Tag Archives: LinkedIn Engagement

10 ways to optimize your LinkedIn engagement in 2018

Having a strong LinkedIn profile is essential to being found by other LinkedIn members and employers, but your job isn’t complete unless you’re communicating with your LinkedIn community on a consistent basis. This will contribute to optimizing your LinkedIn engagement.


I tell my LinkedIn workshop attendees that I spend approximately an hour a day (it’s probably more) on LinkedIn. Their faces register surprise, and I’m sure some of them wonder if I have a life.

But networking is about communication. If you’re going to use LinkedIn to its full potential as a networking tool, you need to communicate with your connections on a more consistent basis. So far you have optimized your profile and network of connections. Now it’s time to complete the circle; optimize your whole LinkedIn campaign.

Here are 10 ways to do just that:

1. Direct messages

The most obvious way to optimize your LinkedIn engagement is to communicate with your connections directly. LinkedIn’s “Messaging” feature allows you to have running chats with all your first-degree connections. At first this was disconcerting, however; LinkedIn members got used to it.

In addition, the “Messaging” feature follows you around the site. You can read and send messages no matter what page you’re on — an obvious sign that LinkedIn wants you to communicate with your connections.

2. Share updates often

Another great way to optimize your engagement with your connections is by is posting updates. How many you post is up to you, but I suggest at least one a day. Some people tell me they don’t even have time to update once a week. I tell these people that they need to stay top of mind. When you’re not seen, you’re forgotten.

You’ll notice that LinkedIn has given its members the ability to create and post video updates. It’s a nice feature, but few people are using it. This could be an option to consider in order to make your updates stand out.

3. Like and comment on your connections’ updates

Another way to communicate with your connections is to “like” their updates. Simply liking their updates is not enough, in my opinion. I would go as far as saying that this is lazy.

To optimize your LinkedIn engagement, you should get a little more creative by commenting on the update. This shows that you read and thought about what they wrote. Additionally this can generate valuable discussion.

4. Don’t hide yourself when you visit your connections’ profiles

Some people adjust their privacy settings so that they only show up as “Anonymous LinkedIn User” or “Someone from the (particular) Industry” when they visit other people’s profiles. Not me! I visit my connections’ profiles — with full disclosure — many times a day. My connections will visit my profile many times as well.

When people visit my profile under the veil of secrecy, I do nothing. When people drop in announced, however, I’ll show my appreciation by writing to them, “Thanks for visiting my profile.” This will also lead to a discussion.

5. Endorse your connections

You’ve probably read many opinions from people on the topic of endorsements. Add me to the list of people who prefer both receiving and writing thoughtful recommendations to simply clicking the “Endorse” button.

In fairness, endorsements do have a greater purpose than showing appreciation for someone’s skills and expertise: They are a way to touch base with connections. This is another way to optimize your engagement. As they say, “Spread the love.”

6. Participate in discussions regularly

This is a great way to share ideas with established and potential connections. I have gained many new connections by actively participating in discussions on LinkedIn.

Believe it or not, I don’t find groups to be the best places for discussions. Instead, it’s better to start them via updates you post from your homepage. There are people who do a great job of optimizing their engagement because they add comments that generate more communication.

7. Be a curator 

If your connections blog, take the effort to read their posts and comment on their writing. This is an effective way to create synergy in the blogging community, and also a great way to get material for your daily updates.

One of the easiest ways to optimize your engagement is to share posts from other sources you read on a regular basis. There are plenty of online publications which provide relevant information for your network. Sharing knowledge is part of your networking campaign.

Take It a Step Further

An online connections will not become a fully thriving relationships until you’ve communicated with them in a more personal way. While LinkedIn offers many powerful ways to communicate with your network, there will come a time when you’ll need to move off LinkedIn in order to take your networking relationships to the next level.

8. Send an Email

Email doesn’t require a lot of effort, but it’s an important step in developing a more personal relationship with a connection. You should have access to the email addresses of all your first-degree connections on LinkedIn, so use that information when you’re ready.

9. Call Your Connections

This is a daunting step to many, but it’s a necessary one.

That said, don’t just call your connection out of the blue. Email them first to let them know you’d like to call. Write the reason for your call; if it’s your first call, you’ll probably want to talk about who you are and what your professional goals are. You don’t want to put your connection in an awkward situation or catch them off guard, so be clear about the purpose of your call.

10. Meet Your Connections Over Coffee

Finally comes the face-to-face meeting at a place that is convenient for both of you. If your connection lives in a distant location, you may suggest getting together when you’ll be in their city or town.

When you meet in person with a connection, that person becomes a bona fide member of your personal professional network. This is the ultimate way to communicate with a LinkedIn connection. It may not happen often, particularly if a connection lives far from you, but when such meetings do occur, they present great possibilities.

