Archive for the ‘personal brand’ Category

How to Make Your LinkedIn Profile More than Just a Resume

As you work through completing your LinkedIn profile, it’s important to remember your ministry business plan.  Your ministry business plan should include several objectives that will help you meet your ministry goals, your vision, and your mission.  Just knowing why you are participating in social media and how it will benefit your ministry is a great start.  Keeping those things in mind as you complete (or remake) your LinkedIn profile will help you stay on track and build your ministry brand that will help you accomplish your goals.  Here are a few things you might want to consider:

Photos – A photo on your LinkedIn profile helps you appear more ‘real’ to people viewing your profile.  Does your photo represent who you want to be?  Is it too casual?  Do your clothes and the background appropriately represent your ministry?  If you want to present yourself as approachable, are you smiling?  Do things in your photo belong in your ministry (cars, pets, etc.)?  Logos are nice, but the LinkedIn rules say they can be used on your company page, but not your LinkedIn personal profile.  The best photo is a professional head shot that flatters but does not mislead.

Key Words – Key words help people find you on LinkedIn, as well as the web search engines like Google.  Key words should describe what your ministry focus is (i.e. evangelism, counseling, deliverance, etc.).  You can use the Google AdWords key word tool, you can see who other similar ministries use, but the best method is to use words that have significant meaning to your ministry function.  Use key words that will attract the broadest audience, as well as very specific people.  For instance, in my deliverance ministry I might use “spiritual warfare”, “freedom”, as well as “demonic oppression”.  Your most important key words should be used in your headline (see below) and the first sentence of your summary.  Other key words can be used to replace vague words in the rest of your summary, as well as your specialties, skills & expertise, experience, education, and interests.

LinkedIn Headline – Your LinkedIn “Headline” is found directly under your name and to the right of your photo.  Your headline is commonly mistaken as your job title, and if you don’t enter one, or add a new position, LinkedIn will use your most recent position title as your headline.  Since this is the first, and sometimes only thing LinkedIn users will see, it should describe your job, indicate why others will want to contact you, and cause others to view your profile to learn more about you.  This might take some thought, and probably several revisions until you find the best headline.  After several revisions, I settled on “Anothen Life helps you eliminate things you thought you had to live with – Linked4Ministry extends your ministries reach” to represent my two ministry focuses. 

Websites – LinkedIn allows you to include direct links to three websites.  If you don’t have three websites, you might include a blog or even your LinkedIn groups like I do.  Remember to keep your business plan in mind when you select which websites to include, and be cautious about including overly personal websites, facebook pages, twitter accounts, etc.  You can rely on your LinkedIn profile as your web presence, but an actual website is much better.  There are several free websites that have limited features and functionality, or consider web hosting sites like Network Solutions or 1&1 that cost under $150 a year for hosting and an editing package that is almost as easy as a word processor.  To maintain your “ministry” image and brand you should avoid web hosting services with names or advertising that might detract from who you are.

Experience – Your professional experience should include your most recent positions, as well as a description of what you accomplished at each position.  If you include other jobs that don’t relate to your current position and goals, keep your job title and description brief so they don’t distract from your current brand.  Eliminate brief positions and experiences that detract from your current brand.

Recommendations – Recommendations are often overlooked by ministries, but they can be as valuable as a personal testimony when witnessing to someone.  Recommendations should be from a variety of people and dates.  Don’t seek gushing recommendations, but focus on those that tell others what to expect when they use your ministry.  The best way to receive recommendations is to send 2-3 a week to your current contacts.  They will love receiving unsolicited recommendations, and LinkedIn suggests they will want to send you one.

Keep Your Personality Visible – In most ministries your personality will matter to potential clients, partners, and contacts, so be sure you still represent yourself as warm, caring, confident, and personal.  Include how people benefit from working with you, what you want to accomplish, why you love what you do, and what keeps you energized in your ministry.

