With the launch of WACAC’s LinkedIn group last month, you may have been wondering what this whole LinkedIn thing is all about. It’s a professional networking social media site. When I finally joined Facebook in 2007, after assuming all social media was mindless, it was because someone explained it to me as the “MySpace for grown-ups”. In 2014, I’d call LinkedIn the “Facebook for grown-ups”.

If you’ve never set up an account at www.linkedin.com before, you absolutely should! If you have a LinkedIn account but haven’t joined the WACAC group yet, please join us at http://bit.ly/wacaclinkedin! For both those experienced and new to LinkedIn, I’d like to offer you five tips to engage with more colleagues on the professional social media site.

  1. Add a picture. We’re drawn to photos, and we want to know who we’re talking to. Such is the nature of online activity. You don’t have to be all glammed up; a simple picture clearly identifying your face is just fine for the purposes of LinkedIn.
  2. Add relevant profile details. Perhaps the biggest advantage of LinkedIn over Facebook is the ease with which you can find professionals by occupation and employers, past and present. Add employers, job titles, and colleges attended. You can also add skills, such as Admissions Counseling and Student Financial Aid. You and your colleagues can endorse each other for these skills. Going to LinkedIn today? Endorse five people while you’re there!
  3. Join and participate in groups. Nice plug for the WACAC group, right? Joining a group instantly widens your network of potential LinkedIn connections. When you like or comment on discussion posts, or even post discussions yourself, other group members can discover who you are and what interests you professionally. For our profession, I also recommend LinkedIn’s Higher Education site at www.linkedin.com/edu, which makes it easy for you and your students to learn about and follow colleges and their students/alumni on LinkedIn.
  4. Post responsibly. I don’t need to belabor this point. As with any social media platform, the language, tone, and content in your posts reflect who you are. Keep it clean!
  5. Have fun. You’re on “Facebook for grown-ups” now. Connect with your colleagues, make new connections, and enjoy your experience!

By Tony Losongco