They say we spend 30 percent of our lives working, so it is only natural that we put our professional connections to good use. LinkedIn is a social networking site for professionals who want to connect with people in their industry, or the industry they want to be part of. It’s a great platform that can help businesses connect with potential partners and patrons in a targeted and professional manner. Just like any other social media networking site, influence on LinkedIn matters. You have to have a sizeable number of followers in order to impress some of the big shots you'd want to attract on the platform. Below, we run down some of the most powerful tips for growing your LinkedIn following. Make those connections matter with these effective strategies. Image credit: BusinessOnline360

Image credit: BusinessOnline360

Get Your Company Name On As Many Profiles As You Can

You can’t turn heads if people within your industry don’t know of your company’s existence. Ask your employees to list your business name on their profile so that their connections can hear about you. By putting your name on as many profiles as you can, you increase your visibility on the platform - which is great news for your SEO. Remember, your employees are your best brand advocates - be sure to make use of them!

Optimize your LinkedIn Page for Search Engines

If you type in a general job position on Google, search results will be populated with LinkedIn profiles. What does this mean for you? Well, this just goes to show that there are a number of ways you can optimize your profile and gain organic traffic from search engines. Image credit: LinkedIn Pulse

Image credit: LinkedIn Pulse

One of the first things you have to do is claim your custom URL. This is the easiest change you can make to your profile to drastically increase your chances of ranking as high as possible on as many SERPs as possible. linkedin-customization

Image credit: Hongkiat Blog

Another good tip to keep in mind is using focused and descriptive job titles. This can further improve your chances of gaining traffic through organic search. linkedin-career-titles

Image credit: LinkedIn Pulse

Make People Want to Learn More About You

Just like on any other social networking site, you have to pique people’s interest. Create a profile people will be interested enough to click on. Below are some areas in your LinkedIn profile that can be tweaked in order to attract more clicks:

Your Headshot

This is probably one of the first things people see about you. Find the balance between interesting and serious without being unprofessional. linkedin-profile-pic Companies and businesses are encouraged to use a high-quality version of their logo that scales well on various devices. Doing so will help improve brand awareness, and will ensure that people associate you with professionalism.

Your Career Summary

LinkedIn now allows you to add documents and pictures directly into your career summary. Use this to paint a more vibrant picture of your skills and experiences.

Other Profile Features

Use as many of the available features as possible. Upload videos, pictures, documents and anything that could help you present yourself to possible connections in the best light. Image credit: KO Marketing Blog

Image credit: KO Marketing Blog

Engage with Current Followers and Potential Connections

Despite being more career-oriented, LinkedIn is still a social networking site and you can gain more followers by being as engaging as you can. Log on frequently and pay attention to notable posts from your connections. Leaving relevant comments on other people’s updates will make you more visible, not only to the person you are engaging with but also to their network, as well. Image credit: SocialMediaExaminer

Image credit: SocialMediaExaminer

When sending out contact requests, personalize them as much as you can. Definitely don’t just send the auto-filled connection request message. Keep in mind that LinkedIn users are more picky when it comes to people they connect with than on other networks, because they use it for a serious purpose - to advance their career. Take the time to craft unique and concise contact requests that will prove you are worth connecting with.

Purchase High-Quality Connections

Having an initial set of high-quality connections can help you get the ball rolling as soon as possible. This is an efficient way to build a more impressive-looking profile without having to wait on the painstakingly slow process of organic growth. Be sure to buy from high-quality providers, who will offer connections from users who look totally real: screen-shot-2016-12-29-at-40506-pm To help make it even easier for you, we test and review providers of LinkedIn connections and endorsements. Be sure to check them out before purchasing followers to make sure your campaign is all set up for success.

It’s All About Promotion

Utilize all of your social media platforms to promote your LinkedIn account. This way, people you already know can connect with you. Image credit: Hongkiat Blog

Image credit: Hongkiat Blog

This is a quick and easy way to grow your following on all of your social networks. People who already know you will be more inclined to connect with you on other platforms, growing your network on each one. You never know what benefits might come from adding a Facebook friend to LinkedIn, or vice versa.

Put Out Great Content

LinkedIn allows you to publish blogs for all your professional connections to see. Use this to provide indispensable and relevant content, making it clear that you have some interesting opinions to share. 7-management-traits The blog post pictured above, 7 Management Traits That Will Make All Your Employees Quit, has reached over 600,000 views. LinkedIn really is a community of professionals who want to get better at what they do, and they’ll take the time to read worthwhile content. People on the internet are already bombarded with every marketing ploy known to mankind from the moment they log in. Take the higher road and provide them with valuable information, and they’ll see you as a worthwhile connection who won’t waste their time.

Get Into the Numbers

If you’re serious about growing your presence on LinkedIn, you have to track your progress over time. Being familiar with how LinkedIn Analytics works will help you determine the stronger and weaker points in your growth campaign, and what you can do to improve. linkedin-analytics

Image credit: The Next Web

You’ll be able to evaluate each engagement tactic, and see the effect it has on your page traffic. It may take some time, but eventually you’ll be able to read those charts and graphs with no problem. Learn more about your Company Page Analytics by checking out this tutorial.

Develop a Strategy and Run with It

Growing a following requires a solid strategy that can help you get the right kind of attention you need from the right set of people. Success on a platform like LinkedIn doesn’t happen overnight. You have to invest enough time understanding how your profile performs and what your connections want. There are a number of ways you can grow a following on LinkedIn but these strategies must be used in combination with each other for maximum success. Growing a following through organic methods alone is pretty tough - that’s why buying LinkedIn connections and endorsements is a viable option. You must remain consistent in your strategy in order to prevent your numbers from stagnating. Acquiring followers doesn’t mean automatic success, but if you keep those numbers up eventually you’ll hit on some great connections that will push your career forward. It’s all a matter of time. jay-z