Making the Most of Your LinkedIn Experience

Gone are the days when LinkedIn was only viewed as a place to look for a job, hopefully, you have discovered the power this business social network offers, but if not, let’s review how you can best use LinkedIn to promote yourself as well as your publications.

You Decide How You Will Be Known

LinkedIn is the only site where you have the opportunity to establish a name for yourself. A brand that YOU select – not one defined by your title or your college degree – but how you truly want to be known to the world.

Before someone meets with you, they “Google” your name. And if there is very little information available or the only responses are the occasional listing from a charity event in which you attended or a press release from when you were first hired six years ago – people will be forced to make up a brand for you.

That’s why you want to take control and create that brand of how you want to be known.  Not just as accountant, but as an accountant specializing in the sporting world with a passion for golf, Habitat for Humanity and the Cleveland Browns. Not as just an author, but as a PUBLISHED author focusing on fiction for Young Adults interested in science fiction.

LinkedIn Has the Audience

In several studies examining the LinkedIn population, purpose and results, I have found that:

  • 53% of B2B users have actually gained a customer thanks to their ongoing relationship building efforts on LinkedIn. That is a significant number.
  • 4 out of 5 LinkedIn users are the decision makers for their company, lets you know that your time on the network could lead to additional business.
  • 83% of B2B marketers use LinkedIn for business.

Regardless of genre, there is an audience for your name and publications on LinkedIn. It truly is the Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon in that who you know may know someone, who knows someone who can help promote your writing.

Spotlight Your Best Productsadd a publication

LinkedIn now offers the ability to connect PDF files, slide presentations and video to your profile.

Consider creating materials that showcase your books, your writing process, your focus in the literary world and then upload them to your profile.

Create quick videos using your phone or the camera on your computer to share snippets of your personality. Have fun with it. They don’t need to be professionally produced, but should offer information about the books you are promoting.

There is also a Publications application that enables you to connect your Amazon book link to your profile so that people can buy your book(s) with just one click directly from LinkedIn.

Utilize the Self-Publishing Application on LinkedIn

new headersFinally, now that the self-publishing component of LinkedIn is open to all users, you can add regular articles that help establish a name for yourself as well as clearly define your voice. From a recent article in Mashable entitled How Self-Publishing on LinkedIn Can Elevate Your Professional Profile we learn:

LinkedIn publishing makes it easy to create a body of content, and helps users raise their professional profile to another level by showcasing their expertise on relevant topics. The credibility and value of this content has the potential to take professionals much further than a simple resume or online profile can. And unlike a personal website or blog, which requires writers to solicit and build an audience, self-publishing on LinkedIn allows users to share content with people already in their network and reach a broader audience thanks to easy sharing features.

One of the great things about publishing on LinkedIn is how easy it is to post your content. While publishing on LinkedIn used to be reserved for a select few users or “INfluencers,” any LinkedIn user can now click the “publish a post” button at the top of his or her LinkedIn homepage to add content.

Users can add text, images, links and even video. The post will then appear on a user’s profile and will be shared with his or her network, including connections and anyone who follows the user. LinkedIn also provides post stats such as views, likes, shares and other metrics. It’s just as easy as posting to a personal blog — but with an audience already built in.

Self-publishing on LinkedIn is as simple as clicking on the “Publish a Post” button from your home page and then start writing. It is a platform that is already widely respected, highly trafficked and available for your words of wisdom. Why not take advantage of the opportunities.

One Last Word on LinkedInli groups

Although there are many other tools and uses for LinkedIn like searching for businesses, schools, churches and libraries that might be interested in your book or hearing you speak about your books, the one last thing I want to mention is the power of LinkedIn Groups.

In this picture I have captured the top responses when I search for Writers Groups on LinkedIn, but if you are looking for groups in your town, genre, or interest, LinkedIn will most likely have a group of people interested in chatting.

Groups are a great place to share ideas, get advice and even promote your book. So check out the groups on LinkedIn and join in the discussion.

Bottom Line: LinkedIn is free, it is powerful and it is easy to use so make sure you take advantage of the opportunity to create a powerful brand name for yourself.