Misspellings and Grammatical Errors – Misspellings and grammatical errors in your LinkedIn profile can present a negative image to viewers that don’t know you.  Misspellings and grammatical errors can lead people to think you are either careless or may not have the intelligence, education, or qualifications they believe they need.  Since LinkedIn doesn’t include a spell check, and it’s not one of my strong points, I type everything in my word processor and then cut and paste it in LinkedIn.

 As always, thank you for reading Linked4Ministry.  If you are new here, the best way to receive all the new posts is to subscribe for e-mail updates at the top right.  If you have been following Linked4Ministry and find it helpful, please consider sharing it with other ministry partners that it could benefit.  It’s easy to do by clicking on the following buttons, and it’s OK to click more than one !

Blessings,
Bill Bender
Linked4Ministry & Anothen Life Ministries

Would Being Recognized as an Expert Bring Success to Your Ministry?

It is usually a tremendous advantage to be recognized as an expert, especially in some fields of ministry.  Being an expert can bring clients and ministry receivers directly to you; and can encourage friends and other ministers to refer their contacts to you for your expertise in a specific field.  Of course the first step is to make sure you are an expert, that step is up to you.

Once you have the expertise, how do you tell people without sounding arrogant or elite?  With today’s online resources you can build trust and exhibit expertise in your field in many ways.  A little planning will help you put your time and resources where they will help you the most.  Skipping the planning can likely cost you extra time and delayed success.

First begin by identifying your ideal business or ministry “target audience”.  That target audience might be customers, counseling clients, ministry receivers, students, pastors and church leaders, or even publishers and distributors for your products.  Then identify where your target will likely spend time, such as reading the newspaper, trade journals, brochures, websites, blogs, social networks like LinkedIn and facebook, etc.  You can begin by asking your current friends and associates what they recommend.  Finally, identify the media outlet that is likely to get you the best or largest return and find resources that will help you take advantage of that outlet.

Since Linked4Ministry started out primarily about LinkedIn, I’ll start with that.

Your LinkedIn Profile – Since LinkedIn was designed to be a professional network, a good profile can exhibit a real level of trust and expertise with the right elements.  You can find additional information about the LinkedIn elements in past blogs and articles from Linked4Ministry but here are the minimum recommended elements:

  • A professional head shot photograph.
  • A good “headline” that tells people what you can do for them.
  • A summary that tells what you’ve done for others.
  • References that exhibit trust, reliability, and success.
  • Educational references that add expertise to your field (can be seminars etc.)
  • Apps that show Books & articles that you’ve written or read in your field.

LinkedIn Groups – Identify what groups your target audience might join.  If you have identified targets in LinkedIn, you can view their profile to see what groups they are in that might benefit you, and might help establish your expertise, and join them.  You can search for people with key words (i.e. pastors, authors, publishers, etc.) to see what groups they are in.  Once you identify the groups that will help you, and you join the groups, read through the discussions to see what the ‘tone’ of the comments and articles are.  Identify existing discussions or start new discussions that you have real expertise in and contribute things that will add true value to the discussion.  Look for things that might have been overlooked in the discussion that will shed new light on the conversation or provide solutions not yet mentioned.  Make sure all your posts are well thought out, spelled correctly, and supportable if you are asked.  When you see a target contact that you’d like to be connected to, you can search their contributions in the group and either add to that discussion, or communicate directly with them.  Start with things that add value or ask their advice or input.  Once a relationship has built value, you can invite them to be directly connected.

Other Media to consider

Blogs – It’s amazing how many blogs there are today, and sites like WordPress.com and WordPress, Blogger.com, Tumblr, Textpattern, and Posterous are all free and about as easy to use as a word processor.  Once you have a blog, you’ll need to promote it until it takes off.  Post new blogs in your LinkedIn status updates, in LinkedIn groups (that allow blog links), on your facebook page, on Twitter, in Google+, and everywhere else you can find to get the word out.  Make sure your blog has a place to allow readers to subscribe to future additions, and include icons for sharing on LinkedIn groups, Facebook, twitter, WordPress, StumbleUpon, Digg, Reddit, and any other link your blog host has available.  If you have a website, you should either imbed your blog or make it a very visible link on your home page.  Finally, ask your blog readers to share your blog with friends and associates they believe might be interested.  A good blog with valuable or helpful information can establish your expertise in your field.  Keep a list of your blog topics handy with the URL (internet address) that you can refer others to for answers.

