“It’s not about who you know, and it’s not about what you know. It’s about who knows what you know and how that adds value to them.” – Amanda Blesing on networking
Amanda Blesing is an executive coach, mentor, public speaker, workshop facilitator and LinkedIn expert. She holds one of the top 1% viewed LinkedIn profiles globally and has a readership of 7,000 on her weekly blog.
On Monday 27 May, over a glass of wine and some delicious platters, Amanda spoke to a jam-packed house of communication students, graduates, job seekers and industry professionals about how each of us can maximise LinkedIn to build our personal brands and score that dream job. Amanda unpacked the best LinkedIn personal branding advice and inspired many to reshape their personal profiles.
Your profile is more than just your CV!
Many professionals use LinkedIn solely as a place for their online CV, but you could be doing so much more to maximise your presence! It’s your presence on LinkedIn that will increase your profile views after all.
Try increasing your LinkedIn presence by adding connections in your industry, consistently posting relevant content, and training the algorithm by liking, commenting and sharing. We’ll get to that soon, but for now, let’s look at Amanda’s top tips for your profile.
Get your work experience section right. Logos are very important here, as they add credibility to your previous positions. If your employer hasn’t set up a company page with a logo, encourage them to do so.
Amanda also strongly recommends investing in a professional headshot that you keep updated every 3-4 years. First impressions count, and photos build instant trust. This cuts out the surprise factor when you walk into that job interview ten years older than everyone thought.
Make sure you audit your skills and endorsements every two years. Many managers and CEOs move up from junior roles, and a surprising number still have Microsoft Word or hard worker as their top skill. Amanda even knew a client endorsed for “good in bed” and didn’t know it. Bad look!
Don’t be afraid to build connections!
Amanda says LinkedIn is made for networking but everyone is different when it comes to adding connections and accepting requests. According to Amanda, you get the best results when you’re willing to continually add industry connections, even if you’ve only met someone once. This isn’t unusual and will help build an audience for your content and drive profile views. She also encouraged us to be Open LinkedIn Networkers – that’s someone who’ll accept connection requests from anyone, provided they have a genuine and professional profile.
Although LinkedIn allows you to add a personal message when connecting, Amanda says it isn’t unusual to connect without a message. It’s good practice however, to send a brief thank you message, even if copied and pasted, when someone has accepted your request.
Post organically and be real!
Amanda emphasised the importance of consistent, organic posting. But what does that mean?
It means posting ideas about your industry organically and intentionally. You don’t need to use a marketing tool like Hootsuite to schedule posts. In fact, these actually get pushed down news feeds by LinkedIn’s algorithm.
If you’re posting a link to an external article, instead of placing the link in the post, put it as the first comment on your post. Why? Because LinkedIn likes to keep users browsing its platform, so the algorithm doesn’t favour external-linking posts. Just make sure you include the words “link in first comment.”
Engaging with other users’ posts is key to achieving more profile views. Train the algorithm by regularly commenting, sharing and liking other posts. But don’t be a cheerleader and simply like content; provide a comment and add value to be more visible. When commenting start with a point or message that has substance before adding a safe statement like ‘thank you’ or ‘this was interesting.’
Finally, Amanda had some great advice on post-drafting. Sick of seeing the cliché “I’m very pleased to be attending this morning’s industry breakfast panel discussion and hearing insights about x”? Yuck. Take the self out and start with the learning. “Before 2023, artificial intelligence and smart devices will have transformed hospital care. It was a pleasure to attend this morning’s industry breakfast”. Now that will get you engagement.
Did you receive a job offer or an exciting lead based on Amanda’s advice? Let us know by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org or better yet, send IABC Victoria a LinkedIn message!