Before LinkedIn, if you were looking for a job, you had to look through the newspaper classified ads, send a resume, and pound the pavement.

LinkedIn has made the job-hunting process much easier and more convenient. Most importantly, you will have a better chance of landing the job.

This is because the social media platform has features that allow you to promote your skills and value proposition. You can also learn more about the company and have the opportunity to get in touch directly with its main decision-makers.

What Is LinkedIn?

LinkedIn is the social media platform for professionals. People who are active on LinkedIn use it to find jobs, clients, or to network with influencers and key people in their industry.

The content that you find in LinkedIn is much different than those posted on Facebook. Your community is more interested with your opinion on industry developments and current events than the funny cat video you saw on YouTube the other night.

LinkedIn was created by Stanford graduates, Konstantin Guericke and Reid Hoffman. It was launched in 2003 and after only four years, was able to amass 15 Million members. Today, LinkedIn has an estimated 313 Million users.

5 Ways To Be Active On LinkedIn

As the old saying goes, “Use it or lose it.” The same can be applied to LinkedIn and other social media platforms. If you are not active on LinkedIn, you will be doing your career a great disservice.

Opening an online profile is a step in the right direction. Now you have to shift your focus to staying active on LinkedIn. LinkedIn is a world apart from Facebook or Instagram. Therefore, you need to take a different approach.

Here are 5 ways you can be active on LinkedIn and get results from your efforts:

Regularly Update Your Status At LinkedIn

According to surveys, 77% of LinkedIn members use the network to research on their own community. They could be looking for talent, prospective business partners or potential clients.

The same survey reported that 69% use LinkedIn to reconnect with former associates while 50% of members continue to build the size of their network.

The bottom-line is that staying active on LinkedIn improves your visibility to your community. The best way to maintain a strong social presence on LinkedIn is to regularly update your status.

How different is it to update your status in LinkedIn compared to another social network such as Facebook?

In LinkedIn, you should always think about posting updates that enhance your Branded Value Proposition or BVP. Essentially, you want to show your community what you can do; your interests and expertise.

Here are a few helpful tips on how to create effective status updates in LinkedIn:

  • Share content that will interest your followers.
  • Make sure it includes a relevant image.
  • Provide an interesting, thought-provoking, and compelling title.
  • Add a brief description or comment on the article as an introduction.

For LinkedIn, it is advisable to post a status update twice-a-day. Ideally, the first one should be early in the morning and the second update should be posted before bedtime.

  • Get Involved With Your LinkedIn Groups

There are over 1.5 Million focus groups in LinkedIn. Your membership in the network allows you to join only 50 of these groups. We use the word “only” quite loosely, as it will be hard for you to get involved with all 50 groups.

The best approach is to rank these groups in order of relevance or priority. Your goal is publish 10 pieces of content that highlights your specialization and one post that promotes your company’s products and services every month.

Keep in mind that this quota of 11 posts per month is for each focus group. So staying active with five focus groups can be quite challenging. You don’t have to write new blogs. You can simply share articles that could be of interest to your group.

  • Initiate A Discussion In A Focus Group

When you’ve just been accepted into a focus group, the usual behaviour is to just sit back and follow the discussion thread. Once you’ve gained a measure of comfort, begin to engage the community by offering a few choice comments.

Over time when most of the members have an idea of who you are and what you can do, start a discussion with the group. Not only will this introduce a platform for you to assume the leadership role, but it will increase your presence within the community.

You may be surprised by how much support you will get from your own focus group. For them, having someone else initiate the discussion instead of “the usual suspects” is like a breath of fresh air.

It will put the spotlight on you and further enhance your BVP enough for others to want to reach out and establish a stronger connection with you.

  • Keep Your LinkedIn Profile Updated

According to LinkedIn, keeping your profile regularly updated increases the probability of being found by 40%. When you create a LinkedIn profile, you will be advised by the network of its level of completion.

Chances are you will not get your profile 100% completed right away. However, when you have the opportunity, try to finish your LinkedIn profile.

As an Internet-based platform, content in LinkedIn is driven by keywords. Optimize your content by using the best, industry-relevant keywords to help your profile get found.

Every time you learn a new skill, complete a project, earn an accolade, gain recognition, or receive a recommendation from a client, include the information in your LinkedIn profile.

  • Get Engaged In Your Network’s Updates

In a community, it’s never just about yourself. Likewise, you should think about the other people in your network. Community should always be in a constant state of building. Therefore, take the time to help your followers by frequently engaging in their updates.

A simple “like” or a short comment on the status they shared will go a long way in building stronger relationships with those in your community. If the update is of particular great interest, share it in your other social media pages.

Staying active also means getting involved with your network. It will show your followers that you are deeply invested in the community.

Conclusion: 3 Reasons Why You Should Be Active On LinkedIn

There are several social media platforms on the Internet. Each one has its own unique community that acts or functions according to the purpose and intent of the platform.

Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are social media networks that can be used for business purposes but are likewise ideal for posting informal and more personal content.

In contrast, LinkedIn is a straight-forward, no-frills, professional networking social media platform. Posting “laundry day” stories will not get you anywhere in the community.

People go on LinkedIn to find ways to get ahead with their careers.  And this wonderful social media platform has the tools to help you accomplish your goals and objectives.

Here are 3 reasons why you should be active on LinkedIn:

  1. Enhance Your Presence In Your Industry

If you want to enhance your presence in your industry, you should show the community who you are and what you can do. LinkedIn allows you the means to share your value proposition to the community in 3 ways:

  • Blog – LinkedIn has its own blogging platform which allows you to create and publish content from your account. You can share your content to everyone in your community or keep it exclusive only to a select group of people.
  • Focus Groups – You can find a great number of focus groups that are relevant to your industry in LinkedIn. Join a few of the focus groups and engage with the members on a regular basis.
  • Engagement – Although its 313 Million community members pale in comparison to Facebook’s 2 Billion number, LinkedIn is very active. Take the opportunity to engage your community in key issues that are relevant to your industry.

Recruiters Use LinkedIn

According to a study, 93% of recruiters use LinkedIn to find talent. If you are not on LinkedIn, you are missing out on opportunities to get discovered by other companies.

For recruiters, LinkedIn is a great vetting tool. Your online profile and level of activity will give them great vantage points to assess your abilities and capabilities.

If you are looking for a job or a better career opportunity, you should stay active on LinkedIn. Likewise, you should constantly improve your online profile. Keep it updated as often as possible.

  • Hedge Your Career Versus Uncertainties

The sad fact is there are no recession-proof jobs and careers. If you are privately employed, you can get laid off regardless of your tenure or designation. If you own a business, you will have to contend with economic factors that you have no control over.

That is why you should never stop networking even after you’ve landed the job or started your business. Keep going at it. Grow your contacts list. Build your network of industry connections. Enhance your online presence.

The more active you are on LinkedIn, the more your industry will know of you. Staying active allows you to create opportunities for your career or your business. In the event, the unthinkable happens there will be new doors for you to open.