shutterstock_170100236LinkedIn, how do I love thee? Let me count the ways…

In an article I wrote for ME Marketing Services this past September, I shared some suggestions for getting started on LinkedIn. Within the article, I explained the importance of having a solid profile, finding connections, and being polite on this platform. If you use LinkedIn, you probably already know that most people tend to be business-like and act more professionally there.

Being professional, however, doesn’t mean you can’t share a little love with your LinkedIn network. Here are ten ways you can use to get started.

(1) – (3) Like, Comment and/or Share to show the love

When people in your network post statuses on LinkedIn, you can choose to engage by clicking on “Like,” “Comment,” or “Share.” Of course, you can do two and even all three. It’s an easy way to show you care.

(4) Use the LinkedIn mentions feature

LinkedIn rolled out a feature called, “mentions,” in April, 2013. With mentions, you have the ability to easily tag someone by name in LinkedIn, just like you can with the other major social platforms. You may find that this feature proves to be especially useful for starting and continuing conversations, or otherwise communicating directly with people on LinkedIn.

(5) Personalize your invitations to connect

LinkedIn has a standard message when you send an invitation to connect: “I’d like to add you to my professional network on LinkedIn.”

This is nice and all, but not very personal. Taking a couple of seconds to add a personalized message can go a long way. The recipient(s) appreciate your extra effort and probably feel better about accepting your invitation.

(6) Endorse people in your network

LinkedIn introduced endorsement capabilities in September, 2012. This feature allows you to endorse people in your network for skills they list for themselves. If you are certain that someone has the skills they say they have, then endorse away.

(7) Give recommendations

Writing recommendations on LinkedIn is a great way to help former co-workers or colleagues who may be job-hunting, or even just because. When you write recommendations, make sure they are sincere, relevant, and appropriate so they’re truly useful for your recipients.

(8) Get involved in LinkedIn Groups

LinkedIn hosts thousands of groups, meaning you should have no trouble finding at least one you like. Find a group or groups of like-minded people to join and participate in discussions when possible.

(9) Start conversations or share something relevant

Have you just written or read an article or blog post you think your network would like? LinkedIn makes it easy for you to post links to online content or share other information with your network. Post new updates regularly, but respect your followers and be considerate with your posts. Avoid “spamming” or “firehosing,” for example.

(10) Don’t be shy…

Sure, LinkedIn even recommends you only follow people you know well, but why should you limit yourself and your network? If you feel comfortable and want to expand your network then go ahead and invite people to connect and/or accept connections. If necessary, you always have the option to remove them from your network.

So, how do you share and engage on LinkedIn? I’d love to hear the ways and the reasons you use LinkedIn. Please leave comments below or click here to connect with me on LinkedIn.