February 24, 2017

3 Reasons Practitioners Should Be Using LinkedIn

Sponsored by Emerson Ecologics

With all the digital channels to choose from, LinkedIn is by far the most noteworthy for integrative healthcare practitioners. It provides an outlet for sharing, learning, and connecting with others in our industry. LinkedIn’s mission is ‘to connect the world’s professionals to make them more productive and successful’, and really, who doesn’t want that?

Putting that idealistic vision of productivity and success aside, we’ve outlined the top 3 reasons you should be on LinkedIn, and how it can help you and your practice thrive.

1. You might not exist without it.

Have you Googled yourself lately? Chances are anyone wanting to know more about you or your practice will. LinkedIn gets along great with search engines and usually appears within the first few results. As the most respected social media channel for professionals, and with its unwavering reputation for churning quality content, it will help build your personal brand and influence in the industry.

A LinkedIn profile is essentially a digital résumé. You can include your education, experience, awards, causes you care about, and even endorsements and recommendations from fellow peers. Nothing beats word of mouth! Don’t forget to include keywords in the background section of your profile; search engines love those too. High-impact keywords would be your specialties, such as “women’s health” or “endocrinology,” in addition to your practitioner type, like "naturopath" or "chiropractor."

Establishing a digital presence on LinkedIn is your professional validator. It helps build trust regarding your expertise and publicly shows you embrace your community.

2. You’re missing out.

LinkedIn is a great way to stay in the know, no matter what industry you are in. A simple search can show you results for posts, groups, individuals, companies, or organizations all relating to what interests you. LinkedIn’s Pulse feed is an easy way to see what is trending in your industry, and you can personalize it too. The Pulse smartphone app actually gets smarter with each swipe: Left dismisses the article that you are not interested in, and a swipe to the right saves it for you to read later. LinkedIn remembers and tailors your feed with each use.

Although we have our favorite publications and experts we gravitate toward (we know IGNITE is high on your list!) LinkedIn is becoming a leader in sharing news, and you don’t want to be left out when it comes to knowledge experts are sharing in the integrative healthcare industry.

3. Your referral network could be more robust.

Sure, you have connections from school or events you have attended, but how are you nourishing those relationships? LinkedIn makes it almost effortless. By sharing others’ content in your own newsfeed, commenting on posts and connecting via private messaging, you're staying connected without much effort. Cultivating new relationships is equally important and can happen in many ways. First, you can see your 2nd and 3rd degrees of separation (a friend of a friend). This can help you identify experts you may not have met otherwise. Don’t be shy in asking your contact to introduce you to theirs (yes, that is a feature in LinkedIn too). Another way to meet peers in integrative health is joining groups. Many of the medical groups created by practitioners require each member be a practitioner, which ensures the advice and content is unbiased and not overtaken with 3rd party solicitations.

Even if you feel your current referral network is enough, there is no harm in building it up now to tap into it for the future.

LinkedIn can be your best friend in creating your personal brand, growing your network, and staying connected—all of which are good things to help your practice thrive and open doors to new opportunities.

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