2 Using LinkedIn to promote my brand
LinkedIn is a social networking platform for professionals. It has more than 562 million users in over 200 countries and territories worldwide.
The stated LinkedIn vision is to ‘Create economic opportunity for every member of the global workforce.’
Social media isn’t for everyone, but of all the platforms discussed this week, LinkedIn is the one that professionals should seriously consider engaging with.
There are many ways to use LinkedIn to both develop and promote your personal brand. Nations (2018) recommends the following for beginners:
- Get back in touch with old colleagues
- Use your profile as your CV or resume
- Find and apply for jobs
- Find and connect with new professionals
- Participate in relevant groups
- Blog about what you know.
Activity 2 My LinkedIn profile
A key element of your LinkedIn profile is the summary section. This appears at the top of your profile and is the first thing people will read about you.
Do you already have a LinkedIn profile?
- If yes, use this exercise to update your summary section.
- If no, consider setting one up and then using this activity to fill in your summary section when you are ready.
A LinkedIn summary is usually no more than two or three paragraphs long and is an opportunity to grab people’s attention and encourage them to read on. Treat it like a personal profile on a CV.
Refer back to your personal brand story for ideas of what to include.
Compose your summary in the box below.
If you need some ideas, Frost (n.d.) has some suggestions for different templates:
- The mission-based summary – opens with a broad description of what you do, then gets more and more specific
- The personality summary – begins with an anecdote that demonstrates one or two key personality traits
- The short and sweet summary – shares current role, previous positions and skills, useful for technical or conservative industries
- The blended summary – blending the personality- and mission-based approaches to create something light, fun and professional
- The accomplishments summary – tells potential employers why you deserve the job.
Frost’s blog also includes examples of each and shares some useful ideas and suggestions.
One of the most valuable opportunities for building your personal brand on LinkedIn is to join relevant groups and regularly contribute to the conversations that take place.
LinkedIn Help (n.d.) advises, ‘You can find groups to join by using the search feature at the top of your homepage or viewing groups you’ve already joined. You can also create a new group focused on a specific topic or industry.’
LinkedIn is probably the most obvious platform for professionals, but there are others that can be equally valuable when raising your profile. Find out more about them in the next sections.