“I’m not sure how to get it right in LinkedIn – what should I do? “
This is probably the most common question I come across when talking to people. I could go into a lot of detail about how to use LinkedIn however, for me there are 3 key principles of getting it right in LinkedIn:
Integrate your Personal Values
In your profile, in your content, in your communication, in your comments. This allows others to get to the heart of your business, how you care for your customers, why they should trust you. Allow them to see the person behind the profile.
Interact with Connections
Be proactive and engage with people. Comment on their posts, communicate with them, get to know them better. Invest time to build quality relationships.
Inform & Educate
Share your nuggets of knowledge and best practice about your area of expertise. Give generously and raise your profile as an expert.
There is far more to understanding LinkedIn but if you get the above 3 key principles right, you will be well on the way to getting it right in LinkedIn.
Integrating your personal values is the key that unlocks the others.
Take a notepad and list down the top 5 values that are important to you personally.
Read through your profile About section objectively – do your personal values shine through?
What about the content that you post in LinkedIn – how well do your values integrate?
Now consider the engagement on content that others post – are the values you believe in are truly reflected
If you need another pair of eyes, ask a trusted friend/colleague to review for you – and offer to do the same for them.
You have invested time on honing your LinkedIn Profile, getting it set up the right way and are being found in searches.
Imagine how frustrating it is when there are distractions that take your viewers away from your Profile and to other profiles instead! Possibly even your competitors.
LinkedIn have a feature that is turned on by default. It is called People Also Viewed (PAV). It sits in the right hand side of your Profile and lists profiles that other people have viewed. It is meant to be helpful however, as a business owner, you want the focus of your viewers to be on you, not to be distracted by moving away from your profile and especially to those who are your competitors.
What most LinkedIn Users don’t know is that this feature can be turned off so that it does not appear on your Profile.
How to turn off People Also Viewed
Go to the Me button on the black menu bar at the top of your LinkedIn Profile
Select the Accounts and Privacy Option
Select the Privacy tab
Select the Viewers of the profile also viewed option
“This year, The Harrogate Bridal Show will host a series of one-to-one ‘Ask the Expert’ sessions covering a range of topics including marketing, PR, financial planning and sales. Sessions will be available to book at the registration desk at the show, and are on a first-come, first-served basis.”
Linda will be one of the Experts, available on Sunday 8th and Monday 9th September, answering your LinkedIn questions.
If you are a business owner in the bridal and wedding industry and are attending the show, do book in a slot to chat to me. Or, if you are unable to secure a slot, contact me to arrange a time to meet up in the VIP area for a coffee.
There are many levels of LinkedIn training you can undertake: some people just want to build connections and relationships, while others intend to use LinkedIn as a key part of their marketing strategy.
Whichever the case, there are essential skills that everyone needs to learn, such as how to update your profile. This may sound simple, but as one MD found out, mistakes can still happen – and are not best made in front of your entire professional network.
Here’s how the story goes…
As the managing director of an established IT company, Lisa had built up a sizeable LinkedIn network, including: colleagues, vendors, clients, business associates and leads. The business was booming: she was in the process of setting up a subsidiary company, while reassuring clients, associates and prospective clients that the existing business would remain her primary focus.
Excited for the launch of the new business, Lisa booked some LinkedIn training for her marketing team, so they could start raising awareness of the new venture. They would need to update their profiles to reflect both businesses, which was a core part of the initial LinkedIn training.
Creating a Professional Image
A paragraph of universal wording was agreed for the ‘Experience’ section of all personal profiles within the company, so a consistent message would be created regarding the developing business. Lisa attended the training along with her marketing team, but when it came to actually updating the profiles, she said she had ‘other things to do’ and ‘knew how to do this anyway’.
On went the training, and by the end of the session the marketing team felt confident in using LinkedIn to promote the business, the new Company Page had been created and they were proud of their smart new personal profiles! The trainer left, happy with the results and off to prepare for her next client.
Where’s the Panic Button?
Very early the following morning, the LinkedIn trainer had 3 missed calls with voicemails from Lisa to her mobile – all with an air of distress and urgency. It transpired that instead of adding her new business venture to her profile, Lisa had replaced any mention of her existing business with the new company – she had effectively shut down her own business overnight.
In amongst the many messages of surprise, and hesitant congratulations, Lisa received a number of private messages from her clients and prospects: demanding answers and raising concerns. Her calls and messages to the trainer were cries for help – she didn’t know what to do, or how to explain her rather public mistake.
What followed, were many hours (at a cost) spent rectifying the profile mistake and offering apologies and reassurance to her valuable clients and prospects. It was a simple error. The remedy was to use the profile ‘Experience’ section to add the new business; then rearrange the order so the existing business would appear on top, as her primary focus.
This knowledge was built-in to the LinkedIn training schedule, just after Lisa left to attend to other things. So too, was the advice that when making any major changes to your profile you should ALWAYS switch off ‘Sharing profile edit’ – so you have the chance to review and move things around before your network are notified of the change.
To find this, go to Settings ➡️ Privacy ➡️ How others see your LinkedIn activity ➡️ Sharing profile edits ➡️ Switch to No
The Moral of the Story: You don’t know what you don’t know
If you are aware that training is needed, then book a trainer you trust to teach you and set aside the time to learn, even if you think you know it already. Like other platforms, LinkedIn regularly adds new features and updates existing ones, so a professional trainer will have the expertise to guide you through these.
Lisa is now happily running both businesses and has not lost any clients or prospects fortunately. However, following step-by-step instruction for something so important could have avoided unnecessary time and money spent, and removed the risk of damaging her business reputation.
💡 For more information on using LinkedIn to grow your business, or to book a targeted training session, please contact Linda for a no obligation conversation.