Five reasons you should be using… networking website LinkedIn
01 Relationships matter
We all know relationships matter when it comes to getting work. Research also supports this — in 2009 a study in the US showed that 89% of professional services firms had a relationship with their client before they were asked to quote. Today we can use the internet to get so much more out of these relationships, more efficiently and effectively.
02 Size is important
LinkedIn is the largest professional online network, with more than 8m UK members, and you’ve probably been invited already, possibly even by your clients. Of all the social networks, LinkedIn has the best reputation among professionals, because it is built around the concept of referrals, with an accessible, rigorous way of controlling who can contact whom.
03 LinkedIn makes your network visible
Perhaps you know 30 people well, but you are connected to thousands of others through their trusted relationships. LinkedIn shows you these people. You can get a personal introduction and Linkedin will even tell you whom to contact to get it. No more time-wasting phone calls.
04 It helps your prospects find you on Google
Your best contacts are talking about you to others when you’re not there. Next time your name is mentioned, will someone be able to find you online? Optimise your profile so that people searching on Google will find you via LinkedIn. Your public LinkedIn profile then becomes your professional home online.
05 It aids with teamwork
Linkedin lets people work as a team to win work, and not just your staff either. Everyone you know and trust can help by proactively seeking out business opportunities. The platform helps them share your useful things with others in a permission-based way email marketing cannot equal.
By Su Butcher, a social media marketing consultant in the construction sector. She is running a series of LinkedIn workshops across the UK this year. www.justpractising.com