What Can LinkedIn Do For Me?

The line between profound talent and profound disability is a surprisingly thin one.
-Daniel Tammet

Whenever I encounter this query, I am tempted to ask in response, “What can’t LinkedIn do for you?” It can’t assure your promotion, or even promise you a gig. It won’t automatically increase your popularity or recognition in your profession. And it certainly isn’t likely to have your morning cup of java ready when you awake.

However, it can help you do all of these things (short of the coffee).

LinkedIn is a tool, just like a hammer. Hammers don’t nail by themselves; they require our participation. By joining LinkedIn, and taking part in the myriad opportunities it offers, one can:

  • Build a professional network.
  • Find contacts to further business interests.
  • Learn what others in related industries are doing.
  • Find out what new developments are taking place in fields of interest.
  • Contribute to others questions and concerns in discussion groups.

This list is by no means exhaustive. However, allow me to examine each of these further and share my views from a somewhat personal standpoint.

Build a professional network.

Of the many benefits I’ve experienced since joining LinkedIn a few years ago, this has to be among the most important. I’ve managed to “meet” some of the most important professionals in Social Media, many of whom I converse on a regular basis. From them I have gleaned insight and expertise for which I would gladly pay a king’s ransom, yet I receive for the cost of my effort in joining this premier savant SNS and seeking their counsel. And such is not limited to Social Media, but to innumerable disciplines.

Find contacts to further business interests.

The new informational and educational course appearing in this blog, The Social Media Professionals Series is dependent greatly on fellow members of LinkedIn. I know of many others that have developed mutual and joint ventures. In fact, some depend exclusively upon the site for these investment enterprises, since so often most of the membership can be expected to uphold an acceptable level of professionalism. While it is true such trust may sometimes be disabused by those less scrupulous who try to blanket their connections with offers of cheesy sales schemes, or promote themselves and/or their livelihoods as something more than they truly are, this is more an exception than a rule.

Learn what others in related industries are doing.

When viewing profiles of LinkedIn members, one of the first things the viewer sees is an update of activity. This can be very informative about what efforts are currently being undertaken, as well as a place to find newsworthy events and other informative and explanatory items of interest. It is also a first step towards locating those who might be advantageous connections.

Find out what new developments are taking place in fields of interest.

LinkedIn offers a “follow” feature, wherein the activities of both members and companies can be pursued. Important developments can be noted and learned, keeping one abreast of the latest industry goings on. This can be very advantageous to many for obvious reasons.

Contribute to others questions and concerns in discussion groups.

Groups are among the highest beneficent attributes available on LinkedIn. This is the area where those with common interests can be encountered, and those all important connections made. Members can showcase their talents and knowledge by becoming involved in the wide array of groups available. Often one will encounter a question or topic that they are uniquely qualified to comment on, thus establishing themselves as accomplished on the subject. This can in turn lead to individual conversations, which may develop into increased networking possibilities that could extend beyond membership and into the greater realm of real world business interests.

An all-inclusive and complete listing of assets in LinkedIn membership is beyond the scope of this article, yet these should serve as some of the more discernibly conspicuous. Perhaps this has at least in some part answered the question of what LinkedIn can do for anyone interested in increasing their professional consequence. It most certainly has for my own.


About Grannelle

eMarketing Scholar
This entry was posted in Opinion, Social Media and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to What Can LinkedIn Do For Me?

  1. Jen Lacey says:

    You know, I have to tell you, I really enjoy this blog and the insight from everyone who participates. I find it to be refreshing and very informative. I wish there were more blogs like it. Anyway, I felt it was about time I posted, Ive spent most of my time here just lurking and reading, but today for some reason I just felt compelled to say this.


    • Grannelle says:

      So appreciate the very kind words, Jen! This is little more than one more exercise in Social Media for me, but that people actually read it makes it well worth the effort. Thanks for stopping by!


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