As the New Year is now well under way, it might be worth analysing your social media profiles and taking the opportunity to refresh and replenish them to ensure they are optimised for maximum engagement in 2014.
Did your LinkedIn activity tail off towards the end of last year? Make a few quick changes to your LinkedIn habits, and you can ensure your LinkedIn profile is as strong as ever this year.
Is your profile photo in date?
The start of a new year is the ideal time to refresh your online profile photo. Make sure it is recent (within the last twelve months is ideal) as remember, LinkedIn is a visual social media platform. A well composed, professional and up-to-date photo will make a good impression to potential clients, customers and colleagues.
(To update your profile picture, navigate to "Edit profile" and click the camera icon to the left of your name and current work details).
Review the last twelve months.
Did you have a good 2013? If you did, tell people about it. The start of a new year is a great time to reflect on the past twelve months and pick some key achievements and successes that you can shout about on your LinkedIn profile. Not only will this promote you and your skill set, it will also ensure that your LinkedIn profile is up to date and shows you at your best.
Do you connect, then forget?
So you have hundreds of connections, but when did you last connect with any of them? Your connections aren't valuable to you unless you maintain and cultivate a relationship. Engaging with connections does not mean constantly messaging your contacts - which is time consuming and inconvenient. You could comment or like their updates, recommend a group you think might be of use to them, etc. There are lots of ways to ensure you are not forgotten and build first-level connections into more robust relationships. Perhaps set yourself a target to connect in some way with one connection each week on LinkedIn.
Make recommendations count.
There has been much said about the comparisons between LinkedIn endorsements, which let you ‘endorse’ a connection's skill with a quick click. They are very easy to give and receive so therefore arguably are less impressive than a written recommendation.
In 2014, make your written recommendations count by asking your connections to to highlight a particular skill so it is not too generic. Also, ask for a recommendation while you're in the middle of a project as is when your hard work is freshest in people’s minds and they will be more likely to oblige with a relevant recommendation.