Whether or not this is true is up to the strategist leveraging the system, but when it comes to profile use, Facebook is for family and LinkedIn is for business. Thus, having a strong LinkedIn profile can lead to positive business growth, connections, jobs and money – if, of course, you use it right.
At No Limit Agency, we are a brand biography agency. That means we focus on creating as many touch points as possible (marketing, PR, social, advertising, digital, creative) to create an ongoing narrative about your brand. You can do that personally as well—step away from the brand you work with and apply a similar approach to your own footprint to create a great story.
Below, you will find some tips on making a great LinkedIn profile that is sure to gain the attention of followers and connectors:
Profile Photo: Use a professional photo and keep it consistent with your company’s leadership. First impressions are everything, which is why having a positive, smiling and professional photo will add credibility to your profile.
Cover Photo: Your cover photo should continue the story of your profile photo. Rather than it highlighting you as a person, it can support the company you work for.
Title: Start off by using your real name, and then add in any certifications or title additions you may have. This is all completely searchable within both the LinkedIn network and Google. Next, as a subhead, add in the terms that you want people to search you by. Some leaders will put in buzz terms, like “expert at franchise development” or “strong LinkedIn marketer.” This area will also be searchable, so make sure it appeals to the target audience you are trying to reach.
Posts: This section is now front and center when you land on the page, and it’s a great place to share content. Sure, you can share traditional posts on LinkedIn—and you should at least once a week to keep your content feed fresh. But here, you can also add longer narratives or aggregate content you have been featured in. These are a part of LinkedIn Pulse (genius of them to get you to write content for them in exchange for boosting your own brand biography) and can be seen by a wider audience. For instance, one of my posts, “Leads Take 6 Months to Bloom,” was an “Editor’s Pick” and has nearly 40,000 reads, 548 likes, 90 comments and 149 shares. All of that exposure came from simply placing content on LinkedIn.
Background: This is where you get to share some content about your story. While this is typically reserved for your bio, it should include your expertise and how you stand out in your job. You should also highlight your specialties here, as they will also be searchable. Make sure you beef up this section so that those who click on your profile can learn more about you.
Experience: For each job that you have worked at, at the very least, put the standard boilerplate for that company. This is helpful in creating your LinkedIn story. If you want to be more ambitious, add in your big accomplishments.
Recommendations: These are valuable. When they were first added to LinkedIn, connections went crazy, asking everyone for one. They are not as requested today as they once were, but having other people tell your story is a valuable part of your profile, as it gives you credibility. Set a goal to gain a few next year to beef up your third-party credibility.
Advice for Contacting You: This is a good section to explain the best ways to get in touch. For me, I say, “Nick loves connecting with entrepreneurs, business owners, thought leaders and even suppliers. But, if he accepts your LinkedIn request, don't write him right away selling him your services, as he will probably remove you as a contact (unless, of course, you have something amazing to sell). If you are interested in exploring a relationship with No Limit Agency, email him at firstname.lastname@example.org If you have a great story for www.1851franchise.com and want his team to write about it, email email@example.com.”
Publications: You know how other executives write that they have been quoted in The Wall Street Journal or USA TODAY? This is your section to share publications that have quoted or featured you. This adds another layer of third party credibility to your story and your profile. Whenever you are in the media, you should enter a publication submission to keep track of all of the press that you get.
There are many beauties of LinkedIn. The best thing about it is that you can connect with virtually anyone in business – athletes, home buyers and potential franchisees are all on there. And still today, when you receive an email from its system, you don’t mark it as spam and probably read it. This gives you a great tool to connect with new people and know your message is reaching them. LinkedIn is a great connections tool, but you have to use it on a regular basis.
For your brand, make sure you go to your 1851 page on a weekly basis and find one piece of content to share. This will provide a strong starting point to leverage the tool for business growth.