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LinkedIn: social networking to get noticed

AJP By Amanda Ponzar

Whether you're a nonprofit business or individual you almost don't exist if you're not online and in social networks.

A few weeks ago, a nonprofit development director asked if I could help raise her profile on LinkedIn. You know the world's about to end when Amanda Ponzar becomes a social media guru. When I first started using LinkedIn three years ago, I didn't post a profile photo because "it could fall into the wrong hands." I quickly realized I don't get to choose whether or not I'm online, but I can be proactive about controlling my information.

LinkedIn_logo_1 Fast forward to 2010, and I'm a LinkedIn junkie, networking out the ying-yang which benefits me personally (five recruiter calls this year) and helps advance United Way's work and recognize our corporate partners. No offense to Facebook with its 500 million users, but I'm just not that interested in posting personal weekend plans or reconnecting with high school crushes. "This is business not personal" to quote The Godfather.

My five LinkedIn Tips:

  • Get to know people in the real world (volunteer, attend association events like AMA, PRSA, Chamber of Commerce, etc.) to build your network.
  • See who you already know on LinkedIn (LinkedIn can do it automatically if you enter your personal email), and ask for recommendations.
  • Complete your profile with employer names so former business associates can link to you.
  • Share news, research, tips or job postings on your network activity update. Include links. Post what YOU would want to read.
  • Join groups and respond to other posts.

One of the best nonprofit social media experts I know is Heather Mansfield at DIOSA Communications, who I heard earlier this year at HandsOn Network's LEAD Summit. Heather has a knack for social media and trains nonprofits nationwide. Check out her LinkedIn tips for nonprofits (or any organization). Plus, I asked Heather where women excel in social media. Her response?

Linkedin motivation 1.) Women are friendlier online, thus they tend to be better at building online community. Men are often too combative and argue. Some men could actually learn a lot from women when it comes to building and nurturing an online community -- if they can check the ego at the door and just listen.

2.) Women in general know how and when to use :) (smile icon).

3.) Women's ability to multi-task makes them excellent social media managers because you have to be running 5-10 profiles on a daily basis.

So, get out there. Read, succeed, create, think, do -- and make sure people know about it. Why not get started by commenting on this post?


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Thanks for sharing the useful information. By the way I reside in Pittsburgh & I am an engineer. I work for a company but I am looking for change. I did research online & found Key Environmental Inc . It is the best company for employees & one of the top places for work in Pittsburgh. Is there anyone belong to Key Environmental Inc? Any information about this company is greatly appreciated.


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Susan Greene

Fast forward to 2012 and I am finally ready to step into my perceived "oh so intimidating" world of blogging and what you wrote about in this post was essentially going to be my first topic! And, I was going to give you a "shout-out" noting your persistence with trying to get me to write something for lip-sticking (including offering to ghost write for me!!). So, first toe in the water per your parting thought- I am commenting on this post (I know 2 years later but we can celebrate my baby steps!!). Be on the lookout for my blog post next week on the new Clarity blog. Now back to the drawing board on the topic....

stan wardsworth

Perfectly practical and thought-out advice!

feel free to link with me via FB - - or - linkedin -

I'll be sure to support you! Keep doing what you're doing! Thanks!

PS Not exactly sure about the man piece :-)



Sorry it took so long to respond... I was busy sparing with guys on LinkedIn. No... just kidding. :)

As far as when to smile online, I just feel it when I am writing. If I was speaking the words to the a person face-to-face and my impulse would be to smile while talking, then I feel that while writing. I use smiley faces when I feel that I would smile in person if the conversation was verbal.

That said, I manage a group of 9,500 people on LinkedIn and have had to block and delete 10 people or so for being rude over the last 2 years, and not one of them of woman. Same thing on Twitter... never have had to block a woman... and yes, on Facebook too. It's not all men of course, a very tiny fraction, but I think it does speak to a difference in online communications styles.


Amanda Ponzar

Brian, excellent use of the smiley face. Interacting online means our words have to reflect what our faces would in real life (echoing Larry's point that we smile in person with clients). For men & women, let's keep up the good networking on and offline.


ok, when is the right time to use the smiley?

A Man :)


Great article thanks for the tips. I'm here from the list of 50 best women blogs. I have a blog too about product reviews,giveaways,diabetes and food tips. I'm now following your blog.


I love the idea of social networking, especially when you can find groups of like-minded women and share ideas and resources. I found Moxie Exchange Movement on Facebook and love the work they are doing, connecting women in a business forum. The online connections though social media are fantastic, but it is nice to be able to meet up face to face as well.

Kim Bauer

I am with you on this. I actually keep a running list of my posts in an excel spreadsheet, and keep track of which of the 10 or so social forums that I comment in.

I make sure I hitting each of my forums on a regular basis. It is a lot of work, but I believe it will continue to pay off.

Since my blog is mostly lifestyle, I have been light on my use of Linked in, but based on your success, I am going to ramp it up a few notches.

Thanks for the great post.

Kim Bauer

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