I am excited to go through this journey of unveiling LinkedIn to you. And the reason is simple: As great as the LinkedIn platform, not many persons are able to maximize its huge potential and the many opportunities it affords.
Founded on December 28, 2002, and launched on May 5, 2003, by Reid Hoffman and founding team members from PayPal and Socialnet.com, LinkedIn is renowned for professional networking, posting job opportunities and recruitment.
With over 630 million registered members in 150 countries, the platform is increasingly gaining ground as your go to for Job opportunities, recruitment and building connections and networks.
According to estimates based on worldwide figures, 122 million users got job interviews via LinkedIn and 35 million were hired by a LinkedIn online connection.
The peculiar platform allows users to research companies, non-profit organizations, and governments they may be interested in. Typing the name of a company or organization in the search box causes pop-up data about the company or organization to appear.
Potential employees can also apply for positions using their LinkedIn profiles as resumes.
Are you a young person, a student, a career professional, a startup entrepreneur, or even an already established business owner; there is so much you could do via the LinkedIn platform.
However, as beautiful as the LinkedIn platform, packed with daily opportunities both for connecting with high profile personal, and getting almost instant jobs, it is one platform some persons are so afraid to explore.
I will tell you a very funny story. As a matter of fact I will be telling a lot of true life stories I have seen, read and experience on LinkedIn.
I remember when I newly discovered LinkedIn, I downloaded the app, signed up and really loved what I saw: the level of professionalism, value, impact, opportunities, etc. However, as beautiful as the platform, I couldn’t explore it, I couldn’t get the best out of it.
I really wanted to be there, I loved it, I felt I too can maximize its opportunities. But, everything looked too technical for me. Everything looked so serious that I felt “I don’t belong here” even though down deep, I knew this was where I wanted to be.
The challenge – I didn’t know how to go about my profile, at least, not in the professional way I saw other active users did. It was intimidating. So I ran!
And for months, I didn’t show up there. Sometime later, I read about someone who was building a great following and connections on LinkedIn. This was someone I knew.
It dawn on me I had to dust up my profile. If this person can do it, I thought, I too can!
I went back on LinkedIn, did my research and rebranded my profile. Honestly, the result has been beautiful! I have had connections buy my books on LinkedIn, have had business owners reached out to me to help them develop Content Marketing Strategies for their business. And even our just concluded edition of Content Strategy Forum had registered participants from LinkedIn.
What’s even more beautiful is its rich content and a large network of like-minded persons and experts. You can build in a short time a great connection and engagement on LinkedIn. Click here to connect with me.
Now, how do you startup on your LinkedIn journey?
Update your LinkedIn profile
Update your profile with everything new and inspiring about you, your business or your profession. Begin with:
Your Profile Picture
LinkedIn is one media platform where your profile picture truly matters! If you desire reasonable engagement, you must make conscious effort to work on your profile picture.
It is your first impression. And must be professional. The background of the picture should be bright and your facial expression welcoming. If you can smile, please do.
Your profile picture should always have your picture on it. Do not use images or flyers, logo or any of those. It is your profile picture! And should have your picture on it. Guess this applies to other social networks as well. The next segment would be your;
Right after your profile picture is your headline. On the LinkedIn platform, your headline is as important as your name,
I may know your name and still don’t know who you are. And what’s truly important is who you are, what you do and what you represent.
While people may easily forget your name, they are likely to remember who you are and what you represent.
That’s what your headline helps you achieve on LinkedIn. Your headline is where you tell people very briefly about yourself and help them decide why they should connect with you. Your headline tells your profession and what you do. You should keep it very simple but catchy. For example;
Your name – your profile picture and then your headline, which could be:
Human Resource Officer.
Online Business Consultant, Content Strategist
Digital Marketer, content and copy writer.
Lawyer, Girl’s Right Advocate.
Public Speaker, Communicator
Business Strategist, Writer. Et.c
After your Headline comes;
This is another very important segment of your LinkedIn profile. And as observed one of the hardest to put together by users. Do not be in a hurry to describe you, take your time and give us the best and detailed description of who you are, what you do and the services you offer.
Your description should tell your audience some of your abilities and skills and your area of expertise. If you are a lawyer for instance, what aspect of law do you major in. What kind of jobs have you done in the past and for who?
Mention a little about yourself and highlight your greatest strength. Talk about your work experience. Anything that puts you forward and helps you stand out!
Point out specific results you have achieved so far in your career or business?
Your description page takes up to 2000 words. So you have enough space to sell your idea, your business or your skills and your brand!
However, I always recommend you make your description lively and interesting. No one will spend time reading some boring and unrelated stuffs about you.
Certainly, your education is great in helping to boast your LinkedIn profile! You own a university or college degree, place it here. You’ve taken other courses, both online and offline, show us here too.
Also list out some of your relevant course work while in school. And if you graduated with a good grade like a first class or second class upper, here is the perfect place to sell yourself.
We can say your LinkedIn profile is your online CV or resume. Adding specific and relevant skills is a great way to boost your CV.
If you have acquired any certificate, training or skills over the years, this is the section to show the world.
You probably have had several engaging activities in the past, whether in your university days or your workplace, this is the best place to showcase them.
Your volunteer experience is a credible boost on your LinkedIn profile. You probably feel you don’t have a work experience, hence, nothing to show forth. But you have volunteered for an organization one time or the other. Let us know about it on your LinkedIn profile.
