If you own a business, you are its identity. It is through you that others, be it the market or your audience, will get to know about your business.
Moreover, considering the transformations taking place in the customer buying habits, it is also suggested to personalize your brand. It is recommended you give a face to your brand because people buy from people, not a business.
This has given a rise to the importance of building a personal brand and LinkedIn has proven to be an exemplary platform for the same.
LinkedIn is the leading social media platform for the business world in today’s time. It is a channel that has given space to corporate professionals to connect, network, scout for job opportunities, or hire fresh talent.
By building a personal brand, you establish yourself as a knowledgeable and authoritative person in your industry. This allows your audience to put trust in you.
Also, when others in the industry start to know you, it can give your other marketing efforts a boost. Take backlinking for SEO, for example. You can use a backlink checker to find quality links for your website and reach out to them. If you have a well-performing personal brand, you will not find it as challenging to get a positive reply for the same.
If you are not sure about how you can start working on your personal brand, keep reading on. We will be covering all the steps and tips needed for the same.
Steps To Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile
The first step to build a personal brand is making sure it is optimized for the search. It means that whoever is searching for an individual in an industry similar to yours, they are able to easily discover your profile. Here are a few steps you can follow for the same.
Step 1: Use a clear profile picture
To give your brand a ‘face’, it is important you are being smart with the profile photo you are choosing. Your photograph should:
- Showcase your face clearly.
- Make you look approachable.
- Make you look confident.
- Have a clear background.
- Not be blurry.
- Not have sunglasses, a hat, or anything that covers your face and head.
Step 2: Use banner photo for work details
Many individuals leave the banner photo/background photo blank; you shouldn’t. Use this cover to share about your business. If you are an owner of one of the digital marketing agencies, you can list the services that you can offer. Or, if you are an independent graphic designer, be creative and tell the world about it using your banner photo.
Step 3: Add a clear and concise headline
A headline is placed right under your name.
It helps with two things. Firstly, it will make it easy to find your profile; it will make it more discoverable. Secondly, it helps give people a clear idea of what you do. The more clear and precise your headline, the more search-friendly it will be. It’s best to avoid using jargon or fancy words when it comes to a headline because appearing on top of the search results on LinkedIn will otherwise become tricky.
If you are an owner, you can add your headline as ‘Owner of *business name*’, if you are a co-founder, you can add ‘Co-Founder of *business name*’, and more.
Step 4: Leverage the ‘about me’ section
You have an ‘About Me’ section right below your headline. This is the section that you must utilize to share your story with the world. You have a limit of 2,000 characters to do the same. However, when a person lands on your profile, they will be able to see around 250 characters before the ‘See More’ option. Thus, you need to open your introduction with some creative lines that keep your visitor hooked to your profile.
It’s best to avoid any sort of jargon or buzzwords in this section.
After that, you can add some media, your past work, or links to your press releases in the featured section that comes right under the about me section.
Step 5: Be smart when filling work experience
When filling out your work experience, you have got to be a little smart. You might have plenty of work experience, but it’s best to fill your main achievements; you don’t have to mention all your previous jobs. Also, make sure with every progress you make in your business, if it’s noteworthy, you must add that to this field.
Step 6: Add education and skills
Lastly, be proud and show off all your qualifications. Often, people like to go through the degrees and schools that they have attended in the past. It makes you and your business more credible.
By adding skills, you can get endorsements from your network. This helps build trust in front of your audience or client-side.
Tips On Building A Personal Brand On LinkedIn
Now that you have your profile optimized, here are a few tips that you can follow to give your personal brand a boost.
Be consistent with your posts
One thing that everyone will tell you is that you need to be consistent with your posts on LinkedIn. Now, consistency here doesn’t mean that you have to post daily. It only means that you must post frequently. It can be as low as 2 to 3 posts per week.
But one place where you must maintain your consistency is in the quality of content you are offering.
Today, you will find almost everyone sharing posts on LinkedIn because it is a ‘new trend’. Often, just because they are running after this consistency of posting daily, they leave out the quality. Many people are seen sharing posts that hold no relevance to them, their brand, or their audience.
You must steer clear of going in that direction. You should share posts that are adding value to the lives of your audience or to those in your industry. Also share how things are progressing with your business; just don’t be promotional with such posts.
Yes, you can easily add a blog section to your websites and get done with it. However, when you add articles on LinkedIn, it helps make you get more discoverability in front of your audience.
How? This is because when you post an article on LinkedIn, all your connections will get notified and the same will also appear on their feed.
If you are not too keen on posting blogs on LinkedIn, you can share an excerpt of your blog on your website and direct your LinkedIn audience to your website. Or, you can also syndicate content from the blog and repost it.
Make sure your profile is set to public
LinkedIn is a professional network. You add your work experience, education, and even posts so that your audience and other industry fellows can recognize you as an expert in your field of work.
Now, if you put in all your efforts into establishing yourself as an authority but keep your profile to private, how will your prospects know what type of content are you sharing or what business do you run?
The entire purpose of personal branding is to establish your identity and with a private profile, it will all be in vain. Thus, it’s best to keep your profile set to public.
Participate in the groups
LinkedIn Groups are a community in themselves. Often, individuals from the same field come together to form a group and share their knowledge or perceptions, or suggestions with each other.
You should certainly become a part of such groups. Find communities that not only have your competitors but also your audience. This way, in case someone in your audience has a query, you can help solve it.
It will help establish you as a knowledgeable and skilled individual, making it easy for them to trust you. As for the competitors, you can make some friends in the community or learn from what others are doing. You can use this data to make improvements in your business.
Engage with others’ posts
LinkedIn is a platform where a give and take relationship is supported, especially if you are just starting out.
The whole purpose of you posting valuable content is to bring in engagement (likes, comments, or shares). This is because when more people engage with your content, it gets more visibility in front of their social network.
To bring this traction, it is important that you give back to others. This does not mean leaving random comments. Only engage with posts where you feel you can use your expertise to either add, solve, or argue smartly. You must always focus on adding value, in one or another way.
This will also help you become discoverable in front of the social network of the author of that post.
Network over direct messages
One of the beautiful features of LinkedIn is direct or personal messages. This is a great way of building some long-lasting professional relationships in the industry. And networking in your community is never a bad idea.
Of course, you can use direct messages to sell your services or products as well. However, you must understand that the audience on LinkedIn is there for a purpose. They are not waiting to make a purchase.
Thus, you must first build a relationship with your prospects. Talk to them, understand their challenges and pain points, and then pitch your services. This will make the flow more natural and not abrupt.
The chances of the audience moving to the next stage would increase by a few percentages if you have already built a rapport with them.
Building a personal brand on LinkedIn isn’t tricky. But one thing that many get trapped under is pretense. It’s best to share what you preach and what you truly have learned from your experience. Pretending to be who you are not is never a good idea.
Just be consistent with your efforts, engage with your audience, optimize your profile, and you are good to go.