Social networking sites, particularly Facebook, are getting a lot of press these days. While I have joined Facebook, mainly as a way to connect with some of my out-of-town friends, I’m focusing on LinkedIn as my online networking tool of choice.
I was first introduced to LinkedIn by someone I met in a coaching program. I spend several months half-heartedly adding connections. But, big surprise (note the sarcasm) I didn’t see any results.
Then about three months ago I decided to take this tool seriously. I’d give myself six months and really give LinkedIn a try. This meant spending some time connecting to people I know, even if only slightly, and using some of the tools on the site such as “Answers”.
The result has been that my “network” has grown exponentially. I’ve gone from about six first degree connections and a couple of hundred second and third degree connections to 27 first degree connections and 783,400+ third degree connections as of today.
I’ve grown my extended network so much by adding a couple of super-connectors who have over 500 links each. When I first saw that these people had 500+ connections I wondered how they did it. I don’t think I even know 500 people.
Then today I got an email from Mickael Nadeau. He’s one of my super-connector links and has written a phenomenal blog post about how he did it – and how anyone else can to.
In his post, he writes that using LinkedIn should be like any other business strategy – you need a plan. Then he goes on to give you a very detailed plan including 12 strategies you can use to build your online network. Even using a handful of them will allow you to greatly expand your LinkedIn network, and hopefully your online business.
I’ve started using some of Mickael’s strategies on my own, but others I didn’t even know about. He writes about using LinkedIn groups to connect with others with similar backgrounds or interests who are not already part of your network. I didn’t even know there were LinkedIn groups!
If you want to use social networking as a serious part of your marketing strategy, or are still thinking about it, Mickael’s blog post is a must read!
You can check out my LinkedIn profile. If you want to add me to your network, please do.
Andrea J. Stenberg