Post by Blog Manager Robbi Hess
As pet bloggers who are serious about connecting with professionals in the pet world and who want to forge business connections, I believe it’s crucial to have a presence on LinkedIn. Yes, I know there are many social media platforms you should keep up with: Facebook, Google+, Twitter, the BlogPaws Community and any number of other professional networking groups that you are involved in, but I think LinkedIn should be part of your social media strategy.
Why should you use LinkedIn? It is a business-oriented social media platform as compared to Facebook which is more social. There are also more than 240 million active users and many of those users are corporate brands. Pet bloggers looking to extend their blogging reach and perhaps become a paid blogger it pays to make connections and form relationships in the areas in which brands may be congregating.
Here are my top five LinkedIn tips for the pet blogger:
- Build a strong profile. Make certain your “headline” contains terms that make you searchable — yes, think SEO for your LinkedIn profile headline. For example: Pet Blogger, Pet Food Reviewer, Lifestyle Blogger, Editor, etc. whatever you want to be found for should be in your profile headline.
- Build your “resume.” You’ll notice that LinkedIn is more in-depth in your current and past professional endeavors as well as your education, organizations to which you belong and skills you possess. Use content rich words to describe who you are and what you do. Use words and phrases that are a part of your particular industry or niche. If you have a blog and a brand, make certain you use that in your profile aka resume to let potential business connections see why they need to be part of your network.
- Your summary. Make sure the summary aka background words under your profile are vibrant, content rich and clearly spell out who you are. Consider this your tagline. The first few lines of text in your background are the first few lines of text aka the first impression you will have on someone who is checking you out as a possible connection. Remember, these words aren’t written in stone, you can go back in and update or enhance them when you change direction in your pet blogging business.
- Put your best face forward. Make certain you have a clear, crisp professional photo for your LinkedIn profile. Just as you wouldn’t likely connect with someone on Twitter whose profile picture is “the egg,” neither will you be taken seriously on LinkedIn if you don’t have a profile picture. If you’re presenting yourself as a pet blogger you can certainly have your pet in the picture with you, but make sure you are in the picture… not just your pet.
- Ask for recommendations. If you’re on LinkedIn and have made connections with people who know who you are and what you do, ask for a recommendation. That said, do not send a blanket request to 200 connections to ask for a recommendation — yes, LinkedIn will let you do that. Send individual requests with a personal note. If you want to be known for a specific niche you can ask in your recommendation request, “Could you please recommend me for the work we did together on the recent fundraising event and make note of the organizational skills I brought to the table. Thank you!”
As with any of your social media platforms, make certain you spend at least a few minutes a day checking on what your connections are doing, commenting on status updates and endorsing those with whom you are connected. Yes, LinkedIn is yet another task to add to your already overflowing social media plate and while LinkedIn may not have the most active users compared to other social media sites, it is a place where brands gather. If connecting and building a relationship with brands is your ultimate goal, I hope to see you there!
(Photo Shutterstock Bulldog in Business Clothes)