Have your ever had expectations that a business action would produce great results, only to have it fall flat on the floor face down because you didn’t use current data? 

Never Try to Share What You Aren’t Actively Using

I did that recently. I volunteered to share a bit of expertise at one of our ELP meetings. The only problem was that I had chosen a topic that was a learning one.  I grabbed a several month old course on the topic: Social Media. I chose to focus on Facebook, first, and LinkedIn, second. Big Mistake! I had overlooked comments I heard in the past that Facebook was changing constantly. And particularly in the past few months when I had not been active. But I charged ahead, researching and writing what I would present based on dated data.

I confidently got up and began sharing my research. About half way through the half hour, I got a question which lead to an answer, more questions, answers from knowledgeable audience members and the remaining 15 minutes we all got an education on why it’s impossible to give a realistic presentation on how to use Facebook for business purposes. I punted to the “experts” in my audience and facilitated a discussion on why it was not a good idea to use Facebook, in its current Chameleon mode, for business. The consensus was to wait for Facebook to respond to the challenges that Google + is giving it and then see if it can be used.

Always Consider Your Audience and Share What You Know

As I sat down, I reflected that I hadn’t done two crucial things: I hadn’t considered my audience and led with my LinkedIn presentation, and I hadn’t met the needs of my small business owners and entrepreneurs in the room. I could have confidently shared what I had been doing on LinkedIn and what I planned to do. Since I never did get to LinkedIn, let me give all of you an opportunity to effectively learn how to use LinkedIn to network and grow their business. I am suggesting you start with the following quotes from a blog by Sue Ann Kern,  one of Utah’s Social Media Experts.

Use LinkedIn to Make Key Business Connections

“LinkedIn is by far my favorite social media site. It is a professional networking site, rather than a social site like Facebook. I regularly attend networking functions, both in Park City and Salt Lake, and meet interesting people with whom I’d like to maintain a professional relationship. Maybe they are in a similar field, maybe they can offer something I need to improve myself or my business, or maybe I can offer them something. Regardless, they would not be in my 150. If I sign up for their mailing list, whether it be snail mail or email, I would never have the time to open and read about what they are up to. But with LinkedIn, I can see their updates and read about their latest accomplishments, if they need help with a business dilemma, or if they want to share an interesting article. I also have about 300 connections on LinkedIn. These are people whom I’ve met or whose work I admire. The connections mean something to me. I’m not in favor of using the tools available to connect with over 500 people in just a few days. It means nothing to be connected to someone whom you’ve never met or even heard of. You will not win if you die with the most LinkedIn connections.”

“The cool thing about my LinkedIn connections is that THEY have connections. So, because LinkedIn is based on the 6th of separation principle, if I want to meet someone for whatever reason, chances are that one of my connections or one of their connections (or one of their connections) will know them and help me to meet. And I don’t have to spend a lot of time on the phone or in person trying to make these connections. I still have time for my 150.”

Your Ability to Connect with Anyone May Be Just a Short Few Connections from You

“LinkedIn is today’s most popular professional networking social media site, with more than 80 million users from over 200 countries.  Every Fortune 500 company has executives participating in LinkedIn.  This social media site is incredibly effective if you are trying to increase leads and opportunities, showcase your business’ products and services, search for a job, or find the perfect candidate for a job.”

Now, I suggest you take a moment and jump to my website blog and read the three articles (a fourth on Thursday) I have there telling you how to make LinkedIn work for you and your business. Go to www.b2bcontentmaster.com/blog/ and get the professional information that is current.