As a career coach, I speak to a lot of clients, students, and other professionals about LinkedIn. When I ask people if they use LinkedIn, they usually respond by saying something like, “Yes. I have a profile.” But, having a profile is just one important piece of using LinkedIn. I like to compare this to having an amazing Instagram bio, without ever engaging with others’ content or creating content of your own. With this example, you might start to see the importance of logging in and engaging with your LinkedIn community more frequently.
For more information on creating a LinkedIn profile that will wow employers and potential clients, follow this link to our previous article.
While having an effective profile is extremely beneficial, it’s really only about one-third of the puzzle. The other two pieces being Engagement and Content Creation. In this guide, you’ll be learning the second piece, Engagement.
The point of having a great LinkedIn profile is for people to see it! If the only time someone sees your profile is when you link it on your resume or they search specifically for your name, you are missing a huge opportunity for passive traffic to your profile, your amazing work, and potential job offers and clients without ever applying or reaching out.
But, you’re in luck. I’ve compiled my top tips for LinkedIn engagement in this guide to get more people to visit your profile in efforts to connect and work with you:
1. Curate your timeline with the most relevant content
LinkedIn will populate your timeline with content that they feel is most relevant to you. This includes posts and content from your 1st connections (usually the ones you engage with most frequently), hashtags you follow, related content that you’ve engaged with previously, and more.
While it’s great to keep in touch with your old college friends and coworkers, you’ll want your timeline to be mostly in alignment with your brand and area of expertise. That way you don’t have to filter through irrelevant content to find posts worth adding to. For example, most of my timeline as a career coach and workshop facilitator includes posts from professionals about career development, job searching, talent acquisition & development, personal branding, entrepreneurship, tech, Atlanta, minority & LGBT news, & higher education.
These are my areas of expertise as well as things I want to be known for. This makes it much easier for me to scroll through my timeline to like and leave meaningful comments.
2. Follow top influencers and thought leaders in your industry
Not only is this a great way to stay up to date on trends and hot topics in your industry, it’s also a great way to build relationships with successful professionals for potential collaborations and virtual mentorship. (Side note: I’ve found this to be much easier than trying to connect with highly successful people using Instagram or other social platforms. I’m assuming it’s because not as many people are active on LinkedIn). You can also grow your own audience when you comment on their posts, allowing their followers to see your great content & profile as well.
This step will take some dedicated time and research. You may be able to find these people a little easier by doing a quick Google search like, “top tech professionals on LinkedIn.”
Also, be aware that followers on LinkedIn does not equal influence or thought leadership. There are plenty of people on LinkedIn with 15k+ followers who get very few likes or comments on their posts. You want to look for high engagement (likes, comments, and shares).
3. Like, comment, and share posts that are relevant to your brand and also support the work of others
This is how you can further develop some of your relationships with LinkedIn thought leaders an others in your industry. If there is someone you admire or see posting great content consistently, make a habit of liking and commenting on their posts. When you comment, make sure to leave meaningful Here’s why: When you leave comments on someone’s post, now their entire network has access to see your comment/subject matter expertise. You’ll want to share your expertise and opinions as it relates to the posts, not comments like “Nice” “Great” or “Thanks.” Those do nothing to showcase your knowledge and won’t encourage others to follow you.
One thing to note, you shouldn’t only focus on influencers and thought leaders. One of the best ways to grow your personal brand on LinkedIn is to connect with your “competition” and support each other’s’ content.
4. Follow relevant hashtags
This can also help expose you to other thought leaders and relevant professionals in your industry. Let’s say you are interested in AI. You might follow hashtags like, #tech #IT #AI #ArtificialIntelligence #DataScience #MachineLearning #ComputerVision. Following relevant hashtags will help you to find more content related to your expertise and interests. Added tip: If you create content using hashtags, your content can start trending with those hashtags.
5. Help whenever you can
This is a big factor for why people love LinkedIn. There is very little drama, argumentative politics, celebrity rumors/gossip, etc. that you see on many other platforms. LinkedIn and its users have done an amazing job at keeping content and engagement professional and helpful. If you see an opportunity to connect someone to a relevant professional, organization, job opportunity, online resources, do it by tagging them. If you see that someone posted their resume to get hired, leave a like and comment on it wishing them luck to spread the post’s awareness. Being known as a helper and supporter is one of the best ways to build your reputation on LinkedIn and in general.
LinkedIn Engagement is one of the best forms of networking in 2019. It’s a great way to build relationships with people before meeting them. It’s also great for connecting with people who are not geographically close to you.
Once you have created a profile that impresses the viewers and start engaging with people on a consistent basis, you will be well on your way to mastering LinkedIn. The only thing left to learn is Content Creation. Be sure to subscribe and stay tuned for our 3rd LinkedIn Guide on Content Creation coming soon!
Follow Brett Ellis on LinkedIn and on Instagram @brettelliscms