Are You Missing Important Information on Your LinkedIn Profile?

I field lots of questions each week about LinkedIn, but one of the most-asked questions is:

What information should I include on my LinkedIn profile?

As a general rule, if your answer to any of these questions is "Yes," then you should include the information on your profile:
.

  • Does putting this on my profile add to my story or increase my credibility?
    .
  • Does putting this on my profile make it easier for people to find me?
    .
  • If I do not put this on my profile and my competitors have it on their profiles, will I be at a competitive disadvantage?
    .
  • Does this information help people understand what I do and how I can help them?
    .

Other frequently asked profile questions

Here are some of the answers I typically give when asked specific questions about profile details.

Should I include my high school?

Yes, because people will find you when searching for your school, and people love doing business with fellow alumni.

Should I include an educational entry even if I didn't finish and get the degree I was aiming for?

Yes, as long as you are truthful and don't state that you completed the degree. Having that entry on your profile could help others find you in a search since you'll be one of the people who shows up in a search if someone uses the "Schools" filter or the Alumni search feature.

Should I include my Rotary Club membership (or similar civic type organizations)?

Yes, because people will find you when searching for other Rotarians, and people do like to do business with like-minded fellow club members. Also, others in the community will respect you for helping others.

Should I include the awards I won ten years ago at a prior job?

Yes, because awards enhance your credibility and add to your story even if they are unrelated to your current job duties.

Should I include specific industry training programs or courses?

Yes, because it will obviously enhance your credibility and increase your chances of being found when someone is searching for people with that specific type of training/course.

Should I include the certifications I hold?

Of course, because certifications are instant proof of credibility, and people will search for professionals with those credentials.

Should I include local groups or associations I currently belong to or have belonged to in the past?

Yes, you should. Because people like doing business with others who have the same interests and affiliations, including your groups and associations could open the door. This is also another way to enhance your credibility.

Should I include all the jobs I've ever had?

Of course, because when adding connections, many people look for people they've worked with in the past. This will obviously help your past colleagues find you. Also, your job experiences help you tell your story, and the information you share might be just what a viewer of your profile is looking for.

Bottom line:  If you've done it, you're proud of it, and you want the professional world to know about it, put it on your LinkedIn profile!

SPECIAL OFFER

If you'd like help creating an engaging, highly visible LinkedIn profile and a meaningful LinkedIn strategy that will skyrocket your business and career, then take advantage of my specially priced $197 LinkedIn consultation.

This consultation will take place on the phone, and I'll share my desktop screen with you. I will perform a detailed critique of your profile and email your marked-up profile to you prior to our session. Click here to book your time.

Here are a few comments from my recent clients:

"Great job offer received via LinkedIn only two days after consulting with Wayne!"

"He made the learning experience fun, interesting, and was a big help to me. It has increased my exposure almost two-fold in a couple weeks."

"I highly recommend Wayne's 1:1 LinkedIn coaching session. Per Wayne's guidance, I reached out to the SVP of Client Success for a company I saw a suitable role. I used language Wayne provided in our 1:1 session to initiate the contact...Since then I've had an initial interview and interacted with the SVP multiple times."

Don't miss your chance to get results like these. Book your time now by clicking here. Space is limited.

The post Are You Missing Important Information on Your LinkedIn Profile? appeared first on Wayne Breitbarth.

Are You Missing Important Information on Your LinkedIn Profile?

I field lots of questions each week about LinkedIn, but one of the most-asked questions is:

What information should I include on my LinkedIn profile?

As a general rule, if your answer to any of these questions is "Yes," then you should include the information on your profile:
.

  • Does putting this on my profile add to my story or increase my credibility?
    .
  • Does putting this on my profile make it easier for people to find me?
    .
  • If I do not put this on my profile and my competitors have it on their profiles, will I be at a competitive disadvantage?
    .
  • Does this information help people understand what I do and how I can help them?
    .

Other frequently asked profile questions

Here are some of the answers I typically give when asked specific questions about profile details.

