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Jun 27, 2023 Donna Spencer

We’re Only Human After All...The Power Of Getting Personal On LinkedIn

In the era of AI-generated content, it’s becoming more important than ever to keep humans in the loop.
Successful social sellers on LinkedIn know this. They know that 84% of consumers prefer recommendations from friends and family (Nielsen).
That’s why they strategically build their networks, add value by engaging in meaningful conversations, and consistently share industry knowledge and expertise. 

Exceptional social sellers do all this but add a different dimension: they share something of themselves either by showing their personality or by drawing on personal experiences that have shaped their values and views.

Here Are Some Benefits To Getting Personal

  • People buy from people. The more people feel like they know you, the more likely they are to trust you.  Adding a human dimension gives them a reason to connect with you based not just on your professional knowledge but also on your interests too.

  • It can make your time using social media more enjoyable. Maintaining momentum with posting, engagement and expanding your network over a long period of time can be tough going. Getting a little personal can be rewarding, fun and lead to some fascinating conversations.

  • It makes you more memorable, something that’s especially  important given the explosion of AI content, capable of pumping out repetitive unoriginal content. Don’t underestimate the power your unique experience can have to move, inspire and educate. AI will only go so far.

Be An Apple In A Basket Of Oranges

Sounds Good But How Do You Go About It?

Getting the right blend of professional and personal on LinkedIn can be challenging at first. Here are some suggestions for areas where you can start to make that human connection:

1. Your About Section

This is the heart of your profile and you have 2600 characters to stand out from the crowd. It's an opportunity to tell people what you do AND who you are. Consider some of the following questions: What motivates you? How did you get to where you are now? What excites you about your work? Try to write as you would speak and avoid some of the typical management speak that can obscure your personality.

Sarah G Profile Image taken from Sarah Goodall's LinkedIn Profile


2. Engaging With Posts From Other People

Commenting on posts is a great way to show a bit of personality and build relationships. Most people take a fairly informal approach to comments and there’s no need to spend a long time crafting something that should be quick and conversational.

Make sure your comments are meaningful and be sincere. ‘Great post’ or ‘very interesting’ doesn’t add anything of interest or value. While comments like this can give the LinkedIn algorithm a gentle nudge, they are unlikely to result in a response.

3. Draw On Your Personal Passions

Consider whether you have any personal passions that could be a platform for offering professional insights to your network. If so, build these into some - not all - of the content you share. Done well, this can really make you stand out from the crowd.

‘Focus on being you. You’ve got a great opportunity to be you and talk about things you want to talk about.’

– Julia Dixon, Tribal Coach

Some words of caution here: make sure you can align those personal passions with professional insights and always think about what you are looking to achieve on LinkedIn. You might be an ace cookie maker but there’s unlikely to be an overlap there with, for example, leadership development or trends in digital transformation.

However, if you are looking to attract new talent by raising awareness that your organization has a culture that values diversity, talking about your personal experiences could give that real credibility.

Here are some examples that have worked well on our Kickstart and Coaching programmes: 

  • A passion for sport; talk about leadership and lessons business can learn from sport and about building high performance teams

  • An interest in architecture; talk about urbanisation trends and sustainable construction

  • The experience of being a female leader in a traditionally male dominated industry as motivation for being a champion for gender diversity


What’s The Right Balance?

A tricky question: share too much that’s personal and you may well be met with cries of “this isn’t Facebook” and cause people to switch off. Use your common sense here. If comments or content with a personal element would raise an eyebrow or blank look in a business context, it’s not appropriate for LinkedIn.

But if they would cause your audience to lean forward to learn more and engage in conversation, you’re on the right track. Use post analytics to check whether you are engaging your target audience. If the statistics indicate you are doing the equivalent of standing in a room talking about yourself while everyone glazes over - or worse, you are in the wrong room entirely - stop and reassess.

Editor's Note: This blog was originally published in 2021 and has been completely refreshed and updated to be relevant for 2023.


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About Tribal Impact

Tribal Impact is a B2B Social Selling and Employee Branding Agency.

We're a team of social media strategists, trainers, coaches, content creators and data analysts who are passionate about helping our B2B customers develop and scale their social selling and employee advocacy programs.

Learn more about us here.

Published by Donna Spencer June 27, 2023
Donna Spencer