While LinkedIn was predominantly used as a job-seeker and employer portal, in recent years, it has emerged as one of the winning social media platforms to grow your personal brand.
However, many entrepreneurs still think their personal brand isn’t critical while growing their business. Well, think again; according to research conducted by eMarketer, 77% of consumers are more likely to buy when the company’s CEO uses social media.
This becomes an absolute necessity when you are in B2B or are trying to establish yourself as a thought-leader in your industry.
How does LinkedIn come into the picture?
- LinkedIn has 810 million users from 200+ countries.
- Marketers see up to 2x higher conversion rates on LinkedIn
- An ad on LinkedIn can reach 14.6% of the world’s population
Now, how can you leverage this gold mine to your advantage? Here are a few tips that will help you navigate LinkedIn to craft an authentic personal brand that drives value.
1. Optimize Your Profile
a) Profile Picture: Let’s start with the basics; choosing a good profile picture can make all the difference. Here are some points you should focus on:
- Look welcoming in the picture; always smile!
- Great lighting
- Avoid using selfies
- Dress professionally
- A professionally clicked high-definition photo would be recommended, but you could do it yourself with proper planning and a good phone camera.
b) Cover Photo
Your cover photo is a great way to stand out from the noise and present your services. You could either add your company’s logo or an image associated with your profession or go one step ahead and add your value proposition like Digital Marketing Expert Neil Patel.
Your LinkedIn headline is one of the most visible sections of your profile and your image. Along with stretching across the top of your profile page, it also introduces you to others newsfeed posts, the ‘People You May Know’ section, and clients browsing through your profile. Your headline is your first impression; based on how impactful and straightforward it is; it will determine how business contacts and clients view you and your brand.
Try to be clear, compelling, and specific to reach the right audience. For instance, an excellent example of a Career Coach would be a ‘Career Coach | Success Strategist | Making your strengths work for YOU.’
d) About Section
Take the time to create an impactful elevator speech to connect with your target audience. While listing your services, try to support them with facts and figures. For example, you can state that your marketing strategies helped your clients generate 4 million in revenue in the last six months– that will be more compelling than merely saying that you’re an excellent marketer.
e) Right Keywords
What keywords would you want to appear for when potential clients or business contacts search LinkedIn? Determine those keywords and use them in your headline, job title, summary, and job description across your profile. Choosing the right words makes the difference between your profile being found or going unnoticed.
2. Start Posting
a) Provide Immense Value
Your quest to develop a solid personal brand will start with creating authentic and valuable content to help your target audience. For instance, if you are a Sales Expert, share a roadmap of how you approach clients with easy tips that others could use. Another great tip is to always reply to all the comments on your post; this is a great way to interact with others and have meaningful conversations while building authentic relationships.
According to research, posting images and videos on LinkedIn drives twice the views a word post would get. You can leverage this by sharing a picture of yourself and your personal experience with your followers, whether your mental health journey or leading a company from the ground up, which will help create a personal connection.
b) Create Three Content Buckets
By distributing your content into three sections, you will be able to create content with ease and cater to your followers in your niche. So, for instance, one content bucket can be your expertise, let’s say marketing, the next can be something you’re passionate about, like diversity and inclusion, and the last can be insights from your week or life advice that can help others. By sticking to these three topics, you can grow your network with people who connect to these causes and value your opinion on them. Another great tip is to recycle your best-performing posts by changing a few words around.
c) Interact With Other Profiles
Pick five content creators from your industry and block 20 minutes every day to interact with their posts as well as with other posts that you like. While personal messages can sometimes go unanswered due to the massive volume of messages that thought-leaders receive on LinkedIn. Rest assured that 9 out of 10 times, you will get a reply to your comment that will start a conversation and help you find your tribe.
d) Go One-On-One
In the course of posting and interacting with others’ profiles, engaging individually with users is a great way to get to know your connections on a more personal level. If you are intrigued or interested in what one of your connections does, send them a private message to catch up over a cup of coffee on Zoom. In doing so, you’re going above and beyond to build relationships rather than a mere following. This is also an excellent opportunity to learn from others and build a rapport that could open new doors in the future.
e) Publish Blog Posts
Write articles pertaining to your expertise to showcase your thought-leadership on the subject. You can have a longer and shorter version of the same so that they can be easily shared. By doing so, people can search for a keyword, and thousands of relevant articles will appear, including yours. This is beneficial to you because when people share your LinkedIn article, they share and promote you and your business (therefore your brand).
Building your personal brand on LinkedIn won’t happen overnight; you must post consistently while some posts go viral and some barely get 1000 views. However, following these tips, creating great content, and engaging with the right people will grow your network exponentially if you stay persistent and put in the work.