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What is LinkedIn?

LinkedIn stands out among social networks for its focus on professional or business-to-business content – users generally don't share personal content or opinions. While it used to be considered useful only for job- and personnel-hunting, it has grown and evolved in recent years to enable more diverse network-building.

On LinkedIn, you can have a personal profile, a company page (suitable for a group, centre, project, etc.) or a LinkedIn group. A group is defined by LinkedIn as a "hub which provides a place for professionals in the same industry or with similar interests to share content, find answers, post and view jobs, make business contacts, and establish themselves as industry experts." 

See (opens in a new window)UCD Institute for Discovery on LinkedIn for some examples of good content on this platform:

How to use it

Like Facebook, you have to have a personal profile in order to participate in or create either of the other two. LinkedIn has published a concise blog on (opens in a new window)how to create the best LinkedIn Profile.

The principal advantage of this platform is that you're guaranteed an audience, especially from certain industries, as well as peers connected with your own and other institutions. By including the university you graduated from, you can connect with all the alumni from that institution, so it offers many opportunities to enhance your network.

Like Twitter and Instagram, LinkedIn uses hashtags to gather content about particular topics of interest, and also to suggest posts to users from contacts in their network.

The platform is adept at pulling previews from websites or YouTube videos you link to in your posts, but you can also attach (and tag) images and videos just as on Twitter. Unlike Twitter, you are not limited to 280 characters in your posts, so you can write much more detailed introductions to your outputs and articles, and tag as many other users as you like (without breaching the etiquette referred to in our sections on Facebook and Twitter). In general, you can post profile pieces and articles of length on LinkedIn profiles, pages and groups in a way that's not possible or desirable on other social media platforms.

For further examples of how to promote research on LinkedIn, visit the (opens in a new window)UCD Research LinkedIn page.

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