If you’ve updated your information, and your LinkedIn profile is stellar (your goal is to achieve All-Star status) – rich with keywords, targeted towards the position that you’re seeking, and tells a compelling story, but you’re still not getting the attention you expected, you may need to increase your network connections.

How many connections do you have? If you have less than 500 connections, you’re at a disadvantage. Here’s why:

  1. Your reach is limited. If you’re posting good content, it’s not reaching as many people. The more people who engage in it (i.e., like, comment or share), the more people will see it and may reach out to connect with you.
  2. Your information may not be showing up when people (recruiters or business leaders) are searching for keywords that align with your profile. Who you are connected to matters in this situation.
  3. There may be a perception that you are not engaged, which could have a negative impact, especially if you’re in a field where networking (including social) is mission-critical.
So, how do I increase the number of connections that I have on LinkedIn?
  • Consider prior relationships: you can easily find people by searching by name, or looking through the employee lists at the company that they work for. Think about college friends as well.
  • Think about making new acquaintances: who are people that are in your field that you admire or respect? Is there someone that you might be able to help to solve a problem?
  • Who are the people that work for companies in which you have an interest? Reach out to them to establish an introduction or connection. Think about engaging with recruiters, hiring managers, and those that might be peers to a role that you’d be seeking.

When you send a connection request, include a short note and introduction, to increase the likelihood of your request being accepted.

  • Participate in groups that are related to your field or areas of interest: don’t just join the group – contribute – whether you start discussions, or engage by commenting and giving perspective to content that others are providing.
  • Become a thought leader in your industry or profession: publish your own articles, repost interesting articles, and find ways that you can share the wealth of information that is available with others.

LinkedIn can be a phenomenal resource. The key is being engaged in every aspect, and you can expect that many doors will be opened – whether it’s or a new position or providing an opportunity for a new business deal or venture.