Today has become an era of social networking websites. They are not only popular but these websites prove to be a best platform to stay connected with everyone around the globe. LinkedIn is one of the most popular social networking websites; however, what makes this networking website different from others is that it is a professional networking website. You might have an account on LinkedIn already but are you making the right use of it?
Like every other networking website, Linked in has changed a lot too hence introducing new applications and various features to help professionals in achieving their goals. If you are a designer, this article can help you a lot in revamping your profile completely and different ways to find new clients and maintain a good relationship with the existing ones. Since you can find pages especially dedicated to designers, it will be a lot of easier for you to stay connected with people in the relevant field and learn something new. The next time you need a business card printing order, include your LinkedIn details in your business card layout. It can help build up your network quickly.
How it all started?
Every thing has its own history and same goes for LinkedIn. LinkedIn was introduced almost 8 years back in 2003. The main concept of linked in was to give business community a platform to stay connected professionally as other networking websites are for social and personal usage. Initially it was compared with job websites as people were not really able to differentiate. People need to understand the difference between LinkedIn and job search websites. LinkedIn is mainly to build healthy relationship with other professionals and does not offer proper platform for searching a job.
As a LinkedIn user you can always discuss about what’s latest in business world and if there are any openings in your organization, you can discuss about them with other professionals as well. You won’t be allowed to make your contact information viewable to everyone but you can certainly find ways to connect to people and give people a way to get connected to you.
As LinkedIn faces a lot of competition with other social networking websites, the developers of LinkedIn have been working on their toes to come up with new and exciting applications which would be of professional’s interest. Now, if you are a web designer, we can provide you with a few tips to update your LinkedIn profile and make some new contacts and get new projects.
Update Your LinkedIn Profile as a Designer
It doesn’t matter if you are freelance designer involved in making smaller articles of design like calendars, flyers, brochures, posters, postcards or business cards, or if you are an employed designer making bigger advertising campaigns, you can always use LinkedIn to promote yourself and your creativity.
The most important thing to start off with is to complete your LinkedIn profile as profiles which are 100% completely are likely to appear on the top of the searches. In your LinkedIn profile you will have to mention your current job and two of your previous experiences. It also gives people an option to write recommendations for you. This feature works like testimonials and professionals who have worked with you can mention their experiences with you in recommendations.
In order to complete your profile, upload a professional picture of yours in your LinkedIn account; update your education, professional summary and skills/specializations. Once you are done with updating your profile do make sure that it says ‘100% complete’ on the right hand side of your editing page.
The most important thing that you need to keep in mind while updating your professional summary is using relevant keywords to your field. If you are a graphic designer or a web designer, make sure you use keywords that revolves around your field for instance, freelance designer, logo designer, web artist etc. Also, LinkedIn provides an option to create your own URL for your profile and it would make searching you a lot easier.
Regular Update on New Applications and other Developments
In order to move with the time, LinkedIn too is making changes and developing new applications to make the website more interesting for the people. Such applications are a great way to provide more information about yourself and since you are a designer, your profile should be an example of your creativity. LinkedIn gives you an application to create your own portfolio and this is the best way to let people know about how creative you are.
There are a lot of other applications and procedures that have been introduced to make lives of designers easy. For instance, a designer friend of got to know about a new technique of printing. So he used LinkedIn to spread the word about it. Therefore, all you need to do is a little bit of exploring here and there and LinkedIn has a lot of interesting applications to offer to you such as Slide Share presentations etc.
Introducing New Sections
It is human nature to get bored easily and this is why even on websites people are always looking for something new and interesting. This is exactly why LinkedIn has come up with a lot of new sections to give your professional profiles a whole new dimension. There is a separate section where you can add your work if it has been published somewhere. You will also have a section to mention your fluency in different languages. Not only this, there have been separate sections designed to specify your skills, certificates and patents.
Once you have mentioned all of this on your profile, you can pretty much imagine how impressive your profile will appear to another professional. Not every website gives you an opportunity to show off your skills, abilities and your achievements.
Join Groups and Participate in Discussions
Groups are considered to be one of the best features of LinkedIn. People belonging to different walks and professions of life can simple search for the group relevant to their field and interact with people of the same interest. You can even create your own group. You can normally join a group without any issues but for a few groups you might need to provide additional information or any professional association.
If you join various groups, you will be able to contact members without any issues and this way you can always increase your professional circle and you can get to know people are in the same field as yours.
Improvement in Privacy Settings
If we have to talk about best features of LinkedIn, privacy settings are one of them. They have recently made a great improvement in their privacy settings. Other than this, analytics and recommend button are among the new features introduced by this professional website. They are working on implementing some new and more informative features on the website and lot of them are developer and are being tested by QA department.
LinkedIn can be considered the best platform to introduce yourself, as a professional to other professionals. This can be your perfect representation as a professional. All you need to do is work a little hard on updating your profile. As you must have read, LinkedIn has a lot of features and applications to offer to you as a user in general, and a professional, in particular. In coming months there will be a lot of improvement in the website so you need to use it on regular basis to stay updated with what’s next and latest.
If you want to stay updated on the news and views regarding your own professional field, you can subscribe to LinkedIn blog, where you can also get information on latest happening on LinkedIn. Not only this, you join fan pages or follow LinkedIn on Facebook and Twitter. So, create a profile, get active on LinkedIn and start interacting with other designers to learn more and to get new projects as well. Get noticed as a professional!