I was chatting with another marketing consultant the other day and she commented that I have a good chunk of LinkedIn connections, and I need to promote that more on my website. It seems like a humble brag (look how popular and well connected I am!) but then I thought more about it. I worked hard to make those connections! And while some of you may scoff at the amount, some of you may be wondering how to get to this point. And for those of you trying to increase your connections, here’s what I do…
- Connect with EVERYONE you meet, as soon as you meet them. When I get home from a networking event, I do my best (sometimes it’s a week or two later) to connect with people I met. I send a personal note. This is ideal if you don’t have a need to send them a follow up email or need to connect with them for coffee or a business lead at that point.
- Encourage People to Connect with you. When I speak to groups I mention my LinkedIn. I also tell people (students specifically) to send a personal note. “Hi Elizabeth, your talk today in class was so inspirational I finally know what I want to do with my life. I’m eternally grateful for you!” The personal note reminds me of how we met. I’m on LinkedIn regularly but many people aren’t. Make sure you send a personal note to remind them how you connected. Yes you’re amazing and memorable, but if it’s been 5 months since I heard from you, you could be out of site out of mind.
- Don’t Give LinkedIn Your money. Dude, don’t. Yes there’s some interesting additional features, but if you are consistent with your follow through then you don’t need all the extras they offer.
- Don’t Connect with Strangers. Everyone has a different opinion on this, but my personal thoughts on LinkedIn are that these are people I have met or had a conversation with at one point and time. Some people are okay with adding people they don’t know, but for me, I’d prefer to connect with people I’ve met.
- My Social Media Links are everywhere – it’s in my newsletter footer, my email signature, and my website side bar. Make it easy for people to follow, fan and connect with you.
Increasing your online presence and authenticity takes time, consistency and engagement. Fill out your profile, add a PROFESSIONAL headshot, and start connecting, it can only help your business grow!