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30 September  2009 ~

Branding on LinkedIn Most of  my blog posts stem from questions I’ve been asked and today’s post is no exception.  Recently, there was a great social media study put together by Chris Burke and Equation Research (will be writting about this in a later post) and one question asked the respondents to name the social media tools they used.  One site was notably absent from the listed responses and that site was LinkedIn. 

Interestingly, for numerous reasons, LinkedIn is generally not thought of as a site to market across.  Related to this, we’ve received bunches of questions regarding the value of using LinkedIn for marketing and branding.  Our answer is simple – LinkedIn is a communication tool. As long as you participate on it, make sure you are able to articulate your brand as effectively as possible.  …and this leads us to today’s blog post – five ways you can exhibit your brand on LinkedIn.

 

To be upfront, branding is not my expertise.  As such, we can’t offer the “million dollar approach to branding”.  We typically look to simplify ways to think about your brand around filling in questions such as

  • My expertise is… 
  • Three adjectives to describe my skills are…  
  • Using the above, in 10 words or less, describe your expertise (for example – Ten Years of Continually Improving Budgeting & Financial Reporting)

With that as our background, let’s look at branding on LinkedIn.

Professional Description – In our humble opinion, this is the most efficient and effective way to brand oneself on LinkedIn. This “3 second bumper sticker” appears underneath your name  literally every time your name shows up on LinkedIn.  Take a look at your current Professional Description.  Is it as effective as it can be?  If not, you may want to use the questions above to help craft a more effective “3 second bumper sticker”.

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Vanity Link – LinkedIn provides everyone with a default URL link to their Profile and it looks something like this “/pub/1/640”.   (see graphic below) Do you think anyone will remember that? 

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One thing we have started to see a lot of is people creating a vanity link around their brand.  In the exhibit above, Bob Smith might consider using  www.LinkedIn.com/in/FitnessGuy

Current Position – Are you familiar with the update LinkedIn recently made to their Outlook Toolbar?  In Outlook, assuming you have the LinkedIn Toolbar set up, if any person in an email is on LinkedIn, you will be able to immediately see their photo and a little branding blurb about them.  Guess where that branding blurb comes from – your Current Position.  Note – that blurb used to originate from your Summary.  Make sure you have the most effective phrase that brands you in the top 2 lines of your Current Position.

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LinkedIn Applications – A very powerful branding opportunity comes from using one of the LinkedIn Blog apps – Word Press or Blog Link which allow you to pull in your 4 latest blog posts.  Plugging in these apps takes literally no time at all.

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The What Are You Working on Now Function – To be clear, while this is similar to Twitter and Facebook in its functionality, LinkedIn users do not expect to get hit with a tsunami of updates each day.  Update this every 3 days or so, and update it with something that provides value to your connections.  It is permission based communication at its finest and allows you to stay in front of your connections – without interrupting them.  Remember provide value and don’t misuse this tool.

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About the CFO Strategist
Chris is very proud to add Best Selling author to his resume.  The book he co-authored, 42 Rules for 24 Hour Success on LinkedIn reached best seller status on Amazon, hitting a high of #68 across all of Amazon! Recently the book was included in the “Top 100 Best Social Media Books, Ever” list at #77 http://blog.mellowbillow.com/2009/08/17/top-100-best-social-media-books-ever/.  

To purchase the book, please go to www.LinkToProsper.com or to Amazon.
For more about us and social media info, please use our contact form to contact me.

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2 Comments »

  1. [...] Five Ways to Exhibit Your Brand on LinkedIn · CFO Strategist – WSJ … [...]

    Pingback by Blue Grenadier September 30, 2009 @ 11:13 pm
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    Pingback by Twitter Trackbacks for Five Ways to Exhibit Your Brand on LinkedIn · CFO Strategist [cfostrategist.com] on Topsy.com October 2, 2009 @ 7:55 am

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