Do you have a LinkedIn profile, but don’t ‘do’ much with it? Or perhaps you’ve heard about LinkedIn, but have not set yourself up yet. Either way, chances are you’re not using it to its full potential!

LinkedIn is a great resource for entrepreneurs, business leaders and even jobseekers to connect and broaden their network. Your success on LinkedIn, like many other aspects of life, is determined by how much you put into it.

Try our 5 tips to improve your online networking.

Optimise your profile. This means ensuring all fields are completed including a professional photo of yourself (not your logo) and any relevant keys words used by potential clients are included within your description.

Download our Complimentary LinkedIn Audit Checklist

Connect. Reach out and connect with people you know. Friends, work colleagues (current & former), business associates, and clients. Take the time to get to know what your connections are up to; you may learn about new skills and career paths your connections have. When you meet someone new at an event that you would like to stay in touch with, send them a connection request to join your network – but always personalise the invitation to confirm why you’d like to connect.

Join groups that are relevant to your industry, location or target market. There is a limit to the number of groups you can join, so if after being accepted into the group it doesn’t jell with you, leave and find a group that contributes and supports its members to network online.

Review and accept LinkedIn connection requests. As your network grows, so will the new connection requests you receive. Review any new requests you receive and implement a connection strategy.

Related: Should you really accept that LinkedIn connection request?

Post or share relevant and useful content. LinkedIn is a great way to show your expertise in your field, share blogs you have published to your website, or articles from other writers whose content you admire or enjoy. Many great articles have social share options, so take advantage of this feature to share the article directly after you’ve read it, adding your thoughts or comments on what you’ve just read.

The latter two tips should take you less than 5 minutes each day, and daily use should be encouraged. If you can’t manage 5 minutes each day, at least aim for 5 minutes each week. In no time at all your network will include mutually motivated members who are keen to share your passions and visions.

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By Sam Spence – Founder & Principal Executive Assistant, Executive Virtual Associate.

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