With over 500 million members, LinkedIn is the most widely used social media platform for professionals in the world. With its unique design, you can connect with colleagues and follow your favorite companies, but users have quickly discovered that there is much more to the site than what meets the eye. Read more for insider tips that are guaranteed to give you superstar status on LinkedIn.
Go above and beyond the profile requirements
Lights, camera, action! Here’s your chance to make a big impression. You’ve got that one photo from a few years ago, an automated summary, and your last three job titles listed. That should be good, right? … The experts tell us otherwise. In order to become a LinkedIn legend, the very first thing you need to do is optimize your own profile. Consider these tips:
- Go with a professional headshot.
- Use a custom background image (size: 1400 x 425 pixels). One pro tip is to incorporate your company logo!
- Spend some time on your profile headline. According to “Business 2 Community,” you may want to consider adding additional context to your current job title to show your professional value and give a sense of your personal brand. The example they give is: “Marketing Consultant at SmartBug Media | #1 Rated HubSpot Partner.”
- Treat your LinkedIn summary as the professional elevator pitch you’re always excited to give. Write a few sentences that emphasize how experienced and knowledgeable you are, and top it off with a call to action.
- Add descriptions to your job listings. Focus specifically on what you accomplished while you were there and how you brought value to the company. This is not your resume, so say sayonara to those bullet points!
- According to the LinkedIn Official Blog, members with 5+ skills listed on their profile are contacted 33x more than other members. Show us what you’re made of!
Build meaningful connections
Now that you’re on the track to revamping your profile, let’s turn our attention to that list of connections. Surprisingly, there are many different philosophies on how to go about building your connections on LinkedIn. Some people put themselves on the fast track to 500+ connections, and some will only connect with people they have worked with in person.
Find a rule of thumb that you are comfortable with and stick to it. In the long run, LinkedIn is about building meaningful connections with individuals in your professional community. Be intentional with how you build that circle—it will pay off in the long run.
Create and share valuable content
So, your profile is ranked as “All Star” (yes, that’s a thing), and you have a well-built professional circle. How do you start your ascent to the stuff of LinkedIn legends, you ask? One word: content.
An instant way to start down the path of being a thought leader in your industry is by creating and sharing content, which is something that 99.8% of LinkedIn users have never done. But honestly, that gives you all the more reason to! By sharing your expertise or opinions on topics that matter to you, you will be adding value to your community, as well as growing your influenceable market. Make sure to respond to any engagement you receive to foster new connections and professional relationships.
Only 0.2% of LinkedIn users have published an article on their publisher platform. With over 500 million total users, it is an underutilized and extremely valuable market. Also, if you’d like to just dip your toe in the water first, sharing articles on topics you are interested in is another way to engage with your community and increase your presence.
Want to go the extra mile? Follow these pro tips
- Upload native video. In the age of digital marketing, we know that video is important. What’s even more important for many social networking sites is getting you to stay on their site for as long as possible. Because of this, the LinkedIn algorithm favors native (or directly uploaded) video over external video links. Treat video as you would a regular post, such as sharing your thoughts on a certain topic or sharing insider tips and tricks.
- Spruce up your posts with tags (and hashtags!). According to this article by Stephanie Baocchi, “When you tag someone in a LinkedIn post, their connections and people who follow them will also see that content. Once a few people engage with the post it’s also seen by those people’s followers and connections,” and so on and so forth. To gain even more traffic to your posts, use relevant and/or recommended hashtags. Users who follow the topics you tag will likely see your post in their feed.
- Use your platform to connect people. Finally, one of the best pieces of advice is to use the audience following you’ve gained to connect people. You’ve probably seen the viral posts of someone asking their connections to comment on what their goals and aspirations are, and see if they can speed that along by connecting with someone in your network. It is a way to bring people together and create a tangible sense of community.
Speaking of LinkedIn connections and accessing original content, connect with us! Click here to follow Interact on LinkedIn and keep updated on community college marketing trends.