Who Should You Connect With on LinkedIn and Why?

Who Should You Connect With on LinkedIn and Why?

By now, everyone knows what rookie mistakes to avoid and the type of profile picture needed on LinkedIn.

But what about who you should connect with?

Inviting thousands of professionals to connect may seem like a smart idea on the face of things, but there’s a high probability that it’s not benefiting your career progression in the slightest.

The key to finding the right people to connect with on LinkedIn is to only consider “like-minded people”.

Creating opportunities for employment is all about engaging with different people from various backgrounds, but with the same mindset.

If you find yourself constantly asking yourself, why do I want to see that post?

Or thinking, “Oh shut up” when you see a connection comment on something, you need to reconsider your strategy.

To give you an idea of who you should connect with on LinkedIn and why, here’s a complete guide.

Old colleagues

You’ll be surprised by the benefits of staying in touch with your old colleagues.

Make the right impression and you might get referred to a position further down the line.

Employee referral schemes are on the up, so you can join your old work chum on their way to the top.

And let’s face it, starting a new role is always a lot easier when you know someone who works there.

Or you may need a way of introducing yourself to a 2nd connection.

If your old colleagues have a big presence on LinkedIn, they’re bound to have a few contacts that can benefit your career.

They can act as the stepping stone to open up fresh possibilities.

It’s a case of playing the long-game and having these contacts there when you need them most.

People you meet

No, I’m not talking about Tinder dates or John Smith from your local pub.

I’m referring to the people you’ve met at networking events or industry conferences.

Not only will connecting cement your relationship with them, but It’s also handy if you run out of business cards and need them to remember who you are!

Just get them to take out their phones and send the invite immediately.

The beauty of connecting with people from networking events and conferences is that you’ve already got a flavour of whether you like them or not.

They can’t hide behind emails or phone calls, it’s a personal experience you can use to judge a character.

You can then follow-up by dropping them a line on LinkedIn to ask any additional questions or see if they fancy setting up a call.

The connectors

As I mentioned earlier, old colleagues can come in very handy when you want to branch out and communicate with a connection of interest.

When I say “The connectors”, I’m talking about the people and organisations who know a lot of people in your industry.

For instance, a member of the local Chamber of Commerce.

Their team will have regular contact with businesses who need new recruits.

Having these kinds of people pop up on your feed will present an array of opportunities.

It only takes them to like one recruitment post or to comment on the status of a hiring manager at your dream company to appear on your feed.

You’re effectively giving yourself exclusive access to more relevant people and improving the odds of finding a top paying job.

Recruiters

The next people who you should connect with on LinkedIn are recruiters.

Once again, they’re a source of networking and will post/share job ads you might be interested in on a daily basis.

However, it’s worth doing your research into their area of expertise before you hit “Connect”.

For example, if you’re a graphic designer searching for permanent positions, but the recruiter specialises in content and freelancing roles – they’re not worth adding to your network.

Their area of expertise must benefit you in some shape or form.

Otherwise, your feed will be littered with irrelevant job ads all the time!

Close friends and family

The final type of people you should connect with on LinkedIn is your friends and family.

While this won’t directly benefit you in your job hunt, they can help you promote and boost your presence when you need it.

Generating likes on LinkedIn isn’t always easy.

Although, with the help of your friends and family, you can make sure your posts attract a few.

In turn, this will ensure your post takes priority over other recent ones, in accordance with LinkedIn’s very strange algorithm.

Final thoughts

The main thing to remember is that LinkedIn is a space for creating opportunities and strengthening relationships, not a popularity contest.

If you want to progress your career, you need to keep your profile organised and relevant at all times.

You should follow the quality over quantity rule – only connecting with professionals who are useful to your career development.

Once you figure out who you need to connect with, the rest will all fall in place.

Good luck!

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