Many times, some persons forgets to add this on their profile. If you are in for business, then your contact should not be found missing on your profile.
Your audience, whom could be employers or clients, should be able to reach you almost with one click.
Your email, your business line, and your website should be visible at the contact section.
Publication, Features and Awards
If you have been featured on any site before, here is the avenue to showcase that.
Have you published any articles, journal, books or the likes?
Have you been awarded for excellence or any other role? LinkedIn has a place for that as well.
If you ask me, this is one of the best credibility boaster on LinkedIn. It is a great thing for you to tell us about all the beautiful things about you.
It is, however, super inspiring for other people to say these things about you! And LinkedIn has got a place for that.
If you have worked with persons in the same group, or had clients from LinkedIn, send them a note for a review and recommendation. It is a powerful way to establish your brand or expertise on the platform.
Below are some recommendations I have had from my clients and connections on LinkedIn.
Why do you need to take your LinkedIn Account Seriously?
I will tell you a story. Someone gave a remark sometime about a job opening in her workplace. As usual, a vacancy was published and several persons applied. However, among the few persons who were called for an interview, the HR of the organization went without their knowledge to have a check on their LinkedIn profile.
And only the ones who had it running and up to date were called to resume work.
What does that tell you? While your CV is a forward representation of you, your LinkedIn account is an active representation of you. It tells quite a lot what’s on your CV, but even more importantly, it shows the various activities you are engaged in, day in and out.
If you can get your dream job via your LinkedIn profile, why lose a job because of it?
There are other instances of how some persons have missed out on global opportunities simply because they were inactive on LinkedIn.
There are many stories of persons who were very qualified for a job, a contract or scholarships, even more than their competitors.
But because they had not put their LinkedIn profile in order, they lost to the other persons who have taken time to build a reputable LinkedIn profile.
You may be involved in a lot of activities, making impact and doing great where you are.
But opportunities you deserve may pass you by if you are not guided about putting out yourself via strategic content development on platforms such as LinkedIn.
This brings us to the next important aspect on how to grow your LinkedIn account.
What type of content do you publish on LinkedIn, and how do you go about its creation?
One thing you must note is that, if there is one platform that really celebrates your works, the impact you have made and are making, challenges you face in your industry and how you overcome, it is LinkedIn.
So what kind of content should you engage your audience with?
Unlike other social media platforms, LinkedIn algorithm encourages higher engagement when you publish the right content.
Do not treat LinkedIn as a promotional channel.
If you truly want engagement on your content, avoid posting links of other platforms to your LinkedIn timeline. LinkedIn encourages original content.
If you must post links, you must do so creatively like I did here.
However, LinkedIn prefers you share the original content, whether in writing or in videos. You could add the link up at the comment session, that way your content can still run.
Using keywords and Hashtag also helps your content to perform maximally.
Like every other time, an article on your LinkedIn timeline should have a compelling heading or title. Relatable enough for people to want to engage with.
The more engagement you get on your LinkedIn, the more viral your content will go. LinkedIn has a unique algorithm that keeps your content at top feed of your audience’s timeline for as long as two weeks. Depending on the number of engagement your post generates, especially in the comment session.
The more comment you have, the more your post will get on new eyes as LinkedIn will show that post to the audience of those who have made comments on your post.
Share your personal story
Story telling is a brilliant strategy that works every time, even on the LinkedIn platform.
The world is exposed to a lot of information. People can learn anything at anytime on the internet. But no one will know your story or learn from it except you tell it!
But even more importantly, “human beings are story telling beings”. Telling your story is a great way to help people connect with you on a deeper level.
You probably had an experience in the office that has great lessons, tell it. Sharing your experience will resonate more with your audience than just telling them the lessons you have learnt. Tell your story.
LinkedIn will only show the first sentence or two of your article to your audience, who would have to click to continue reading. This simply means you have just about one brief sentence to convince your readers you have something of value for them helping them pulse to continue reading.
Talk about your job activities and task
You know a lot about your job and industry. Here is a great platform to teach people what you know and position yourself as an expert.
Don’t keep your knowledge to yourself, share! Talk about your job activities and duties and how it can help your audience improve on their task.
Your heading/title or first sentence should be catchy!
There are several ways to go about this. Let’s examine a few:
Asking questions around your niche that your audience may be interested in, questions whose answers can help solve a problem can improve your LinkedIn engagement.
Make controversial statements or arouse curiosity
It’s just the same principles. These tactics work for any kind of content, whether on LinkedIn or other platforms.
Statements like “you do not need a hundred persons to grow a hundred million dollar company” will likely get people to pulse and read.
Also, giving statistics that people can argue for or against will get you some good engagement.
You can go out of your profession sometimes and develop relevant, valuable content. But as much as you can, stay within your industry.
In summary, LinkedIn is a beautiful platform to get lots of opportunities. Job opportunities, contracts, business opportunities, make great connections and build lasting relationships. But first;
Get your profile up-to-date with all required and relevant information.
Keep it real but never lose your professionality.
Make connections and expand your network.
Make thought out comments
Send congratulatory direct messages
Follow relevant page and engage with them.
Recommend and endorse people you know and trust, ask also for recommendations.
Be consistent with developing content. Make daily post, if you can, twice every day! Build your portfolio.
Any question? We will love to attend to you. Kindly ask below in comment session!
Online Business Consultant
Content Strategist, Author.