Good Day: 


Recently I taught a class on networking using social media tools. In doing my research for the class, I was able to get some great ideas from several books, but one of the ones that helped me a lot was Jan Vermerien’s “Let’s Connect.”  He is the same guy who brought us “How to REALLY Use LinkedIn” that I am so fond of.  My goal in the class was to apply “classic” networking ideas from these respected authors to the social media tools and concepts that have skyrocketed in the last couple of years.  These tools were not extensively addressed in these books.  Thus, I thought it would be helpful to you if I shared some of these connections between networking and specific parts of what I consider the ultimate in virtual networking tools:  LinkedIn.


Jan Vermerien’s overall concept of networking is “The Golden Triangle of Networking,” with his illustration being a triangle with the word “Give” at the top, “Ask” on the bottom left, and “Thank” on the bottom right of the triangle.  As you can probably guess, his premise is to always be giving, and if you do that, you will then have the privilege to ask for something from a friend; you should always close the loop by thanking that person, and around and around it goes, back up to Give and so on.


Let me share with you a few of the specific techniques/tools available on LinkedIn that I think specifically address these three important networking concepts.  This will help us to accomplish what Jan would call effective networking with the help of this great social media business site.




1.       Be proactive by asking a 1st level connection if he/she would like to review your 1st level connections and find someone he/she would like to be introduced to.



2.       Write a recommendation for a person that is very specific in describing accomplishments and has keywords that will be important to your connection.



3.       Let your connections know which groups would be useful for them to join you in.



4.       Share articles/websites/advice with connections through a status box update.  Share these with group members in either Discussion or News.



5.       Forward the LinkedIn profile of a person you would be willing to introduce a friend to that you think would be beneficial for both parties.



6.       Check important industry groups frequently and help by answering questions people are asking.




1.       Ask for a recommendation from a strategic connection that will help enhance your story and/or add credibility to your profile.  Ask your connection to fill the recommendation with keywords and specific accomplishments.



2.       Ask for an introduction to a 2nd or 3rd level connection.



3.       Ask your connection to share important information on what makes a person or a company “tick” or some insights on the culture or decision-making process at a target company that may help you strategize on your approach to marketing to that company.



4.       Use the Event function to invite a friend to attend an event with you.



5.       Use either the Answers section or the status box to ask a question.  If there is a sense of immediacy in receiving an answer, use Answers, which will be in the form of an email.



6.       Use LinkedIn Polls to investigate an important question you could use to get input from a large group of your connections.




1.       Post a “thank you” to someone as a status update about an important meeting, a new connection, helpful information or an invitation to an event.



2.       Write a recommendation.



3.       As a thank you, offer to connect a friend of yours to someone in your network that you feel would be a beneficial introduction for both parties.




Wildcard Tip or Question


Make sure you are loading your company’s profile with lots of strategic keywords in both the Profile section and the Specialties section.  You wouldn’t’ believe how many people are missing this.  In the Company section, try doing a search using a strategic keyword.  Make sure you come up in the search, and take note of your competitors who don’t come up.  As people start using LinkedIn for searching more than things like Yellow Pages, business directories and, yes, even Google, you are going to be the firm they find in the market.



Miscellaneous News and Notes--


Some of the other resources I provide are:

•       Customized corporate training classes
•       Keynote and workshop presentations for conventions and association meetings
•       Corporate social media strategy consulting
•       For Sale:  LinkedIn training DVDs for beginners and intermediate users
•       For daily tips, follow me on Twitter at:

Here is my upcoming schedule for teaching/speaking so you can share with friends, relatives and business associates.  Follow link or paste into your browser for additional details and registration information.


Wed Sept 29, 2010  Wayne's LinkedIn Power Formula Training for Beginners
                              M&M Office Interiors; 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM

I hope you are able to think about lots of ways to Give, Ask and Thank this week so you have a productive networking week.




Wayne C. Breitbarth
M&M Office Interiors, Inc.
W233 N2833 Roundy Circle West Suite 100
Pewaukee, WI  53072
office 262-781-2600
cell 414-313-7785