looking out an office window to the ocean

This past week, I had three people mention they’d like to be more active on LinkedIn, but they find the platform a little overwhelming. I feel their pain. That’s how I used to feel.

I don’t know if it’s because LinkedIn is a “business platform,” but when many of us step inside the LinkedIn world, we don’t understand how it all works. It can seem like everyone knows what they’re doing but you.

When I first started using LinkedIn I didn’t have a clue how it all worked. I thought the only goal was to get lots and lots of connections. I had no idea who I should be connecting with. And even worse, I didn’t know what I was supposed to do with all those people once we were connected?

I didn’t know what to add to my personal profile. It seemed so boring to just copy/paste the contents of my resume. Plus, if I wasn’t looking for a job, why would I even want to list all the places I’d ever worked?

In the beginning I also had such a pathetically small network. I had no idea on how to make it grow. Who all was I suppose to connect with? My friends and family? People I used to work with? What about strangers?

I actually felt embarrassed to ask other people to “LinkIn” with me. So I tried connecting with random strangers. I felt like a total fraud.

But, I stuck it out and didn’t quit.

The turning point for me was finally admitting I didn’t know what I was doing. So I did what I do best. I googled it.

google search results for linkedin for beginners

Lo and behold, I found lots of information on using LinkedIn. I learned how to improve my profile. I learned how to find key connections. I learned how to publish posts and articles.

Today, I feel totally competent and confident using LinkedIn. Even better, using LinkedIn is now a regular part of my business strategy. I love all the great connections I’ve made. And being active on LinkedIn has done wonders for my business.

So, knowing there may be other folks out there, who are struggling to use LinkedIn, I thought I’d share what’s worked for me. Which is why I made a video about how I do LinkedIn. In the video, I provide you a backstage look at my daily practice on LinkedIn.

Warning: It’s a little long (26 minutes) but I wanted you to get the full experience of what I really do. I hope this backstage tour helps you see LinkedIn as a little less confusing. And, I hope it will help you create your own LinkedIn strategy.

Here’s what I cover in the video:

1. Be Consistent

I make LinkedIn a daily part of my regimen. I don’t usually go on on the weekends. Monday through Friday I try to spend at least 20-30 minutes a day on LinkedIn.

2. Check Messages

I monitor my LinkedIn messages. These are the personal conversations I’m having with my connections. I always make a point to read and respond to each message I receive in a timely manner.

3. Review Connection Requests

I don’t like to leave people hanging. If someone would like to connect with me, I review their LinkedIn profile to ensure they are a good fit for me. I always appreciate people that take the time to write me a personal note about what they want to connect with me. It’s polite.

4. Respond to Notifications

I spend a lot of time reviewing and responding to notifications. This is a great way to continue the conversation and make some new connections. For instance, if someone took the time to leave a comment on a post I published, I like to give them a “thumbs up” and comment back on their original comment.

5. Read Through the Newsfeed

I love looking through the newsfeed. There is so much great content to choose from. As I scroll through the newsfeed, I keep a lookout for posts that I find interesting. When I see something, if I like the content, I usually give it a “thumbs up” and leave a thoughtful comment. I spend the time to provide honest feedback that the author might find useful.

6. Prune Connections (Follow & UnFollow)

If there is too much content cluttering up my newsfeed, I may consider unfollowing specific people, businesses, groups, and hashtags. When you are just getting started on LinkedIn you won’t have many connections. Therefore, it’s important to begin following people, businesses, and subjects you find interesting. This will provide you with a newsfeed worth scrolling through.

7. Check Out John Espirian

If you really want to up your LinkedIn game, I highly recommend you follow John Espirian on LinkedIn. I have learned so much reading John’s LinkedIn posts and articles.

I also suggest you check out John’s website, which has lots of great blog posts, audios, and videos.

gillian whitney
MEET THE AUTHOR:
Hi, I’m Gillian Whitney, a LinkedIn Live Stream Strategist & Coach making live video easy peasy. Working with B2B professionals from around the world, to leverage LinkedIn Live to be discovered, noticed, and recognized on LinkedIn®