So, you’re a budding graphic designer looking to get your name out there. You have a personal website, blog, Facebook page and Twitter handle… What now? Have you thought about creating a profile on LinkedIn?
LinkedIn isn’t just for C-Suite executives and those on the job hunt. Generally, the three most common active LinkedIn users are:
- Job seekers
- Employers looking to hire
- Small business owners
LinkedIn gives you a presence in the graphic design community, but on a strictly professional-development level. If someone is in need of a graphic design service, they will check LinkedIn. This is why you need to be there.
Still unsure of how it works? Here are four ways you can use LinkedIn:
Have you taken a look at LinkedIn? If so, you may have noticed just how many graphic designers currently use this platform. From freelance to full-time and even design business owners, they all use LinkedIn. You can connect with other experts in the industry, pick their brain for ideas, learn about their process or just talk shop.
Never underestimate the power of a strong network. With LinkedIn, you can grow your network beyond the bounds of geography. Who knows where that will take you!
You know how important it is to keep up on design trends. You read blogs, subscribe to newsletters and follow industry experts on Twitter. But what if you could chat with multiple designers, in one place, about where design is going? This is what LinkedIn groups allow you to do.
Rather than reach out to designers individually, you can join a group and network with others like you. This makes it a little easier to make meaningful connections. Need feedback on a new design? Share it with a group and see what people think. Talk about industry trends and issues that only like-minded graphic designers will understand.
Here are some graphic design groups to get you started:
- Designers Talk: Freelance Graphic Design Group
- Graphic Design
- Graphic Design Professional Group
- Graphic Design Professionals
Showcase Your Work
You may have a website to showcase your previous work and portfolio, but no one will see it if you don’t share it with the right people. Making this work easily accessible on LinkedIn will ensure that potential employers or clients can see what you’re capable of.
In addition to getting your work in front of the right people, LinkedIn also hosts your online resume. You can describe, in detail, what you learned from each job you’ve done, and how you carry that forward into future jobs. You already know how to sell yourself, LinkedIn is just another outlet to do so.
Receive Testimonials and Endorsements
Selling yourself is easy, but the sales pitch usually means a lot more when it comes from someone else. On LinkedIn, your connections can write personal recommendations about you that will appear on your profile. When a potential client takes a look at your work, they will see that someone else was happy with it.
Your connections can also give you endorsements. For every skill that you list, someone can endorse you for it. This means that they have seen you demonstrate this skill and will vouch for your ability in this area. After all, it’s one thing to say you can do something, it’s a lot more valuable when someone else says it too.
So if you want to expand your online presence, but are not sure how, LinkedIn should be your next step. It will get you in front of key members of the graphic design community. The rest is up to you.
Are you on LinkedIn? How has it helped your professional life? Tell us your LinkedIn story in the comments below.