LinkedIn Best Practices for Your Personal and Business Profiles
LinkedIn has over 187 million members worldwide in 200 countries. From a professional standpoint, it’s certainly the place to be. So why not make sure your profile — both your personal one and the one for your company — are in tip top shape for 2013. Here are five spruce-up tips.
1. Don’t underestimate the power of images. Profiles without images are less memorable than profiles that use them. On your personal profile, be sure to include a clear, high-resolution head shot. Remember, LinkedIn is the place to be professional. Leave the more creative shots for Facebook and Twitter. Don’t neglect your company page, either. Thanks to changes made a few months ago, you can now have cover images for your LinkedIn company page. The dimensions are 646 x 220 pixels. You can also include images of your product on the products section tab as well. (Read more about optimizing your company page here.)
2. Don’t forget to provide status updates on both your personal profile and your company page. It’s easy to get caught up in Facebook and Twitter and overlook status updates on LinkedIn. But you should post them. Need some ideas on what to write about?
Personal profile: This content should be meaningful and should reflect you as a person. Part of your “essence,” of course, is the work you do in your organization. Your posts don’t need to be all about work, but a good chunk of them should be business-related:
- Share an interesting article that’s relevant to your business, your industry, or the business in general.
- Post an inspirational quote.
- Talk about some projects you’re working on or that you just wrapped up.
- Give a shout out to colleagues and/or vendors.
- Talk about a business book you recently read.
Company page: Again, think in terms of meaningful content. The people who follow your company page are open to hearing about the goings-on in your organization. According to a study LinkedIn conducted, “67% of our members follow a company to gain industry insights, 61% for company news, while 49% are attracted by the peer community.”
- Link to a post on your company blog.
- Announce new products and services.
- Share a customer testimonial.
- Be sure to take advantage of Targeted Status Updates, which LinkedIn rolled out to all company pages last June. This allows you to tailor your updates to specific audiences (e.g. company size, industry, etc).
One caveat: LinkedIn isn’t Twitter or Facebook, so you don’t need to post constantly to have a positive effect. Two to three times a week (and even less) is fine.
3. Don’t overlook the obvious: your employees should have strong profiles AND should be following your company. We’re often amazed that people miss this step. Encourage all employees, from your office manager to your sales reps to your interns to have strong personal profiles. And make sure they’re following the company page. Encourage employees to link to one another and to comment on status updates on both personal profiles and on the company page. Social media is all about engagement and being social, after all.
4. Become a groupie! Groups are a great way to show your expertise, position yourself as a thought leader, take part in the LinkedIn community, and help people. As of right now, you can only participate in groups as an individual, not as a company, but that doesn’t mean you should avoid groups. For example, if you’re the owner of a web design firm, you can still show your expertise (and get potential leads) by answering questions in web marketing groups (and your employees can as well). This HubSpot post has some great tips about company pages and groups.
5. Use apps and plugins that make life easier and that help promote content on LinkedIn…and off. To get the most out of LinkedIn, you should leverage it across your website. LinkedIn has a Plugins page that has dozens of options for doing just that. Schedule status updates with tools like Buffer or HootSuite.
Do you use LinkedIn for business? What are some strategies that you use to get the most out of it? Share in the comments.