- Wed, September 07 2011
- Filed under: Social networking and web 2.0
Today, LinkedIn announced it’s adding a Volunteer Experience & Causes section to the Profile page. This means professional profiles aren’t just about about day jobs - they also incorporate volunteer work and favorite causes.
This is great news for us for three reasons.
1. Social norms: I think one of the most powerful things we can do in our culture is to create a social norm around doing good. If a person’s profile in the top professional social network in the world isn’t complete without volunteer work and favorite causes, that creates an expectation that giving back is an essential and expected part of a person’s working life. For those of us trying to advance worthy causes, this is an enormous help.
2. Social influence: The most influential factor in people deciding to support a cause is the recommendation of their personal connections. By including causes, charities and volunteer work in LinkedIn profiles, the social network becomes wired to create these positive influences for our organizations.
3. Social good: At the end of the day, to do good, we need strong relationships. LinkedIn is a great tool for going that and therefore advancing our missions. Here are two ways you can capitalize on the social good potential of today’s news:
a. Encourage volunteers to share the work they do for you on their profiles. Ask them to update their LinkedIn Profile here. If you are not yet a LinkedIn member, it takes just a few minutes to create a profile here.
b. Claim Your Nonprofit’s Company Page. Company Pages are a company or nonprofit’s profile of record on LinkedIn and a powerful way to speak to millions of professionals. When LinkedIn members indicate that they work or volunteer for your organization, a Company Page is automatically created so it is up to you to claim it as your official presence on LinkedIn. Over 101,000 organizations currently use a Company Page to position their organization and differentiate themselves. As an example, the Company Page created by the American Red Cross has attracted thousands of followers. So if you haven’t claimed your Company Page yet, now is the time to do it. Check out more info here.
Want to do more? Check out more about nonprofits on LinkedIn here.
Full disclosure: I am a big fan and user of LinkedIn, and LinkedIn is represented on my organization’s board. But I’d say these nice things anyway, because this is really good news for our sector.