Your online profiles say a lot about you. From Facebook to Twitter to Instagram, the snapshots of your life that you choose to share with the world give your audience a distinct impression of you. Of course, you want to make sure it’s a positive one! The absence of an online presence says a lot about you, too, especially when it comes to business. Having and maintaining a LinkedIn profile is a must for your career, no matter what industry you’re in. Here’s why you should sign up today.
Job Hunting Has Changed
Employers check out your online presence as a routine part of the hiring process, and that goes beyond making sure you don’t have any scandalous photos from your college days on Facebook. They’re looking you up on LinkedIn and making assumptions based on what they see – even if they see nothing at all. A blank or poorly maintained LinkedIn profile signals that you’re not especially serious about your career and your professional image, and may not even be all that tech-savvy. Make sure you’re putting your best (digital) foot forward at all times.
It Matters Once You’re Hired, Too
So you’re not planning on searching for a job ever again. You’re happy in your current role and not concerned about layoffs, etc. – why should you worry about having a LinkedIn profile? Depending on your industry and role, your professional digital presence becomes even more important after you’re hired. For example, if you work in sales, you better believe business owners are looking you up after you leave their office. They want to know whether or not you’re worth their time, and the quality and quantity of information on your LinkedIn profile can give them a lot of clues about that. In some industries (financial services and insurance come quickly to mind), it’s assumed that you have a robust, up to date profile and considered a major red flag if you don’t.
Personal Branding is Not Just a Fad
You’ve probably heard a lot of buzz around “creating your personal brand.” While this might sound like a whole lot of marketing mumbo jumbo designed to sell leadership coaching sessions, it’s critical to the overall success of your career. Think about it – you spend time carefully choosing what photos and updates you share on Facebook, Instagram, and other personal social media platforms, so why wouldn’t you take the same care with your professional life? As you continue to progress in your career, even if you stay with the same company your whole life, your personal brand will get you into meetings, open conversations with investors and partners, and score you networking opportunities.
Networking Isn’t Just About Business Card Swaps
We’ve all been to networking events, some more fruitful than others, hosted by local chambers of commerce or other organizations. If you’re not leveraging LinkedIn, however, you’re missing out on valuable opportunities to take your networking even farther. You can connect with people you meet at events, continuing the conversation long after you’ve physically parted ways. You can also research people with whom you’re meeting before the meetings happen – rest assured they are doing the same to you! Finally, connect with people you’ll never get the chance to see in person using LinkedIn’s powerful search tools. Building your professional network this way will pay dividends down the road.
Learn and Engage with Your Network
Having a profile and keeping it up to date is a great first step, but maximizing the benefits you can reap from LinkedIn requires really using the platform and all it has to offer. Research and connect with potential sales leads, engage with thought leaders by commenting on their posts, and post your own questions and updates to get feedback. We’ve covered how to do all this effectively in another post, but for now remember that you get out of LinkedIn what you put into it. It takes work, but so does anything worth doing.
A Payment Processor Who Gets It
You’ve got a lot on your mind, and if the idea of having to spend time updating your LinkedIn profile sounds about as appealing as a root canal, you’re not alone. Let us take payment processing off your plate so you can focus on other more important things. Give us a call at 1-855-360-0360 or drop us a line on our website to get started.
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