Please Stop Making These LinkedIn mistakes

August 20, 2019

So, let’s dive in!

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Please, for the love of all things good and holy, STOP making these LinkedIn mistakes. 

Some of them are affecting your visibility. 

Some of them are affecting your reach.

And I hate to say it, but some of them are really hurting your online reputation and personal brand. 

If you’re gonna invest time and energy into doing LinkedIn, you really want to do it right – right?

So, I’ll make it easy for you: 

Here’s the mistakes you NEED to stop making, STAT. 

(Oh, and side note? If you’re THINKING about LinkedIn as a platform for your business, but you haven’t quite started yet? This is the perfect episode for you too, because you can avoid making these common mistakes in the first place!)

1. Not Optimising Your Profile

Here’s some truth bombs for you.

LinkedIn is a search engine. And, a powerful one at that. People have the ability to search for people in your industry, with your position title, in the roles you have previously worked in, in your city.. And much more. 

Which is all well and good IF you are actually discoverable on the platform. 

So.. are you? 

A lot of this comes back to ensuring that you have a fully optimized profile. 

LinkedIn gives preference to those that have filled their complete profile out, so if that isn’t enough of an incentive – well, I don’t know what is. 

Now, here’s a few little things to keep in mind. 

Headline: Your Headline matters. It’s searchable, and it’s how many people will come across you. So, it’s really important to ensure that you are properly keyword optimizing it as well as making it attractive and appealing to those checking you out. 

Number two: Your photo. 

Now, of course, this isn’t searchable, but you need to make damn sure that the picture it is painting is a good one. This is not the time for low quality social pics with your face cropped out. Make sure your profile photo is personable and professional. Make sure you are facing the camera. Make sure that the first impression that you are painting of yourself is a good one. 

Number Three: Your Professional Summary

This is where you need to ensure that you pen a killer bio that summarises who you are and what you do, as well as telling people how you can help them and why you are there!

In addition, you want to make sure that all other aspects of your profile are properly filled out. These include your relevant experience, qualifications and more. 

Remember, the more complete your profile is, the more opportunity there is for people to find you and for LinkedIn to prioritise your profile in search. 

2. Not Using the Search Feature

Now, whilst we are on the topic of search, let’s talk about the second big mistake that people make on LinkedIn. And that, my friends, is not making use of the powerful search feature on the platform. 

Let’s say that you want a list of every Marketing Manager in Brisbane because you have a digital service that you would love to pitch to them as a white label offer they could provide to their clients. 

Well, you can! 

To do that, you simply click into the search bar at the top of LinkedIn, you type in ‘Marketing Manager’ and in the advanced search column, you filter by city. You can also filter by industry, if you want to find every Marketing Manager in the Real Estate industry in Brisbane, for example. 

Now, if the opportunity and power of this doesn’t excite you – well, I don’t know what will. 

It’s a great way of putting together a more personalised marketing strategy targeting specific companies and people. 

If you want some ideas on how to use this in your marketing, I highly recommend that you check out Episode X of the podcast, where I interviewed my amazing business friend and calligrapher Jo about how to take your marketing offline. She made a hit list of people to contact offline and personally sent them packages – something you couldn’t do if you didn’t know who they were in the first place, right? 

The other way to use this feature is to personally connect with them on LinkedIn, which leads into the third biggest mistake that I see on LinkedIn. 

3. Being Spammy

LinkedIn has a bad reputation for a good reason: it deserves it.

If you’ve been on LinkedIn for any period of time, you would know that there is a lot of spammy behaviour on the platform. 

It’s as people log in, lose their manners and lose any concept of how to treat another person in a friendly, normal manner. 

As the ex-Marketing Manager for a large real estate company, I would often get connection requests from others in the industry. Usually, they wouldn’t be personalise – which is mistake number one. If you are going to take the time to connect with a new connection, make it personal.

Once I did accept, though – well, that’s where the REALLY bad behaviour would begin. 

I’d often IMMEDIATELY be spammed with a sales pitch. 

No. Just… no. 

If you aren’t willing to build relationships and add value on the platform, you won’t succeed.

You’ll also destroy your personal reputation and waste a lot of valuable time in the process.

4. Mistaking being professional for lacking personality

Repeat after me: being professional does not need to mean leaving your personality at the doorstep. Or in other words, you can be professional and still have personality! People connect with people, and when you conduct yourself – both online and offline – in a way that showcases your personality, it will resonate with the right people. 

LinkedIn is an unnecessarily stale platform for that very reason. Everyone is trying to ‘fit in’. 

It’s by standing out – in a manner that expresses your personality whilst still being professional – that will really get you traction on the platform. 

You can write copy in a personable way. You can show up on video and give people an insight into your personality whilst still adding value. You can craft a profile that showcases your personality as well as your expertise. 

This is ultimately what will get you traction on LinkedIn because people are more likely to engage with content that they resonate with. 

Which brings me to the fifth and final mistake that you need to stop making on LinkedIn. 

5. Not understanding the LinkedIn algorithm

Just like Facebook and Instagram, LinkedIn has an algorithm which determines who sees which content in the feed. 

According to LinkedIn, the feed aims to serve up content from ‘people you know, talking about things you care about’. 

What this means is that in order to succeed on LinkedIn, you need to create content that is useful or helpful above all else. 

When it comes to deciding on the relevance of a post, there are three criteria that LinkedIn takes into account: 

  1. The value to the member
  2. The value to the members’ network
  3. The value to the creator of the post. 

Notice the common theme here? It’s VALUE! Create value and help people. That’s the golden rule. 

One way to create this value is to really niche down into particular topics. Linked has found that their user base is more interested in going deep on topics that they are interested in. So, they see more engagement and conversation around niche topics – for example, LinkedIn Marketing – than broad topics – for example, social media. 

Not understanding the algorithm and creating broad, self-serving content is, in a nutshell, a recipe for disaster. 

So, there you have it. The top five LinkedIn mistakes you NEED to stop making on the platform. 

Do LinkedIn right, and there is huge potential. 

Get it wrong?

And you’ll waste your time and damage your reputation in the process. 

Tread carefully. 

Keep Listening!

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