
Another advantage of using LinkedIn and of course networking is creating more leads, more successful marketing (with social media marketing techniques), creating better, more and easier B2B and B2C relationships, raising brand awareness, and boosting traffic to your company’s website or other social media channels and so on.
It may be hard to believe, but according to statistics, not only more than 50% of B2B buyers are on LinkedIn, but also more than a third of all online marketing traffic flows at this network.
To find more leads and more quality prospects, you can network through paid accounts such as LinkedIn Sales Navigator, you can promote products, services, and benefits of using them much easier and at a much lower cost on this platform; and complete your CRM faster and better.
Statistics say that LinkedIn users spend more than 7 minutes a day on this platform on average. Maybe this time seems short, but this is a lot for a professional marketer, you just need to have a company page, a suitable profile, worthy content, knowledge of how to work with LinkedIn algorithms, and what type of marketing you should use.
4. Follow industry leaders
We said that LinkedIn is a social media platform full of people who work in different industries. Well, it is natural to find influencers and leaders of these industries in it, people like Bill Gates, Simon Sinek, Scott Galloway, and thousands of other top figures.
You can follow these people and even interact with some of them directly, of course, you should also consider that it is rare for such people to respond to their messages on social networks personally, but it still is better than nothing.
5. Learn from interesting content
The modern world is changing every day, and modern humans are bombarded with different information 24/7, and cannot definitively confirm whether they are right or wrong.
That’s why I always use LinkedIn as one of the more reliable ways to get industry news. Because there are reliable and professional companies and people in it, I hope they will convey the true news to their audience. not the fake news and gossips like TV stations like Fox News.
Once you find these people and companies, you can read what they’re sharing in their feed or company page, or sign up for their newsletter.
All of these reasons and so many more benefits of using LinkedIn and having a strong network on the platform are enough to start networking, right? So how to use LinkedIn for networking?
How to use LinkedIn for networking?
Well, now that you are interested in the benefits, why, and what LinkedIn and networking are all about, let’s talk a little about networking strategies.
These tactics have helped me and many others not only to create successful relationships on LinkedIn but also to make hundreds of thousands of dollars in sales. I divided these strategies into three categories: Target, Engage, and Build. Well, let’s see what I am talking about.
As the cat in Alice in Wonderland said, “You have to know where you’re going or you’ll get lost.” Well, honestly, networking is like that as well. If your goal and the people you want to find are not clear, networking can be pointless, boring, and of course misleading.
So, first of all, it is important to define your target people based on what you want to achieve on LinkedIn. I mean creating the ideal connection persona.
For example, if you are looking for a job, the ideal connections can be people who already work in that job, industry, or at the same company of your desire.
To create this profile persona, you can list a series of keywords, based on the account you are on and using a series of filters for searching (there are a lot of useful filters out there, believe me). I usually create between three and five target personas when I want to start networking on LinkedIn. For example, a content developer in the social media marketing industry at a multinational company.
Of course, if you don’t have a very specific industry or company in mind, it doesn’t really matter. But the more accurate your persona is, the easier it is to find more suitable people.
Moreover, you can join different groups because the people who are in these groups are usually the same people who already have the persona you are looking for. If you want to add group members to your network, always send a small note with your request.
For example, tell them how you found them, why you want to connect with them, mention the things you may have in common with them, etc. This small note can be very effective in elevating the acceptance rate of your requests.
Engaging is one of the most important parts of being active on all social networks, including LinkedIn, especially in the networking section. Social media is one of the most powerful ways to increase social influence, promote your brand, and connect with people who can help you in the future.
Always remember that for a successful networking, you must have a precise plan, you must know where you are, what you want, and where you are going. I always advise others to leave at least 7 thoughtful comments a day.
When you leave a comment, not only is your headline shown to everyone who sees it but a thoughtful comment can aware people of your expertise, which in turn makes them familiar sense to you and lower their guard it’s easier for them to contact you now.
So what posts should we comment on? You can start with the personas you made, that’s why I said to specify your target first. In addition, you can leave comments under the posts of the companies you have in mind (job-seeking-wise).
Another way is to search for keywords with #hashtags in the LinkedIn search box, for example, #SEO, and see who has posted with this hashtag. You can also select the posts in the groups and leave a comment there.
The second step is to try to connect with more than 5 to 7 people a day (those who fit your target personas come first). As mentioned, the more you engage with people, the easier it is to start a conversation with them. Because you could probably drag them to your optimized profile to send you a request and of course check your profile.
Well, now we come to the part that may be a bit annoying, which is unfollowing. All of us are so confused when we are new to LinkedIn that we probably follow anyone and anything that comes our way.
Over time, when the number of pages and people we follow increases, our feed will probably look like a garage sale. That’s why this step is very important, you must pass your following section from strict filters and unfollow any person or page that is not related to you. When you log into your account then, you will see what you want to see.
Don’t worry, when you unfollow someone, they will remain your connection if they are already connected to you; only their posts will not be shown to you anymore.
