Social Media Marketing

How to Write a Very Powerful LinkedIn Recommendation

Recommendations are critical on LinkedIn. Other than your headline, photo, and profile summary, recommendations are probably the next most important thing. Look at them like testimonials (real ones) for a service, business, or product. It’s called social proof in the online marketing world, it getting that social proof is often the key to success or failure. So, with all of that said, what makes the difference between a good, and a not so great recommendation?

The “ho hum” recommendation is generic. It lacks details as to what the person being recommended did or provided in a certain situation that made the difference. The reader is left with thinking, “So what?” Here’s a not so great recommendation.

George provided IT support to our company for a period of six months while we were changing locations. He was proficient, and we’ll definitely reach out to George again if the need arises.

Although not horrible, do you see how unspecific that recommendation is. Sure, it’s positive…sort of! But it really doesn’t tell you too much about what George did and why he was so great. As a matter of fact, it doesn’t tell you George was great at all! This isn’t “cringeworthy”, but it is a little lack luster.

Compare that with this…

George was the third freelance IT technician we hired in a two-month period. The first two were horrible, even leaving us offline for a period of over 24 hours. George was recommended by a friend. I was impressed with him from the beginning. When he arrived at our office, he had already done his homework on our system. He told us exactly what our main problem was and what would be required to fix it. Of course, we hired him on the spot. He even worked over the weekend to get us up and running as fast as possible. Not only did George fix our main problem, but he found a few other mistakes from our first two freelance IT guys. He fixed those too without even charging us extra. I’ve already recommended George to two other CTO’s that I know, and I’ll happily recommend him again!

Do you see the huge difference between these two? One’s like a limp, used dishrag. The other’s full of details and praise! That right there is how to write a killer recommendation for LinkedIn!

How to Write a Very Powerful LinkedIn Recommendation

Recommendations are critical on LinkedIn. Other than your headline, photo, and profile summary, recommendations are probably the next most important thing. Look at them like testimonials (real ones) for a service, business, or product. It’s called social proof in the online marketing world, it getting that social proof is often the key to success or failure. So, with all of that said, what makes the difference between a good, and a not so great recommendation?

The “ho hum” recommendation is generic. It lacks details as to what the person being recommended did or provided in a certain situation that made the difference. The reader is left with thinking, “So what?” Here’s a not so great recommendation.

George provided IT support to our company for a period of six months while we were changing locations. He was proficient, and we’ll definitely reach out to George again if the need arises.

Although not horrible, do you see how unspecific that recommendation is. Sure, it’s positive…sort of! But it really doesn’t tell you too much about what George did and why he was so great. As a matter of fact, it doesn’t tell you George was great at all! This isn’t “cringeworthy”, but it is a little lack luster.

Compare that with this…

George was the third freelance IT technician we hired in a two-month period. The first two were horrible, even leaving us offline for a period of over 24 hours. George was recommended by a friend. I was impressed with him from the beginning. When he arrived at our office, he had already done his homework on our system. He told us exactly what our main problem was and what would be required to fix it. Of course, we hired him on the spot. He even worked over the weekend to get us up and running as fast as possible. Not only did George fix our main problem, but he found a few other mistakes from our first two freelance IT guys. He fixed those too without even charging us extra. I’ve already recommended George to two other CTO’s that I know, and I’ll happily recommend him again!

Do you see the huge difference between these two? One’s like a limp, used dishrag. The other’s full of details and praise! That right there is how to write a killer recommendation for LinkedIn!

How to Write a Very Powerful LinkedIn Recommendation

Recommendations are critical on LinkedIn. Other than your headline, photo, and profile summary, recommendations are probably the next most important thing. Look at them like testimonials (real ones) for a service, business, or product. It’s called social proof in the online marketing world, it getting that social proof is often the key to success or failure. So, with all of that said, what makes the difference between a good, and a not so great recommendation?

The “ho hum” recommendation is generic. It lacks details as to what the person being recommended did or provided in a certain situation that made the difference. The reader is left with thinking, “So what?” Here’s a not so great recommendation.

