HABIT 2: Embrace Social Media to Nurture Connections
HABIT 1: Ask Great Questions
Social media platforms provide us with invaluable tools to keep abreast of what our connections are doing, and to provide value for them. From congratulating contacts on new jobs, to sharing articles on industry trends, these platforms enable us to scale as connectors. Scaling and staying top of mind are the real network benefits of LinkedIn and Twitter.
Here are ways to nurture the network you’re building with social media:
- Have a focus: Know thyself. Know your professional passions and areas of expertise—and learn to share them. This clarity helps you focus your profile and status updates. For me, I share updates from the perspective of an Irish woman living in New York working in a marketing leadership role. An important caveat: while it is very useful to have a clear focus, it is also wise to be open to serendipity and to not cast your news sources or your network too narrowly. It’s worth keeping the 80-20 rule in mind—80% of your activity may be highly focused and the other 20%, random in nature.
- Be consistent: Consistency is critical to using social networks well. For most people that means at least one update every day on your networks of choice. Your social media activity should not consume your day, and it doesn’t have to. There are a number of integrated features, from Twitter lists to the LinkedIn Contacts app, that will help you keep on top of your social networks and easily manage them every day.
- Integrate social into your workday: Carve out time during each day to check your social media feeds, and engage your connections. I check my LinkedIn Contacts alerts on my commute every morning, and send congratulations to connections that have taken on new roles. It takes me fewer than five minutes to do this. In addition, I carve out time each week to sent “thank yous” to those who have shared content with me or re-tweeted my posts. When do you check your favorite news sources? If you read the news first thing in the morning, take advantage of tools like HootSuite to schedule your tweets to be posted throughout the day.
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