LinkedIn is the world’s largest online professional network. But how can you be visible and relevant as a designer on LinkedIn? Recently I received this question from a furniture designer. With this blog I want to share my personal thoughts and advice to use LinkedIn as a designer.
Your value as a designer
The Value Proposition Canvas is a one-page visual tool to understand that designers solve problems of clients. This tool brings the problem of your client and your solution together (so your design solves this problem). Or you are describing the pain of your client and you’re the pain reliever.
Design is a way to solve problems, so it is for furniture design. For the furniture designer a client’s problem might be that the standard furniture being sold in shops does not offer variations. Furthermore it’s standard design might not fit the own brand identity and it might not represent or position the products to be sold very well. By understanding these problems and by creating a design that solves them, a designer creates products that perfectly fits to the identity of the company, it’s flexible and can be used longer so the return of investment is more interesting. It also showcases and presents the products to increase the sales. Designers are problem solvers.
2 ways to be visible & relevant as designer on LinkedIn
In this blog I want to give you two specific tips on how you can use LinkedIn as designer:
Tip 1: Make your value visible on LinkedIn
Look at your own value proposition: Which exact problem are you solving for which type of clients? Pick for instance three projects you’re really proud of and tell a story on which problem you’ve solved and how. Share that on your LinkedIn profile or in updates for your network.
Tip 2: Use LinkedIn Search to discover new opportunities
Be proactive on LinkedIn by using the search function on top. Type the position that your ideal clients have. You get a long list of results. It’s important to be selective in this list and filter your results by the geographic area that you are serving. Most important, filter for people that are second connections. These people are already in your network because there is a common contact between you and your ideal client or partner. That builds trust and trust is a very important aspect in the buying decision.
If you don’t have a short list of your ideal partners and clients, you can go to their profiles individually and click on the ‘More’ button. You see the function ‘Follow’ allowing you to see the updates from your ideal clients and partners in the newsfeed. This is an invitation for you to engage and to comment on their posts and share your expertise.