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How to use LinkedIn as an effective marketing tool   LinkedIn prides itself on being the social network most focused on building a professional presence online. The following is a list of ways in which you could use LinkedIn in order to promote your business to your network and build a strong marketing profile.   1.     Create a strong professional profile   One of the best ways to keep your connections informed about your happenings is by posting ‘status updates.’ Status updates are brief statements that you feel your connections will find useful. In addition, they can include links to related content on your website. To appear active in the LinkedIn community, post useful and actionable status updates on a regular basis. LinkedIn also allows you to easily syndicate your Blog posts to your profile. As you post to your blog on your Website, your LinkedIn profile will be automatically updated with your posts’ title, abstract and link to the full post on your Website.   If you are an active participant in Twitter, you can integrate your LinkedIn status updates with your Tweets to keep your connections and followers informed. LinkedIn makes it easy for you to request recommendations from your connections. A collection of glowing recommendations that underscore your expertise and experience will significantly enhance your profile.   2.     The LinkedIn Community   LinkedIn Groups help you stay informed and keep in touch with people that share your interests. You can create your own LinkedIn groups or join any number of groups that focus on your area of interest or expertise. Participating in LinkedIn Groups by adding value to the discussion is a great way to expand your circle of influence.   LinkedIn Answers is a great way to share business knowledge and connect with like-minded colleagues. You can ask pressing questions and get fast, accurate answers from your network and other experts worldwide. In addition, you can showcase your knowledge, expertise, and interests by answering questions.   Company Pages are a powerful research tool that you can use to find companies to do business with or research competitors. In addition, you can create a Page for your company to showcase your expertise. You can publish your company’s description, headquarters address and Website address. To further your company page’s value, you can post targeted jobs, recruitment videos, information about products and services and company images.   3.     LinkedIn as a marketing tool   When you create a LinkedIn profile, it will create a LinkedIn Web address that will appear like a collection of odd letters and addresses. LinkedIn will let you customize this address to create a branded LinkedIn address with your name. Become a ‘Recognized Expert’ by answering LinkedIn questions and actively participating in LinkedIn group discussions. This way, you have an opportunity to establish yourself as an expert and thought leader in your field. If you have an active list of LinkedIn connections, you are most likely only two or three connections away from the prospect. Use LinkedIn’s introduction features to ask one of your connections for an introduction.   Successful business people are always looking to find valuable employees that will ensure their future success. LinkedIn provides you with an easy place to find them. You’ll have access to a pool of talented individuals within your LinkedIn groups. You can also post a job directly on LinkedIn to attract a talented set of candidates. Whenever you meet someone, connect with them on LinkedIn. It’s a great way to expand your influence and keep connections up to speed on your accomplishments.