If You Want to be in the Media, Be Online and Especially on LinkedIn

September 22, 2011

Like anybody else journalists and reporters have to do more in less time.

When they are looking for information, they use the web a lot (surprise surprise).

However there are some “characteristics” you might be interested in to know about.

These are some findings of the Arketi Web Watch Media Survey (from a blog post on the Marketingcharts website):

– LinkedIn is the most popular social network among business journalists, with 92% having a LinkedIn account (85% Facebook and 83% Twitter).
– Virtually all (98%) journalists read news online, and 91% search for news sources and story ideas.
– Many engage in activities such as social networking (69%) and microblogging (66%), while more than half blog (53%).
– Despite high levels of social network membership, only 44% of journalists obtain story ideas from microblogs, while 39% obtain them from social networking sites.
– 82% of business journalists say a company without a website is less credible, and 81% turn to a company site when they are unable to reach a source.
– 85% call industry experts for breaking news.

What could be the conclusions?

1) You need to be present online with a website, a LinkedIn Profile (personal) and a LinkedIn Company Profile.
2) You could start building relationships with journalists by following them on Twitter and commenting on their blogs, stories (on the website of their magazine) and microblogs/status updates.
3) You need to be where they are when they need an industry expert (fast): on LinkedIn.

To your success !



LinkedIn and other Social Media invite Organizations to Think about Human Relationships

March 23, 2011

Many companies are realizing: LinkedIn and other social media are here to stay, but how can they benefit us as an organization (versus as individuals)?

The answer is: by tapping into the power of the second degree!

In this case the first degree is the management team of an organization (or other central departments like marketing or recruiting).

The second degree: all the employees of the organization.

The task at hand for the “central” unit is to help the rest of the organization by OFFERING them good content for their individual LinkedIn Profiles. When all employees put this content on their Profile their network (and people who visit their Profile) will see this. Do you see the exponential power?

If you want to be successful with this, it’s important to remember that it’s about OFFERING them content, not FORCING it upon them. The latter will create more resistance than gratitude for help.

This is how LinkedIn for example can be beneficial, but this is only the end of a process, not the beginning. And that’s where many organizations drop the ball.

Being successful with social media starts with creating a great working environment in which people are empowered and trusted. Only then organizations will really benefit from the tremendous power of LinkedIn and other social media.

Employees have always been the ambassadors of an organization.
In the past it was at parties with friends, in the gym and in the pub. Now it is also on the Internet, which makes it more visible. The latter makes organizations that are more hierarchical or “dictatorial” nervous. They are loosing control over their “slaves”.

LinkedIn and other social media invite organizations to look inside again and work on human relationships first. They invite organizations to rethink why these people are working together and how the talents of each individual can be recognized and allowed to show and grow for the greater good of the organization.

In other words the “new” media invite us to connect with each other again as the wonderful, talented and inspired human beings we are and to invite each other to live up to our potential.

And isn’t that what it has always been and always will be about?

To your success !


The Bank of Facebook

April 7, 2010

Social and business networking are changing the world.

Watch this video to hear Thomas Power’s look on what one of Facebook’s benefits/features might be and which consequences it might have.

Track The Response To Your Tweets and Status Updates in LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Plaxo and other Social Media

January 13, 2010

Status updates and Tweets are a perfect medium to share tips, experiences and useful information with other people from our networks.

Since these updates and Tweets are limited in length, most of us have to refer to a blog post or article on a website and use a tool to shorten these URL’s.

Tools like Bitly (also integrated in Tweetdeck, one of the best tools to deal with Twitter) and TinyURL are used a lot (for more examples see this blog post about URL Shorteners).

While these tools are very handy to save some space, they don’t show you how many people have clicked on them. Of course you can use Google Analytics or another web analytics tool when you point at your own websites.

So I was very happy to recently have discovered another tool that does this. It is called Tr.im. And it is free!

If you are interested in knowing how many people are following your advice and click on the URL’s in your Tweets and status updates, use this tool.

To your success !


PS: this is just one of the tools that you can use. If you are interested in more tools, read my book How to REALLY use LinkedIn (of in het Nederlands: Hoe LinkedIn nu ECHT gebruiken). Download your FREE light version first to be sure you will be happy with your purchase.

LinkedIn – Twitter integration: pros and cons

December 9, 2009

Last month LinkedIn integrated Twitter on the Profile page and on the Home Page.

Before you get too excited (or wonder what to do with it), I want to share some thoughts with you.

Pros of the Twitter integration:

– When someone looks at your Profile and likes it, they immediately can click on your Twitter ID and start following you. This is a benefit because sometimes it is hard to find someone on Twitter (despite the search engine). Why? Not everybody uses their own name or when they do they don’t always use the same picture as on LinkedIn (and then try to figure out which John Smith it is). Of course most of the times it is not so hard to do, but all shortcuts that make our life easier are good.

– You only have to post something once, instead of posting it on Twitter and then go to LinkedIn and post the same message there again. Again it makes our life easier.

Cons of the Twitter integration:

– Some topics people post on Twitter are pretty personal. Not everybody on a professional networking website is interested in them (and sometimes it is better that they don’t know what their connections are posting; that being said: be aware that everything you post online might be found by your professional contacts so always think before you write!)

