This branding tutorial will teach you specific best practices for how to brand yourself on LinkedIn. Personal and CEO branding consultant Karen Leland will outline a list of the major dos and don'ts for creating an all-star personal brand on LinkedIn, including how to write a winning summary that best reflects your personal brand.
- [Voiceover] Whether you're looking to find a job, hire an employee, reach out to potential clients, or just keep in contact with your network LinkedIn is the big dog of business-to-business social media. In many ways, a LinkedIn profile has become the new resonate. If you're not convinced, consider these statistics. 77% of LinkedIn members use the site to research people and companies and 44% report an increase in networking effectiveness from using LinkedIn.
Here's what this means to you. Imagine your scheduled to attend an industry conference and you reach out to a potential customer who will be there as well. You set up a date to meet at the event, your, hopefully, future customer is likely to give your LinkedIn profile a gander. Their online impression can have a powerful impact on your upcoming face-to-face meeting. Did you know that 65% of journalists have used LinkedIn for research? If you're looking to connect with reporters being well positioned as an expert in your field on LinkedIn is one way to get found and interviewed.
And finally, 53% of B2B marketers have acquired a customer through LinkedIn. Think about it, if you're well branded on LinkedIn for what you offer there's a greater chance that a potential customer, who is looking for what you do, will find you. Hopefully, I've made the case for why having a LinkedIn profile makes good online, social media, branding sense and the place to start is by becoming an All-Star. If you look at the far, upper right-hand side of your LinkedIn profile, you'll see a circle filled up with blue depending on how high the blue line goes, determines your profile strength.
In descending order, they are: All-Star, Expert, Advanced, Intermediate, Beginner. Take a moment and see where your blue line is located on your LinkedIn profile. To maximize your brand on LinkedIn you want to achieve an All-Star status level. While there's no hard and fast rule about how to achieve All-Star some of the basics necessary to get there include: a current headshot, your current position, your two past positions, your education, a profile summary, and additional skills.
Those are achievements and skills such as books written, projects, languages spoken, etcetera, and at least four recommendations. A current headshot, I covered this information in detail in another video but it's so important that it bears a short review. By the way, LinkedIn profiles with photos are 11 times more likely to get viewed than those without a photo. The best headshots on LinkedIn are images where you're looking straight at the viewer. Remember to avoid a distracting background, don't show a lot of jewelry or accessories, and don't have another person's face, arms, shoulder, hand, or other body part in your photo.
In short, you want your profile picture on LinkedIn to represent your best business brand, whatever that might be. If you're a CFO of a Fortune 500 company a jacket and tie might be in order. If you run a popular restaurant that caters to the stars you might want to sport a hip shirt from the latest Los Angeles designer. The next place to focus in creating an All-Star level profile is your current and past positions. Note, that your LinkedIn header is immediately to the right of your headshot and shows your current position and previous position.
If you have multiple positions showing, past or previous, they will appear on your header. For this reason alone, it's important to have your various companies and positions detailed. It gives viewers a quick look at your background, right at the top of the profile. Remember, don't just list the names of the companies where you have worked, take the time to write a few sentences to a paragraph about your role at each company and what you achieved and worked on. These types of specifics are an opportunity to give viewers additional information into your strengths and skills.
Now that you have your current and previous positions in place, round out this part of your profile by adding your education, including where you attended school, dates you attended, descriptions of what you studied, and any awards or honors you received, or any special achievements while at school. If a poor profile pic is the mistake people make most often in their LinkedIn profile, a second close is a weak or nonexistent summary statement. Think of this summary as the one page business plan for your brand.
It may be the only thing someone, who lands on your page, may read. Poorly written, incomplete, or just plain lame summaries can damage your credibility. Here's one I saw while surfing LinkedIn one day. It simply said, "Yes, I'm a freelancer who works for myself "to help others with my skills." The point here is that while this person might be fabulous at what they do, I wouldn't give them a second glance given how ridiculously unprofessional their summary was. And I venture to guess that most people would be put-off by this profile within seconds of seeing this summary.
To be fair, most summaries aren't this bad but the majority are insufficient. A good summary needs to do two things. It must be readable. Short paragraphs and bulleted lists help the reader glance through the information easily. Large blocks of text are too hard to read and almost always guarantee no one will get beyond the first few sentences. It should show an at-a-glance view of your achievements and accomplishments While your summary should not be a laundry list of everything you've done your whole career, it should be more than just a generic report on who you are.
In short, your summary is the place where specifics count. Numbers, names, and details are the stuff that great summaries are made of. The more you can paint the picture of who you are, through what you've done, the better. In another video on creating a branded bio I gave you a series of questions to ask yourself. You can use these same questions to help shape your LinkedIn summary. Here's a list of areas of achievement to consider. Remember to check out the Exercise File to generate a list of these achievements for your LinkedIn summary.
By putting these basic LinkedIn, best practices in place your online personal brand will be head and shoulders above most people.
This course shows how to authentically and powerfully present your brand online. Branding expert Karen Leland reveals the important differences between the four main social media sites—LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest—and how to use them for career advancement and networking.
- Developing a personal branding mindset
- Adding a good photo, profile, and background to social media sites
- Using LinkedIn for personal branding
- Expanding your Twitter reach
- Creating virtual events on Facebook
- Curating pins on Pinterest