“Active participation on LinkedIn is the best way to say, ‘Look at me!’ without saying ‘Look at me!”
― Bobby Darnell
In today’s time, being on LinkedIn is simply awesome. Whether you are a business owner, a professional, a freelancer, or a student, this platform has something for everyone. That’s probably why the social media platform has recorded an impressive 690 million active users in 2020 itself.
But when it comes to marketing on LinkedIn, professionals, and businesses are still in the nascent stages.
While some consider it to be just another platform for networking, there are others who believe it’s only meant for hiring purposes. And then there’s also a group of people who are trying to leverage the platform for marketing but haven’t cracked the code yet.
If you’re someone who’s just starting out with LinkedIn marketing or wants to know what may have gone wrong with their strategy, this post is for you.
Dos’ of LinkedIn marketing
1. Let your profile show who you are
When someone visits your profile, they see three things:
- Your profile picture – Make sure it looks professional. Adding party pictures, pictures from your wedding or your last trip is not a good idea.
- Your cover photo – Make your cover photo like your business card. Define what you do in a couple of words. (Bonus Tip – You can pick a template from Canva to design your LinkedIn cover).
- Your headline – Your headline should define your USPs as a professional. So instead of stuffing it with your skills, offer solutions to the problems of your target audience.
For example, Instead of simply writing that you’re a startup coach, maybe talk about how you help them grow.
2. Craft your about us section strategically
Copying templates to add some random content in your ‘about section’ might not help you in the long run. Nor will trying to find a few good paragraphs from a similar profile. This section needs to be about you, what you do, what you can offer, and hence strategically crafted.
Here’s a simple format to follow to ensure you don’t undersell or oversell to anyone visiting your profile – especially your prospects.
- Write about your present – What are you doing presently, professionally of course.
- Write about your past – What have you achieved so far?
- Write about your future – Where do you see yourself in the next 5-10 years?
But more importantly, write what you strive to achieve and how you can add value to those who connect with you on LinkedIn. Treat this as your cover letter and you’ll see how many conversations you’re able to strike naturally as you expand your network.
3. Build your recommendations and request endorsements
70% of people trust reviews and recommendations from strangers and that is the power of social proof. The same holds true on LinkedIn. Highlight your skills by getting recommendations from ex-coworkers, friends, bosses, and others in your network.
This social proof also helps you sell better. With more people standing up and speaking positively about what you have to offer, you’ll have to do lesser convincing.
4. Give your profile visitors a sneak peek into your background
Add relevant information under every experience that you may have. Also, make your profile more interesting by adding some information under your educational background. This will help your connections get to know you better and maybe even find something to relate with you on!
For example, add information like ‘Sports captain in school’, ‘National champion – Cricket’ etc. to enhance your story in the eyes of the visitors. If nothing else, it might just become a conversation starter.
A little pep talk before you dive into a sales call, for instance, is a great warm-up session.
5. Share your knowledge and insights
There are endless things one learns while on the job. Some relevant to the job and some that are experiences that somehow help you become a better self for the job.
But how do you get someone new in your connections or your prospects to know how much you’ve learned? Or how much value you can add to them? You can’t just have them trust you blindly and hop onto a sales call. You need to warm them up and make them feel like they can trust you.
This is where sharing your knowledge and insights as LinkedIn posts come into play.
From top-notch marketers to solopreneurs and others, the ones who are becoming “known” in the industry are typically those who haven’t been afraid to share tips. Unfiltered. With only one goal – educate.
6. Proactively engage with your connections
LinkedIn marketing is not just about sending out invites and growing your network. The important thing here is to stay on top of your connection’s minds at all times and for that, you need to engage with them proactively.
Send your connections personalized messages, endorse them for their skills, interact with the content they post, reply to the comments you get on yours, and find other avenues to start a conversation on LinkedIn.
Now, this can be time-consuming. But you can leverage automation tools such as Scrab.in to automate these tasks for you. From visiting profiles to sending out personalized messages, it takes care of it all and gives you back the time you can invest in growing your business.
Now that you know some of the most effective dos’ of LinkedIn marketing, let’s move on to the don’ts.
Don’ts of LinkedIn marketing
1. Do not send requests to “everyone” on LinkedIn
It is often said that you should only connect with four types of people over LinkedIn:
- People who can teach you something.
- People who can learn from you (this is the kind that will engage with your content).
- People who are your prospects or can give you some ROI.
- People who you can actually add value to.
So if you’ve been sending out invites to connections of those you want to connect and everyone else that shows up on LinkedIn, it’s time to take stock. Stop, right now.
2. Do not spam people with vague messages
When we said to reach out to your connections with personalized messages, we did not mean bombarding them.
Always send meaningful messages to your connections to strike conversations. In fact, even when you’re sending across a note with an invite, put in the effort to make it relevant to who you want to connect with.
The best way to do this is to learn about the problems of your target audience and then offer them a solution. Without expecting anything in return, of course.
3. Keep your profile more up-to-date
One of the most common mistakes that people make is creating a profile and then simply using it for expanding their networks, or so to say, LinkedIn marketing. But as months roll by, their network changes, their professional roles change, but their profiles remain the same. That’s where they start to lose out on conversations because the new visitors and connections don’t know who you are “now”.
So irrespective of what your LinkedIn marketing goals are, make sure your profile remains up-to-date at all times.
No goal can be achieved when the foundation is too weak or too old.
4. Do not stuff your content with hashtags
You are posting consistently? Awesome work!
But if you are stuffing your content with unlimited hashtags then nothing is going to happen. We know you want your content to reach as many LinkedIn users as possible. But at the same time, you want it to be readable. You want it to make you look like an authority instead of someone who just posts copy-paste content.
Whether it’s a link you’re resharing or a piece of content from what you have learned so far, make sure you only add the relevant hashtags to it. This will also make sure that you attract the right audience to your content and your profile, making your LinkedIn marketing strategy more effective.
5. Stop scrolling, start doing
LinkedIn is great and has some amazing content but mindlessly scrolling through the platform won’t take you anywhere. It’s like going down the rabbit hole of watching one YouTube video after the other.
So join the platform with a goal. Your goal can be personal branding, lead generation, etc. but having one is an absolute must.
Once you have a goal, grow your network, follow hashtags, follow industry leaders, join groups and engage with people as per that goal. Do as much as you can to reach as many people as you can and see your LinkedIn marketing strategy become more effective by the day.
Should you focus so much on the dos and don’ts?
LinkedIn is one platform that is yet to explode. With amazing organic growth and new features coming every now and then, it is one of the best platforms to invest your time and resources in.
However, you should never forget that there are humans sitting on the other side of the screens as well and you cannot simply sell something to them instantly. Your goal needs to be “networking”.
Learn from what you do. Learn from your connections. Take value and add value, and continually test different strategies of LinkedIn marketing to grow your business!
So give some time to this platform. Add a tint of content and lots of engagement to bake the perfect cake of ROI and if you do it right, trust us, your brand value will grow over time.