Online Networking

Social media can help or hurt you professionally. Here are some tips for successfully using social media to strengthen your reputation and grow your network.

  • Seek new connections: You’ll never broaden your network if you don’t connect with people outside of your personal circle. Open yourself up to all types of followers and friends.
  • Earn respect on social media sites by offering quality, accessible information in a friendly way. Share relevant links, commentary and helpful advice.
  • Always introduce yourself: Whenever you friend or follow a new person or jump into an open conversation, introduce yourself. Share your real name, occupation and geographical location.
  • Tweet and update for your most conservative followers: Remember who your most conservative followers are, and make sure whatever you put online is appropriate for them.
  • Be polite: You wouldn’t make a nasty comment to a person you just met; apply the same attitude to your social media activity.
  • Reciprocate kindness: Once you’ve established a relationship with an online contact, ask for help, but remember to say thank you and to reciprocate kindness.
  • There are boundaries: avoid oversharing (i.e. talking about health problems and mushy stuff). Anything you prefer to keep private needs to stay offline!

Resources to help you build an online profile: Connect with alumni from the College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources on LinkedIn: linkd.in/12RlKRD.

Build your own LinkedIn profile: see Example (PDF) with tips