Wednesday, August 16, 2017

"Linked In Has Many Benefits For CAPS Professionals"

Social media is a fact of life. It's part of our culture. Some of us use it more than others, some like it, and some don't. As aging in place professionals, it doesn't even matter if we like it or not - it is something that can help us promote our business, connect with the marketplace, and establish ourselves with strategic partners that we want to engage to help us to deliver our services effectively to our clients.

In terms of building and growing our aging in place business, some social media sites may be better for us to use than others. Part of it depends on what our prospective clientele is viewing. Some sites are more photo and video oriented, while others have more text along with photos or videos. It's up to us to decide where to devote our time in creating and posting content that we think our existing and prospective clients and customers - along with business relationships we are trying to establish or nurture - would like to see.

Many of us are familiar with sites such as Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest - primarily because we use it personally rather than for business. Nevertheless, these can be strong sites for our businesses. One site that is often overlooked in crafting a business marketing strategy is Linked In. For any of us where this is the case, we need to take another look at it.

Linked In is one of the most well-known and oldest of the social media platforms. It has millions of users. It likely is the number one site for business-to-business connections and activity and is a very strong search engine as well. It is quite underutilized by CAPS professionals.

Linked In is arguably the number one ORM (online reputation manager) where people read our profiles and see endorsements, recommendations, and solid information about our background (for those who use these features). It gives us credibility in a very big way - especially with consumers, potential referring professionals, and others we want to connect with us. It serves as an independent third-party resource that publishes information about us. True, we supplied most of it and created the framework for others to endorse and recommend us, but it's still out there online for the world to see.

Linked in has many moving parts that showcase our credentials, skill sets, accomplishments, work history, certifications and awards, endorsements, and additional content. It can also host our YouTube videos and SlideShare presentations for additional visual content and impact.

Consumers may find us here, but primarily Linked In is the place for us to look for and attract strategic partners that we to use to deliver our services. As we look for other CAPS professionals that we want to reach out to or people that possess the training or expertise that we need to engage - regardless of where they might be located - we can build our network. We can find people in our immediate service area that we thought about or were previously unknown to us also.

This also is useful when we are expanding inot new markets or when people contact us who require services in areas where we don't provide them. We can search and find someone who is interested in a referral from us.

Having a Linked In profile may be second only to having a good website. In many ways. Linked In serves as a website. It provides solid information for people who want to learn more about us before engaging or deciding to do business with us. Consumers certainly can find us on Linked In - it is social media after all, and it's free for anyone to use - but out major thrust is going to be in creating business relationships.

If Linked In is something that has been on the edge of the radar and really something that seemed very important, it's time to reevaluate and boost our online presence with a strong Linked In profile.

Then, there are the groups on can join and participate in, such as "Aging & Accessibility."

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Steve HoffackerCAPS, CEAC, SHSS, is a licensed Certified Aging-In-Place Specialist-Master Instructor and best-selling author of universal design books. To learn about this and other programs for aging-in-place or universal design, visit stevehoffacker.com or call 561-685-5555. Also, check out the "Aging & Accessibility" groups on Facebook and LinkedIn.