The one social media platform you need to be on
Love it or hate it, social media has completely changed the way we communicate, on a personal and professional level.
And while I can get into a "what's it all for?!" existential debate myself (despite working in this field) there's one platform that helped me launch my business and which I strongly suggest you get on if you're not already.
Hmm...Watch what just happened physically for you. Did you recoil? Did you shrug? Did you breathe a little easier? The fact is most of my clients' reactions span all three. As creative small business owners we can often— incorrectly— label LinkedIn as some networking tool for those people, over there (you know, the corporate suits that "network"), but it's so much more.
Ever considered being on a creative panel discussion? How about pitching that collab idea to a larger brand? Catering for a retailer's event or running a class for people in your niche? Well, the people you need to discuss those ideas with are all on LinkedIn. So too are journalists, editors and bloggers. In fact, with someone joining up to the $26.2b platform every 2 minutes, you're likely to connect with whomever you want to.
So, what else do you need to know to get over the "sell out" fear about signing up or improving your existing profile?
One of the best things about this tool is your ability to download information about all of your (1st) contacts. This may help you find relevant people from within your own contacts to help grow your business or personal brand. Here's how.
Who Do You Know?
As unfair as it may seem, nepotism exists and especially exists in business. LinkedIn allows you to see if you have any mutual connections with someone you're keen to meet, such as a magazine editor, brand marketing manager or trade fair organiser.
How Do You Rank?
Without getting into the world of SEO and Google ranking, just know that LinkedIn is seen as a "quality" source for search engines. That means when someone googles your name or business and you're on LinkedIn, the platform and your profile will most likely come up high in search results. Likewise with image search results, so ensure your bio pic is correctly named and represents you/your business (keeping in mind that profiles with professional head shots get 14% more views).
If you don't have a website up and running yet, your LinkedIn profile can act as a stand in, providing background info on you and the business.
LinkedIn can be a fantastic tool for growing your contacts, connecting with #likemindedpeople and achieving business goals. Rather than just dismiss it, consider how it may benefit your business.
Not sure where to start with your own LinkedIn profile? Download my cheat sheet for getting started.