Are You Making These 8 Embarrassing Mistakes on LinkedIn?

by Alison Green

LinkedIn can be an incredibly powerful tool for networking, expanding your contacts and even finding jobs, but it has its own unique etiquette land mines. Here are eight of the most common faux pas people make on LinkedIn – and how to make sure that you avoid them.

1. Sending generic connection requests. It was probably a mistake for LinkedIn to provide default text for the connection request emails sent through its system because many people don’t bother to customize it. People who know you well might not mind receiving the default message, but if you’re trying to connect with someone who may not even remember you, it’s smarter to personalize the message and remind the person of how you know each other and why you’re asking to connect. Plus, even if the person does remember you, you’ll make a better impression and solidify the connection by writing something personalized.

6. Filling your summary with subjective self-assessments. Calling yourself a “visionary leader,” “charismatic communicator,” “exceptional marketer” or other highly subjective self-assessments is likely to elicit eye rolls. If those things are true about you, it should be evidence from the accomplishments you list. Let others who know your work effusively praise you. It’s not something that you credibly do yourself.

8. Inflating your experience. It’s bad enough to inflate your experience, skills and accomplishments on your resume. But when you do it on LinkedIn, people who know the truth will see it. If your co-workers or former co-workers look at your profile and see you reporting accomplishments or responsibilities that they know you didn’t have much of a hand in, they will know that you’re lying. It will destroy your credibility, possibly get you gossiped about and make people less likely to vouch for you in the future. Keep it truthful.

See all 8 mistakes and the complete USNews article

How to Publish on LinkedIn Pulse: A Beginner’s Guide

Written by Carly Stec | @

Try as I may, I’ll never be able to recreate my mother’s tomato sauce recipe. It’s a science; a tried-and-tested formula that took her years to master. (Time well spent, if you ask me.)

But the great thing about formulas is that they provide us with a starting point — a list of the elements we need to produce an intended outcome. From there, it’s up to us to put them together.

When LinkedIn announced that they’d be opening up their publishing platform, Pulse, to the public in February 2014, the professional network suddenly turned into a more interesting destination for marketers to explore.

What does my mom’s tomato sauce have to do with this?

Well, while many were quick to see results from the new platform, others felt hesitant about whether or not they should give it a go. And without a clear formula for how to approach the unfamiliar territory, many continue to remain sidelined today.

Unwilling to leave good marketers behind, we’ve put together a roundup of everything you need to know before you hit publish on LinkedIn Pulse. From topics, to structure, to timing, this post will have you up to speed in no time.

How to Post on LinkedIn Pulse

1) Explore the platform first.

Before you dive into a post, it’s important to note that LinkedIn’s publishing platform is a little different than your company blog. The audience, the tone, and the overall lay of the land are unique to LinkedIn.

What does the lay of the land look like, then? In a SlideShare announcing the publishing platform’s launch, LinkedIn described themselves as “the working world in one place.” They wrote, “LinkedIn has millions of executives, entrepreneurs, entry-level, workers, and people about to retire.” While this sounds like a valuable audience to tap into, you’ll want to be sure that it aligns with your company’s buyer persona — otherwise, it’s not worth publishing there.

Once you figure out if you should be publishing on LinkedIn, it’s time to learn how to post on LinkedIn Pulse successfully. Here are a few, according to LinkedIn:

  • Write about areas in which you have an expertise.
  • Keep your writing focused. Avoid covering too many topics in the same post.
  • Keep your voice authentic.
  • Don’t shy away from expressing your opinion. However, keep your long-form posts appropriate for the LinkedIn audience. Don’t post anything obscene, shocking, hateful, intimidating, or otherwise unprofessional.
  • Publish whenever you have something valuable to share with LinkedIn members. In general, the more long-form posts you publish, the more credibility you will build, and the stronger your professional profile will become.
  • There are no limits on word count, but the long-form posts that are best received are more than three paragraphs.
  • Upload pictures, videos, presentations, and documents to add to your content. It helps bring your insights to life and is a good way to showcase concrete examples of your experience.
  • Use the share box on your homepage to share short-form thoughts, questions, and other media such as articles and images. (Learn more about sharing on LinkedIn here.)
  • Have colleagues, friends, or family members review and edit your long-form posts.

Want to learn more great tips for publishing on LinkedIn? Check out this post by LinkedIn Executive Editor Daniel Roth on how to crush it as a LinkedIn writer.

2) Hone in on a specific topic.

See the rest of #2 and the complete HubSpot article

4 Differences Between LinkedIn and Your Resume

By Erica Breuer

You worked hard perfecting your resume—and you’re feeling really good about it. So naturally, the next step would be to hop online, copy-paste all that excellent content into your LinkedIn, call it your “LinkedIn resume,” and share it with the world?

Nope. Not even a little bit.

Your page may offer the same categories as a resume; but if your profile reads the exact same, consider this an intervention for how to use the platform to your benefit. Fun fact: The site is a full-bodied personal branding vehicle with its own set of rules.

This is your chance to tell your career story in an interesting way, and I don’t want you missing out on it. So, here are four key differences that you should understand before you even think about touching copy-paste.

1. It Should Tell a Bigger Story

Details. Context. Vivid pictures.

Your LinkedIn profile is a place for all that additional color you cut your from your resume to make it one page. But I’m not just talking about including portfolio items, projects, more skills, and so on (although those are great things to incorporate).

