Article By: JASMINE BRIGGS-ROGERS Career Coach and Resume Writer, CEO & Founder of Creatively Inspired Coaching, Director of Career Services at Berkeley College
As a Career Coach and Resume Writer for Creatively Inspired Coaching, I am often asked how do I increase my connections on LinkedIn. Having a strong LinkedIn network can lead to more business opportunities. I have met tons of connections on LinkedIn that have led to job opportunities, clients, referral business and speaking engagements.
Here are some simple steps to increase your connections on LinkedIn. If you are one of those people that are just looking to get a lot of connections and you don’t care who it is there are people who are open networkers. You can search the term L.I.O.N for individuals that will connect to anyone, but if you’re looking for a job or building a business you really want to curate who your network.
The first thing you can do is let LinkedIn go through your email, you do not have to connect you all the people that LinkedIn suggests, you can go through and select who you would like to request. I highly recommend connecting with people you used to work with and used to be in contact with, you never know where they are now and how they can support you in your career.
Network and Connect
Another tip and it t might sound counterintuitive but it’s to get off LinkedIn go out into the world and network. As you meet people you can add them on LinkedIn. Linkedin even has a function where you can turn on your location and it will tell you who’s around you. So go out into the world and meet people. When I do meet people and get business cards, the main way I use them, other than to clutter up my office is to find them on LinkedIn, connect with them and build a long-term relationship.
A great way to find people is to look to past colleges and universities you attended. LinkedIn has a great search function for alumni. Most colleges and universities have a Company page and on that page there is an Alumni section. You can search for alumni by title, company, and graduation year. These are great people to reach out and connect to because you have something in common.
Personalize Your Message
When you’re connecting to people that you haven’t met before make sure you write a personalized message, don’t just send the standard LinkedIn message. Another great way to increase your connections is to join and interact in groups. You should join groups that are connected to your industry and that’s a great way to meet industry professionals and learn about job openings and business opportunities. Again, you want to write a personalized connection message.
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