3 Tips for Growing on LinkedIn
I've been consistently using LinkedIn for about a year. I began with a small network (100 connections) last year. I had an account but I rarely used it. I had connections from people I knew in real life and others from my university. I'm not an expert by any means but I have grown my connections from 100 to over 600. Along with that, in the beginning of February I turned on the creator mode. I began creating regular content (twice a week) on LinkedIn. I explained in more detail about my experiment with consistently creating content on LinkedIn in this blog post, as part of my 5 lesson series. I started off with 915 followers and 644 connections. My "actual follower amount", which I define as people who follow me and who are not my connections. was 915 - 644 = 271. Right now, I have 596 actual followers (1282 followers - 686 connections).
While I'm by no means a "LinkedIn Influencer" like Austin Belcak, Salina Yeung, or Isobel Cowell, I have grown my following at a steady rate since February. I wanted to share my techniques I've used to grow my following and network.
But you may be asking, why me? I mean I have only 1,000 (which for social media these days is quite little). Why should someone listen to me? Well it's because of something I've talked about before, the expertise bias or the curse of knowledge. When you become a master at a skill/topic, you tend to have trouble teaching others. Because you have too much knowledge on the subject, and don't remember what it's like being a beginner. Concepts you find trivial, and "obvious" are completely new to beginners. Unless you devote yourself to teaching (its own skill), you will have a difficult time explaining your knowledge to others.
Some of these ideas may have been inspired from other content creators. If I know where my inspiration comes from I will be linking the original post/creator. All of these are tips I use regularly to expand my network. Also these tips may not work for everyone but it worked for me.
The 3 Tips:
This is the whole premise behind the LinkedInHardMode Challenge created by Albert Bellamy. Posting consistently helps you get noticed and build an audience. People will notice when you show up regularly. Also engage with the comments on your post. It not only helps generate more engagement but it creates a relationship with your audience. If you're struggling with what to post I wrote about it in a LinkedIn Post on how to "use other content to inspire your own".
Engage with your network by commenting on posts
This also helped me get over my fear of sharing my opinion. It's a small step but it makes a difference. Once you begin commenting consistently you're much more likely to stand out than someone who only lurks on the platform. And you create actual relationships with people in your network. Through commenting alone I've built relationships with people in my network. We support each other. Another tip is to find the biggest name accounts in your niche, and leave a thoughtful, meaningful comment. Not only do you get to practice your writing skills, but you can gain followers/connections from being the "most relevant" comment. In a LinkedIn post I included my own template for creating meaningful comments.
Be Authentic, Find Your Own Voice/Style
Another tip from Albert is no one will care about your content if they don't care about you. We all talk about the algorithm, trying to format our posts for the Algorithm. A few of these include: breaking up your post into short paragraphs and single sentences; and using spaces, symbols to break up longer posts. What's most important is finding your writing style/voice. We can all take tips for catering to the algorithm. Most people want to follow someone who is authentic, a real person, not fake. While there's a line between personal and professional, there's no harm in sharing aspects of your personal life. Take time to find your voice. Experiment with different styles until you find one that works for you.