How to get your LinkedIn updates to go VIRAL

A couple weeks ago my brother, Tom North, posted a quote on LinkedIn by Canadian entrepreneur, Brian Tracy.

Successful people are always looking for opportunities to help others. Unsuccessful people are always asking ‘What’s in it for me?’
— Brian Tracy

The post has been wildly successful on LinkedIn receiving almost 1,000 Likes and 50 comments:

This is definitely a solid quote, but there are a lot of amazing quotes people share on LinkedIn on a regular basis. So why did this one do so well on Tom's LinkedIn profile?

Because someone important took notice.

Adam Grant, a Wharton Professor and author of GIVE AND TAKE (someone I admittedly don't know too much about but have since started to learn more about) was tagged in a comment by one of Tom's connections. Tom then commented back about loving his work and recommended buying his book. So Adam Grant, who clearly is all about taking and giving, took the praise and gave thanks to Tom and Cara Dowden for their kind words about his work. 

Adam Grant has almost 86,000 connections on LinkedIn, and by commenting on Tom's post, the status update would then appear on Adam Grant's profile. Now Tom's post has the potential of reaching 86,000 people, plus whoever Likes it from Adam Grant's profile, it would then appear on their profile. Make sense? The potential reach becomes massive!

According to Adam Grant's LinkedIn, he is a recognized top-rated professor, one of BusinessWeek's favorite professors, one of the world's top 40 business professors under 40, and one of Malcolm Gladwell's favourite social science writers. And yet, he takes the time to comment on his fans social media posts to say thanks! That's cool and extraordinarily smart. Based on what I've read briefly about him, it seems truly authentic and these little gestures have probably helped him grow his own brand immensely, speaking directly to people he wouldn't have been able to reach without social media. These kinds of personal connections are so valuable for personal brands, entrepreneurs, small business to large companies. It's about growing a community of fans and followers, and building trust and giving yourself a voice.

As for my brother's LinkedIn fame . . . 

  • He received 100 new views during a one week period (he usually has approx. six per week)
  • He made 20 new connections (some even endorsed him, even though they've never worked with him . . . that's odd, and I wouldn't recommend that)
  • He received 100 new Twitter followers, a 20% increase (you'll notice he added his Twitter handle to his LinkedIn name during this time ... that was a smart move)
  • He connected directly with Adam Grant on Twitter afterwards
  • And most importantly, Tom realized that LinkedIn can be a domain for a conversation with people in similar industries and expertise.

I love sharing these kinds of stories. Social media gives you the ability to connect with people you wouldn't have the opportunity to otherwise. Check out a similar story I shared about the Power of Twitter.

Do you have a story of your own? Share it in the comments below!