LinkedIn has been around since 2003 and is an extremely successful business-oriented social networking service. Everyone in the professional world knows they need to have one, but we don’t all know exactly how to use it.

One of the biggest selling points of LinkedIn is the ability to network with people that you may not be able to outside the digital spectrum. So we’d like to ask, have you done this? Are you successful in networking and marketing yourself and/or your company via LinkedIn?

Take us, for example. Here at Aftershock Digital we provide digital marketing and advertising services to several companies in various industries. After reading about the success of Lewis Howes, we decided to try our hand at expanding our network using LinkedIn. We connected with several individuals who worked in the TV or Radio businesses and sent out messages, but found no luck. While many of them did accept our invitation to connect, only a few responded to our message, and no one took us up on our offer to meet and see if we could form a mutually beneficial connection.

Although it may not have worked for us, that doesn’t mean it doesn’t work for others. A little while back we received a message from a prominent video production company here in Phoenix. The message started out with interesting facts about video and ended with an invitation to grab coffee, which was accepted. Although there was no potential synergy between their business and ours, they told us they had great success growing their company through LinkedIn.

So, growing your business is possible on LinkedIn, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t a few roadblocks. On average, we receive about 5 spam messages a day on LinkedIn and we can’t be the only one with this problem. This makes it extremely difficult to network with someone. It’s not hard to imagine that your message may get lost in between spam messages or completely overlooked by an annoyed professional with an overflowing inbox.

As with everything in life, there are pros and cons to trying to virtually network. We’d like to know your thoughts on LinkedIn. Is it working for you? Are any of the connections you’ve made deep enough to move on to the next level of business? Do you know anyone with a success story?

Leave us a comment below with your thoughts. Until then, happy networking!

-Written by Amy Pope