Should I include my high school?

Yes, because people will find you when searching for your school, and people love doing business with fellow alumni.

Should I include an educational entry even if I didn't finish and get the degree I was aiming for?

Yes, as long as you are truthful and don't state that you completed the degree. Having that entry on your profile could help others find you in a search since you'll be one of the people who shows up in a search if someone uses the "Schools" filter or the Alumni search feature.

Should I include my Rotary Club membership (or similar civic type organizations)?

Yes, because people will find you when searching for other Rotarians, and people do like to do business with like-minded fellow club members. Also, others in the community will respect you for helping others.

Should I include the awards I won ten years ago at a prior job?

Yes, because awards enhance your credibility and add to your story even if they are unrelated to your current job duties.

Should I include specific industry training programs or courses?

Yes, because it will obviously enhance your credibility and increase your chances of being found when someone is searching for people with that specific type of training/course.

Should I include the certifications I hold?

Of course, because certifications are instant proof of credibility, and people will search for professionals with those credentials.

Should I include local groups or associations I currently belong to or have belonged to in the past?

Yes, you should. Because people like doing business with others who have the same interests and affiliations, including your groups and associations could open the door. This is also another way to enhance your credibility.

Should I include all the jobs I've ever had?

Of course, because when adding connections, many people look for people they've worked with in the past. This will obviously help your past colleagues find you. Also, your job experiences help you tell your story, and the information you share might be just what a viewer of your profile is looking for.

Bottom line:  If you've done it, you're proud of it, and you want the professional world to know about it, put it on your LinkedIn profile!

SPECIAL OFFER

If you'd like help creating an engaging, highly visible LinkedIn profile and a meaningful LinkedIn strategy that will skyrocket your business and career, then take advantage of my specially priced $197 LinkedIn consultation.

This consultation will take place on the phone, and I'll share my desktop screen with you. I will perform a detailed critique of your profile and email your marked-up profile to you prior to our session. Click here to book your time.

Here are a few comments from my recent clients:

"Great job offer received via LinkedIn only two days after consulting with Wayne!"

"He made the learning experience fun, interesting, and was a big help to me. It has increased my exposure almost two-fold in a couple weeks."

"I highly recommend Wayne's 1:1 LinkedIn coaching session. Per Wayne's guidance, I reached out to the SVP of Client Success for a company I saw a suitable role. I used language Wayne provided in our 1:1 session to initiate the contact...Since then I've had an initial interview and interacted with the SVP multiple times."

Don't miss your chance to get results like these. Book your time now by clicking here. Space is limited.

The post Are You Missing Important Information on Your LinkedIn Profile? appeared first on Wayne Breitbarth.

How Do You Know What to Put on Your LinkedIn Profile?

Should I put [fill in the blank] on my LinkedIn profile?

I'm asked this question several times each week. I always answer I don't know, which usually comes as a surprise to them and probably to you as well. After all, I'm the expert!

What I really mean is I can't answer that confidently until I understand what someone plans to accomplish on LinkedIn.

If you're unsure about whether you should put something on your profile, I suggest you start by asking yourself three questions:

Would putting this on my profile:
.

  • help people find me?
  • improve their perception of me and my brand?
  • help them understand what I do and how I can help them?

If your answer to any of these questions is "Yes," then I suggest you put it on your profile.

Let's look at the three questions more closely.
.

Help people find me

Trust me on this one. Connections are the gas in the tank on LinkedIn, especially if the connections are strategic (for example, customers, potential customers, influencers of Gas Pricesyour customers, people at organizations where you want to work, etc.). You want people to find and connect with you.

For example, on my profile, I list my first job out of college, Arthur Andersen & Co. This entry helps people from the "good old days" find me—and they just might need some LinkedIn training or consulting at their company.
.

Improve their perception of me and my brand

People are using LinkedIn to size you up. Entries that display your expertise, emphasize your integrity, and show your creativity will cause people to like and trust you. Hopefully this leads to more connections and more business.

