Showing How Social Media Works Beats Selling the Hype

Most companies providing social media solutions are busy selling the statistics and the hype. They’re quoting stats such as the 3 year growth on Facebook, that Dell earned $3 million dollars from using LinkedIn, the number of new LinkedIn members … and so on and on.

Don’t get me wrong, I love statistics. But “how can you use social media to grow your business?” That’s where it gets exciting because most of the tools are free or relatively in-expensive in terms of cost. You just have to be willing to invest the time required to engage and interact.

So while many people are focused on talking about how they can help small businesses, we choose to show small businesses how to do it themselves.  We knew that those who can, will do it themselves, and those that understand the need for social media, but lack the time or resources, will seek to outsource the work.

As a full fledged member of the David clan (small businesses), we continue to help businesses understand how to use the Social Web, making sure they understand the need for a strategy, and the tactics to accomplish their goals and objectives.

In business there is a process of familiarity that most people go through prior to making a purchase. The first step is they have to know that you exist. Next they need to like you or your product or service. Finally they have to have some level of trust. If they know, like, and trust you then you have a shot at earning their business.

Social media provides numerous opportunities to introduce you or your company to other, to capture their attention through sharing content, or build goodwill through being a resource. Continue reading Showing How Social Media Works Beats Selling the Hype

5 LinkedIn Tricks You May Not Know

Most people are familiar with the basic features of LinkedIn such as connecting, groups, answers, applications, etc. There are some cool features that often get missed by the average user.  Here we look at five under-utilized tricks you may not be familiar with.

One of the benefits of writing a book (in my case two books which will be released on June 1st) is that you reacquaint yourself with some features that are not always top of mind.  These five feature won’t make or break your LinkedIn experience but they are useful.  Drum roll please…

Add a You Tube Video to Your Profile

You can do this with either Slideshare or Google Presentation.  My perspective was that Google Presentation was a little faster, but you should try both to see what works for you.

Here is how you would add a video using Google Presentation:

  • Add the Google Presentation application
  • Go into Google Docs and create a new presentation
  • Click on Insert (top link) and click on Video
  • Search for your video on YouTube and choose your video
  • Click on File (top link) and choose Rename – rename your presentation
  • Go back into Google Presentation from your Profile
  • Click on your video and Post to Profile

When the slide show is clicked the video will play. Continue reading 5 LinkedIn Tricks You May Not Know

Some Great LinkedIn Tools

Mondays are my big post day.  I try to post my most relevant post for the week.  If Monday is a good day then the rest of the week is gravy.

This week I was set to post the first Podcast from Linked Intuition, which was to be created on Saturday through my new Podcast show Radio North Fulton.  Unfortunately my cohort Scott Dunn, of Sonar Connects, woke up not feeling well and spent the day on a chicken soup IV.   Hopefully we can reconnect this week and I’ll post it next Monday.

So to keep Monday a good day, today’s topic is LinkedIn related tools and widgets.  You might have heard of some of these.  You might be using some.  But a lot of people are not aware of all of these, so here they are.

Non-LinkedIn Tools

LinkedIn Presence Scoring Tool
Ever wondered how your LinkedIn efforts compare to the average user.  The Linkulator grades your LinkedIn activity on a scale from 0 to 100, and shows you the average score among those who have graded their profile.  The results also include tips on what you can do to improve your score and presence.

Google Alerts to Track Topics
This isn’t a LinkedIn tool but it can be used to track LinkedIn related information.  Set up a Google Alert to track LinkedIn related topics to keep up to date with changes and information about LinkedIn.

Xobni Email Plugin
This Outlook plugin opens a summary window that displays information on each email sender and how you connect to that person.

LinkedIn Tools:

Outlook Toolbar
The Outlook toolbar is an excellent way to have full-time access to your LinkedIn contacts and information even when you are not on the LinkedIn Web site.  The tool integrates your LinkedIn data with Outlook, provider you instant access to en email sender’s profile.

Browser Toolbars (IE & Firefox)
The LinkedIn Browser Toolbar allows you to directly access LinkedIn, it allows you to search from anywhere, and also get the scoop on inside job connections. With easy one-click access to LinkedIn, you can easily see the LinkedIn profiles of everyone sending you Web mail.

Jobs Insider
The Jobs Insider comes with the LinkedIn Browser toolbar.  With it you can see how you connect into a job listing and see how you are connected to the position.  The tool works with Monster, CareerBuilder, HotJobs, Craigslist, SimplyHired, Dice, or Vault

You can request an introduction to the hiring manager, get your resume to the right person, or find out more about the company

LinkedIn Answers & RSS Feeds
Track topics based on keywords and categories in LinkedIn Answers to review and respond to questions posed by other LinkedIn members.  When you look at a category on the right side at the bottom of the Browse box is a text link to “Subscribe to new questions in” whichever category you are currently viewing.

LinkedIn Widgets

Company Insider
Let your users discover how they are connected to companies on your site. You pass a company name and we’ll show how many people the user knows and a few sample names. This widget works great for news sites and blogs, letting readers connect to people at companies you mention. It also works well on jobs sites where job seekers can see who they know at hiring companies. Use it anywhere to inject professional networking into your site.

Profile
Show LinkedIn profiles on your blog, website, or application. The Profile widget shows the public profile of anyone in LinkedIn. Use it to show your own profile on your blog or website. Or use it in your business application to show profiles of people. The Profile widget takes a Public Profile URL and shows the public profile for that person. Your users can then click through to see the full LinkedIn profile page, including how they may be related and communication options.

Share on LinkedIn
Add a Share on LinkedIn link to your website or blog allowing your users to share your content with their LinkedIn connections or networks. This gives your content legs: one user visits your site and can notify literally tens, hundreds, or thousands of others. Works great for news sites, blogs, and other content rich sites.

I would also consider the various LinkedIn applications tools as well.  Down the road I’ll add a post reviewing these but for now you can access them from the LinkedIn site.

Which tools have you found useful?  And what are some LinkedIn tools that I missed that you think everyone should know about?