Answer or Ask Questions – You can scan LinkedIn questions to find ones in your field of expertise, or start new ones that will attract attention.  Follow the same guidelines as group discussions to build value before asking for return.  The same goes for other sites like Yahoo Answers or Answers.com.  LinkedIn allows readers to vote on the most influential answers, Yahoo gives you points if your answer is selected as best., and Answers.com identifies the most answers with a ‘top contributor’ title.

Polls – You can start LinkedIn Polls (in the general LinkedIn polls or in specific groups) that will ask intriguing questions that will challenge people to stretch their thinking or beliefs around your expertise.  Use the group discussion guidelines.

Conclusion – If you take time to provide true value without an expected return your expertise will be noted and shared, but obvious self promotion or blatant bragging or selling will backfire.  Include links to your own resources and to other resources in comments and answers that give readers additional value.  Give away free advice that demonstrates your expertise, but never give a half answer with a “buy this” for the rest of the information.  My suggestion for the key to success in God’s Kingdom is “pay it ahead” and you will receive God’s blessings, which includes the monetary success you need to live.

As always, thank you for reading Linked4Ministry.  If you are new here, the best way to receive all the new posts is to subscribe for e-mail updates at the top right.  If you have been following Linked4Ministry and find it helpful, please consider sharing it with other ministry partners that it could benefit.  It’s easy to do by clicking on the following buttons, and it’s OK to click more than one !

Blessings,
Bill Bender
Linked4Ministry & Anothen Life Ministries

Are You Receiving the Full Benefit from LinkedIn?

It’s easy to sign up for social media sites and only use them for a messaging service, checking out your friends latest photos, and keeping up with what friends are doing.  LinkedIn is different; it was designed for “professional networking”, and can be a great tool for building your trust, credibility, and publicity for your ministry and your career. 

If you aren’t using all LinkedIn’s features and receiving all their benefits, 2012 is a great time to ramp up your results by looking at some other uses that might help you ‘extend your reach into the kingdom’.  Here’s a few to consider:

Complete your LinkedIn profile – Of course your LinkedIn profile will always need frequent updates, but be sure you’ve posted a professional head shot (photos say you are real), your LinkedIn headline is not just your title (this should be a reason others will look at your profile to see who you are), your LinkedIn public profile (URL) has been customized to just your name (so it’s easy to use and looks professional), your summary is both informative and interesting (this might be all others see and will know about you), your current and past experience is included with quantifiable results (what have you done), your education and credentials are included (are you qualified), and you’ve included at least an app or two (Reading list by Amazon, etc.) to show a bit more about yourself.  The bottom line is if someone looks at your profile, will they see all they need to know who you are and why they will want to contact you?

Be an active, professional networker – Your network is important to you, but do you make them feel that way?  It’s easy to get overwhelmed as your network grows so maintaining communications is critical.  Let your contacts know what you’re doing, but don’t just push your services and products, share things that offer real value to them.  Change your LinkedIn Status (several times a week is good) with links to articles that your network will find helpful or interesting.  Scan through your Network Updates (on your LinkedIn Home screen) every day or two.  If you see one of your contacts has changed positions, is involved in something interesting, or posted an interesting link, congratulate them or let them know the link was interesting.

Participate in your groups, and search for new ones that might be helpful – LinkedIn groups are one of the most helpful ways to connect with new, influential, and valuable people in LinkedIn.  Search for and join LinkedIn groups that are focused on your interests.  If you have a “target” contact list, you can join groups they are in (as long as those groups would also be helpful for you).  Once in the group, read through the discussions and look for ones you can add value to.  Those valuable comments are frequently noticed by others in the group, giving you a perfect opportunity to communicate directly with them, and even invite them to join your network.

