Check out my definitive guide to all things LinkedIn.
1. DO be selective about who you connect with
Back in the day, it was thought that the best way to grow your LinkedIn following was to connect with anyone and everyone. Not any more.
Be selective about your connections – will their content add value to your feed? Are they someone you’ll potentially work with? Build slowly and be purposeful about your connections.
2. DON’T leave your banner space blank
The banner on LinkedIn is a great space to make a statement. Although it’s not clickable, you should include text to a simple URL – for example, your website address.
Always set text across the top of your banner or on the right-hand side.
3. DO keep an eye on your profile views
A great way to judge how well your content is doing is to keep an eye on your profile views. You can do this via the link linkedin.com/me/profile-views.
There’s no need to instantly connect with people who view your profile (you don’t want to look needy), save your follows for people who engage with your content.
4. DON’T post and ghost
Tempting as it is to load up a scheduler with a week’s worth of content and then forget about it, you’re not going to see results.
LinkedIn thrives on engagement so it’s really important that you’re active on the platform – especially in the first three hours after posting – to respond to comments and engage with other people’s posts.
5. DO optimise your headline
Although you get 220 characters to write your headline, the first 70 are the most important. Why? Because these are what people see under your name when they view the app on mobile.
Make sure your job title, or the service you offer, is visible in the first 70 characters.
6. DON’T waste time on engagement pods
Engagement pods are another old-school tactic that should be left in the past. If you’re invited to join one, don’t be tempted.
Pods can lead you to sharing no end of random and confusing content with your own followers. Focus on Step 1 and your time will be better spent.
7. DO use a professional headshot
Set the right tone for your business with a professional headshot. But remember, professional doesn’t have to mean boring.
You can make your profile picture stand out by adding cool backgrounds at pfpmaker.com.
8. DON’T let competitors steal your profile visitors
Your profile page has a default ‘People also viewed’ panel. This panel shows visitors the other people people who have looked at your page have looked at. (Hint: it’s probably your competitors.)
9. DO use your Featured section
This is a useful spot on your profile that allows you to pin key content, including top posts and links to your website, blogs and lead magnets.
10. DON’T be salesy
Just because LinkedIn is a work-based platform, that’s not an excuse to shove your products and services in people’s faces.
Treat it like any other platform and post a mix of helpful, interesting and relevant content.
11. DO engage
Yep, there’s no getting away from this one. Because the more time you put into engagement on LinkedIn, the more you will be rewarded.
As a rule, try to comment on at least five other posts for every post you publish yourself.
12. DON’T be shy – ask for recommendations
It’s absolutely OK to ask for recommendations on LinkedIn. If you’ve worked with someone and done a great job they’ll be more than happy to support you.
You can only receive recommendations from first-level connections so make sure you do that first.
13. DO set up a company page
Don’t worry, you don’t have to use it! But having a company page is best practice and opens up another opportunity for people to find you – especially if your company name is different to your actual name.
Make sure your page is optimised with the right keywords and links people back to your profile page where they can get in touch with you.
14. DON’T get stage fright
LinkedIn can feel intimidating. Putting content out for your potential customers is one thing, but the fear of being judged by your peers is quite another.
Look, you just need to be brave. Focus on your goals and objectives. Your competitors aren’t your customers so don’t waste time worrying about them.
15. DO use captions on videos
A whopping 80% of internet users watch video with the sound turned off. So, if you’re posting video to LinkedIn make sure you add captions.
Unfortunately, the platform doesn’t offer an in-built caption service so you’ll need to create your content, caption it and then upload it.
16. DON’T send generic connection requests
If you really want to make a good impression on a potential new connection it’s important to personalise your connection request.
Reference a recent post they published, or pick out some information from their about section. Making an effort can make a huge difference and will help you stand out in a sea of generic DMs.
17. DO use your keywords
Keywords are powerful on LinkedIn, so you should pepper them freely throughout your headline and About section.
Think about what you offer and what people might type in if they were looking for your services.
18. DON’T use pictures in every post
LinkedIn is one of the few platforms where text-only posts still perform well.
That’s not to say you shouldn’t ever use images – it’s good to mix things up. But don’t feel that every post has to include a picture or graphic.
19. DO use hashtags
Hashtags increase your visibility on LinkedIn but don’t go mad! You should only use three and always put them at the end of your post and not dotted through the copy.
20. DON’T Post links without a comment
If you’re going to share content on LinkedIn, make sure you give it context. If you post an external link, add a comment which explains your thoughts on the topic and why you decided to share.
21. DO Engage, engage, engage
I’m saying this one again. Not because I don’t have any more dos (I do!), but because it’s so important. Every time you comment on someone’s post you’re making yourself visible to all their connections and followers.
So, the more you comment and add value, the more people will potentially discover you.
Need help getting to grips with LinkedIn? I can help! Book a LinkedIn Power Hour for just £97 here.