How to Utilize LinkedIn for Networking
LinkedIn is the go-to site for on-line networking. Here are some tips get the most out of your LinkedIn network:
Connect, connect, connect. Make sure that your are connected to as many people as possible within your field. Go through your resume and look at each job you have listed. Are you connected with all of the people you worked with at each job? Don’t just think of the people who were senior to you and at your level. Connect with junior people as well. They will be senior one day soon.
Give people a reason to connect with you. Always include a personal note when asking for a connection. Let the person know WHY you want to connect, (i.e. I saw you speak at XYZ conference, or enjoyed the article you wrote and would love to connect).
Make it a habit of connecting as soon as possible. Keep business cards or v files for people you meet every day and connect with them soon after meeting to insure that you are fresh in their mind.
Join groups on LinkedIn in your interest area. This will connect you with a host of people who are in your field of interest. Affinity groups, Alumni groups etc are all available through the Groups feature on LinkedIn.
Finally, remember, LInkedIn is a social networking site. Everyone who is one LinkedIn is there to network so don’t be afraid to take a chance and reach out to someone you don’t know but would like to know. Happy networking.