George provided IT support to our company for a period of six months while we were changing locations. He was proficient, and we’ll definitely reach out to George again if the need arises.

Although not horrible, do you see how unspecific that recommendation is. Sure, it’s positive…sort of! But it really doesn’t tell you too much about what George did and why he was so great. As a matter of fact, it doesn’t tell you George was great at all! This isn’t “cringeworthy”, but it is a little lack luster.

Compare that with this…

George was the third freelance IT technician we hired in a two-month period. The first two were horrible, even leaving us offline for a period of over 24 hours. George was recommended by a friend. I was impressed with him from the beginning. When he arrived at our office, he had already done his homework on our system. He told us exactly what our main problem was and what would be required to fix it. Of course, we hired him on the spot. He even worked over the weekend to get us up and running as fast as possible. Not only did George fix our main problem, but he found a few other mistakes from our first two freelance IT guys. He fixed those too without even charging us extra. I’ve already recommended George to two other CTO’s that I know, and I’ll happily recommend him again!

Do you see the huge difference between these two? One’s like a limp, used dishrag. The other’s full of details and praise! That right there is how to write a killer recommendation for LinkedIn!

LinkedIn Networking Essentials

LinkedIn IS a networking platform! Repeat this at least twenty times a day when you get up in the morning! I’m always amazed at how many people have LinkedIn profiles, but yet do nothing to actually network there. Okay, I get it. Maybe not everyone is a sales person, but surely everyone can benefit from knowing more people in their career field. What if you walk in on Monday and get the dreaded pink slip? What are you going to do then? When it comes to personal networks size (and quality) actually does matter. So, let’s talk about how even the most wall flower of all the wall flowers can network efficiently on LinkedIn.

Connections

Don’t be too picky about your connections, and at the same time, be very picky. This sounds contradictory, and it is. Here’s the deal, though. LinkedIn works like that old game, six degrees of separation. I’m connected to you. You’re connected to someone else. And, I’m only indirectly connected to you. But there’s massive power in that indirect connection! The more connections you have, the more your network expands. But…you need to be directly connected to someone in order to message them. (Inmails are so expensive!) You need both! A large number of connections and also targeted connections.

Networking

Reach out to people in your network regularly. Doesn’t have to be every month. Just at least once a year for those people who’ve fallen by the wayside. You’ll be surprised at how much business will just bubble to the surface just by doing this.

Status Updates

Keep your profile and your status updates up to date! Tell your audience what you’re up to, as far as work is concerned. What projects are you working on? How might that benefit them? What types of employees are you looking for? You’d be amazed at who’s reading your updates and who you can get to reach out to you this way.

Communicate

And, while you’re actually networking, how about really communicating with people? Ask them how the new job is going. How’s that move to Colorado Springs? Again, your goal is to stir up the proverbial mud and see what rises to the top!

Here’s Some Novel Things to Do on LinkedIn to Really Stand Out

I’ve spent a lot of time on LinkedIn, both helping others master the platform and building out my own account. I’ve seen a lot of things done wrong and a few things done right. Standing out, branding yourself, positioning yourself (whatever you want to call it) on LinkedIn doesn’t have to be difficult. It’s really just a matter of common sense, and a slight bit of old fashioned sales skill. In this article I want to give you a few good ideas that will make your presence on LinkedIn shine!

Don’t Use the Generic Connect Request!

When you send someone a connect request on LinkedIn, you’re offered the opportunity to write your own message or use LinkedIn’s generic message. It’s so tempting to use the generic message because it’s so much faster! Don’t do that, because if you do, you’ll a: look like everyone else, and quite frankly b: look like you don’t care about the person you want to connect with. And, in point of fact, you don’t do you? Because if you did, you might want to go over to their profile, find some commonality, and mention that so that people know you care about them.

Don’t Use Messaging to Spam!

Well, actually, don’t spam at all! Get someone’s permission before you send them information about yourself, what you do, your business, what you sell, etc. If you don’t get people’s permission, you’re going to come off as a spammer of sorts. Remember the old Zig Ziglar mantra, “People don’t care what you know until they know that you care”? Well, you’re not going to be coming off as caring, are you?