Get a few recommendations – Recommendations tell readers what others know about you and why to contact you.  Don’t just send out requests to everyone you know.  The best strategy is for you to send 2-3 recommendations to your connections each week.  Many will respond with their recommendation for you.  If you do request recommendations, send some examples of what you’d like them to include, it makes it easier for them to write and you’ll get the results you desire.

Create a “Company” or ministry page – A company page is used to share additional details about your company’s products and services, as well as comments made by clients.  It provides an additional internet location for you and other employees and partners to be found by LinkedIn and other internet searches.

Create a LinkedIn Group – If your ministry might benefit from a continual connection to a specific group of clients, partners, etc. you can create a LinkedIn group.  The group options allow you to approve members and even comments members post, or leave it as an open group that anyone can join or post comments.

Be aware of your competition – Have you researched other ‘competitive’ or ‘partner’ ministries to see how they are using LinkedIn?  It’s always helpful to see what others have done to give you ideas on how to present your ministry and yourself on the internet.

Advertise Events – The events app can be especially helpful for ministries located in a small geographic area or advertising web events for a larger audience.  It also gives you an opportunity to see what events others are hosting or attending to see if they might interest you.

This is only a small list of things that LinkedIn participation can help you ‘extend your reach into the kingdom’ with.  The key is making the time (10-15 minutes a day, or an hour or two a week) to make use of LinkedIn’s features and benefits.  If you have questions or suggestions, feel free to send them to me at BillBenderLinkedIn <@> gmailcom.  That way of presenting an email address keeps the ‘web-bots’ from finding an email address to scam, just put a period or ampersand in place of theand <@> and leave out the spaces.

 

As always, thank you for reading Linked4Ministry.  If you are new here, the best way to receive all the new posts is to subscribe for e-mail updates at the top right.  If you have been following Linked4Ministry and find it helpful, please consider sharing it with other ministry partners that it could benefit.  It’s easy to do by clicking on the following buttons, and it’s OK to click more than one !

Blessings,
Bill Bender
Linked4Ministry & Anothen Life Ministries

 

Not Customizing your LinkedIn Public Profile URL Can Limit Your Effectiveness

Have you customized your LinkedIn Public Profile?  Did you even know that you had one, or what it is?  If you answered no to either question you have limited the effectiveness of your LinkedIn profile and reduced your online exposure to new connections, partners, and clients.  Not customizing and using your LinkedIn Public Profile is like building a website, giving it an obscure hard to remember name, and not telling anyone what the address is.  No one would ever find your website, right?  Well, maybe some would find it in Google searches, but if you had some odd website address that no one could remember, those that did find it might never come back, or tell others about you.  It’s a plan to fail, but can be easily corrected with a few simple actions.  A customized name that’s easy to use and remember, and will inspire others to click through to your profile to learn more about you and your ministry.  Now, let’s get started.

A LinkedIn Public Profile is your LinkedIn Profile’s URL, or web address.  If you don’t customize it, LinkedIn will assign a default address when you set up your profile.  The default address will include your name, usually with dashes between first, middle, and last, and will have a series of seemingly random numbers, letters, and slashes after it.  If you customize it, it will be easy to remember, easy to use, and look a lot more professional, thus encouraging others to go to your LinkedIn profile.

If I did not customize my LinkedIn Public Profile, it might look something like:

                http://www.linkedin.com/pub/Bill-Bender/18/a32/2be  

After customization, it is now:

                http://www.linkedin.com/in/billbender  

The second address is clearly much easier to remember, and therefore use.  I can use it in emails, business cards, brochures, in books, on CDs & DVDs, on Blogs, and even at the end of a Video to direct readers to find out more about me.  Another subtle advantage of a customized LinkedIn URL is it tells other LinkedIn users that you know your way around LinkedIn!

