What kind of impression is your LinkedIn profile making? LinkedIn is the best business platform to use to build your professional network, showcase your personal brand and develop valuable connections.
Increasing numbers of statistics are becoming available which emphasise the massive impact and value which engaging with social selling via an optimised LinkedIn profile. For example, sales reps using social media as part of their sales techniques outsell 78% of their peers!
Here’s the next staggering statistic - 75% of B2B buyers and 84% of C-level executives use social media when making purchase decisions. (IDC) This demonstrates that if you’re a B2B sales rep who isn’t yet active on LinkedIn then you should be!
Why Optimise Your LinkedIn Profile?
An optimised and active profile can start conversations, nurture relationships and demonstrate thought leadership. All of these benefits are there to be reaped across the board, from sales reps to human resource professionals. 94% of recruiters use LinkedIn to find candidates but only 36% of job seekers are active on LinkedIn which again shows clearly that it pays to be optimise your profile, be active and start engaging with others.
A successful approach to ensuring your digital reputation on LinkedIn is effective is to combine an optimised profile with regular activity. Posting relevant and authentic content on your chosen areas (in my case for example; content marketing, SEO, social selling, employee advocacy) can help establish you as a thought leader and draw attention to yourself for the right reasons.
The Rise Of Social Media In B2B Sales
There's no denying that spending time maintaining an active LinkedIn profile takes time, but this investment can reap dividends. Basically, you reap what you sow. Sales reps using social media as part of their sales techniques outsell 78% of their peers (HubSpot) ……so whilst it does require investing time in familiarising yourself with LinkedIn and building a routine, you will see the fruits of your labour.
Initially, you will have to spend some time getting your LinkedIn profile looking it’s best. Sometimes it’s challenging knowing where to start, so here are some practical tips you can work through before you launch your optimised profile!
Here are Our Quick LinkedIn Profile Tips to Optimise Your LinkedIn Profile & Drive Your Professional Network
Headshots are best here and make sure your face is clearly visible and in focus. Ideally, your photo should convey a warm, approachable and professional vibe.
Simply writing your job title here is a missed opportunity to communicate what you do and draw attention to your profile. Think of how you impact your organisation.
3. Contact Info
It goes without saying to make sure all fields hold correct information, the objective here is to facilitate someone being able to contact you easily. It’s a great idea to include your Twitter link if you’re an active (and professional!) user.
4. LinkedIn URL
You can edit the URL which LinkedIn automatically assigns to your profile. A personalized URL is far more memorable and will make it easier for others to find you. Use your own name if possible, for example, my name is Vanessa Baker and I edited my URL to look like this: www.linkedin.com/in/vanessajbaker
The key here is quality, not quantity. Your LinkedIn network will reflect your professional relationships so be selective about accepting invitations and sending invitations. Send a personal note with each connection request and mention how you feel you could benefit each other (shared professional interests, goals, previous work experience etc). It’s important that your approach authentic whilst steering away from the pushy/ salesy method.
As well as searching for people online within LinkedIn to connect with, you will also meet people at industry events (for example) who you could connect with and happy customers are often delighted to connect if you have delivered a good service.
6. LinkedIn Summary
What would make you want to read someone’s LinkedIn summary? Think about what information could be most influential in getting someone to read more. How could your experience and skills be of interest to your target audience? This is a great opportunity to communicate your knowledge and skills in a positive way. If you genuinely feel passionate about what you do, then feel free to say this. The best approach is a warm but professional tone to generate enthusiasm.
7. Articles & Activity
Think about the areas which interest you professionally, find great content on these topics to share. It’s a valuable exercise to reflect on the relevant areas in which you would like to position yourself. Once you have become familiar with curating content and posting with enticing overviews, think about the next step by creating your own articles for publication on LinkedIn. This is a key way to offer value by finding insights and sharing them with your connections.
Engage with other people by reading, liking, sharing and commenting on their posts. Make it a habit to check every day and build it into your daily routine. Interacting regularly with your connections will demonstrate that you value their content, which will not go unnoticed.
Whilst this section looks like a resume, try to bring it to life by providing the results you’ve achieved for previous organisations and clients and describe how you achieved them (think positive adjectives here!)
List any degrees, as well as any coursework or certifications that demonstrate your qualifications and credentials.
10. LinkedIn Groups
There are bound to be well-known business groups on LinkedIn which match your area of interest. By following and interacting with the group’s activity, members and buyers will become familiar with your profile and the areas where you could potentially develop value for them.
11. Recommendations on LinkedIn
Recommendations increase your credibility and demonstrate that other people’s trust in you, particularly in B2B markets. Don’t hesitate to recommend other connections (keep it genuine!) and you will find that you receive reciprocal recommendations. This is no different to influencer marketing and advocacy, where your most valuable tool is through your 3rd party recommendations.
Once you’ve done all the hard work and launched your new and improved LinkedIn profile, try to build social media into your daily to-do list. As Sarah Goodall, founder of Tribal Impact says “Having daily, habit-forming behaviours such as checking feeds for responses and reactions to your posts will bring social media to the top of your to-do list - all that can be actioned while having a tea or coffee break.” Read more about Tribal Impact's Coffee Cup Routine here.