Let’s take your professional experiences section, for example. You have the opportunity to give the backstory on interesting twists and turns that can’t be explained on your resume. So, instead of sticking with bullets, share a bit about your work: Here’s a side-by-side snapshot:

Resume

“Grew sales by 25% by implementing referral program and expanding customer base…”

LinkedIn

“I accepted a Sales role with Dropbox after meeting the company’s CEO at the 2015 SaaS Convention. My previous SaaS selling experience allowed me to usher immediate results, such as growing our customer base by…”

The second option is much more captivating, and while there’s no place for it on a resume, it’s totally appropriate for LinkedIn. Remember, the one caveat to this approach is that you should always think twice about the details you’re sharing. Sensitive or internal company information, as well as overly personal details, should never make the cut. (Here’s a trick: If you’d share something to flesh out an interview answer, go for it. If you’d hold off, leave it out.)

4. It Shouldn’t Be Too Formal

Robotic third-person resume language is not going to cut it here. A summary that reads like a bio on the back of a book is one that no one reads. Instead, draft it by writing the way you speak.

Use a conversational tone and pepper in details about your work that humanize you. Don’t just talk about what you do; talk about why you love doing it. Instead of focusing on the number of years of experience you have in XYZ industry, explain how you got your start there. Weave in bits about the types of teams you’ve enjoyed working on, your personal philosophy, or what kinds of projects inspire you the most. Here’s what it might look like:

“As an entrepreneur, sizing up situations and pulling together the best people, resources, and solutions to address business challenges isn’t just a skill—it’s my second nature. My 10-year background of success in home healthcare started with a genuine passion for addressing changes to this industry by…”

When you think it’s ready to go, send it to a friend and ask if it sounds like you and if it does a good job expressing your passion for your work.

It’s understandable that people would confuse LinkedIn and their resume. After all, they’re both places to discuss your professional achievements. But by understanding the differences and taking the time to flesh your profile out, you’ll have a helpful, complementary page where you can direct contacts to learn more about you.

See all four ways and the complete “The Muse” article

5 Steps To Connect With People Outside Your Network On LinkedIn

By

Once you move beyond the generic “add connections” option that LinkedIn has, you might want to specifically search for and increase your connections with people aligned with whatever connection policy you might have.  The challenge is that restrictions exist within LinkedIn that may prevent you from inviting others you don’t personally know.  You are entitled to try to connect with people without knowing their email address, but once five people respond to your invitation to connect by nothing that they don’t know you, your ability to connect will be restricted.

Once you’ve decided to connect with professionals that aren’t part of your network, chances are you will initially find them by doing advanced people searches.  If you are already an experienced user, you’ll likely encounter people you might want to connect with everywhere on LinkedIn.  These people often appear on the “people you may know” widget that is featured prominently in the top right-hand corner of your LinkedIn home page and in group discussions.  So, once you find someone with whom you’d like to connect, follow these guidelines to complete the connection:

3) Warm leads are always the best:  As in real life, a “warm” lead, someone your target connection actually knows who can make a personal introduction on your behalf, often leads to the greatest success.  Rather than relying on a cold call or email, get in touch with the person who connects the two of you and ask him or her for a formal introduction.  If your targeted user is a third-degree connection, find someone who could facilitate an introduction between you and a person who is actually connected to your targeted user.  Your eventual goal is to be introduced to your second-degree connection who can then facilitate the introduction with your third-degree connection.

4) Join the same LinkedIn Group:  A simple tactic you can use to contact someone is to join one of his or her LinkedIn Groups.  Of course, this only works if your desired contact has the default settings on, which allows group members to send messages to each other.  At present, the option to send a message to a group member does not appear as an option when you find a common group member on an advanced people search result; instead, you will be prompted to send an InMail. No worries: Simply navigate to the same Group that you a member of, do a member search, and you will have the option to send a message from that user interface.

See all 5 steps and the complete article

6 of the Most Powerful LinkedIn Stats for Sales Professionals

As a social seller, you know you can turn that data into action. With over 414 million members, LinkedIn enjoys access to fantastic data on professionals all over the world.

We’ve collected some of our latest and greatest stats on how B2B buyers and sellers are faring. Take a look at what we’ve learned about what is (and isn’t) working for B2B selling today.

3. Offer New Insights

The Stat: Especially on larger deals, B2B buyers expect sales professionals to offer new or different insights. We found that74% of buyers making a large purchase have such an expectation, while 62% making a smaller purchase do. Additionally, buyers want the insight to be tailored to their roles, challenges, verticals and overall circumstances.

Take Action: Do your homework. Take a look at your prospects’ personal challenges. It can also be extremely useful to look closely at their competitors and make recommendations or share content tailored to the prospect’s circumstances.

4. Lead with Ideas

The Stat: 92% of B2B buyers engage with sales professionals who are known as industry thought-leaders.

Take Action: Build your reputation and your influence by joining groups, sharing content, answering questions, and making insightful contributions that go beyond self-promotion and cheesy sales tactics.

See all 5 and the complete article

10 Tips for Standing Out on LinkedIn

Sophie Deering

What does it take to become a LinkedIn WINNER? Although there’s more to creating a great presence on the network than merely creating a profile and leaving it to work it’s magic, ensuring that you fill your profile out fully and sell yourself in the best possible way really can make a difference.

Whether you’re looking for a new job, seeking out new business or just trying to maintain a strong professional network, it pays off to look after your personal brand on LinkedIn.

This infographic by Todd Clarke gives 10 tips for a better LinkedIn profile that will capture people’s attention!

9) Make your headline stand out

Your headline is the first thing that people will see, so make sure it grabs their attention. It should be you in a nutshell, so your job title and company/industry could work, or alternatively something more quirky could do the trick.

10) Know your objective

What do you want to achieve from your presence on LinkedIn? You can use this objective to tailor your profile and create a plan of action for how you wish to utilise the network, from expanding your network, to getting spotted by a recruiter.

See all 10 tips and the complete UnderCoverRecruiter article