Here’s how to Customize your LinkedIn Public Profile URL:

  1. Let your mouse hover over “Profile” in the LinkedIn tool bar.
  2. Click on “Edit Profile”.
  3. Click on “Edit” just to the right of your current LinkedIn Public Profile  (See  “Step 3”  illustration below)
  4. Click on “Customize your public profile URL” at the bottom of the “Customize your Public Profile” box on the right side of the page.  (See “Step 4”  illustration below)
  5. Enter your name without spaces, symbols, or special characters.  You can use just an initial for your first and/or middle names but remember, the best address is one that is clearly you, and easy to remember.  (See  “Step 5”  illustration below)
  6. Click on the “Set Custom URL” blue button to complete your customization.

 

 Step 3.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Step 4.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Step 5.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Of course, a customized LinkedIn URL is all for not if your LinkedIn profile is not complete.  Check out other Linked4Ministry articles, and stay tuned for future tips to learn more about building a great LinkedIn profile.

As always, thank you for reading Linked4Ministry.  If you are new here, the best way to receive all the new posts is to subscribe for e-mail updates at the top right.  

If you have been following Linked4Ministry and find it helpful, please consider sharing it with other ministry partners that it could benefit.  It’s easy to do by clicking on the following buttons, and . . . it’s OK to click more than one !

Blessings,
Bill Bender
Linked4Ministry & Anothen Life Ministries

 

Are You Missing Out on LinkedIn Recommendations?

LinkedIn recommendations should be from someone that actually knows you personally, or that you’ve worked with or ministered to.  The goal of a LinkedIn recommendation is to give those that don’t know you an idea of your expertise, your character, your empathy, etc., and the kind of work or ministry they might expect to receive if they contact you.  The more credible the source, the more value the recommendation will have, and the more informative the recommendation, the better the response will be so it’s important that your recommendations portray exactly what you believe will be helpful in meeting your LinkedIn (and ministry) goals.

The best way to receive LinkedIn recommendations is to send 2-3 recommendations a week to your current connections.  When they receive them, they will be asked if they would like to send you one.  Even if they don’t respond on their own, they will be more likely to send you a recommendation when you ask them at a later date.

How Many and How Often?

How many recommendations you receive doesn’t matter because you can post just the ones that will benefit your current needs, and change them as often as needed.  You should have enough recommendations to tell others what you want them to know about you (so they will be encouraged to call you, use your services, engage your ministry, etc.).

It’s important to have enough recommendations that it doesn’t look like they only came from a few close friends, but not so many that they will be ignored.  A good guideline is 10% of your connections.  Remember, you can select the ones you want to show on your profile, and save others for later use.

What if I Don’t Have Enough Recommendations?

If you are not receiving enough recommendations, it’s time to ask for them.  Remember, requests should be sent to those that actually know you and have worked with you. 

Don’t send out bulk requests, it’s best to have your recommendations spread out over a long period of time, and continually coming in.  This keeps your profile alive, allows your contacts to see you are continually being recommended, and a continuous stream of recommendations is more realistic of a thriving ministry.  That’s why I say to send only 2-3 recommendations a week, and the same goes for the requests for recommendations that you send.

Getting the Recommendations You Need

If you receive a recommendation that doesn’t fit what you are trying to present, don’t hesitate to ask the sender to modify their recommendation.  Perhaps they knew you in a past assignment that doesn’t represent what you are involved in now.  Most people that recommend you want to help you, and will be willing to reword their recommendation, especially if you suggest the wording you would prefer.

Sending Recommendation Requests

When you send a recommendation request, make it easy for them to fulfill your request by suggesting some things they might include.

Begin your request with something like:  “I’m sending this request to ask you for a short recommendation of my work for my LinkedIn profile.  I’d especially appreciate your including some examples of my work (ministry) with you.  To make this as easy as possible, I’ve included a draft that you can use or edit to make it your own.  You might also want to view other’s recommendations that I’ve posted on my profile at http://www.LinkedIn.com/in/billbneder

(Include a short draft of the kind of recommendation you’d like to receive).

Bottom Line

Make sure the recommendations you send, and the suggestions you request others to include in their recommendations of you are honest.

