For our professional lives, LinkedIn is the place to be (which is why I’ll likely re-publish this there). I wanted to become more active and visible on LinkedIn, but I don’t have a lot of extra time to devote to it. This is a tactic that I’ve been using for a few months, and I like the results. Could I get better results doing something else? Maybe. This works for me because it allows one of my off-LinkedIn activities (reading, which I do a lot of) to positively impacts my LinkedIn visibility.
You’ll see something similar to the image below when you go to Profile and, in the drop-down menu, click on “Who’s Viewed Your Profile.” These numbers are far more valuable than the number of connections we have. Because it’s not about how many connections on social media, it’s about what you do.
The graph shows only the last 90 days; the right side is only the one week. (I can’t figure out how to change the 90 days; it’s not obvious. I get the impression that I would be able to if I upgraded to Premium membership, but why I won’t has been covered in other people’s posts. If anyone knows how to change those parameters, send me the link, and I’ll update this post to include it.)
You can see that my activity slumped in late June/early July. I may have been busy with life, but I think it was because I was still creating this habit. We know how that goes. We start strong, then old habits return, blah blah blah. It’s at that point, when we make a renewed effort, that a new habit can truly be formed. (Sometimes it takes multiple tries, like quitting smoking.)
While Profile Views (A) is not in my direct control (although it is impacted by my visibility), Actions Taken (B) is in my control – and that’s what’s increased my visibility during this time.
So, how did I do this? Let’s look at what I did last week – and how I did it:
- Shared. This (along with Liked and Commented) is where all my reading comes into play. The vast majority of posts, articles, blogs, etc., that we read online comes with “Share” buttons. They’re usually horizontally near the title or vertically on the left. The vertical ones often stay there as we scroll down and up. So, say I’ve read something that interests me or – even better – have something to add to the conversation. I click on the icon where I want to share it (in my case, it’s usually LinkedIn and Twitter). A window pops up giving me the opportunity to add a pithy comment or just share. It also gives me the opportunity to share with particular people or groups – or everyone. (Sometimes it asks for a login, but I’m often logged in, in another window.) You can see that, last week at least, I shared far more than I took any other action.
- Endorsed. LinkedIn often gives us opportunities to endorse people. We can probably proactively do it, but I just wait until those endorsement opportunities pop up when I’m in my account. I endorse people for only the skills I know they have. If I endorse everyone for everything, I’m not really helping anyone. Then it becomes just a numbers game.
- Added. This is the number of people who have been added to my LinkedIn network – whether they’ve invited me or I’ve invited them. Again, I’m not about the numbers, so this one also grows “organically.”
- Liked. Similar to Sharing, Liking involves clicking another link that’s included in, again, almost everything published online. The difference is that this is a popularity number (for the article/author, not me) that stays with the published piece, while Sharing is re-publishing it to my network or individuals. This is usually the thumbs up/down icon rather than a social-network icon.
There are three that I didn’t participate in during this week, so they don’t show:
- Published an Article. Like the one that you’re reading. I didn’t write anything on LinkedIn last week.
- Commented on a Group Topic. I would guess that Comments on anything have more weight than just Sharing or Liking.
- Commented on an Article. Again, Comments on anything increases visibility.
When the Search Engine Optimization (SEO) part of my brain takes over, I imagine that there is an algorithm to the value of these activities, which I could figure out if I crunched the numbers. (I couldn’t find anything with a quick (one-page!) search, but I bet others have figured it out. If anyone has written about it, let me know, and I’ll update this to include that link.) My guess is, with most valuable first: Writing, Commenting (Article, then Group Posts), Sharing, Liking, Adding Connections, and Endorsing, with profile updates and other LinkedIn activities thrown in. I’ll bet that anything with a photo or video gets extra “points.”
In addition, not only have the number of people viewing my LinkedIn profile increased, but the number of those I don’t know has. (Aside: I’m not sure why a Treasury Agent would view my profile. While he didn’t respond to my request as to why he viewed it, he did agree to my request for a connection.)
It’s not fast, but, as a marketer, I know these things take time. The bottom line is that I’m taking something that I’m already doing (reading) and leveraging it (by Sharing, Liking, and Commenting) to increase my visibility. Adding Connections and Endorsing happen naturally/organically because my other activities put me in my LinkedIn account more often.
What about you? Have you been intentionally increasing your visibility on social networks? What has worked – or not?