One of the reasons that people don’t make time to visit and interact on LinkedIn is because they don’t enjoy it! My remedy for this is to improve your LinkedIn news feed so it is filled with people and news you actually WANT to see.
In my ongoing quest to help YOU understand and utilize free social tools like LinkedIn, here is a quick tutorial on how to improve YOUR LinkedIn news feed.Here is a quick #tutorial on how to improve YOUR #LinkedIn news feed. Click To Tweet
What are your goals?
First, determine WHY you are using LinkedIn.
- Is it to find more leads?
- To establish your expertise?
- To stay up to date on industry news?
- To build and/or nurture your network?
- To do research?
- To build brand awareness?
- To monitor your competition?
- All of the above?
Being clear on what you are doing will help guide this process and will save you time and effort.
I often say that if you are on only ONE social platform, make it LinkedIn. But that is if you are a business professional looking to establish yourself in a specific industry. If you are looking to sell a large volume of inexpensive widgets, this may not be a platform worth building.
And if you are on LinkedIn just because you read a blog post that told you that you NEED to be there, check the list above – if your goals aren’t there, maybe you don’t really need to be there.
It is safe to say that if you answered yes to any of the goals listed above, LinkedIn CAN help you. Let’s go!
Many people build their LinkedIn network one of two ways:
1. They allow LinkedIn to access and invite everyone in their email address book
2. They just accept anyone who sends them an invitation.
Tactic one may give you a good baseline group but depending on the age and cleanliness of your address list, you may end up connecting with your babysitter and dog walker but very few professional contacts.
Tactic two, where you rely solely on ACCEPTING invitations, often leads to a news stream full of spammy, aggressive salespeople as those are the ones who are usually quick to invite any and every person that joins the platform.
Both tactics can leave you with a large number of connections of little value and out of alignment with your needs and goals.
Building a better news feed
Using those goals from above, let’s look at how to improve YOUR LinkedIn news feed.
- Is your goal to find more leads?
If this is your intention, let’s be sure that you are connecting with POTENTIAL LEADS. This isn’t rocket science. If your ideal lead is the owner of a small dental practice, you would probably attend dental conferences when networking in person. Do the same here. Is your target market mid sized accounting groups in the Detroit area? Use LinkedIn’s search tools to find and connect with them.
- To establish your expertise
If this is your goal, posting articles and sharing blog posts you have written is key. But think about WHO you want to have read and view your content. Who exactly, are we trying to impress? Invite them!
Note that LinkedIn will help others find YOU when they are searching for information regarding your area of expertise. Be sure you are open to linking when they reach out to you.
- To stay up to date on industry news
Follow people who are posting stats, info and insights of interest to you. Note that you can FOLLOW someone famous, without sending them an invitation to link. This allows their content to be pushed to your stream.
Be sure to check what they share – if it is spammy, don’t follow. Try to find people who are sharing content you LOOK FORWARD to seeing.
- To build and/or nurture your network
In order to stay in touch with your colleagues, make sure you are actually linking to them. Then take the time to visit your stream and/or their profiles, to like, comment on and share their posts. Treat it like a LIVE networking event – go to the other tables and shake hands. Make introductions. Share content of value to your community. Add your insights and help them understand industry news that may impact them, but that they are unable to fully follow. Add value.
- To do research
Use your time on LinkedIn to do research by searching on terms, hashtags and people. Link to or follow the people who are sharing things you want to stay on top of.
- To build brand awareness
Like with establishing your expertise, if your goal is to build brand awareness, posting and sharing content is key but again, make sure you are linking with the people who you want to make aware of your brand. LinkedIn will help by serving that content up in searches but you can up your odds by directly connecting to potential leads.
- To monitor your competition
Again, you can FOLLOW most LinkedIn members without formally sending an invitation. Note that people WILL be notified that you have followed them but it is a quick and easy way to keep an eye on what they are doing. And unless they follow or work with someone like me, it is unlikely that they even know how to find who is following them.
- Add some fun
In addition to all these tips, I suggest you follow some people just for fun. Either humorous accounts that can brighten your day or people who talk about your hobbies or passions. Do you LOVE wine? Follow some vineyards or wineshops that offer virtual tastings and tours. Planning to go to Cambodia? Follow some local guides or an architect posting beautiful images with backstories. Digital networking can expand your world exponentially – take advantage of it!
One of the easiest ways to improve your LinkedIn news feed is to pare it down. Just because you accepted someone’s invitation once, does NOT mean you need to stay connected forever! Un-link from people you no longer want to be connected with. Or if there is someone who is posting way too much, clogging up your newstream, Un-follow them. This allows you to stay connected but their content will no longer be pushed to your stream.
It’s your party
Social communities are like parties and YOU get to make the invitation list. Don’t let your party be overrun by loud or spammy people. Invite people you want to connect with and search out new and interesting people. Make your LinkedIn news feed a place you WANT to visit and you will find your time their more productive!