Never send a “Canned” LinkedIn request.  If you just click on “Request Recommendations” tab (under Profile / Recommendations on the menu bar) your message will read:

“I’m sending this to ask you for a brief recommendation of my work that I can include in my LinkedIn profile. If you have any questions, let me know.
Thanks in advance for helping me out.”

It’s not that the canned request is wrong, but I’m sure you will agree that it’s impersonal.  If you personalize your request, you can expect a more personal (and helpful) recommendation.  If you give them suggestions, you have a better chance of getting a quick response that includes the details that you want to show.  (The same goes for LinkedIn invitations!)

Conclusion

Any recommendation is NOT necessarily better than NO recommendations!  Good recommendations are a key factor in getting your LinkedIn profile to help you accomplish your goals and they deserve some of your time to achieve great results.  Be proactive in sending great recommendations to your connections, and make sure your connections know when you need recommendations and what kind of recommendations will help you!

 

As always, thank you for reading Linked4Ministry.  If you are new here, the best way to receive all the new posts is to subscribe for e-mail updates at the top right.  

If you have been following Linked4Ministry and find it helpful, please consider sharing it with other ministry partners that it could benefit.  It’s easy to do by clicking on the following buttons, and it’s OK to click more than one !

Blessings,
Bill Bender
Linked4Ministry & Anothen Life Ministries

Using LinkedIn Recommendations and how to post those you receive from other sources

 

LinkedIn recommendations are very powerful.  Even though you would only post the favorable ones, they still give your readers someone else’s view of who you are and what you offer should they contact you.  We know the power of our personal testimony when we witness to a non-believer, but too many Christians don’t take advantage of that power in representing their ministry.  If you were looking for a new church, think about how helpful it would be to see 5-10 opinions of what others have found before you actually visit.  Also, remember how helpful it is when you are shopping online to read recommendations from other users.  There’s no doubt that recommendations can influence decisions and actions, so isn’t it time to get started.

 

The “best” way to get recommendations is to first ‘give’ some.  Pick 3-4 of your contacts ‘each week’ that you know personally (or through ministry/products received), and that you feel comfortable about recommending, and send them a recommendation.  When they receive your unsolicited recommendation they will be blessed.  When they accept your recommendation, LinkedIn suggests they send you one.  By sending 3-4 each week, you receive a ‘constant stream’ of recommendations that reinforce the message they send.

 

If you receive a recommendation from a non-LinkedIn user (i.e. in a thank you letter), you can suggest they join LinkedIn and send it through the LinkedIn system.  If it’s from someone who doesn’t want to join LinkedIn, or perhaps it’s an older recommendation from someone you can no longer contact, you can scan it, or retype it and make a .pdf of the recommendation.  Once it’s in .pdf format, you can post it in your LinkedIn profile in the ‘box.net’ files.  (You have to add the box.net files to your profile first if you don’t already have it).  Use a description that shows what the file is, like “Letter of recommendation from a Pastor (or ministry receiver) about my work with them”.  To further enhance that recommendation you could use a quote or two from the recommendation in your LinkedIn summary, and note the complete recommendation can be found in your ‘box.net’ files.

 

By adding recommendations to your LinkedIn profile, you profile further becomes a ‘selling’ tool for your ministry.  Be sure to customize your LinkedIn public profile URL, and then you can add it to your business cards, ministry brochures, and emails to help build your trust, your credibility, and your ministry success.

 

As always, thank you for reading Linked4Ministry.  If you are new here, the best way to receive all the new posts is to subscribe for e-mail updates at the top right.  If you have been following Linked4Ministry and find it helpful, please consider sharing it with other ministry partners that it could benefit.  It’s easy to do by clicking on the following buttons, and it’s OK to click more than one !

Blessings,
Bill Bender
Linked4Ministry & Anothen Life Ministries

 

 

How to Get More Out Of LinkedIn

 Getting more out of LinkedIn, or any social media, is just a matter of knowing what’s available, what’s important, and scheduling time to do it.  If you signed up for LinkedIn and nothing is happening, it’s probably time to take a look at (1) what you want out of LinkedIn, and (2) what you are doing to achieve it.  Comparing it to going to a networking meeting and just standing in the corner, you won’t get very good results.

