Why LinkedIn? [Internship]

                In today’s economy, students and young professionals share a common fear. Their fear is whether or not they will find a job. With the presidential debate currently going on, the candidates for president are constantly promising to make new jobs. This does nothing but make the current students worry that there are no jobs now and may not be any in the future. Fortunately, there are online tools that can help graduates and undergraduates worry a bit less. LinkedIn is the world’s largest professional networking site. It is said to be the best investment you will ever make in your career. It is used by individuals and businesses for networking, job searching, hiring, and much more.

                Recently, I have started an internship with the company Digital Ethos. They have asked me if I was signed up with the website LinkedIn and were shocked when I said I was not. Immediately I signed up after receiving their reaction. I could see how important LinkedIn was right away. LinkedIn is a great way to establish your identity on the web. With 175 million members worldwide, LinkedIn is clearly a striving network that helps individuals and small businesses to large corporations.  With LinkedIn, you can exchange ideas, knowledge, and opportunities with a broad network of professionals. Your LinkedIn account is the first impression someone gets when they google you, this can be a huge benefit if your LinkedIn account is up to date and well put together. Your LinkedIn page can either make you or break you.

                Signing up for LinkedIn is easy. You simply put in your full name and your email address. From then on, LinkedIn gives you step by step instructions on how to get your account up and running. This includes indicating where you are currently employed and what type of job. Another cool feature of LinkedIn lets you indicate what field you are in. It also asks you where you have been employed in the past and for how long. This can give your future employer a general knowledge of where you worked and what your skill-sets could be. Your education also holds a section on your LinkedIn profile, which can include when you were in high school and in college. If you haven’t graduated from one or the other, it lets you select your anticipated graduation year. LinkedIn has a section called “Summary” which lets other users quickly learn about your background and interests. There is a different area for your skills and expertise which helps potential employers find you when they are searching for a specific knowledge-base. Recommendations on your page can carry a lot of weight.  It lets your colleagues, clients, or suppliers speak on your record. Recommendations are just like reference part of your resume. You’re “snapshot” is like your web based business card. It includes your name, location, education, recommendations, education, past positions, and links to your website. Use this space efficiently and you’ll be sure to catch someone’s eye.

                These days, it is so crucial for not only graduates, but undergraduates, to get their foot in the door of the career world right away. It is very important for young professionals to use LinkedIn for many reasons. Young professionals don’t have a lot of experience, so LinkedIn helps them by providing an answers section. This allows a wide variety of professionals to answer any question you might have about your field or any type of field you may be interested in. Asking and answering questions also helps you build your online visibility. This is essential to making your way to the top. This generation of young adults is said to be the “Digital Native” generation since most, if not all, of their life was spent in front of a screen. LinkedIn lets them continue this sort of lifestyle and it makes it a lot more comfortable to be more productive on the network. Young professionals have little to no experience in the work force. LinkedIn gives them a realistic outlook on their field of interest. You should never let one job define your field. With over 175 million members worldwide, it is easy to network and see all kinds of different sides of your field. You can also check out your fields leading players. You can see how they got to where they are by seeing where they went to school, what they studied, what skills they developed, what groups they belong too, and to whom with they are connected. This will help you obtain a better grasp on your anticipated field you want to join.

                The people who are part of your network are called your connections. A connection can indicate that you know the person well or that they are a trusted business contact. In order to become a connection, you need to be invited and accepted. LinkedIn doesn’t support people in adding somebody that they don’t know. When you want to send someone a connections request, LinkedIn asks how you know this person. The options include colleague, classmate, friend, business partner, and I don’t know said person. If you chose “I don’t know said person”, LinkedIn will not allow you to add them. If you chose any of the other, it will ask for the persons email address.

                LinkedIn narrows down your connections into three different categories. They are first degree, second degree, and third degree connections. First degree connections are the people that you have directly connected with because you or the person sent an invitation that has been accepted. Second degree connections are the people who are connected with your first degree connections. You can contact them through something called an introduction. You may ask your first degree connection to introduce you to your second degree connection. Since you probably don’t know your second degree connection, an introduction from your first degree connection would be the only way to connect with them. Finally, your third degree connections are the people who are connected to your second degree connections. If you want to become their first connection, you have to ask for an introduction. An introduction usually sounds like, “Dear Mr. Smith, Let me introduce you to Mr. John from Company X.” LinkedIn shows you which connection a person is by placing an icon which says either “1st”, “2nd”, or “3rd” connection.

