Today's LinkedIn Nugget

Keep on electronically smiling

dadjoke

The other evening I attended a jazz concert. The leader’s happiness infected his band of 3 excellent musicians.

Now I’ve seen a whole lot of live music and I have never seen such a happy band. These 4 played great music as a team and they smiled and laughed for the entire 2 hours they performed. I enjoyed them enjoying themselves.

It’s a lesson I intend to emulate: smile more as I work, help others smile too, show how I enjoy what I do, pass it along to you.

And since you cannot see me as you read this, be assured I am grinning happily ear-to-ear.

And I will learn to make this a natural part of what I do so in the future when you next see me present to the public and to private groups: part of my ikigai, my raison d’être, my “why” I do that I do. (Of course at this point my kids would be nervous that I will insert some Dad joke here. I couldn’t resist the temptation!).

I crafted my LinkedIn profile to reflect my personality, yet remain professional.

No, this is not a fake mask but a natural part of me, in this blog and everything I do.

You can do this too.. 

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Today's LinkedIn Nugget

Do you grab attention?

intreresting itemsRemember the cultural image of the exotic traveling salesman in Wild West movies and musicals?

Let’s modernize that to today: in your  electronic emporium of trinkets, items from lands far away,  and potent elixirs, do you attract prospective clients and customers?

If you are like me, you use every sensible method of marketing yourself. Some electronic, some not. Whatever it takes to make the reader poke his/her head under my tent and nose around. I want them to interact with me to get an impression of my brand.

But in social media you never know who looks at you because they can leave without a trace, unless you compel them to contact you for more information. And they won’t do that unless you show then something that’s truly interesting enough to move them to act.

That’s how you should approach the narrative in each section of your LinkedIn profile, renovating from your profile’s roof to the cellar, as needed (and it’s almost always needed!), then continuously entrance them and offer ongoing value as a colleague to your connections (articles to share, positive/ additive commentary, and original essays).

Be interesting and active please. No one does business with a wallflower.

 

Today's LinkedIn Nugget

Pathfinding on #LinkedIn with your own article

path

Sometimes you just have to break away and pave your own path. Even if it’s just subtly different from the rest of your area/industry/peer group.

It takes self-confidence to offer an opinion, a view, or synthesize a lot of information into a new concept that others may need to know about.

Just positing it as an update is not enough. Yes, it’s faster, and easier, but readers might speculate that it’s just a bit too different.

They need convincing.

You can offer your viewpoint(s) and make your case in a long-form article to anyone and everyone on LinkedIn, all around the world, from your soapbox.

Composing a LinkedIn article takes some effort: use your best persuasive language, a great headline to attract attention, a background graphic. hashtags to draw attention to your topics, etc. to make your point.

Realize the average reader is attention-deprived, distracted by many competing images and noise, and needs to be thoroughly convinced.

Once others read it, share it, comment on it, and/or thank you, you’ll feel the reward. You might even do it again on another topic to share your ideas.

Offer your views to 575 million business professionals globally. Be a pathfinder.

Today's LinkedIn Nugget

Be instrumental in your #LinkedIn Group

band

It takes teamwork to make music. It takes cooperation to sound good. Collaboration often results in harmony, uniquely your own brand of interpretation, easy for the senses to absorb.

The sound check is over, the testing completed. The stage is set. Now make music.

I introduced you to the new Group function on LinkedIn (my blog last Friday).

Please play it like a finely tuned instrument, the one you perfected with experience and over time, and jam with others in a similar area of interest.

Start a new group. Reinvigorate one. Participate in one or more, ask questions, and answer the ones when you can add value.

The results? They can be symphonic.

Or they can rock. Or you can solo and inspire others.

Find your way to be instrumental.

 

Today's LinkedIn Nugget

Can #LinkedIn get any better?

unlimitedplus_doctoredI am referring to LinkedIn’s piece by piece improvements, slow but methodical.

Is it perfect? By no means!

But is there anything else like it for the global business professional community? No.

So it’s unlimited, but now with a plus…This week the big public announcement from LinkedIn is the all-new Groups revamp, well needed and beyond what was revealed to me and a few others in June at a private focus group I had earlier blogged about.

You can read about the new Groups function here and here, and I also suggest you investigate the topic in the Help Center for details on the upcoming changes, as they are layered in over the next weeks.