There’s no doubt that LinkedIn is “the place to be”.  Their recent IPO surprised everyone with the results, and their number of members continues to grow at an outstanding pace, just passing 120 Million.  LinkedIn is still a “Must” for job seekers, but LinkedIn’s true power is in networking professionals (including ministers).

 

What do you want?

 

Facebook is a great tool for strengthening existing ministry followers and promoting a ministry that already has a large number of friends that will share your page with their friends.  LinkedIn is about connecting you to people you know, people you’ve ministered to, ministered with, and trained with, as well as giving you opportunities to connect to “target contacts” (those that could be beneficial to your ministry).

 

Here’s a list of some of the things LinkedIn could do for a ministry:

 

  • Help you be found – LinkedIn allows you to be found by searching for “Key Words” that describe your ministry or expertise.  Your key words should be in your summary, your specialties, your skills, and possibly your ministry name, your headline and your title if it is appropriate.

 

  • Establish Trust and Credibility – LinkedIn can help you establish trust and credibility with new contacts from your recommendations, your achievements, your connections, your groups, your honors and awards, your publications, your blog, your presentation, your reading list, and anything else you include in your profile.

 

  • Free Advertising – By creating a LinkedIn “Company” (Ministry) Profile, you can describe your company/ministry, as well as the products and services you provide.  This can serve as a temporary web presence if you don’t have a dedicated web page yet.

 

  • Connecting Group Members  – LinkedIn groups are unique and powerful in joining members of a like minded focus like a church congregation, denomination leadership, an ordination fellowship, a seminary, or a ministry focus (healing, deliverance, social media, prison, women’s, etc).  A LinkedIn group allows sharing discussions, questions, ideas, events, as well as sending free newsletters and messages to your members.  LinkedIn Group members also update their own email address, keeping you from having to maintain your own list.

 

  • Reaching Out – Joining larger groups that compliment your focus will allow you to be connected to an almost unlimited number of others with a common focus, background, or interest.  Joining groups is a great way to get connected to “target contacts” that you wouldn’t otherwise have a way to connect.

 

  • Soliciting input and help – When you share what you are working on in your “status” update, all your connections will see it and can give you input, support, and share it with others in their network.

 

  • Promoting Books & Products – The Reading List by Amazon allows you to highlight your own publications and recommend other’s works.

 

  • Advertise Events – LinkedIn Events allows you to post event details that your contacts will see in their network updates and share with their contacts.  Other LinkedIn members can also search for events of interest.  LinkedIn allows users to indicate if they will attend or be a presenter, increasing the event visibility among other members.

 

  • Promoting Your Blog – LinkedIn allows you to automatically include the title, the first few sentences, and a link to your most recent blogs.  A Blog is important to your ministry because it allows you to show your expertise in your area of ministry, it brings people to your website and keeps them coming back, and having a blog gives your ministry more visibility in internet searches.

 

  • Linking your Ministry Associates – Your ministry associates can have their own profile with all the above features, as well as being linked to your ministry through your Ministry Profile.  This allows visitors to see all your associates and recognize the strength and expertise of your ministry.

 

In Conclusion

Begin by determining what you want to accomplish with LinkedIn, then write down the steps you will need to reach your goals.  Don’t forget to include who will take action, and a target date for each needed action.  It’s best to set up some kind of follow up system to reduce the chance of missing an important step in the process.  A weekly review of needed actions and a completion check list will keep you and your team on track.  When you have completed all the necessary steps, it’s probably time to set new goals and the actions needed.  If you ever stop the process, your future success can be limited.

 

As always, thank you for reading Linked4Ministry.  If you are new here, the best way to receive all the new posts is to subscribe for e-mail updates at the top right.  If you have been following Linked4Ministry and find it helpful, please consider sharing it with other ministry partners that it could benefit.  It’s easy to do by clicking on the following buttons, and it’s OK to click more than one !

Blessings,
Bill Bender
Linked4Ministry & Anothen Life Ministries

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