                LinkedIn offers a feature called “groups”. Being a member of a group lets you engage in one on one networking between group members. An advantage is that you can send lnmail for no fee. As a member of a group, you can discover the most popular discussions in your professional group. LinkedIn groups also allow you to follow the most influential people in your groups by looking at the Top Influencers board to see all their group activity.

                Looking for a job on LinkedIn is said to be a whole lot easier than going door to door hoping they are hiring. If you know what company you are interested in joining, simply search for them on LinkedIn’s search bar. The company will have their employers listed and you can network with them and see what they did to be able to work with the company. Eventually, you will be able to establish them as a connection. On the other hand, if you have no idea what company you want to work for, you can search a keyword, job title, or location. Even though the search is much broader, you will still get a general knowledge of what you are looking into.

                It is clear to see that there is a lot more to LinkedIn than just looking for a job in a newspaper. Connecting with people and getting your name out there can also contribute to your success on LinkedIn. If you use your LinkedIn profile correctly, it will become a huge benefit for you in the job marketing world.



The content in this article is part of Digital Ethos’s Digital Media Education in the Higher Education Internship Program, the content was created by @KaylaMarzo, a Student at Suffolk County Community college, intern at Digital Ethos.

Traditional Print Advertising versus Digital Online Marketing


Digital © digitalcamertechnique.com

Digital © digitalcamertechnique.com

This blog post is written partly in a question and answer interview format. This step-by-step process is meant to make it easier to understand the transition from traditional (print) advertising to online (also known as digital) marketing.  It also emphasizes the importance of this evolutionary change. Since I know my own experiences intimately (what I have gone through as both a consumer and a business owner), I am using myself as both the interviewer and interviewee in the Q and A section.

The world as we know it is going through a major transition from printing everything to digital (paperless) technologies. There are several reasons for this change from print to pixel.

• First is the green reason. It involves using less paper, having less waste and conserving resources. In fact, some businesses have a green or paperless policy. They frown on the use of paper and go to great lengths to minimize its use altogether.

Reduce & Reuse Logo © Marketing Bytes

Reduce & Reuse Logo © Marketing Bytes

• Second is technology. The computer and the Internet have begun to make this possibility into a reality. But this transition is not seamless. One area where this is a road filled with uncertainties is in the marketing & advertising industry.

• There is still a great deal of paper used in this industry. Although it is decreasing and there are options to use paper or go paperless in many of our daily activities, it is my opinion that the case to continue in the less-paper direction with all due diligence is a crucial one.

• Unfortunately, one of the major obstacles to going paperless is the generation of adults, considered baby boomers and older, who grew up and became educated without this technology. The height of sophistication was slide rules and pocket calculators. Now there are the Inbound Boomers to help with this transition.

The Boomer Family © Marketing Bytes

The Boomer Family © Marketing Bytes http://www.facebook.com/TheInboundBoomers?v=wall

• The process of thinking is very different for those of us born before desktops, laptops, iPhones, iPads, iPods and I don’t know what other ‘i’ things there will be. We think on paper. Our reality is based on doing and learning things by reading from and writing on paper not from a computer screen, keypad and mouse (or touch pad). It takes a focused and concerted effort to change one’s thought processing beyond  ‘recycling one’s garbage’.

• None the less and for the reasons listed above, I think it is very important to have a discourse (this is where the Q and A format begins) to highlight where we are in the transition from print to pixel and the value of continuing as quickly as possible.

Q: Do you have any phone books in your home?
A: I admit that I still have a few local ones but none of the large, cumbersome ones.

Q: If so, what do you use them for?
A: Primarily to gather dust but I hear they are good as pillows for high chairs, car seats if someone is short and can’t reach the petals or see above the dashboard and the latest designer furniture pictured here.

Phone Book fo'ever © ecojoes.com

Q: How many times have you opened a phone book in the last year to find a phone number or locate a local business?
A: Once, maybe twice.