Well, your brand and your goals on LinkedIn need a strong network. Because the opportunities that come to you in life determine how successful you are going to be. Well, yes, I do not agree with the nonsense of success coaches and that you can make everything out of nothing. In a world where people easily search for everything online, what they see when they search for your name is very important.
When you build your brand and influence, you need to take time to develop it. Since there is no manual for this, don’t be afraid of making mistakes. Let me assure you that by doing this, you are attracting the right people to you, and naturally, more opportunities for job advancement will happen for you.
Try to be the same reliable source of ideas, knowledge, thoughts, etc. that your audience expects. We are all creative in some way, maybe you are good at writing, maybe you make good videos, take good photos, etc. So use the skills and produce valuable content.
Of course, it might be unrealistic for many people to say that, for example, come and interview a CEO in a video, but I recently saw a video of a challenging discussion about the salary of front-end developers, which was between a very professional developer whom I know closely and the founder of a multinational IT services company. You won’t believe how many IT service companies and how many developers commented on it and were discussing the right salary there and how many times it was shared.
Well, these are my three steps strategy to network on LinkedIn, do you know other strategies? tell me in the comments section below.
How to grow a LinkedIn network?
Social media platforms, especially LinkedIn, have become so important these days that when you go for a job interview, they are one of the parts of the application form of many companies. And when you say, for example, that I don’t have an Instagram or LinkedIn account, it’s like you’re saying I came from the 1800s.
It is logical though. I mean the internet and social media have dominated our lives so much that we practically just don’t sleep or take a shower in it. We are actually living in a virtual world these days.
As I said in the above sections, LinkedIn is currently a center for creating business and professional connections and has more than 870 million users in 2023, yet to get more users every day. It may not be as popular as Instagram, TikTok, and Twitter, but when you consider the nature of this platform, 870 million is still such a huge number.
Just like in the real world, more connections on LinkedIn can be a very important factor in reaching your goal on this platform. So let’s learn how to have more connections in it. take a look at my top ten ways list:
- Personalize connection requests
- Follow up on in-person networking opportunities
- Break growth goals down into achievable chunks
- Invite engagement by posting often
- Explore LinkedIn Groups
- Grab attention with visual content
- Engage with existing connections
- Promote your LinkedIn URL
- Leverage keywords in your profile
- Write and publish articles demonstrating expertise
The four golden LinkedIn networking tips
Although I mentioned all the necessary points in the higher sections for Networking so far, I thought why not share the four golden tips that I learned on this platform after some years. Well, come and let me share them with you.
1-Make your profile stand out.
The first impression is very important everywhere. Whether it is in the real world or on social media platforms, the first impression determines whether one person is worth the try or not. Your profile is exactly the first impression on LinkedIn that can have a huge impact on your successful Network. So please optimize all parts of your profile as much as possible.
2- Connect with people and interact.
Well, so far we have realized that Networking is very important on LinkedIn, and we all know that when the number of connections reaches more than 500, you can say that you have a good place on LinkedIn.
But it is not very logical to get to this number by reaching out to anyone and everyone who comes your way, better be a little pickier in this matter. Get in touch with people who are active in your industry and may help you in your career path right now or in the future.
After your invitation is accepted, make sure to interact with them every now and then, and do not let these valuable relationships get forgotten in your connection section. react and comment on their posts, send them the content you think they might like, interact with them via direct message, and so on.
3- Post engaging content.
Well, we were able to gather some members on LinkedIn with our attractive profile. Now it’s time to convince them that we are reliable, professional, and knowledgeable. Well, this is exactly what is done when you publish an interesting post.
By producing and constantly publishing valuable content, not only can you prove your expertise to your connections but you also can make them and other people who may somehow look at your posts think of you as a thought leader.
Also, valuable and scheduled content that is published at the proper time can convince LinkedIn algorithms to show your post to even those who are out of your network, who can say how many of them will request a connection with you?
4- Join LinkedIn groups.
It is a wonderful strategy to use different groups to get under your industry’s spotlight. Groups are great for creating meaningful links in your industry. For example, if you are in the animal protection section, you can find more than 255 different groups on LinkedIn with the same word. Membership in several active groups can give you an active, relevant, and useful connection to make effective Networking.
For the final word, Networking on LinkedIn is far more important than I can express. It can be said that LinkedIn is the most similar social media platform to the real world. All members are present there with their actual names and real experiences (somewhat).
Relationships on LinkedIn are not very easy to establish but easy to lose, it may not be difficult to send a message to invite someone to contact, but it cannot be said with certainty if the connection will later respond to your messages, posts, and content. Just like the relationships we have in the real world, the ones we build from scratch.
We spend time(our most valuable asset) on these relationships while we are not sure whether they stick around or not. What we know is that this Networking has unpredictable opportunities with it, and that’s enough for more effort and investment.
Does networking on LinkedIn work?
Yes, it defiantly is the best way to promote your brand and to have successful marketing
Why is LinkedIn important for networking?
It is important since it is the only business-oriented social media platform so far.