LinkedIn has a valuable section that lets you establish expertise. I am referring to LinkedIn Answers. Folks go to LinkedIn Answers, navigate to the section most appropriate for their question, type the question and submit it to the pool of questions. Other LinkedIn users review questions, volunteer responses and wait for a grade. The person who asked the question can review the answers, label some of them as “Good” and then label one of those as the “Best Answer.” LinkedIn tracks how often users have provided “Best Answers” and presents that information under the column heading “Experts.”
I am amazed how many talented and professional people volunteer their wisdom at LinkedIn Answers. They do it knowing that the more times they are cited for a “Best Answer,” the higher the number next to their name when LinkedIn lists the experts in a particular category. I have two examples to show how this works.
I went to LinkedIn Answers, navigated to Business Development > Advertising and asked a question. I asked: I am looking to expand in a neighboring market (San Francisco Bay Area). Should I get an additional phone number with a local area code, or should I get an 800 number? Which will help build more credibility with locals?
Some users responded quickly and asked if I was targeting Business to Business or Business to Consumer? I responded: This will definitely be B2B. I want to promote my Internet marketing services to folks in the San Francisco Bay Area. Promoting my number from the Sacramento suburbs might not carry enough weight. Hope this helps.
Nine people responded. The answer Rick Schwartz provided was not only good but I felt his was the best and therefore I cited it as the Best Answer. When people find a list of Business Development experts, Rick Schwartz will be on that list. This worked for Rick.
It also works for me. I was perusing LinkedIn Answers one day and found Karen A. Taylor’s question in the Small Business section: As a solopreneur or small business owner, what is your biggest challenge right now? I responded: Balance. You have three main tasks and must balance them all.
1. Working ON your business. This would include your marketing, strategizing and deciding what technologies you want to learn vs. what you feel won’t help. Your decision to learn LinkedIN would qualify as working ON your business.
2. Working IN your business. This would include arranging your office, sending/receiving e-mail and doing billable work.
3. This is not from Michael Gerber…maintaining your personal life. I tell people I have a life, a dream wife and a dog. That helps me show I have a life and also punch out from work occasionally. It’s OK to let clients, customers and prospects know you have a life, spouse, kids, hobbies and/or pets. It may even help you build a stronger connection.
You need a good balance. Too much work and no play will create burnout. Too much play and too little work will leave you broke and your customers looking for someone else. Too much time IN the business and too little ON the business will leave you selling services clients can perform in-house or find unnecessary.
Karen selected this as the Best Answer to this question. Are your LinkedIn answers visible to all LinkedIn users? Yes. Are your LinkedIn answers indexed by Google and therefore eligible to appear in a search results window? Yes
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