Q: Do you read the advertising circulars and magazines that are delivered weekly to your home by the post office?
A: Never

Q: Or do you throw them away without reading them?
A: They are delivered by letter carrier between Wednesday and Friday and placed in our lobby. Within a day, they become  a messy pile. The building super throws them away on Sunday for Monday garbage pickup.

Newspaper ads © Marketing Bytes

Newspaper ads © Marketing Bytes

Q: Do you collect discount coupon books and cut out retail coupons?
A: I love coupon books. In fact, when they arrive, I take most if not all of them so they do not end up in the trash. I hand them out in my neighborhood. Everyone loves when I do that. I have no patience to clip coupons but I do hear about people that do.

Q: How many times have you left coupons home or misplaced them so you were not able to use them when you needed them?
A: I always misplace the book coupons or other discount papers I receive.

Q: Do you have the plastic ID key chain tags that retailers give out?
A: Someone could write my biography based on the number and variety of the ID tags I have. In fact, CVS Pharmacy gives one the option of printing out a coupon or placing their weekly discount information on their ID tag so one never has to worry about losing a coupon. Other retailers should adopt that system too. It is a great digital, paperless move.


Q: What techniques do you use to promote your business?
A: All online, ‘attraction’ and Inbound Marketing.

Q: What is the primary way your customers find you?
A: Networking, recommendations and referrals online and in-person.

Q: Do you advertise with traditional print media, print ads, coupons, etc?
A: No. But I know plenty of local businesses that do and I am startled by how much money they willingly spend to do so.

Q: Do you know where the circulars and magazines that you spend your advertising budget on go when they are delivered to postal residents in your community?
A: I know they go right into the garbage.

Garbage truck © dreamstime.com

Garbage truck © dreamstime.com

Q: Do you believe that if you keep using traditional methods of print media advertising, including direct mailings, that it will eventually pay off again when the economy improves?
A: I know that is NOT the case. Technology is changing the way consumers shop and businesses need to advertise. But many of my local business colleagues do not seem to understand this yet. Some times I consider sending out a postcard for the fun of it but the cost of printing and postage cool my enthusiasm.

Q: Do you know what the cost is per new customer based upon the system of advertising you are using?
A: I admit that I don’t use this tool religiously but I know it works and I recommend that clients use it. I also know that online marketing is much more affordable and has a much wider reach than traditional advertising unless you can afford an advertising spot on the SuperBowl.

SuperBowl Ad © USA Today

SuperBowl Ad © USA Today

Q: Do you have a trackable method for learning how your new customers find you?
A: Yes, the new online marketing technology programs have amazing features to assist business owners in following and recording the progress of their marketing activities.

Q: Do you think it is easiest and cheapest to use direct mail (letters and postcards) to contact existing customers and attract new ones?
A: I cringe every time I get another postcard or even letter in the mail from one of my community business colleagues. I know they think this is a reasonable and inexpensive way to advertise. It worked in the past. If only they would take that leap into the 21st Century, the new economy and online marketing to at least give it a try for a little while. They can always continue with traditional media too and compare the results.

Q: Are you afraid of the computer, the Internet and the new advertising & marketing technology?
A: Personally, I embrace it and I am fascinated by what is going on. But there are so many business owners who are terrified of using the new technology. Some barely know how to use a computer.

Online Marketing © AuburnBusiness.com

Online Marketing © AuburnBusiness.com

Q: Do you know what online marketing is and how it differs from traditional advertising in content, cost and coverage?
A: Because marketing and advertising are my business, I started to learn about the new technology about a year and a half ago. It was very challenging but essential for me. Therefore, I am now well versed in what online marketing is. It is the use of the computer, the Internet and a whole host of new programs to help businesses attract new customers. Just as customers have changed the way they shop, business owners have to change the way they advertise to meet their customers’ searching needs.

A: I also know that online marketing is very cost effective. In fact, it is the only way that many start up businesses can afford to advertise on a zero dollar budget. Print advertising is VERY expensive and it requires constant repetition for recognition. With online marketing, once you are on, you’re on. But you do want to update and tweak information there too.