– Twitter has another pace than LinkedIn. Some people tweet 20 times a day. LinkedIn has a much slower pace and people use it in a different way. This sometimes frustrates younger people who like the speed of Facebook and Twitter more. But remember it is a website for professional networking. And that has another pace, whether you like it or not.

Solution to benefit from the advantages, but avoid the disadvantages:

As I wrote in my book “How to REALLY use LinkedIn” (free light version available in English and Dutch) there are free services that allow you to post to different websites at once (so it is not limited to LinkedIn and Twitter, but also Facebook, Plaxo, MysSpace and many others).

For every message you post, you can tick off/on the websites where you want it to appear, giving you more control and save some time as well.

These are examples of such services:




To your (social) networking success !


I’m on LinkedIn but I still don’t get a customer or a job offer

November 15, 2008

Nowadays many people are member of an online business network like LinkedIn, Ecademy, Xing, Facebook or one of the many others.

When the topic of online business networks comes to the table, there are always people who say: “These networks don’t work, I haven’t got any customer via LinkedIn.” Or “Why doesn’t anybody offer me a job. My profile states that I’m open for a new one.”

And then you see other people nod their head affirming what was just said.

But when I ask them to how many people they have reached out to themselves, how many people they have contacted to buy something from them or how many people they offered a job, they all remain silent.

Some even say: “I don’t have time to do that!”

That’s OK. But don’t expect other people to take the actions you won’t do yourself!
Besides do they really call themselves a “member”?

In my opinion they are not a member, they just have a profile.
Let’s compare it with a membership of an organisation. What do members do?

They interact with other members. They listen to others and they answer questions about themselves. In this way they get to know each other and increase their KNOW-factor.
They help the other members by giving them tips and connecting them with other members or with people from outside the organisation. And they do that without expecting anything in return. In this way they “add points” to their LIKE-factor.
They help the organisation through volunteering and sharing their own knowledge and expertise. In this way the TRUST-factor increases.

If you only pay a membership fee, but never show up, nothing much will happen.

And even if you show up, but remain seated on a chair in a corner, also not much will happen either. 
The same kind of dynamics apply to online networking. So here are some tips:

1) Making your profile is the first step.
2) Put enough information in your profile so that other people can find you and notice you, even if you are not proactive yourself.
3) Reach out to people. Start conversations.
4) Join groups and forums and bee active in them. Answer questions and post your own questions. Help people and give them the opportunity to help you.
5) Connect people with each other. When you think it would be beneficial for two people to know each other, be proactive and introduce them to each other.
6) Answer questions in your field of expertise to develop your image as an expert in your field.

By doing these actions you will create more visibility and credibility. Your Know, Like and Trust Factor will increase.

And what will happen next is probably not what you think that might happen: that the people you interact with become your customer or offer you a job. They probably won’t. But what they will do, is talk about you to their network, resulting in many more customers or job offers.

Online networking, just like “normal” networking, takes some time, but after the initial investment period it will bring much larger benefits in the long run.

Have a great networking day !


PS: feel free to connect with me on LinkedIn, Ecademy, Xing or Facebook. Make sure to make your invitation to connect personal ! I don’t accept the standard invitations messages.

Jan Vermeiren, founder of Networking Coach and author of the networking book Let’s Connect (including a bonus Online Networking Power Pack wit a 10 step online networking strategy)

How to deal with the flood of LinkedIn invitations in only a few minutes?

September 27, 2008

If you are a member of LinkedIn, Ecademy, Xing, Facebook or other platforms where you can network with others, you will have experienced that you send almost the same message over and over again. For example when someone wants to connect to you or when you want to connect to someone. If you have a large network this might consume lots of your time.

Lifehacker Bert Verdonck showed me a neat and free tool that can help to deal with this. The tool is called Texter.

By the way, lifehackers are people who are looking for ways to simplify their and our lives.

What does Texter do?

It gives you the opportunity to link chuncks of texts with “hotstrings”.

For example if someone I have never heard of sends me an invitation on LinkedIn, I type “linkedin-res” (which is my own hotstring for “LinkedIn response”) and automatically the following text pops up.


thank you for your invitation to connect !

Unfortunately I meet so many people that I don’t always can “put the name and face together”.

Can you help me by reminding me where we met?

Thanks and … have a great networking day !


By the way, this is actually true, so it is not just a trick. Despite the fact that I can remember people pretty well, I meet lots and lots of people so sometimes it happens that when they remind me where we met I remember them.

So the only thing I have to do is to add the name of the person who contacted me to the text. It can be a huge timesaver! By the way, ALWAYS personalize your invitations, responses and other messages (see also a previous post about this subject).

And another sidenote 🙂 When I show this in presentations or training courses, people ask me if I connect with everybody. No, I don’t. The people I don’t know I send the message above. And then it depends on their answer if I connect with them or not. People who don’t respond, obviously don’t get a positive response from me.

Of course you can use this technology also for other tasks than online networking, like answering e-mails or giving information.

Actually you can use Texter for any text you need to type in more than once and is more than a few words. It will save you LOTS of time !

Read more about Texter, download it for free and experience how you save minutes and maybe even hours a day.

On the Networking Coach website you can find more networking and referral tools that can make your life easier.

For other lifehacking tips, see Bert Verdonck’s weblog or the Lifehackers’ website.

Have a great networking day !


Founder of Networking Coach and networking speaker

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