Spread the Word—LinkedIn Style
How designers are making the most of LinkedIn for their businesses
LinkedIn may not be the first social media platform that comes to mind for design professionals who want to find more clients. “LinkedIn is for people looking for jobs,” we often hear. True. But it’s more than an extended help-wanted section; it’s a way to broaden the reach of businesspeople, often in conjunction with Facebook and other social media channels.
Here’s how Claudette, BeckySue and other designers are making the most of LinkedIn to further their businesses:
1) Ask peers for help. This especially works if you present a mutual “I’ll scratch your back, if scratch mine” offer.
In the Kitchen and Bath Industry News group on LinkedIn, for instance, Boston-area designer “Claudette A.” posted an invitation to “like” one another’s Facebook business pages to grow their fan bases. That brief post in April 2011 to the 13,000+-member group has so far resulted in more than 1,200 comments from professionals, most of them asking to be “liked” on Facebook, and the responses continue today.
2) Think how live business practices should go digital.
Consider how the common courtesies of in-person encounters, such as showroom visits and business partner meetings, should translate to the online world. See Atlanta-area designer BeckySue Becker’s digital business card below, which is a great example of how the standard practice of swapping business cards now works for online meetings. The best part: Each of her connections can now easily pass along her card to their connections on LinkedIn or Facebook or via e-mail.
3) Maximize your LinkedIn profile, including links from other sites.
BeckySue has a very complete profile, showing her experience, recommendations from clients and peers, her blogs, samples from her portfolio and more. Plus, she’s taking advantage of LinkedIn’s new endorsement feature, which carries weight for businesses when prospective customers and business partners are “checking you out.” (Read about endorsements at http://blog.linkedin.com/2012/09/24/introducing-endorsements-give-kudos-with-just-one-click/)
Linking to and cross-referencing samples, blogs, tweets and projects found on other sites takes advantage of the spread—and the power—of social media. Read more about “Social Media Cross-Pollination” from our last blog at: http://tiny.cc/c6zgnw.