This is a guest post written by Jeremy Smith of 78p.tv.
When someone thinks of social media, they may come with a variety of definitions that circle around the concept of connecting with loved ones, catching up with old friends, networking with colleagues, and sharing your life through text status updates, pictures, and commenting on other people’s posts. Some common networks that fit this bill are definitely the big three with Facebook, Google+, and Twitter. The discussion of LinkedIn really does not come up much until you start talking about a digital resume, but it might be one of the great niche social media sites that churches are not using.
One of the most common perceptions of LinkedIn accounts is to create your digital resume, and then leave it alone until you need it again. The mistake comes when we expect something amazing to happen from LinkedIn without putting in the necessary time, energy, and effort. Instead, let’s take a look at how we can setup our profile for success and then go the extra mile with engagement and find LinkedIn gold.
As a pastor, consider three different possibilities that can result from an active LinkedIn approach:
Hire A New Staff Person
If you try to setup a LinkedIn profile while you are looking to fill a ministry position, you are already behind in the game. Networking with others, showing your understanding and authority on the topics of church and faith will ultimately help you network with top prospects and make the candidacy that much easier.
Endorse Your Staff and Volunteers
Unlike other social networks, LinkedIn has the professional benefit of endorsements and recommendations that can impact careers. How amazing would it be if every staff person gave an honest and compassionate assessment on skills and experience for all of their current volunteers? At the same time, a senior pastor that gives an authentic and encouraging recommendation to their staff that will create a positive and professional environment of friendship that may go far outside the digital walls of LinkedIn.
Network With Other Church Leaders
Connecting on LinkedIn with the mentality of “what is mine is mine” may seriously limit your options for future potential staff and volunteers. Connecting with other church leaders in your community not only raises your visibility to a wide range of people that may be looking for a new job or volunteering position, but also can foster a healthy camaraderie. Push for networking with other churches, create your own local church leaders group, and start the dialogue on this network that you may have been longing to have for years.
These are just a couple of outside-the-box thinkings that may take your ministry to the next level.
How will your church decide to engage well on LinkedIn?
This post was written by Jeremy Smith. Jeremy is a Christian first, husband and father next, and then a blogger at 78p.tv, writer, and social media realist. He is currently working at Youth for Christ/USA as the Social Media Specialist and attending Denver Seminary for his Master’s of Counseling in Mental Health. His bachelor’s degree is in Computer Engineering and Master’s in Family Ministry. For those that are looking to create a successful Social Media and Blogging Strategy for their church, ministry, or blog, he would love help you make the most of your work through the Social Media and Blogging Consultation.Tweet