Having a great LinkedIn profile is only the start. To really make the most of the site, you must communicate with your connections. It’s your activity on LinkedIn that makes the difference between standing still in your career and realizing professional success.

If you want to learn more about LinkedIn, visit this compilation of LinkedIn posts.


There are 5 LinkedIn contributors; which one are you?

Spending as much time on LinkedIn as I do, I notice how often my network contributes. Some are consistent and strike an even balance, others do not. In this post, I’m going to address the five types of Linked contributors.

Man on phone 2

I’ve always asserted that there are three components of your LinkedIn success:

Creating a profile;

connecting with LI members; and

engaging with your connections.

It’s the third component that can be as important as the other two. By engaging with your connections, it keeps you top of mind. I use the familiar cliche when I explain the importance of engagement by saying, “Out of sight, out of mind.”

The five types of LinkedIn contributors

1. The non-contributor. Some of you might relate to this. You were an accountant until recently laid off. While you were working, one of your colleagues—maybe your colleague—said, “Hey, you should join LinkedIn. I hear it’s important to be on it.”

So you joined, not quite sure why, and let your profile sit. You accumulated 10 connections, because these were the 10 people you knew at work. You would get invitations, which sat in your My Network queue.

Now that you’re looking for work, you have no activity to speak of. In other words you’re nonexistent. You’re not getting any hits from recruiters, have no endorsements, not getting invites, don’t know how to share an update.

There’s a lot of work ahead for you.

Read why LinkedIn might not be for you.

2. Enough to be dangerous. If this is you, I want to say it’s almost worse than not contributing. You’re trying to do what you’ve been told by someone who was kind enough to give you advice. Perhaps your heart just isn’t into it.

Your profile is strong. There’s no problem here. In fact, you hired someone to write it for you. You were pumped when it was done. The person who wrote your profile mentioned numerous times that you have to 1) connect with ten quality connections a week and 2) engage with them.

The problem is that you are forgetting the last piece. You’re hoping that optimizing your profile with keywords will draw recruiters to you. However, optimizing your profile with keywords only works if you’re active and well connected.

You have potential, though.

3. Busting your ass to catch up. Someone managed to get it through your head that being a contributor on LinkedIn is crucial to being found. Your profile is strong and your network in good shape.

You’ve been contributing, which includes: sharing articles, mentioning industry trends, giving sage advice, asking questions, sharing news about your colleagues. All good stuff, but it’s gonna take awhile before your getting noticed like you want.

I see you on LinkedIn contributing like a fiend. I see you six times a day. I won’t say your engagement reeks of desperation, but…. Here’s the thing, there is such thing as contributing too much.

It will take time to establish yourself, so be patient.

4. Addicted to LinkedIn. This is a bad thing, but you can’t help yourself. The worst thing you did was install the LinkedIn app on your phone. Just like people who are constantly checking their Instagram or Facebook accounts, you’re opening your LinkedIn app.

In fact, you’re posting updates and answering questions while you’re waiting for your son to get out of school, your wife to get off the train, during family gatherings. Yes, you’re concealing your phone underneath the table.

What’s alarming is the number of times you’re sharing updates. Ten times a day is a possibility. Five times a day is a definite. As well, you’re following your connections on a daily basis. You feel you know them as if you met them in person.

I tell my LinkedIn workshop that at minimum they should be on LinkedIn four days a week. Their jaws drop. After pausing, I tell them that the optimum amount should be every day; yes, this includes Sunday. And I finish by telling them not to be like me.

Perhaps you should seek professional help.

5. Strike a nice balance. I’ve seen people who’ve disappeared for months, if not years, only to return with enthusiasm. This isn’t you. You are on LinkedIn almost every day. You share posts twice or three times a day. They are relevant to your LinkedIn community.

You’re also consistent in contributing on LinkedIn. People know when you will share updates and look forward to your posts. I envy you. Yes, I envy you because I am a member of the fifth type of contributor.

Keep doing what you’re doing.

Now that you’ve learned about the five types of LinkedIn contributors, which one are you? Are you barely on LinkedIn to the point where you shouldn’t bother or are you a LinkedIn addict like me. Or, do you strike a nice balance? I would love to hear your story, and I promise not to judge.

How could I judge?

If you want to learn more about LinkedIn, visit this compilation of LinkedIn posts.

9 signs you’re running the LinkedIn marathon


MarathonLately one of my connections told me she needs a break from LinkedIn. Without naming names, I’ll tell you she’s a prominent figure on LinkedIn. I’ve seen her daily on my homepage feed for as long as I can remember.

