One of the biggest setbacks for people who are interested in using LinkedIn is that they often have a hard time learning LinkedIn’s “ins and outs.” Then, it seems that as soon as you learn the basics and get accustomed to its usage, LinkedIn rolls out more updates and changes. However, you don’t have to learn everything at once to be able to learn how to set up a LinkedIn profile.
Below are a few quick tips on how to organize your LinkedIn for beginners.
Sign in and start using the basics for up to 30 minutes per day. At first, things may seem overwhelming, but if you start slowly in simply setting up your profile, the process will be much more manageable. LinkedIn has a user guide to assist you in getting your basic profile up and running. Upload a professional picture of yourself to help your profile elicit more interest. A few “connections” of people whom you already know may pop up; if you wish for them to be part of your professional network, ask them to connect. Even a little LinkedIn usage per day goes a long way in the world of social media.
If you don’t have the time to write original posts, then it’s just fine to share relevant content on your profile page. Start by sharing articles, tips, or other information you find relevant according to your interests and areas of expertise. Select a few groups of interest to start with; you can find relevant content on the group pages, or perhaps you’d like to join in and contribute to the post taking place. You can also “follow” and share information from popular individuals who provide good content relative to your industry. Slowly but surely, you will be making a name for yourself and become more well known. You don’t have to set the world on fire immediately with your profile and postings.
“Batching” is a productivity trick that allows you to dedicate blocks of time to similar tasks. If you get the ball rolling on a certain task, it’s likely that it will keep rolling—one task leads to another. Set a goal each day for the type of postings or administrative tasks you wish to accomplish. For example, make one session dedicated to enlisting new contacts. Find people from companies of interest to you and request a contact. For example, if you are in IT, or Finance, request contacts from relevant LinkedIn members whom you feel will add value to your network. Focus on the types of contacts you wish to attract and tackle each type during one of your “batches.” Another example of “batching” your time involves focusing on keywords, how they matter, and how to include them in your profile.
Often, you will find a great article online, which ends up distracting you, keeping you from your focus. It’s easy to engage in interesting articles when you don’t have the time. An alternative is, instead of making a mental note to share the article, to create a file on your desktop labeled “LinkedIn” and then save the article for later to post and share. Soon, you’ll have a collection of great articles, and posting and sharing won’t be so time-consuming for you.
LinkedIn has a great blog with tips and resources to help you get the hang of this social media platform. The blog will also keep you up-to-date on the latest happenings and rollouts. This is a great way to turn down all the noise online about how to use LinkedIn. Simply put, if any changes occur (and they probably will) you can hear it straight from the horse’s mouth. You can sign up via email to stay in-the-know of all things LinkedIn. Learning how to use LinkedIn may take some getting used to, but taking it in organized baby steps will help make the process easier. Additionally, you can always consider seeking professional assistance in the development of your LinkedIn profile.
Barbara Adams has led CareerPro Global, Inc. (CPG) since 1989, and is recognized as one of the pioneers in the careers services industry. Barbara has built CPG into one of the largest and fastest-growing career services organizations industry-wide. Barbara is committed to CPG’s core factors that include quality product, exceptional customer service, and a passion for helping others achieve their career goals. She believes so strongly in these core factors that she positioned CPG to raise the bar by developing an ISO 9001:2008-guided quality process (the first in the careers industry) through which all of CPG’s processes are reviewed and measured for quality. CPG earned full ISO 9001 registration in 2010. Barbara and her team have recently launched the 21st Career Series publications, providing an insider’s guide on how to develop job-winning resumes and sharing helpful strategies to land federal jobs and successfully transition from the military to civilian sector.