A: Online marketing’s coverage is so much broader than print media. There is NO comparison.

Local SEO © SEOcompany247.com

Local SEO © SEOcompany247.com

Q: Are you familiar with Local SEO (Search Engine Optimization)?
A: Search Engine Optimization is something that Google has been using for years to help consumers find what they are looking for. Google also designed SEO so that if a business uses the right formula, keywords, etc. it will rank well (first place or at least the first page) when a consumer searches for what they want.

A: Local SEO is the latest and most exciting addition to the host of services and tools Google offers. Instead of a ‘global’ search where a customer is looking to purchase something by mail (for example) and it can come from anywhere, local SEO is community specific. It is designed for consumers to locate what they want in a specific community. It is for making local, face-to-face purchases.

Q: Do you know what ‘Google Places’ are as well as their significance in promoting your business?
A: Google has identified over 49,000,000 local businesses in the US. Only about 11% of these businesses have ‘claimed’ their Google Place. Claiming one’s Google Place is the first step in participating in local online marketing and broadening one’s reach better than any other technique.

Google Places-Marketing Bytes near Rockville Centre, NY

Google Places-Marketing Bytes near Rockville Centre, NY

Q: Have you claimed your Google Place? Is your business on the ‘seven pack’?
A:  Yes, my company has claimed its Google Place. In the business categories I am listed under, I rank in the first seven listed and on the first page. This is both for my industry and geographic area. This is what is called the ‘seven pack’. (No it is not a free can of beer when you buy a six pack).

Q: Have you heard of Local Online Business Directories?
A: Local Online Business Directories are similar to print directories but they are dynamic, interactive, and can have visual and verbal information changed at any time. They also have links and can take you to other places. One of their primary features is reviews. They are the most attractive advertising aspect.

MerchantCircle Village © MerchantCircle.com

MerchantCircle Village © MerchantCircle.com

Q: Are you listed on Local Online Business Directories?
A: I am listed on over 70 directories because someone did it for me as a favor and did no know it is unnecessary and even appropriate to be listed on so many.

Q: Do you know how to get recommendations and use word of mouth on line?
A: Yes, there are programs designed to help businesses get recommendations from their website, e-mail, blog, etc. These type of recommendations ARE word of mouth online.

Q: Do you know how to convert your current customers into your sales force?
A: On line recommendations from loyal customers are the best selling tool a business can have.

Q: Did you know that national and regional corporations sometimes need to be advertised as local businesses?
A: Yes, when they have a local retail presence like a Subway, Dunkin Donut, CVS, etc. They are all part of your community’s retail landscape.

EcoJoes-Green Thinking for the Average Joe

MerchantCircle, one of my favorite Local Online Business Directories

Local SEO Online Business Directories

The Ultimate List: 50 Local Business Directories

Designing Traditional Print Advertising

Local Business Listings

Best SuperBowl ads

CVS Extra Care Card

6 of the Best Guest Posting Tips

Guest posting can be a very lucrative venture for all parties involved. The owner of the blog is provided with free content, and the writer of the content is given acknowledgement of their wisdom on the chosen topic. In this aspect, guest posting seems to benefit both parties equally. However, it can be just as difficult to find high-quality blog owners who will allow guest posting, as it is to find high-quality writers to make guest appearances on your blog.

Keeping in mind a few helpful guest-posting tips can be beneficial for all involved and will help to produce the highest quality content that will reflect well on both the blog owner and the content creator.

