LinkedIn is a professional tool that can be a valuable asset, especially at the beginning of a career or if you are trying to make headway in a new industry. While it can be simple to get started, it takes some experience to make it an effective social media marketing tool.
In this article, we will be going over a few methods to help users get the most out of LinkedIn’s integrated tools, including:
- Part 1: Understanding Connection Tiers
- Part 2: Search Smart and Increase Your Marketing Reach with Boolean Phrases
- Part 3: Maximize your Marketing with Group Memberships and Expand Your Connections Using the Introduction Tool
Understanding Connection Tiers
Before you begin searching, you will want to understand the connections themselves. Connections are the links of your network, and can indicate how close you are to a person. They are helpful for seeking out potential clients or people who are in the same industry. Connections show you how you are linked with other members and can also help you grow your own social media marketing endeavors.
The classification tiers work like this:
The different tiers on the platform create a connection web of contacts. Whenever you look at “your connections” you are going to be given 1st degree connections only. All tiers will be referred to as My Network and constitute the people that you will most likely be able to build connections with. These are often the people that you want to target with invites, follow in groups or chat, and will be the most beneficial to your marketing plan or can garter you more individuals to seek out for an over reaching social media marketing campaign.
Keep in mind that while LinkedIn is huge, their search engine will only give you connected results. A good rule of thumb though is the more first degree connections that you have, you will also have more second and third degree connections.
Search Smart and Increase Your LinkedIn Marketing Reach with Boolean Phrases
We have discussed previously, the benefits of LinkedIn and given you a chance to dig deep, utilizing their tools, search engine and contacts to increase your own social media marketing campaign.
Now that you have expanded your contacts and searchable clients and colleagues, it’s time to narrow down your search to find exactly who you’re looking for.
Understanding the Search Requirements
One of the most common mistakes that people make when searching on LinkedIn is using the general search improperly. General searches are broad strokes and will bring you back hundreds, if not thousands of results. Sorting through them can be cumbersome.
Keep in mind, the main modifiers you will want to be using are the plus symbol (+), or the words.
- Plus Sign (+) and “AND”: Both tools will add to your search, making it so that both terms that you look up will show up together in your search results. For example, if you were looking for help creating a website, you could search for “Web Designer + Content Writer” to only find companies or groups that do both web content and design.
- OR: Using OR will designate between two different options. This selection is a good choice to use when you aren’t sure of what you’re looking for. Use this when you think it may be one or the other of something, but aren’t certain. For example, if you wanted to broaden your search further you could do a search for “Web Designer OR Web Developer” to get expanded results on experts in web page creation.
- NOT: Use this term when you want to remove the keyword from your search. This is a good phrase tool to use when you are getting back too many generic results and you want to rule out needless information that doesn’t pertain to you. For example, if you were creative writer looking for colleagues in your field, but kept finding people that wrote in a genre you weren’t interested in you could search for “Creative Writing NOT Fantasy” and find only creative writers that don’t have fantasy in their profile.
Find Who You Are Looking For
Unfortunately, there is no one way to use the search tool. Rather, you want to get familiar with what the tools do and begin to incorporate your parameters into your searches to get more connected results. The faster you can find results, the more efficient your searches will be.
Maximize your LinkedIn Marketing with Group Memberships
Once you understand the connections, you want to be able to make good use of them. Group searches are an excellent resource and can be done from the Advanced Search section by looking specifically for certain groups and navigating through them.
You can also utilize the basic search bar for specific searches. Some of the most common searches that you may want to try are:
- Previous Employers
Clicking on the three bars to the left of your general search bar will give you multiple results so that you can trim down your search.
The simplest method to find people within a group and to grow your social media marketing campaign with the LinkedIn platform is through the “Groups” search. Simply select “Groups” and type your keyword of choice into the search bar. This will allow you to find established groups that cater to your topic or interest.
So, for example, if you were looking for potential Web Designer, you could go to Groups and then type in Web Designer you would get the following results.
This would also be beneficial if you were a freelancer and you wanted to increase your reach and find other potential jobs.
Even if you don’t plan on joining conversations or projects in group, they are a great way to expand your connections list. Once you are in a group you can browse the members and view their information and send an invitation for a connection straight from the page.
Expand Your Connections Using the Introduction Tool
Once you find the people that you are interested in, the next step is to make some introductions. To connect to a second degree member, you will select the introduction link of the first degree person that you know. For a third degree connection, you can choose your first or second degree connection.
- To make your introduction, go to the page of the member that you are hoping to get introduced to.
- You will notice that your mutual person, the connecting party, will be displayed on the right of the page below the “People Also Viewed” section.
- Decide who you want to make your introduction. Sometimes you will only have one person, and in that case, use them. If you have an option for multiple connections, you should choose a specific person to make your introduction for you.
- Once decided, select the request introduction link. Depending on your account, you will then be directed to your inbox with a pre-written message that says something about either requesting and information or get introduced.
- Finally, modify the message and click send.
Once your request is generated, the party that you have selected to introduce will get a message. They can then choose to set up the introduction for you.
Make the Most Out of Your Business Contacts
As you can see, LinkedIn can be a little overwhelming at first. But, if you correctly use the tools built in to their program you can effectively expand your social media marketing network and stay connected with colleges in your industry. Every user has the same tools available, the difference is how you use them.