Many of my entrepreneur and small to medium business owner friends are using Facebook to promote their businesses, and while Facebook is an awesome social media platform, there are many reasons I like LinkedIn more than Facebook to promote my business. The top three reasons are my ability to get found, create value (which helps build relationships), and find people.
Microsoft invested $26 billion dollars purchasing LinkedIn. Six months later, LinkedIn launches its biggest upgrade to the platform in 14 years. There’s tons of buzz right now about LinkedIn. In fact, I’m getting asked weekly to provide training to people who are realizing the power of LinkedIn as an essential component in their marketing strategies, especially for businesses seeking to market to professionals. The platform is for you if you are:
- business to business
- business to consumer who’s consumers are professionals
- speakers, coaches, and consultants to name a few
LinkedIn is the social media platform for professionals…. It’s the Google of professional networking and it can be a major part of your marketing strategy to grow your business too.
Understand there are three steps businesses need to increase new customer acquisition, including 1) building traffic (getting more prospects), 2) developing influence with prospects, and 3) converting prospects into customers. LinkedIn helps your organization with the first two steps by allowing you a massive network of connections. Converting prospects into customers involves your sales expertise which LinkedIn can also help facilitate, however, I like to have my sales conversations over the phone, via Zoom Video, or in person.
In conducting workshops on how to upgrade your LinkedIn profile for business, I have extensively researched the best practices for marketing and compiled them into this overview for you. In just under three hours working with one client, using these strategies, I was able to improve her LinkedIn status from beginner to expert. This will help her get found by those she wants to connect with in her business. This article covers my top tips to getting found, giving value, and finding others.
Quick note: the better your LinkedIn Profile is, the more Google will suggest it to those searching for you or someone in your industry. With one button, you can share your LinkedIn posts with Twitter which helps your search engine optimization. You can also upload your Facebook Live videos to Youtube, and post a link on your LinkedIn profile. Video also improves SEO. So, get ready, get set, and get upgrading your LinkedIn profile using these tips!
Rather watch video: at the end of this article, you’ll find how you can get a free Virtual Training Module to walk you through these tips.
Upgrade Your Profile to Get Found
- Your Headshot: professional, high quality close up of your face. No pets, friends, or other distractions in the photo.
- Background picture: you in your success environment, or other high quality pic to represent your brand. This is a larger pic and takes up the top of the screen. If you have no pic, use a quote, company logo or something else nice. Do NOT use Google Images. If you don’t have one of the suggestions above, then purchase a picture and make sure you give photo credibility to the resource.
- Your title: your title should include WIIFM, What’s in it for me! Me pertains to your connections. Include how you help people in your title. Use all the characters you can, you get many. Your headshot, background picture and title are the first three things visitors will see. After working in advertising and marketing for 20 years, I can tell you with certainty that you have seven seconds to make an impression. If you make a good one, you’ll get 30 seconds more, and on and on. Seven seconds is about the time someone has to screen your photo, picture and title, make it stand out!
- Complete all sections with a buyer-centric mindset (ask yourself):
Who is your audience?
What do you do for them?
What does your brand represent?
What are your brand colors?
What are 7-10 words that describe what you do for others, your credo, or your core values? These are keywords you’ll want to use throughout your copy to help your SEO.
- Add Videos to your summary and experiences to show you doing your thing
- Any presentations, Infographics or other visuals to demonstrate what you do and what you have to offer your connections.
- List all of your relevant awards
- List of volunteer activities (you never know what will inspire people to connect with you)
- List of Certifications
- Education (if it pertains to what you’re doing)
- Get Recommendations
- The best way I found to get them is to give them
- Make a list of people you would like to receive testimonials from, and give them one first (note: don’t just make something up, you want it to be legit)
- Connect to your other platforms
- You can add up to 3 websites you want to link to (company website, FB page, events page)
- By selecting from the “other” tab, you can create a custom description of your link, for example: “Get More Sales” can link to my website where I talk about strategies for improving business sales
Create Value for Your Audience
- LinkedIn Pulse (I love LinkedIn Pulse!!!… or Publisher, I have hear both, it’s like the Wall Street Journal or New York Times when you submit articles, you never know how far out your article will go! I have one read over 6,000 times):
- Blogs or Articles help establish you as an expert in your field
- Post your blog into Pulse, do not just share it from one of your other resources like Hootsuite or WordPress. To get the most out of your article, post it directly in LinkedIn Publisher
- Your articles are served to more than your connections; they are served to people who have similar interests in the content of your article
- Add Keywords and phrases to up your SEO and help the article get found
- Leave juiciest tips out to entice readers to opt-in to your website (and create a sales funnel… a whole different discussion)
- Add Photos, especially your own (super easy to do with iPhone, I take pictures of everything now so I have my own stock photos!) You can use Canva.com to easily add captions and text.
- Add Comments, share updates.
- Advanced Search if you still have it, the new interface does have Advanced search. You can find this on the premium LinkedIn subscription. Depending on your business, this feature is well worth the investment
- Search for people you want to know, see how you are connected, ask for an introduction
- Send a private message, LI messages are 300x more likely to be opened than regular email (WOW!)
Virtual Training: If this seems like a lot of work to you, I have some help. If you would like a copy of my virtual training to show you exactly how to implement these suggestions, just email me at email@example.com. You’ll be registered for my ezine and you’ll receive this and other helpful tips to growing your business.
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About the author: Jennifer Darling is your Positively Successful Sales Coach. She has worked with 1,000’s of businesses in strategic planning to increase their revenue. She provides sales, marketing, personal development and business consulting for small to medium businesses, corporations, nonprofits, and groups. Jennifer possesses 20 years experience for companies such as NBC, CBS, FOX, and Comcast. She holds a Master’s Degree in Management and a Bachelor’s Degree in Advertising & Promotion. Learn about upcoming events on her website.