1. without interest, vigor, or determination; listless; lethargic:a lackadaisical attempt.
2. lazy; indolent: a lackadaisical fellow.
Yesterday's post, Participation is Paramount, discussed the importance of participation in an effective social media campaign. It did not, however, go into detail on how exactly to take part on the different platforms. As we continue to discuss social business participation over the next several days, we will target four key areas where participation can make all the difference: Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin and Blogs. Yes, you can, and should, absolutely participate in other social media circles applicable to your business, ranging from YouTube to Pinterest. But, the four listed previously offer some of the most easily implemented and easy to maintain means to participate.
Are you a Linkedin Lackadaisy? When did you last update your profile? Still sporting the greyscale default avatar? Or possibly that photo from your company web site that isn't necessarily a good representation of your look today?
There's a large contingent of Linkedin users who use the platform (it is a social media platform, not a web site) as a placeholder for their online resume...and nothing else. That defeats the overall purpose of Linkedin. Which is? Business networking and relationship building. I don't want to, and won't, build a relationship with your resume. I will, if intrigued by your profile and interested in the kinds of content you post and the types of conversations in which you take part, build a relationship with you.
You don't stand in a corner and act the wallflower when you attend a local networking or business after hours event, do you? Absolutely not! You mingle, engage in conversation, you speak AND you listen. Can you do the same with Linkedin? Absolutely.
Think about your Linkedin profile as equal parts resume, elevator pitch, community newsletter and sounding/idea board. Of course, you will want to list any accomplishments, awards and participation in groups of interest to your industry. But take it to the next level. Have a blog? Does that blog discuss topics of interest to your industry niche? Share your latest blog post and ask for feedback. Here you're using your profile and the Linkedin feed as a sounding board. You're asking and because you're asking, people will assume you are willing to listen.
Next, share information about upcoming industry events, meetings, get togethers and more. Don't assume that everyone knows about these events. In fact, don't assume in general. Share a link to the event, and preface that link with why you plan to attend. Is there a great keynote speaker? Will there be a panel discussion? A giveaway. Share not just the event, but the potential benefits of attending. In the way, you're using Linkedin like a community (industry specific, rather then geographic) newsletter.
Link to articles and blog posts from other experts and enthusiasts in the industry. Sharing the wealth and spreading the word show that you're interested in listening and not just self promotion, which can be an engagement and participation killer.
Comment on posts. Like posts. Ask questions based on posts. This takes little time and the effort will be rewarded with interaction, interaction leads to active participation.
We've talked about ways to use your own profile and your connection feed to participate and connect. But, how else can you use Linkedin to participate, engage and connect? There are several options:
- Make introductions. Be a gate opener. Connection A is looking for guest bloggers. Connection B is a fantastic copywriter looking to increase business. Help them connect. Make the introduction.
- Take part in Linkedin's expansive group network. Linkedin allows you to search by name, company name and also by group. Interested in knowing more about real estate law? There's a group for that. Want to exchange blog comments? There are several groups that fulfill this need. From general topic to very targeted niche industry news, there are groups for just about everything. Don't see one that suits? Create your own. What's the point. People that effectively participate in groups share information, show they understand that listening and answering with targeted replies is appreciated and get their name/brand in front of a new audience and even bump up your SEO and searchability. We'd call that a win/win/win/win!
- Linkedin also provides an effective area for Q&A, called Answers. Do a quick search with one of your company's keywords and see if you can offer up an answer to a question. If you can, you've possibly gained a new connection who will be happy to share your expertise with the remainder of her circle of connections.
Linkedin is much more than online storage for your digital resume. It is a business network with a robust following and immediate and timely opportunities for participation. When that participation shares and showcases your expertise it is well worth the hour or two a week it will take to take yourself from lackadaisy or luddite to one who appreciates and understands the laurels of Linkedin.