Just over three weeks until 2014 – are your future connections ready for your LinkedIn Profile?
Work and education history done…
But what about your photo and heading?
So, over the last two weeks we have given you helpful hints on getting the main areas of your LinkedIn profile right but what about what people see when they see your summary or heading?
If people know your name or company and search for you after meeting you, will they recognise you by your photo? Do you have a photo? Is it actually of you? A group photo? Company logo or image?
If you look at some of the leading profiles on LinkedIn – i.e. some of the Top 100 – have you compared your’s to their’s? Just look at their LinkedIn Profile and you will see their name is their name – nothing inserted in between their first name and surname, or after the surname.
Their name is their name and nothing more. Why? Well when people are searching, they search for the name, the symbols around name can effect the search results as so anything placed in between your first name and surname. Also, when people have you as a connection, the entry in their address book and contacts list, will not put you under your name correctly. So if they are are looking for you, they will go to your name, can’t find you and then they may move on to someone else, thus meaning you have missed out on a possible opportunity. In summary then, make sure your name is correct so people can find you.
Also, you are you and not your company, so use your name and not the company name. Whilst you think this is a good way to promote yourself, you are breaking the rules of LinkedIn by doing this, thus straight away, you have lost the credibility of your audience. Your audience will not see your name but your company, so they will not seek connections with you due to your credibility disappearing. Afterall, if you break LinkedIn’s rules by not using your name, how can they trust you when working with you?.
Next thing is to make sure your Professional Headline is correct. Again, going back to the Top 100 – look at the profiles and you will see that their Professional Headlines all contain their positions, companies, expertise and or professional titles. They just keep things simple and straight to the point and make it clear as to what they do.
Try to use a three to five word phrase to describe yourself as it will further help with SEO searching or linking back to your existing phrases on your website. For example, instead of saying “Owner of Book Writers Publishing” – try “Helping writers to publish their books” or “Helping you to self publish”.
So, use your Professional Heading to describe you and your work and how you can help others.
Your photo – is it you? What do you do or how do people see you? Make sure your profile photo firstly is there. Too many people leave the photo blank and thus this is creating a lot of harm to themselves. Why? Simple – no photo, no connection. Many people are starting to ignore people who don’t have profile photos as it creates a false image and these the other person feels you lack credibility.
So, you have a photo but what is the photo. Is it you, a group photo, company image or logo? Let us take these in stages working backwards:-
- Company Logo – Whilst you may be wanting to create and improve the image of your company, what it does show you to be prospective viewers of your profiles is one simple thing – you are on your own. The perception is that you own the company and that you are a sole trader. People who own companies or work for companies want people to see who they are and you should do the same.
- Company Image – As stated above, people are looking for you and if the photo is not of you, again you are losing credibility in the eyes of the viewer of your profile.
- Group Image – You have been to an event, meeting or a dinner and people of met you. They remember your name and look for you on LinkedIn, but what they see, a group of people in the photo in an image to small to see who is who. They could quite easily move on to another profile or just simply give up – is this what you want? People are looking for and not groups of people, so make sure your photo is of you and only you.
- Your photo – who are you? When people are looking for you, they will be looking for you as you and what you do, so make sure the photo is of you in your professional circumstances. Just think of footballers or other sportsmen, you don’t see their professional photos of them in suits, do you? Just think of bankers or solicitors, they are always in suits, so their professional photos are of them in suits. Thus, if you dress in casual clothes, suits or sporting/work/corporate attire, then make sure your professional image, is of how people would meet you and thus, they can easily remember you when searching for you.
So, in summary, make sure that your photo is of you and is of a professional one of you, the same as if you had a meeting with the person viewing you – make sure the person they are meeting is the same as of the one they are viewing in your profile photo.
This weeks tip has gone through your Name, Professional Headline and Photo – and together with the first two tips you have had over the last fortnight, you are getting your profile ready for 2014……….
Just by taking these simple tips and implementing them, you will have produced a profile that will interest people and get them connecting with you…….
Should you want to discuss this more, we can offer you a one-off consultation or our subscription based LinkedIn Mentoring Service to help either you your company or both make sure you have the correct image on LinkedIn. So, for more information on this, either pop over to our Showcase page, Company Page or visit our website to see how we can help you further.