Every Thursday at 7:30 pm EST, Brian Clapp, host of the Work in Sports podcast, goes live from the Work in Sports facebook page for an hour long session covering important topics that will make a difference for your sports career.
This week, Brian covered the techniques you can use to maximize one of the most powerful, and free, tools you have at your disposal, LinkedIn.
Here’s a sneak peek at Brian’s outline for the show:
Facebook LIVE Feb 7th – How to Leverage LinkedIn for your Sports Career
1: Why LinkedIn? Start with the basics
*LinkedIn is the Social Choice for Business Communication. Not facebook, not twitter, not insta. Not snap.
*Get this – they have well over 500 million users – and they are all there for business related reasons.
*61 million LinkedIn users are senior level influencers and 40 million are in decision-making positions.
Every single recruiter, HR specialist and Hiring manager who may be considering you for an interview WILL, I mean WILL, look at your LinkedIn profile.
People on Linked in are:
- Forging connections
- Maintaining their professional reputation
- Sharing business related articles and content
They are not:
- Checking out ex-boyfriends
- Sharing political memes
- Complaining about the weather
- Sharing photos from their kids first day of school
That explains why you need to have a presence on there, but it’s much more than that.
Now, I imagine the people who say “LinkedIn is overrated” have published their profile, maybe even put a picture of themselves, and then expected the job offers to come rolling in and the recruiters to start calling.
Sorry, doesn’t work that way. It takes work.
Here’s how and why you should do the work
These are tools we didn’t have when I was coming up in the industry – I couldn’t reach out to industry folks and ask questions, I couldn’t connect with a Talent Acquisition manager for the Cleveland Indians.
You can. Start using it. Here’s how
2: Update your profile first.
This is your impression!
More than your resume.
Pictures, links to blogs, recommendations, referrals, skills. All are included in linkedin.
Make your profile focused on WHAT YOU CAN DO FOR A BUSINESS, not what you need or want, I repeat WHAT YOU CAN DO FOR THEIR BUSINESS.
3: Network Like Crazy
Three types of people you should connect with
Zone 1 – the people you know well. Family, friends, professors, advisors
Zone 2 – the people you meet at conferences, volunteer events, industry events – you’ve met them, but they aren’t family.
Zone 3 – the people you have a loose but creative connection to – you haven’t met these people, but you have a reason to connect. Alumni, podcast guests, speakers etc. Even peers or people closely related to where you want to go.
For example – let’s say you want to work in operations for an NBA team someday…and you find someone who is an operations assistant with the Maine Red Claws of the NBA Gatorade league.
Reach out! Say Hey, I’m Gary, I’m in school now but when I graduate I’d love to work in perations for a basketball team like you – could we connect?”
You add a note and give the reason for connecting.
You will be rejected – who cares?!
4: Don’t Ask For Things, Build the Relationship
Someone accepts your connection request and you ask them – “hey you know of any jobs for me?”
NO don’t do this!!
Start off by asking a softball question that is related to them and their career. Start a dialogue. Like their posts, share their posts, read their posts and comment on them.
Let’s go back to the example with the Maine Red Claws – now you’ve built the relationship, you have had a dialogue, you’ve liked and shared their posts and maybe commented here and there.
Now, a job posting comes up with the Long Island Nets… and you reach out to your contact and say, hey just noticed an operations assistant with the Long Island Nets, you would happen to know anyone over there you could connect me with do you?
If it wasn’t for linked in, this exchange never happens.
5: Build Your Brand
Be a thought leader, share valuable content, write content, have insightful commentary on a developing issue.
When you publish content, or are active on the platform people are going to notice and wonder – who is this cat? And they’re going to check your profile. If you’ve built yourself the right way they just might be impressed.
I do this daily.
6: Stay up to date on industry trends.
All the people I am connected with are interested in the sports industry. This is my newspaper! I get all of my industry focused information off LinkedIn. Again, no politics,
Listen in to the replay and learn so much more! Brian handles live questions from the audience about their sports careers!