Really Follow Up!

I can’t tell you the number of times someone has contacted me and I’ve messaged them back only to have the conversation drop at the point. It might take some work to keep up with all of this, but you want to follow up with your connections. I follow up with everyone a couple times a year. And, I definitely follow up with conversations that I’m started.

Two Ways to Create Near Viral Content on LinkedIn

LinkedIn marketing done right goes something like this. Get an account, create a killer profile, and get a lot of connections. Reach out to those connections and tell them about your product or service. Next, turn yourself into a though leader by creating tons of meaningful content. This process works, but it won’t happen in just a day. It’s going to take a few months. A year, maybe. But think of what you’ll have when you’ve accomplished the “thought leader” part. You’ll have positioned yourself as a big dog in your market area. This is positioning and branding that will serve you well for the rest of your career.

Here’s the catch, though.

It all depends on the content you create!

Most content I find on LinkedIn is dull and boring. Also, because it’s dull and boring, it doesn’t get the clicks or in the case of LinkedIn, it doesn’t drive that many people to your profile or get them to reach out to you, or even to respond favorably to you reaching out to them! If this is one of your marketing woes, good news! I have a few solutions that will help you pour proverbial gasoline onto your LinkedIn fire!

Make Viral Worthy Content

How do you know what topics are hot? Actually, on LinkedIn it’s pretty easy. If you go to your home page, you’ll see a list of trending topics. This tells you what’s igniting people! Pick a topic that can be bent to your own needs and write about that. Better yet, write about it and make a video about it. Even better create a slide show about it. Now you can post on LinkedIn, YouTube and SlideShare all in one fell swoop.

Ask Questions

LinkedIn is, after all, a social media platform. The overall goal is engagement! Asking questions is a great way to get your readers or viewers engaged! Doing this could mean all the difference between your content getting 5 clicks and 500 clicks!

Big Mistakes Managers Are Making on LinkedIn

LinkedIn connects virtually every serious business person on the planet. There are slightly over seven billion people on planet Earth right now. Over half a billion of them are on LinkedIn. Given the fact that LinkedIn rigorously polices their accounts looking for duplicates and bots, you can bet that virtually all of those half a billion people are real! Think about it. One out of fourteen people on this entire planet are on LinkedIn!

Not only does this give you an amazing reach as a job seeker, recruiter, freelancer, sales person, or corporate executive, but it also poses a little problem for you. If all your peers, colleagues, and competitors are on LinkedIn, then just BEING on LinkedIn isn’t going to make you stand out. No, you now have to do more than just have an account.

Here’s what a lot of business professionals do. Or rather, what they fail to do. They fail to create and maintain a vibrant LinkedIn presence. But, since everyone else is on the platform, it stands to reason that many of their peers and competitors are indeed creating a vibrant presence. So, look at it this way. Check out your own LinkedIn profile and then check out some of the profiles of your competitors, and what do you see? Unless you’ve spent some time updating your profile and posting content to it, you’re going to look like a, well for lack of a better word, slacker! Your peers have upped the bar, which means you have to up your game too!

So, how do you do this without killing yourself? LinkedIn isn’t your occupation. It’s just necessary to it.

One way is to use automation. I use Hootsuite for instance to auto post status updates and articles I write to the platform. Speaking of articles, another way is to post articles you’ve written on LinkedIn Pulse. This is LinkedIn’s blogging feature. If you want to go a step further, uploading slides you use in presentations to SlideShare and sharing them on LinkedIn is a perfect way for you to look like a thought leading pro. There are other ways, sure, but these three ideas will get you going in the right direction.

Why No One’s Viewing Your LinkedIn Profile and What to Do About It!

One of the most important metrics to keep up with on your LinkedIn profile is the number of views you’ve gotten recently. Even with a free account, LinkedIn gives you an indication of whether or not your views are growing as compared with the last reporting time. Although you can’t always make sure your views are growing, you can generally influence them to grow, which is a very important thing to do.