Posting Tips for Guest Bloggers

  1. Aim High – Look for highly traveled blogs or those with impressive page rankings. These links will also be highly valuable portfolio material.
  2. Research the Blog – In order to create what is fresh content for the blog, you will need to know what content has already been created. If the blog is a lengthy one, check for tag clouds or keywords on the topics that are the same as your posting idea.
  3. Catchy Title – Catchier content. Be sure that you supply an eye catching title for your content, and make just as certain that the content lives up to the title. A good blogger knows that even the most boring topic can be made interesting with the right language.
  4. Give Your Best Stuff Away – This may be a hard concept to swallow for some bloggers but you want your guest posts on any blogs to be the most shining examples of your work. Not only will this garner the blog owner increased traffic or interest in their site, but it may also cause others to take notice, and perhaps even offer you paying gigs.
  5. Interact – Reply to commenters and pay attention to your re-tweeters. Get involved and make sure that you are available to ponder any issues about your blog posts with others who may be doing the same. Building a rapport with readers is valuable regardless of the blog posted on. Thanks to social media, people with similar interest or interest in you, can find you with a simple click once you have engaged them on site.
  6. Promote Your Posts – Promoting your own post is never more important than it is when posting on someone else’s site. Show them that their effort to give you a great link in exchange for great content has not gone unnoticed. Tweet, share, Digg, and do all you can to make sure the posts receives all of the coverage that is in your power to create.


LinkedIn: Updates on Ads & LinkedIn Today

LinkedIn is a free, business and social network which was built on the idea that personal recommendations in today’s global village is was people really need. Hence, they created a way for people to connect on a professional level, and create a circle of acquaintances, or Connections as they are called. Somewhere, in the people you invite to connect with you, there is a connection to another circle and group of people you might know as well or want to connect with. That is called 2nd degree connections, and from here on, it can grow exponentially.

From this network people can receive personal recommendations, look for employees and search for jobs. LinkedIn has a privacy policy wherein all the connections have to be mutually agreed, so no unwanted connections will be formed.

With over 100 million users, from 200 countries around the world, available in many languages, LinkedIn is a force to be reckoned with.

There are a numerous programs that have been added throughout the years, to make LinkedIn more social and more interactive:

  • Paid Accounts offers more possibilities and tools to find people.
  • LinkedIn Answers allows users to post business related questions that anyone else can view.
  • LinkedIn Ads – LinkedIn has a paid service of ads called LinkedIn Ads, where users can create a small ad to be shown on the side of the prominent pages on the site, in a similar way to Google’s Adwords. The ad directs people to the website of the advertiser. The advertiser specifies which LinkedIn members will be able to view the ad by selecting a target audience. The payment for the ads is done in a CPC (Pay per Click) method or CPM (pay per 1,000 impressions). There is a bid and a maximum price that the advertiser is willing to pay for each click is set. LinkedIn is now testing social recommendation based ads; they are trying to target advertising based on the keywords in a profile and conversations.
  • LinkedIn Today – In March 2011 LinkedIn added another service called, LinkedIn Today. It is a social news product for business people. The news is aggregated from different established sources like The Wall Street Journal, CNN, NPR, Bloomberg, Huffington Post etc. and is customized to match the industries you and your connections work in. The articles in each industry are organized by how popular the story is and how many times it has been shared on LinkedIn or Twitter.

Most of the success stories with LinkedIn Ads come from job seekers and professional services. B2B is also represented in their ads and businesses claim to have success with creating new connections and receiving orders.

Back in January 2011 LinkedIn filed for an IPO, offering the first glimpse into its finances. In the first 9 month of 2010, LinkedIn turned in a profit of 10.1 million on revenue of $161 million. “We do not expect to be profitable on a GAAP basis in 2011” the company said in its filling.

Four months later, in May 2011, LinkedIn became a public traded company. Its shares went for $45 a pop.  That means the company is estimated to be worth $4.3 billion. Reid Hoffman, the co-founder and former CEO of LinkedIn retained 21.7% of the stock which is worth more than $1.6 billion. (Hoffman is one of the founders of Pay-Pal). The shares soared out of the gate to $87.05, and have reached over $100 for a short period before settling in the high 90’s.

Goldman Sachs, an investor, sold all its shares and quadrupled its investment in 3 years.

Read our article when we did a first look at LinkedIn in Nov 2010 and also our article on the LinkedIn IPO.


Social Media For Recruiting

It wasn’t long ago that social media was defined solely as a way to learn how a friend just ate at a great restaurant or who was getting engaged.

However, social media continued its evolution and became particularly useful for companies to locate, recruit, and learn about candidates for open positions. Using social media for recruiting has quickly ignited a hiring fire, lighting the way for many. While sites like Facebook, Twitter and Myspace are still often used for ‘fun’, as well as business, others like LinkedIn have become known as more ‘serious’or ‘professional’ space.

