Objective: To share knowledge, build relationships and network with others. LinkedIn is a form of social networking. You must first create your account at www.linkedin.com
Step 1: Set Up Profile
Log into your account
Click Profile from the side navigation
Fill in your profile details. There are two places you can do this as shown below.
Step 2: Add Contacts
There are three areas of your contact section.
Connections: This shows who you are linked to.
Imported Contacts: These are contacts that you have imported but are not yet linked to
Network Statistics: These are statistics about your network, including how many users you can reach through your connections.
Click Imported Contacts
Click Add Contacts To Your Contact List
LinkedIn can search your email address to locate people you may already be linked to or you can manually add your contacts. In addition, you can search for colleagues and classmates as well as invite people from this screen.
Click Check Webmail to import contacts from yahoo, gmail, aol, etc.
Click Other Address Book if you want to search a different address book program
Click Enter Contacts Manually to manually add each contact.
Step 3: Join Groups
If you’re part of or want to join a professional group, alumni organization or work group, you can do so by clicking groups. In addition, you can create a new group for others to join.
My Groups: This is a list of any groups that you belong to
Groups Directory: Search for groups to join
Create a Group: Create a new group to connect with others with like interests
Step 4: Link to Others
Using the navigation across the top of your dashboard, you can search for jobs, people, companies and answers to your questions. Simply use the drop down arrow next to each option to search.
Let’s say I wanted to search for Lynette Chandler. I could use the quick search bar, or using the drop down option at the top of my navigation, I could do an advanced search.
Enter Search Term in the search people box
A list of search results will populate. In this case, because Lynette has a picture, I can quickly see that the first search result is who I want to link to. So I click Add To Network.
If I wasn’t sure which one was the Lynette Chandler that I was searching for, I would click each name and review the profiles until I found the person I was seeking.
Once I determined which profile was the right person, I would click Add Lynette to Your Network as shown below.
Before you can add people to your network, you must first invite them to connect.
Select how you know the person. Depending on the option you choose, you will have other boxes to fill in.
Add a note to Lynette and click Send Invitation
You should now see a note saying your invitation was sent successfully.
Once Lynette approves the link, she will be listed in my network.
These are the basics of using LinkedIn to network with other business owners.