Most people create a profile on LinkedIn and probably don’t return too often, unless they have connection requests or want to connect with people after a conference or event.
At a recent LinkedIn seminar at Eastern Michigan University, two account executives from LinkedIn provided several reasons why everyone – not just those looking for a job – should take another looked at their LinkedIn profile. Here are some examples:
New business opportunities. Has one of your connections changed jobs or is looking for a new opportunity? This could be a great time to reconnect and build alliances for future projects for your business.
Business development. Search your industry terms and keywords for your business in the Answers section. Being recognized as an expert in your field on LinkedIn can lead to business relationships and recommendations.
Monitoring. Following company profiles of current customers and prospects can provide key insights into personnel changes and may be early indicators of business health.
Recommendations. Recommendations aren’t only for your personal profile. Receiving recommendations from clients can be crucial for the sales process.
Global. Currently, LinkedIn is used in six languages and will be in 12 by the end of the year. It’s becoming a worldwide clearinghouse for business connections.
Email integration. Download the LinkedIn toolbar for Microsoft Outlook and you’ll be able to see the LinkedIn photos of those who email you. It also serves as a reminder to add connections with recent business contacts.
Traveling rolodex. Instead of relying on new business cards and updates from customers and business partners, updates come to you automatically once an individual updates a LinkedIn profile.
LinkedIn is favored by search engines when a profile is updated regularly, so having these notations on your personal profile can help when prospects and new clients are researching you and your company.
Once a company realizes the benefits of LinkedIn for business objectives, LinkedIn will be seen as much more than a resume or job search tool – it can be a boon to the business’s bottom line.
—Tonja Deegan is the digital and social media director at Airfoil Public Relations, a high tech PR agency with offices in Detroit and Silicon Valley.