So how does a company effectively search and target potential candidates from such a large pool though?

Recruit from Your Own List of Friends and Followers

Using Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn can all be useful in recruiting by being able to distribute information about open positions quickly and efficiently to large number of people. Recruiters know they’re distributing information to candidates who will take notice, especially since jobseekers are turned off by sites like CareerBuilder.com which have become filled with spam.

There are a number of free resources available. On most social media profiles, companies can use their status box in order to announce open positions, and of course good old fashioned networking is the best tool of all. On LinkedIn, after building connections of industry peers including co-workers, clients, and local companies, one can browse the profiles of each other’s connections, and then ask for introductions.

Link Up with LinkedIn

Another useful way to recruit on LinkedIn is by joining relevant groups and staying active within them by participating in the group’s discussions and keeping their eyes open for those who are active and knowledgeable.

While similar tools are available on almost all social media sites, LinkedIn gives recruiters the ability to not only view a candidate’s resume, they can also see any recommendations the candidate has received from their peers. The ability to give and receive visible recommendations is a tool that’s not as ‘visible’ and specific on other social media sites. Additionally, recruiting companies on LinkedIn can post available jobs and sign up for LinkedIn Talent Advantage, basically a toolbox for recruiters, both for fees.

There’s no reason to be afraid of approaching candidates. A recent survey on Internships.com found that almost 80 percent% of respondents didn’t mind if a company made contact about potential opportunities, so now is the time to make use of the many tools social media has to offer.


Meetup: Social Networking On & Off the Web

Meetup is a social gathering site that helps to organize groups for local events, interest, and shared educational opportunities. Meetup’s major goal is to encourage people to understand that they can change their world, indeed our whole world, by organizing into groups that can be powerful enough to make great differences.

Who Uses Meetup?

Ranked #462 globally, the cities of San Diego and Denver show particularly high viewer numbers. Although it is used in countries like the UK and Canada, 70% of Meetup’s site visitors are located in the U.S. where its traffic rank is #129. Most common users are women from ages 35 to 64 with some college education. Most of these average users tend to browse from work.

People from all walks, niches, communities, and can and do use Meetup. Meetup can help:

  • To find others in your local area who share similar interest
  • To provide forums where users can learn, teach, and share
  • To encourage users to make friends and have fun
  • To teach that groups can be a powerful aspect for the common person to rise up, stand up, unite and help to make a difference on a local or global level

Meetup has 4.6 million monthly visitors with 3.9 million registered users. It helps to organize 80,000 meetings per month involving 37,000 local groups. Meetup provides coverage for over 3,500 topics and interests, in 4,000 cities, in 100 countries.

What is a Meetup Group?

Users can register with Meetup and begin to set up their own groups meetings. Users most commonly will initiate a Meetup group by posting a set date and time for a Meetup. Popular Meetup group topics are interest are:

  • Hiking
  • Entrepreneurs
  • Knitting
  • Moms
  • Poker
  • Travel
  • Writers

The topics are virtually endless and only restricted to the imagination of its creator. Meetup’s goal is to make sure that although users can benefit greatly from communication, education and integration provided by the internet on a regular basis, face-to-face interaction can provide many benefits that online communications cannot.

Major Meetups

This week a major Meetup group will be sponsored by the International Game Developer’s Association in Chicago. This group will help to get to help participate in problem-solving and chapter run events that are available in the United States as well as Internationally. Group members will also have access to literally thousands of highly talented members of various elements of the game development industry.

There are many small businesses that use Meetup for brainstorming better ideas for their businesses, and just as many Meetup groups involved in being active, health conscious or other aspects of the many non-profit agencies that use Meetup for real time group events.

Average Meetup Groups

Average metropolitan areas such as Richmond, Virginia commonly have around 2,000 Meetup groups functioning on site at any given time. However, larger major cities such as New York and Los Angeles have a significantly higher tally of between 6 and 9 thousand functioning groups.

It is notable too that many Meetup groups get their start on Meetup’s site itself. It is not uncommon for groups to originate, build and expand on Meetup for anywhere between six and eleven months before taking to a face-to-face setting.



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