Linkedin affords professionals, especially artists, to reach, meet and network with other art professionals, that in the past, under normal circumstances, you would never be able to meet and get to know. Artists on Linkedin can meet gallery owners, corporate art reps, interior designers and many other successful art professionals that may eventually help an artist to become more successful.
Today, Linkedin has more than 350 Million registered users and it is still growing. The following are some ideas to follow in order to maximize your time and effectiveness on Linkedin;
Create or Complete Your Profile:
Your profile can make you or break you. A Linkedin profile that has a photo will be viewed 11 x more than a profile that has a blank or default image. Personally, I do not respond or take anyone seriously who has not taken the time to either complete their profile page or the time to upload a photo of themselves. Make your profile a priority and stress your artistic accomplishments and experience.
Connect with People through Groups:
Join groups that are relevant to your art business. Again, your profile will be very important as to whether or not that you will be accepted into that group. If your profile does not show an artistic background, the moderator of that art related group will probably not accept you into the group.
Become an Active Member in Your Groups:
Begin by joining in and participating in group discussions. Thoughtful answers or questions will highlight you as an informed art professional. In addition, you can also “Like” any discussions, posts and comments.
Remember it is Networking Not Selling:
I am always turned off by a person coming into a group, who ignores the group’s mission and tries to sell you something! Who are you? I want to first get to know you, I want to learn more about you and I want to be able to trust you. Networking online is no different than networking in person.
Follow these 10 Online Networking Rules:
- Research a group thoroughly as to their mission, their members and their ongoing discussions and activities. Take the temperature of the group before jumping in and participating.
- Ask questions in the group and when there are answers from group members, stay involved and interact in that discussion to keep things going.
- Do not sell anything. You are in the group to meet and get to know people first and foremost. You are building relationships.
- When commenting on a discussion or question. Watch what you say and how you say it. Stay away from controversial statements, slang and poor use of words. Write the statement out first in a word doc, check it for spelling and sentence structure, then copy and paste into the discussion.
- The people who you meet in a group are the members who you want in your network. They are ones who are there to also help you, as you help them. Then invite them into your network.
- Try to solve problems that other members in the group are having. Help them and you will quickly find many other members who will want you in their network.
- Only connect and network with members in the arts or in the segment of your industry.
- When someone inquires beyond your Linkedin Profile, be prepared with a well thought out “Elevator Pitch” describing you and or your business. Make it concise and interesting to the viewer.
- Whenever there is a group discussion or a group online event, volunteer your thoughts, time and effort. Be a productive member of the group and people will soon know who you are.
- Repeat these steps on a daily basis, with all of the groups that you are member of. Set aside time every day to go through your groups and see what is new and how you can be a dynamic member.
Remember to be a productive and steady member of any of the groups that you belong to. Help others along the way and they will help you when you need it too.