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How do I get started on LinkedIn?

How do I get started on LinkedIn?

If you aren’t on or using LinkedIn, consider these facts:

  • LinkedIn is the world’s largest professional network on the Internet
  • LinkedIn is currently the third most popular social network in terms of unique monthly visitors, right behind Facebook and Twitter
  • There are over 7 million registered members in Australia on LinkedIn
  • People are signing up to join LinkedIn at a rate of more than two new members per second.

Wow!

Whether you are an instructor, personal trainer or club manager or most of your members/clients use LinkedIn, then you need to get on this social media platform. To help you get started, let answer some basic questions.

What is more relevant – setting up a personal LinkedIn page or a company page?

The first priority should be to set up your personal profile. If you manage a small PT or group training business, this may be the way to go. With a personal page:

  • You can show more of your personality and what makes you unique,
  • More opportunities to connect with other people,
  • You can send personal messages,
  • You can join special interest groups.

If you manage a medium to large fitness business, then consider setting up a business page. Like your Web site, a LinkedIn page may be one of the first places a person goes to find out more about your business and what you do.

What is essential to include on your LinkedIn profile?

Think of your LinkedIn profile as an online version of your resume – make sure it is correct and up to date. It should include:

  • An up to date picture of yourself,
  • A background image to make your profile pop out more,
  • Your current and past positions including your title, company name, time frame, roles and responsibilities,
  • Contact details,
  • Education,
  • Skills,
  • Any volunteering or memberships you belong to.

Keep your profile’s headline, summary, and job experience fresh and containing relevant keywords to boost your appearances in searches. The more you are found, the more your social selling, marketing, and personal branding will improve.

How does the way you communicate on LinkedIn differ to other social platforms?

Always remember LinkedIn is a professional network – Facebook is fine for posting cute pictures of cats or snaps of your family but for LinkedIn, keep it strictly professional and relevant to your career or company. Just remember, a potential client or future employer may be looking at your profile right now.

What’s the most effective approach for connecting to people?

Once you are on LinkedIn and have completed your profile, how do you start connecting?

  • Start with people you already know and send them invitations to connect (or import your existing email contact list),
  • Share content regularly to build your presence and attract more connections,
  • Get more recommendations to give your profile extra credibility to encourage people to accept your invitations and to invite you to connect with them,
  • Request an introduction to someone you are not connected to by a connection you have in common,
  • Start joining relevant groups to gain exposure to like-minded people.

Quality over quantity, do you need to be regularly communicating with your connections?

With any social media channel, you need to be regularly communicating with your connections/followers on a regular basis to keep them engaged, entertained and educated. As they say, content is king so make sure it is timely, interesting and relevant.

As for frequency, look at three to five times a week.

What type of content would you recommend fitness business owners share?

Anything that is relevant for your followers and connections:

  • Share links to interesting articles, websites or videos that individuals in your network might appreciate,
  • Member success stories,
  • Interviews with staff on fitness related topics,
  • And get blogging – you have the ability to position yourself as a expert in the fitness industry.
  • And don’t forget, it must always be professional.

What sort of content should you steer clear of?

  • Nothing personal – remember this is a professional channel,
  • Don’t make it a hard sell,
  • Anything that may be considered insensitive or inappropriate for your audience,
  • Steer clear of religious, political or sexual content.

Always ask the question before you post, will this content enhance by professional reputation or is this something my mother would be embarrassed to read.

How can you measure whether what your doing is effective?

As with any social media activity, you need to be measuring the results to make sure you are staying on track and reaching your goals. The Analytics tab provides companies with metrics and trends about their company page such as updates, reach and engagement.

For individuals, keep track of the following:

  • Number of connections,
  • Number of invitations you receive,
  • Number of people who viewed your profile,
  • Number of people who have viewed, liked or commented on your posts,
  • Number of endorsements,
  • Number of recommendations.

So if you are looking for greater opportunities for your fitness business, then maybe you need to get more serious with LinkedIn.

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