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What is LinkedIn?

With more than 116 million users around the world, LinkedIn is one of the most popular social network sites. Aside from the usual objective, that is, to connect people, it also offers its members a huge range of interactive tools and activities with real applications in the physical world. LinkedIn competes, in many respects, with other social network sites on such things the possibility of establishing business or promoting entrepreneurial connections between two or more people or organisations with common goals.

How does LinkedIn differentiate from other social media?

While most people think all social media work the same way, LinkedIn is something a bit different. Facebook is more like your neighborhood local cafe where you and your friends can enjoy your coffee while chatting and having fun at the same time. LinkedIn is notably different from its more celebrated cousin in that it serves as a local trade show or conference, happening in a more professional manner, through which users can directly interact with prospective clients and potential business partners.

Filling in your profile correctly

Simple as it may seem, some people still find it a challenge to create their own profile in LinkedIn. Filling up your profile may be a basic step but many don’t do it quite right at their first try. Important details when filling up include: your name, your picture, your professional skill, work experience and your own website.

As much as possible, you should make your personal profile specific and detailed in order to make it more professional, this making it more attractive to business people. You profile should inform and command respect and trust from users when viewed.

Your LinkedIn profile serves as your professional showcase to the online community. Take note however that first impression lasts. This may sound a cliché but it’s perfectly true. You need to be very careful when creating your profile on LinkedIn. If someone views a profile that has been poorly done, they will get the impression that you don’t pay attention to details.

Use keywords in your profile

Many users are aware that LinkedIn offers great opportunities for many people to establish business connections. When you Google a person on the web, it usually includes results from LinkedIn. So it is always nice to have your profile easily spotted when search tools scan the millions upon millions of web pages. To be able to do this, you need to include keywords which are relevant to your profile such as your professional skills as well as the favorite activities, personal and professional; all helping to bring a profile really to life.

An example might be that if you work for an IT company that offers customized programming to Fortune 500 corporation, one may include keywords such as: experience: IT programmer for Fortune 500 corporations.

Network

Networking is what it’s all about. Join in with the discussion groups, find people to connect with, and when people ask to connect to you, don’t just blindly accept. Take the time to say hi, ask how their business is going and see how the two of you can work together in the future.

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