If you’re not getting many profile views, there are a few things you can do about it. First off, I’d tweak your headline and possibly your profile summary. You headline and your photo appear when someone’s searching for something related to your profile. People look at all the search results and based on what your picture looks like and what your headline says, they decide to take the next step and click on you. You want that to happen a lot more, not a lot less!

Another big thing you can do is to start posting more content, more status updates, more links to PowerPoint presentations via SlideShare, more YouTube videos, more native videos. More, more, more! As you post more content, you’ll greatly increase the number of ways people can find you, which will, in turn, increase your profile views.

Finally, reach out to more people on LinkedIn! Expand your network. Consistently send out connect requests. Don’t do two hundred all at one siting. LinkedIn will notice and probably shut your account down, at least temporarily. You do, however, want to send out ten or so per day. Actually, up to 50 a day is totally safe, in my experience! Reaching out to people makes them in turn go read your profile, which will over time create a lot more leads for you and your business!

Five Ways to Make Your LinkedIn Profile Snap, Crackle, and Pop!

Dull and boring just isn’t going to cut it in today’s oversaturated Internet world. Same old same old isn’t going to get you that new job or attract the right clients to your business. You absolutely must stand out from the crowd. And you have to do this in a way that appeals to your market! In this article, I’d like to turn you on to a few things you can do to your profile to stand out from the crowd and make people take notice of you! Ready?

Headline

Let’s start with your headline. DO NOT just put your job title or your main skill. “IT Professional.” “Freelance Writer.” Both of these are generic and don’t do any selling! Think about how you could restructure those to appeal to your market, whether that’s potential employers or clients.

Photo

This one’s a little tricky. You want to have a good, maybe even professional photo, and you want it to stand out a little. For the photo, I’d go towards making sure you look friendly and likable. As long as, that is, you’re in a job where being friendly and likable is a good thing. If you’re an international security expert, then you might want to tone down on the smile.

Profile Summary

Here’s where most folks just fall flat on their face! You get two thousand characters for your profile summary. Use them! And, don’t be generic. Write in first person. That’s much more approachable then writing in third person. Make sure you include a little (not too much) personal history. How did you get where you are? Here’s where you can really distinguish yourself from the rest of the field!

Recommendations

Yes, you want them! You don’t have to have a ton. Three or four great ones will do. But these especially serve to position you as an expert in your field. Most serious visitors to your profile (the ones thinking about possibly hiring you for something) will check out your recommendations and really read them!

Skills

Your list of skills and your endorsements help define more about who you are and what you do. Just like with recommendations, you can bet that anyone serious takes a long look at them.

How to Turn Your LinkedIn Profile into a Lead Gen Machine!

I’m amazed at how many entrepreneurs, salespeople, freelancers, and business people fail to utilize the amazing power of LinkedIn for sales and lead generation. I know what happened, though. At some point in the past, everyone got it into their heads that LinkedIn is a place to find a job, or a virtual Rolodex. Sure, it’s both of those, but it’s actually so much more! LinkedIn is the world’s top business networking platform with over half a billion users. You can connect with virtually any business person, or really anyone who’s a professional of any sort, on the planet through LinkedIn. To actually start leveraging the power of LinkedIn, let’s talk about a few changes you might need to make.

First off, you need a really good head shot. Not a picture of you, your wife and your kids on your last vacation, where you cropped out everyone but you. You need a well thought through business picture. One great idea is to have the background actually be where you work. Your logo, your company’s logo in the background would look perfect.

Second, you want a headline that really grabs people’s attention. Think about this like a sales letter writer would think about it. If you’re not that great at sales, go find someone in the sales department to help you out. They’re used to thinking like this.

Third, following up on the headline, you want your profile summary to actually sell you. It’s not a resume! It’s more of a gentle sales letter. Write it in first person. Put a little of the human factor in it. Towards the bottom, tell people what they should do next. Connect with you! Reach out to you! Click on a link and get a free report! That sort of thing.

Once you get all this set up, you can start growing your connections and using LinkedIn’s great messaging feature to grow your network!