Wednesday, September 8, 2010

(empo-tuulwey) How to misuse LinkedIn

Jason Alba linked to a Tom Nixon post about how to use LinkedIn, and Nixon's points seem to be good points that slot into my "a tool is not a way of life" mantra. Or, more accurately, "don't blame your hammer when it is not a good tool for flossing your teeth."

Now I am not about to claim that there is a single right way to use LinkedIn - the way that each person will use LinkedIn will be different, and some people will get different results by using LinkedIn in different ways. But Nixon notes that there are some ways in which LinkedIn can be misused.

For example, Nixon refers to "speaking in tongues," in which you use language appropriate in one social network and apply it in another. Nixon's point is that many LinkedIn users do not speak the language that is spoken on Twitter. His example should have some familiarity to Twitter users - even if they aren't familiar with the particular hashtags, at least they have an idea what is being said.

RT: @hankfan36 Seven ways from Sunday! #hocort #FF.

But if you're sending every one of your tweets to LinkedIn, and this is one of them, there are going to be a lot of puzzled faces who aren't going to have any idea what you're talking about.

While my Twitter stream is linked to my LinkedIn account, the only tweets that show up in LinkedIn are those that include the #in hashtag. For example, this tweet was shared with my 300+ LinkedIn contacts:

The big news in my industry today is 3M's acquisition of Cogent. Now there's another player with both ID and AFIS capability. #in

And yes, I know that this is pending stockholder approval and government approval bla bla bla. But certainly a tweet like this is more appropriate for LinkedIn than one of my other tweets. Like, say, this one:

@ezrabutler I could survive being in a car with Barney. But if Baby Bop were there too, I'd aim for a cliff.

I don't think that my next employer, whoever or whenever that may be, is necessarily going to care about my feelings about Baby Bop - unless, of course, I were to apply for a position with HIT Entertainment.

Be sure to read Nixon's other points here.
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