Because she told me she needs a reprieve, it makes me question my insane commitment to LinkedIn, which I call the LinkedIn marathon.

Said person told me she has other things in her life that need tending to, so she plans to take a…hiatus. At first I couldn’t believe she would want to leave LinkedIn and possibly lose her momentum. I asked this person to reconsider.

On second thought, I can see her reasoning; actually think it makes sense.

How the LinkedIn marathon began for me. I became fully immersed in LinkedIn when I got hooked on one of LinkedIn’s most loved features…you guessed it, Answers. For hours upon hours I would answer questions posed under Job Search, until I eventually held the title of Best Answers. Then poof, without warning LinkedIn took away this feature.

I saw LinkedIn, and still do, as a great way to disseminate and gather information. Shamelessly I started sharing my posts three times a week. And then two times a week. After I write posts and share them on LinkedIn and Twitter, I share them in groups. Many of the information for my posts came from talking to recruiters, hiring managers, and career pundits.

Along came LinkedIn’s Publish a Post feature, and we all know the result of that. Over one million people have written long posts which have been great; average; and, well, terrible. I caught the fever and am still infected. I publish a post once a week on Monday. This feature has been very enjoyable for me.

Running the LinkedIn marathon

If you’re like me and engage in the following LinkedIn activities, you’re running the LinkedIn marathon.

1. My LinkedIn schedule has me on the platform almost every day of the year, including holidays. I’ve missed a couple of days here and there. Surely this amount of activity is enough for people to think, “Is Bob crazy.” Or “Does Bob have a life?” Or simply “Why?” Perhaps all three are accurate questions.

2. Having the LinkedIn app has only increased my activity. I find the LinkedIn app to be kind of clunky, yet it’s the last thing I look at before I go to bed. That’s after I shut down my computer hours earlier after being on…you guessed it, LinkedIn. Another sign I’m running the LinkedIn marathon.

3. I did a rough estimation of the number of updates I write a week by going to Who’s Viewed Your Profile. I was surprised to see that I only average four plus updates a day. The suggested number of updates is one a day, lest you annoy your connections.

One week I wrote 43 updates, or more than six updates a day. What the hell was wrong with me that day?

4. Another sign of running the LinkedIn marathon. One of my infrequently seen friends told me she’s seen me a lot. By that she meant on LinkedIn. I couldn’t tell if that is a good or a bad thing. I felt like asking her if she is even on LinkedIn, as I haven’t seen her in ages. But I didn’t want to come off as a wise ass. (Read Don’t disappear my valued LinkedIn connections.)

5. I’ve noticed that as of late, negativity has been rampant on LinkedIn, and it’s getting to be a bit much. Most of the negativity is about LinkedIn Pulse where featured posts land. It makes them look more like poor losers and little babies. I won’t mention names, though. The mere fact I care about this shows I’m running the LinkedIn marathon.

6. Often I’m asked if I make money from being on LinkedIn. My answer is, “Enough.” I have a day job as a workshop facilitator at an urban career center, as well as a LinkedIn side business. All requests for help are from people who contact me because they’ve seen my profile or posts on LinkedIn.

This is another reason why I need to continue running the marathon; to maintain business. People appreciate consistency.

7. I often wonder if there is such thing as being addicted to LinkedIn. So I Googled “LinkedIn Addiction.” I found some articles on LinkedIn addiction. The first one is from Inc.com and according to this article, I am addicted based on the first three. After that, the author is just talking trash.

Here are the three signs of addiction that apply to me:

1. You check LinkedIn:

  • during every lunch break.
  • more than five times per day. Or per hour.
  • at every red light.
  • while playing with your kids.

2. Checking LinkedIn is the first thing you do when you wake up.

3. And the last thing you do before going to sleep.

All of this fits me to a T. I log more hours on LinkedIn than a truck driver on a cross-country run.

Read the article for a couple of laughs.

8. I teach two LinkedIn workshops and estimate that I’ve taught thousands of them over the years. This doesn’t include workshops I’ve led for outside organizations, so the number is pretty high. I’m saying this justifies why I need to be well versed on LinkedIn.

Who am I kidding? I use LinkedIn mostly for personal reasons.

9. The questions I need to ask myself are do I have the stamina to maintain this insane LinkedIn activity? Will I have to pare back? Will I burn out and totally drop of the face of the earth? These would be a sad things.


So, given all of what I’ve said, I guess the smart thing to do would be to modify my activity on LinkedIn, so I…don’t burn out. Perhaps sharing three updates a day, being on LinkedIn multiple times a day (this includes the phone), and sharing posts in groups is leading me toward burnout, like my friend. Maybe I’ll need to pace myself better. But for now, I’m having too much fun.

Photo: Flickr, mgthompson