Grow your network by searching for contacts, or by adding them in bulk with email import.
- [Instructor] Now that you have a solid LinkedIn profile created, you're ready to start connecting with others. One of the great benefits of LinkedIn is how quickly and efficiently you can create a powerful network of connections. LinkedIn is different than other social media platforms though, in that it's meant as a way to connect with people on a more professional level. Connecting with people on LinkedIn is very much about you get what you give. If you connect and add value to your network, expect to see the same come back to you. Now there are several different ways you can find connections. The easiest way is to find a specific person that you want to connect with using the search bar.
So up at the top, I'm going to click in the search bar and I'm going to enter the name of a student I want to connect with. In this case, it's Shad Cayden. You can see here it brings up his name. Now there may be times where it brings up several people with that name and you're obviously going to have to look a little bit deeper to make sure you're connecting with the correct one. In this case, there's only one Shad Cayden, so I'm clicking on his account. Now in his account, you can see right underneath his main profile, there is a blue button which says Connect. I'm going to go ahead and click on that.
Once I do, it brings a pop up box here that says Your invitation is on its way, and then it gives you the ability to Add a note, and this is something that I highly recommend doing. So I'm going to go ahead and click on Add a note and I'm going to type something in here about how I know Shad or why I'd like to connect with him. So now that I've added a personalized message here, I'm going to go to the bottom and click Done. And I've now sent a connect request to Shad.
He'll have to accept that before we'll be connected but I did go ahead and send it. Once I've finished that, I can see other people here that LinkedIn suggests I might want to connect with. LinkedIn does a great job of recommending people who they believe that you'd benefit from connecting with based on information in your profile, including what you do, where you went to school, your interests, and more. Spend some time searching for people that you'd like to connect with. Now you can do this by doing other things such as searching for companies. I'm going to go up to the top and type in KinetEco and let's say I'm interested in working for this company.
I can search their profile here and on here you'll see that it says See all 14 employees on LinkedIn. If I click on that, it shows me a list of the different employees. Now I could go ahead and click on a member if they have an account that is public and able to be seen, and once I do I could connect with them. That may be a good idea. You could also search for people in your industry. In Zachary's case, I'm going to back out here, back to the main page, and I'm going to type in digital marketing. I'll do a search for that and it will bring up the names of people who have digital marketing in their profile.
It may be a good idea to connect with some of these people, or you can also do it by finding people who belong to groups that you've joined. Don't abuse this though by sending out a ton of connection requests to people that you don't know. You want to make sure that any connections are win-win and that you have a valid reason for connecting. If you're sending a connection request to someone you don't know, including a message about why you'd like to connect or how you know them is going to make that person much more likely to connect. Now there is one important thing to know. Users of LinkedIn have the ability to limit who has the ability to connect with them, and you can do this by going up to the top.
I'm going to click on Me, on my profile image here. Go to Settings & Privacy, and then under the Communications tab, there is one that says Who can send invitations. If I click on this, you'll see that I can put Everyone on LinkedIn, Only people who have your email address or appear in your imported contacts, or Only people in your imported contacts. Now it's important to realize that this is the case because there may be times when you're unable to send a connection request to someone, or the platform requires you to enter the person's email address before you can suggest connecting.
In these situations, it's because the person has adjusted these settings to restrict who can connect with them. I'm going to go ahead and search for someone so I'll back out here. And I'm going to search for another member on LinkedIn and that is Jason Hemlock. This is an employee of KinetEco and when I click here, I see that he has the Connect button underneath. And if click on it, I get a pop up saying, Jason's email is required to connect. Now this is because he has this as a setting.
If I don't know Jason's email, I'm unable to send a connection request, so that's something to take note of. One way around this is to send an InMail, which are available with a premium account. InMails allow you to send messages to people you're not connect with. When you purchase a premium account, you receive a certain number of InMails, depending on the type of premium account that you purchase. I'm going to close this out and let's take a look at another way that we can add connections. Now I'm going to go up to the top and click on the My Network link, and when I do this, there'll likely be a couple different places that you can add people from your email contacts.
Right here I can see Add personal contacts and when I click on More options, it brings up a note saying See who you already know on LinkedIn, so you can sync one of your accounts. And here they're suggesting to me, my Gmail account, and what it will do is import any of the contacts that I have in that account, and suggest them as people that I can connect with. In fact, it will send a connection request to those people. Whether or not you want to grant LinkedIn access to your email contacts so that they can customize suggestions is something you'll need to decide on.
For now, I'm not going to do that, but consider this if it's something you feel will be helpful to you. Next, I'm going to go back up to the My Network icon and I'll go ahead and click on this. When I click on it, it brings me to an aggregate page of my network. It shows me any pending invitations that I have and I can decide if I want to accept or ignore them. Here I can see that I actually do have one invitation and it's from a student at Orange Valley University, Freya Terray, and I can either ignore that, or I can accept it. I can see below here that she did include a message.
"Hello Zachary, I've been a classmate of yours "in several marketing classes." So I'm going to go ahead and accept that. And now as you can see, I have my first connection on LinkedIn. From this page you can also scroll down and again connect with people from your contacts, and it will also suggest other people that you may know based on information in your account. Take some time to consider your game plan with regards to connections. Who are the people that you'd like to send connection requests to? And who are people that you want to accept the requests of? Soon you'll begin receiving connection requests and you'll have to decide on who you want to accept them from.
Some people are open connectors, meaning that they'll connect to just about anyone who sends them a request. Other people have a rule about wanting to only connect with people who they personally are close to or know. This really comes down to your preference and what feels right for you. Over time, you'll continuously receive invitations to connect and you'll have to decide on whether or not you want to accept or ignore them. So take a look at your network. Think about the goals that you have when using LinkedIn and decide what feels right in terms of making these connections.
- Creating a LinkedIn profile
- Growing a professional network
- Following companies and influencers
- Sharing updates and articles
- Sending and receiving messages
- Searching for jobs
- Upgrading to LinkedIn Premium
Skill Level Beginner
Q: This course was updated on 10/18/2018. What changed?
A: The following topic was updated: LinkedIn Groups.