Here’s the so-what: LinkedIn is the single professional profile of record for more than 100 million professionals worldwide. It’s focused. It’s smart. It’s forward thinking. And now it has a war chest.
Many people still equate LinkedIn with online resumes. What these folks don’t realize is that LinkedIn is 8 years old — it was born well before the Great Recession — and its usefulness in connecting people with jobs is but one small piece of the value its creators envisioned for it.
As the economy rights itself, morphs and adapts, LinkedIn will continue to provide value to professionals, in more ways than people expect. We’ve already begun to see some of what’s in store with the rollout of:
- InMaps: Provides a visual representation of one’s professional network.
- Personalized news: Right there on your homepage.
- Signal: A way to see what’s happening in your network by sorting through connections’ relevant tweets and status updates.
- Company pages: A way to highlight companies and products inside the LinkedIn network.
So how can you make sure you’re ready for what LinkedIn rolls out next? It’s as easy as 1-2-3.
- Make sure you have a credible profile. Review the content: Is it complete? Is it accurate? Is the story you’re telling consistent?
- Treat connections with care. Too few connections, and you miss out on the power of LinkedIn’s phenomenal tools. Too many, and the tools become useless because your network is junk. Hint: Use InMap to assess your network.
- Send people occasional notes. Say hi. Ask about the kids or parents. Follow up when you know someone’s completed a major project to see how it came together. Be good.
It’s that simple. Then, whether you’re looking to make a sale, get promoted, find a job, discover what’s happening in your field or something else, you’ll be ready.