LinkedIn success: Expanding your network

Now you’ve built your profile for the ultimate success, you’re ready to begin finding connections in earnest.

It’s a commonly asked question: “Who should and shouldn’t I connect with?”. There’s no one-size-fits-all answer, but the simple question to ask yourself when faced with a connection opportunity is “are they going to do me any harm?”.  If the answer is no, then it’s a good idea to connect.

The main reason for this is that the more connections you have, the further your message will spread. LinkedIn offers a wonderful advantage that you have three ‘tiers’ ofconnections:

• 1st degree connections are those to whom you are directly connected
• 2nd degree connections are the connections of your connections (but not directly connected to you)
• 3rd degree connections are the connections of your 2nd degree connections

What this means for you is that when one of your connections interacts with you (accepts your connection invite, likes or comments or any post or update from you etc) then all of their connections (i.e. your 2nd degree connections) will see it too.

This means you have a huge opportunity to network successfully, and as you connect with more users, your wider network will grow disproportionately larger!

The best place to start is with your current contacts. Begin searching directly for everyone you already have contact with, such as your customers and prospects. These should be your main targets.

Then, as you go through your day, save a list of people to connect with and you’ll soon find your list growing.

If you’ve built your profile well (as outlined in our previous posts) then you should be a very attractive proposition that your target audience will want to connect with. But don’t leave it to chance – it’s strongly recommended that you personalise your connection message and also remember to thank them for connecting once they’ve accepted your invitation.

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