But before you get excited (positively or negatively) that this change is coming, have a sober look at your own LinkedIn profile. Does the casual reader get excited there, positively or negatively? Ask colleagues, respected friends, etc. to critique your profile and suggest changes. Why. other than to impress the casual reader of your prowess, is this important?

Going one step beyond the reader and colleagues, Group managers will review your profile to decide to admit you to their groups. Group members will review your profile before they engage with you. Others too: prospective business partners, referrals, hiring managers/recruiters, etc. You know my drill.

So, ask yourself, do you come across as the real deal on LinkedIn? Or boring? Or too flashy? Or best, as yourself, a business professional making a business pitch to the attention-deprived reader?

Using the adjectives “pregnant” or “perfect” as examples, can you be somewhat beyond either? Too much either? With both descriptors, and “unlimited” as well, you are or you are not. Not somewhere on either side of them.

Do you promise too much, offer too little, or hit it just right? Probably not the last one, unfortunately, so probably a buffing up is in order (if you  are to too much/too little). You need to make your brand realistic without going overboard or under.

My inspiration for this blog post was this photo I shot on the train the other day as we rolled past a station’s ad boards. (I apologize for the quality of the photo as the train was moving and the sign was a few tracks away.)

I know I polish my LinkedIn profile continuously to be the best I can be. I try to be real and myself in my profile, yet complete and wholly believable.

Think of ways you can be as “unlimited” as possible and then find your “plus.”

Today's LinkedIn Nugget

One more thing not to leave home without

Elevator-Speech

Other than spare business cards, as we discussed yesterday, be sure you leave your home with a great elevator pitch.

One that makes the listener ask a follow-up question or two. Because they need to know more than what you offered in your brief pitch. Then you can tell if they are listening and curious.

Not too long, just a couple of floors’ elevator travel time.

Practice. A lot.

In front of peers (get critiques from them). In front of a mirror (be sure to smile). Into your mobile phone’s recording app (to listen to how you come across).

Perfect it.

Then twist it towards a business narrative voice (because we speak and write in different manners) and post it to your LinkedIn Headline, using all, or as many of, the 120 characters, with additional spillover questions answered in your Summary.

NOT your title and company name, please. That’s not your elevator pitch, right?

You can do it. Because you have to.

Today's LinkedIn Nugget

Don’t leave home without them (business cards that is!)

bizcardI attend a lot of networking events.

I am amazed at the number of people who have run out of, or have forgotten to bring, business cards.

Yes, it’s an old-fashioned way of presenting yourself.

But a very important one.

So get in the habit of having extras stashed away someplace easy to access when you give out more than you expected: your car, your backpack, your wallet, etc.

And please remember to add your LinkedIn URL to your contact details on your next reorder of cards.

Get with the (LinkedIn) program, please.

Today's LinkedIn Nugget

Anonymity contradicts #LinkedIn

disguiseDon’t be anonymous.

Don’t hide your last name or your complete identity when researching on LinkedIn.

Tell your complete story, truthfully.

Be forthright and outward in what you do on LinkedIn. Link to those you  know and believe you can help. Be open and available. Social media is inclusive.

Yes, I know LinkedIn allows you to troll around in semi-secrecy. I am not a fan.

Be yourself and be open about why you are looking on LinkedIn.

Do you leave the house with a disguise on?

I don’t.

You shouldn’t.

 

 

Today's LinkedIn Nugget

Be emblematic on #LinkedIn

emblematic

When people think of the field you are in, the business you operate, the product or service you offer, you want them to think of you first. Your name, face and logo should pop into their head. If asked whom they would refer, you want to be the one thought of immediately, and hopefully the only one suggested for the need at hand.

You want to be emblematic, as the definition suggests, symbolic of the trait(s) that is/are needed.

How? Here are a few (of many) ways to “ping” on metal radar screens often, valued and admired.

By doing some, or all, of these, you are more top-of-mind:

  • Congratulate them for a job well done or work anniversary with thoughtfully chosen words of applause.
  • Share their comments and updates with your own commentary and thank them, personally for all to see, for offering the material, with an @ sign before their name.
  • Introduce them to others without being asked and identify areas of common ground so the referral is more meaningful.
  • Endorse them for the skills they list, but for only those you have first-hand experience witnessing or utilizing.
  • And finally, a favorite: recommend them on LinkedIn for a job well done citing an anecdoy\te to yeoman work, without their asking for it–you WILL be remembered that way for sure!

Be emblematic for being a great colleague,a great resource, for excellent work.

It’s easy and takes little time. The dividends pay off in heaps.