Years back before the tsunami of tweets, posts, YouTube, podcasts engulfed our lives, I was skeptical to have a social media account. It all started with Orkut where we used to share scraps, pleaded people write testimonials. The Orkut no longer exists, but its memories do. I am not going to discuss about Orkut today. Instead, I want to share my brief journey of conscious social media posting on LinkedIn as a beginner.

LinkedIn is a platform for professionals, to discuss topics beyond vacations, dinner plans, pets, cars, games etc. I have been on LinkedIn for almost 10 years, but have never been active except wishing people on their birthdays, congratulating them on new jobs and work anniversaries etc. My perception changed during an interview for a position in my team. Like every interview ritual, I asked the candidate “Do you have any questions for me?” He said he reviewed my LinkedIn profile and wants to ask me questions. He pulled out an A4 page filled with questions. He asked me at least 10 questions about my career and I must admit some of those were hard to answer. That encounter made me realize the power of social media. I said to myself that day I must take this seriously.

What did I do?

I reviewed my profile. It was not 100% complete, so I completed it to the best of my ability. I cleared all pending connection requests. One thing to note about connecting on LinkedIn is to verify the account of the requestor as cybercrime is prevalent across the internet.

I started reacting to posts appearing on my feed.Thought I got some traction, but it was not good enough. I hired a freelancer to redo my LinkedIn page and that really helped. She came up with some valued suggestions like adding key words on my profile, having a professional photo, clean up career roles and responsibilities verbiage, having a cover photo in line with my career path and last, but not the least adding my name at the end of my LinkedIn link.

It took a few months, but I started seeing traffic on my profile and started getting approached by recruiters. Not that I am looking for a job.

This year I have also started writing articles and sharing quotes relating to work and life. This is a good way to engage with people. It’s also important to strategize your posts based on key dates like Birthdays of eminent leaders, National holidays etc. Posting on key dates using associated hashtags boosts your presence exponentially. Currently #mondaymotivations, #thoughfulthursdays ,#mindfulness are popular.

Another way to improve engagement is to join various business groups and participate in discussions or kick off a discussion about a topic you care the most.

Engagement with social media can be addictive, so it is critical to regulate the use. You can plan the posting one week in advance and then just release that on specific dates instead of thinking daily what to posts. There are platforms like Hootsuite which allows you to schedule posts across all social media platforms.

LinkedIn is also very useful to connect with people from your domain. One suggestion is to have a compelling message when you send connection request e.g. why you are reaching out the person, how connection with you would benefit him/her etc. Just sending a connection with ay message will mostly be ignored.

Hope you found these tips useful. I would love to know your feedback.