How to use LinkedIn Effectively
Your company website should act as your marketing hub, encouraging visitors to understand your services, philosophy and culture. Similarly, LinkedIn is an excellent means of growing your personal brand, offering the business community an opportunity to discover who you are and how you work on an individual level.
However, simply being registered on LinkedIn isn’t enough. As with any other form of networking, a proactive attitude and the application of knowledge are required to make a strong and lasting impression. Seeing how you’re not going to gain anything from being a wallflower, here are some top ways to stand out from the digital crowd.
Your profile is hungry for info
Many people only fill in the absolute essentials on their profile, not realising that it’s the details that can make all the difference. Once you’ve added your employment history, contact information and qualifications, keep going and see what else can be expanded on. Areas such as causes that you care about, interests and key skills can prove more useful than you may realise, so don’t hold back on the particulars.
Good copy makes all the difference
It’s easy to think of your LinkedIn account as an online CV and take a bullet point approach, but it deserves much more than that. Your profile is a highly accessible and scalable portfolio of achievements, made all the more impactful through enlightening descriptions. For example, if you’ve enabled others to excel, give clear and concise explanations, and if your creative thinking improved profit margins, declare it with confidence. As long as you’re genuine and honest, you have every right to sell yourself.
Invest in a business headshot
LinkedIn is no place for fuzzy pics or silly snaps. Whether the visitor is looking to buy, sell, be inspired or apply for a role, they want to be met by a headshot that’s appropriate for a networking site. Whilst a bad image can ruin even the most expertly written profiles, a group photo can cause otherwise avoidable confusion. It’s also worth updating your headshot each year, helping to keep your profile fresh and dynamic.
Connect with suitable people
Practically everyone is on LinkedIn and it can be tempting to connect with anyone that pops up. However, there will surely be industries and roles that aren’t related to your objectives, in which case it’s recommended to refrain from being click-happy. By limiting your connections to those who are useful in some form, be it in terms of business or insight, your news feed will remain a source of valuable activity.
Customise your URL
This can set you aside from the masses and add a level of subtle sophistication to your account. Simply visit the ‘Contact Info’ section of your profile (beneath the profile photo) and change the URL to something personalised and professional. This small tweak means the difference between a line of random characters and web address that’s clearly yours, such as https://uk.linkedin.com/in/chloescragg
Share and contribute
LinkedIn is similar to other social sites in that it’s a great place to distribute news and get involved in conversation. A good rule of thumb is to share a balance of industry developments and internal updates, such as articles from trade journals and online newspapers interspersed with links to your own webpages, blogs and videos. Commenting on other users’ content is also an excellent way to build a rapport and offer your tuppence-worth. Posting on a daily basis works well but don’t get carried away, as bombardment will become annoying and give the appearance that you have too much spare time on your hands.
Add your company
LinkedIn was created for business, so make sure that your company is on there too. To add a company page, hover over the ‘Interests’ tab on the main navigation panel and select ‘Companies’. You will then find an area called ‘Create a Company Page’ on the right-hand side. It only takes a few minutes to add a company page, yet the benefits are multiple and long-lasting, ranging from giving your profile’s employment section extra depth, to building a separate audience of brand followers. By posting daily through both your personal profile and company page, you’ll maximise coverage in a natural and engaging manner.
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