LinkedIn LowDown – part 1

how to make your Personal Profile effective

No matter what industry you’re in, LinkedIn is a crucial business tool. But how do you actually use it? Not many people use LinkedIn to its full potential, which means they’re missing out on the invaluable networking opportunities it can provide. With this in mind, we’ve decided to compile a three-part series of articles on how to reap the full benefits of LinkedIn.

linkedinAt the end of last year, we were lucky enough to receive LinkedIn training from social selling and recruiting evangelist, Mike Clarke. His company, Really Connect, is the world’s number 1 certified LinkedIn training company, working with over 500 corporate and enterprise clients. The training session not only showed us the basic principles of a successful LinkedIn strategy but also showed us how to implement these strategies at an individual and team level.

Although the session mainly focused on how to maximise a personal LinkedIn profile, these changes can also have a direct impact on a Company Page. Since the training session, we’re delighted to have achieved the following results on the Uprise LinkedIn page:

  • A 50% increase in Followers
  • A 200% increase in average monthly Page Views
  • A 44% increase in average monthly Engagements *

With these results, we can safely say that the training session worked for us, so we thought we’d recap some of the main points that we took away from it. In the first part of this three-part series, we take a look at how you can improve the efficiency of your LinkedIn profile. After all, nobody wants to end up like the examples in this video of terrible LinkedIn profiles read by actors.

A professional profile picture

George Eliot’s heart was in the right place when she said to “never judge a book by its cover”, however, this sadly isn’t the case in the world of social media. Your profile picture is the first thing displayed to other LinkedIn users, so this is your chance to stand out and make the right impression. Remember, this isn’t Instagram, so no selfies or shots from your most recent night out! A head shot with a white background will look the most professional. Embedding your company logo in the corner of your profile picture will further help to create a professional image, whilst boosting your company’s online presence.

You can see the embedded Uprise logo on our personal profiles.

You can see the embedded Uprise logo on our personal profiles.

Claim your custom URL

Located directly beneath your profile picture, you’ll find the URL of your LinkedIn profile. By clicking on the cog to the right-hand side, you can customise this URL to make your profile look more professional and easier to share. A URL with your full name looks much better than the generic LinkedIn URL with a bunch of random numbers and letters stuck on the end.

A compelling summary

Your LinkedIn summary is the place to tell your profile visitors exactly who you are, what you do and what you’re looking for. The key is to use the 2,000-word limit to your full advantage, but remember to break up your text into sub-headings like, ‘company I work for’, ‘my roles’ and ‘my likes’. This way, you’re being informative whilst still being personal and relatable. Nothing says “I’m a LinkedIn newbie” more than a summary that reads like a dull CV.

Include name misspellings

If you have a name that is often misspelt, it’s worth including all possible misspellings of your name within your profile. For example, my name is often spelt ‘Rachel’ instead of ‘Rachael’ so under the ‘Additional Info’ section of my profile, I’ve made a note of this. This will help to improve your visibility on LinkedIn.

misspellings

Include keywords

When crafting the content for your profile, it’s worth considering who your target audience is, so you know what keywords to use. For example, if you’re looking to sell products and services, you need to ask yourself what your prospective clients or customers are actually searching for. When you have a list of keywords, these should be peppered throughout your profile to increase the likelihood of your profile being found by your target audience. However, avoid coming across as spammy or desperate! You’re aiming for a few well placed keywords, that way your profile still reads naturally to human eyes.

Show off

LinkedIn allows you to showcase a variety of media, such as videos, images, infographics, documents, links, slide shares and presentations to the ‘Summary’, ‘Education’ and ‘Experience’ sections of your LinkedIn profile. This allows you to highlight different projects and provide examples of your work, whilst making your profile more visually stimulating and eye-catching.

These are examples of the media you can showcase

These are examples of the media you can showcase

Decide which profile changes you’ll tell your network about

For the most part, it’s a good thing to tell your network that you’ve made a change to your profile, as it encourages interaction. However, at times it may be best to keep certain things to yourself. If you’d like to turn off your activity notifications, simply head over to the right-hand side of your profile and slide the ‘Notify Your Network’ button to say no. This is useful when you’re making a number of changes in one go, as you don’t want to dominate the homepage feeds of your connections.

Create and manage a Company Page

LinkedIn Company Pages are very similar to Facebook Company Pages; they’re separate to individual profiles but individual profiles can be added as administrators of the page. By setting up a Company Page, your business can be seen by anyone if they search for your business in the LinkedIn search bar. Posts published on your Company Page will be seen by people who follow your company on LinkedIn. It’s a great way to keep people updated about company news, the latest insights and industry happenings.

A Company Page works brilliantly in conjunction with personal profiles. This is because the content published on a Company Page can then be shared on personal profiles, thus giving your personal profile a constant flow of content, whilst also helping to increase brand exposure and accessibility. Using these tips to maximise our LinkedIn profile pages has been reflected on our Uprise page, resulting in a significant improvement of page followers and interactions.

As you can see, there are a number of ways to leverage your LinkedIn profile to benefit your business. In the next part of our series, we’ll look at how to build up your connections and stay active. Our final part will focus on how to successfully use your Company Page. We hope you find these useful and please feel free to leave any questions you may have below, or contact us here.

*figures based on a comparison between the 6 months prior to the training session and the 6 months following the training session.

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