Creating a strong LinkedIn profile is more important than ever, especially now that Microsoft has acquired LinkedIn, which is expected to have dramatic impact on the sales and marketing world.
A good LinkedIn profile starts with a cohesive message. In the last post I talked about that LinkedIn golden thread that works to tell the world who you are – and acts as a focal point for everything you do on LinkedIn.
LinkedIn is like a giant marketing slick – for you. Not only does your LinkedIn profile give you the opportunity to broadcast a message of who you are, it provides ways for you to use content as proof.
Your LinkedIn content gives you credibility.
The first piece of LinkedIn content you must have is a photo. A good LinkedIn profile features a professional headshot. It doesn’t need to be expensive, but it needs to be professional – not a selfie or a pic a friend snapped of you in your yard.
Next, include all of your relevant work experiences. You don’t need to list every job you’ve ever held – this isn’t your resume.
Add experiences that are relevant to who you want the world to see you as. If you get stumped, look back over our examples of LinkedIn golden thread messages. They can include work experiences that are not in your industry or current field – if they’re relevant. I still have my accounting work in my profile because I talk about how it influenced my sales and lead generation strategy. I wove it in with the golden thread.
Now for the good part. Add content to your experiences. The content should relate to the work experience and illustrate your expertise. Keep in mind that many people are looking at personal LinkedIn profiles to learn more about executives and their business. A business owner, or even an executive, should have content that reflects both the company and him or herself.
Include content for every experience. Even better if you have multiple pieces of content for each experience. In my LinkedIn profile, I’ve uploaded different types of content related to my current position as author, sales expert, prospect attraction authority, top seller, speaker & president of KLA Group. Try adding:
- Anything you’ve written, designed or created. This is another reason to write – to make sure you are well represented
- Presentations you’ve given. Don’t add the whole slideshow, just add a picture of the cover slide with the topic name. Include a link to the whole slideshow if appropriate.
- Press releases or articles that mention you or your business
- Publicity materials about a talk you gave, a project you worked on or otherwise featuring your work
- Any videos that feature you or your business.
One more type of content you should have on LinkedIn: published posts. Aim to produce a post a week, with about 500 words each. Be sure to include an image with each post – thumbnails draw more clicks than a post that lacks a picture.
The content you add to your profile should all tie into and support that golden thread message. The addition of your profile picture, experiences and work samples elevates your LinkedIn profile and makes it more of a magnet for prospects and new leads. Start taking some of these steps today and let me know in the comments how it works for you.
Want to know how to write great content in your LinkedIn posts? Tune in for the next post with tips on what to write and how to leverage your best work samples.
Looking for more social media savvy? Check out our recent posts 6 Tips to Engage Your Audience on Twitter and Rise Above the Crowd, and How to Dress Your LinkedIn Profile for Success.