Lesson 8: Networking On LinkedIn

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When it comes to daily networking on LinkedIn, there's no easier or better way than to start with your News Feed. Your News Feed will be on your home screen for both the LinkedIn desktop view and your mobile app. These are the posts that your 1st Connections are going to be sharing with their network.

It's important that you view this on a regular basis. By spending just a few minutes every day within the News Feed, you can engage with these posts including liking, commenting, and sharing these posts with your network. Keep in mind that the best way to connect 2nd Connections to each other is to share and respond to each other's posts within the News Feed.

Develop Relationships with Private Messaging

Networking is all about developing one-on-one personal relationships with people that you don't see on a regular basis. There's no better way to do this than by private messaging your connections on LinkedIn. Private messages are those one-on-one conversations that you have where you can share your career goals, strengths, and interests in addition to asking that person to share theirs as well. This is where that relationship is going to develop and be sustained.

Avoid These Conversations

LinkedIn Etiquette Tip #1: Avoid those controversial topics, such as political or religious views, and avoid posting personal information or personal details.

LinkedIn is not a place to post pictures of your food or complain about a relationship. It is a place to network with like-minded professionals to find potential referrals for different job opportunities and to develop that sense of community with your colleagues, so leave those inappropriate conversations away from LinkedIn.

Actively Engage with Other Users

LinkedIn Etiquette Tip #2: Respond to all comments and all private messages on LinkedIn. You won’t be a very good networker if people are engaging with you and you're not engaging back. If anyone sends you a comment on one of your posts that provokes some kind of response from you, respond. Continue that conversation, dive off into similar topics, or take the conversation to a private message.

Speaking of private messages, check them on a regular basis. Always return your private messages. Obviously, if you're being sent private messages that are a little odd (typically from a spammer or someone who's just trying to sell to you), you don't have to respond. In fact, I would ignore and delete them. For those conversations that are started with the purpose of developing a relationship with you or for asking you a question, make sure that you're responding to those private messages on a regular basis.

Proofread Your Posts

LinkedIn Etiquette Tip #3: Pay close attention to your grammar and spelling. You don't know who could be watching, and you don't know who will be thinking “Oh, this person has horrible communication skills. They can't even proofread a post or a comment!” Pay close attention to what you're typing and putting out there on the Internet.

This should be a given, but too many people are in a rush and they think a typo isn't going to hurt them. Unfortunately, it may; especially if recruiters or employers are looking at posts that you are putting out there.

Navigating LinkedIn

When you first log in to LinkedIn from the desktop view, you'll immediately see your News Feed. You can customize your News Feed by clicking on the arrow next to “Sort By.” You can sort your News Feed posts by “Top Posts” and “Most Recent Posts.”

After you spend some time engaging with your connections within the Newsfeed, you should make sure to check your private messages by clicking on the Messaging icon in the main menu.

When you open the LinkedIn mobile app, you'll immediately see your News Feed. You can engage with your News Feed by liking, commenting, and sharing other posts that your connections have shared. To access your private messages from the mobile app, you can click on the message icon in the middle of the main menu.

So, are you ready to start networking? This lesson’s Action Task is to spend ten minutes a day for the rest of the week engaging with posts in your LinkedIn News Feed and responding to those private messages.

Spend 10 minutes each morning this week liking and commenting on news feed posts, replying to messages, and sending new messages to your 1st Connections.

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