We all know what LinkedIn is. We use it to recruit, to search for new career opportunities and, of course, as a last resort when stalking former classmates. These are all great ways to use this social platform but we haven’t yet tapped into its full potential. Think about the prevalent role social media plays today in networking, creating connections and building relationships—LinkedIn is no exception. In fact, recent statistics from LinkedIn’s Talent Connect 2018 conference this past October show that there are 600 million members and 26 million companies currently active on the platform. On top of that, their new goal is to get from 400 million to 800 million job connections or postings by 2020. That’s a lot of connections.
So, what does this mean for us? It means we can’t afford to miss the opportunity to do more with this continuously growing platform. With that in mind, we’ve chosen to leverage LinkedIn as a primary form of B2B communication and business development. We’re always looking for creative and effective ways to promote our company and our services, so as part of this new effort we’ve published the Foundry Commercial Life page on our LinkedIn company profile. This page showcases our brand, culture, and the meaning behind what we do. Of course, we’d love for you to check it out and tell others about what we’re doing corporately, but we’d also like you to get involved personally and individually. In fact, some of you already have! We have associates platform-wide who post new opportunities, successes, community service initiatives, company events, etc. Engaging on LinkedIn can even be as simple as identifying connections you share with other Foundry associates to create business opportunities. Landon Funsten, VP Broker in our Charlotte office, told us that for him, LinkedIn acts more as a “marketplace to generate warm connections.” However, for those of you who haven’t really tapped into this platform just yet, we want to show you how you can establish and multiply your voice using LinkedIn.
Now, you might be thinking, “This seems like a lot of work and I’ve only logged in to LinkedIn like three times since I signed up in 2009.” And that’s fair. But there are some simple ways to use the platform effectively, to benefit both Foundry and your personal brand (that’s right: it’s 2019 and you have a brand whether you like it or not). Here are three easy steps to get you started. Ultimately it comes down to being intentional.
1) Build your profile. We have plenty of internal resources available to help you update your profile and build out your page. LinkedIn will also let you know how strong your profile is and how you can kick it up a notch, so to speak. LinkedIn’s official blog tells us that members who include a profile photo receive 21 times more profile views and up to 36 times more messages. So be sure to add a photo of yourself (a professional one) and update your current position, experience and location to strengthen your credibility and brand. Think about this as not just building your personal brand, but also as creating a link to Foundry’s brand by increasing your visibility on the platform.
2) Engage. Be active online. Post about new business opportunities, exciting successes, and re-post Foundry’s company activity. Why is this so important? According to LinkedIn’s Sophisticated Marketer’s Guide to LinkedIn, 94% of B2B marketers use LinkedIn as a content distribution channel and 80% of social media B2B leads come from LinkedIn. Your engagement and activity increases the likelihood that others see what Foundry’s up to, and more exposure means more potential business platform-wide.
3) Make connections. As the saying goes, if a tree falls in the forest and nobody’s around to hear it, does it make a sound? Well, if you share a post and nobody sees it, what good does that do? Making connections is what makes your engagement/activity/content valuable—more eyeballs is better. If making connections via LinkedIn seems daunting or bothersome, try adding just one connection each week. A word of warning, however: your activity on LinkedIn can be seen by everyone you’re connected to, so be thoughtful about who you connect with and what you post. Again, intentionality is important.
 Foundation Inc