The Arthur Andersen entry also applies here, because most experienced business people around my part of the country recognize that if AA&Co. hired you right out of college, you are probably a really smart person.

So, even though I didn't have a 3.9+ GPA, like most students they hired, people assume I'm in that group, and it gives me positive branding kudos. (FYI, I had a 3.4, but I could interview with the best of them!)
.

Help them understand what I do and how I can help them

After all, if your profile doesn't get this done, why are you on LinkedIn anyway?

Professionally, I do speaking and consulting. Here's one of the ways I promote my speaking business:

I am consistently asked to speak at Executive Agenda (EA), YPO, Vistage and TEC meetings as well as CEO Roundtables and Renaissance Forums (REF), where my 35+ years of experience as a business owner and manager enables me to help my peers understand how social media can benefit their companies.

Personally, I am involved with some awesome nonprofit groups. Including them in my LinkedIn profile helps me spread the word about the great things they're doing. By including links to their websites, I am encouraging others to get involved, too.

You can look at my profile to see several examples of this, both in the Experience section and the Volunteer Experience section.

I hope you're now equipped and motivated to beef up your LinkedIn profile.

If you want me to perform a detailed critique of your profile and help you develop strategies to skyrocket your business and career, then take advantage of my special $175 LinkedIn consultation. This consultation will take place on the phone, and I'll share my desktop screen with you. I will email your marked-up profile to you prior to our session. Click here to book your time.

Here are a few comments from my recent clients:

"Great job offer received via LinkedIn only two days after consulting with Wayne!"

"I highly recommend Wayne's 1:1 Linked In coaching session. Per Wayne's guidance, I reached out to the SVP of Client Success for a company I saw a suitable role. I used language Wayne provided in our 1:1 session to initiate the contact...Since then I've had an initial interview and interacted with the SVP multiple times."

"He made the learning experience fun, interesting, and was a big help to me. It has increased my exposure almost two-fold in a couple weeks."

Don't miss your chance to get results like these. Book your time now by clicking here. Space is limited.

The post How Do You Know What to Put on Your LinkedIn Profile? appeared first on Wayne Breitbarth.

Here is What You Need to Know About Your Brand New LinkedIn Profile

Can you believe it? LinkedIn has changed your profile AGAIN! If you haven't received the new profile yet, you will see it soon.

This is the second change in less than a year. And although the changes aren't as far reaching as last year's changes, there are some critical revisions you should make to address these changes.

The changes are only in what I call the top box, which is what people see when they first look at your profile (before scrolling down). That's why you should address these changes as soon as possible.

Here is my review of each of the changes and a suggested action step for that change.

Your profile photo has moved from the center to the left-hand side.

Action step: If you have a custom background, you may have to redo it so your photo doesn't cover important information.

Your headline and your location have been moved from the center to the left-hand side.

Action step: I don't have any specific suggestions regarding this, but, as in the past, make sure you have a great headline. Click here to download my free resource The Definitive Guide to Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile Headline.

Your current company name and logo, along with your university name and logo, have been moved from the bottom of the top box to a higher position on the right-hand side.

Action step: These two entries will be noticed more often now, so make sure your company has uploaded its logo on their company page because that logo gets carried over to your profile.

Also, if you have multiple current job entries, be sure they're in the right order. Use the reorder icon to rearrange them.

When it comes to the university entry, make sure the first university entry you have listed is the one you want to carry up to this prominent spot. You can also rearrange your education entries by using the reorder icon.

Your intro to your Summary (the portion that shows up prior to the viewer clicking Show More) has been expanded from about 200 characters to about 290 characters.

Action step: This is great news. You now have a 45% expansion of this important section, so use it well to grab your reader's attention or share additional important information. If you want to make it easy for the reader to contact you, consider adding your phone number and/or your email address in this prominent space.

Any media you've uploaded or linked to not only from the Summary section but from your Job Experience and your Education entries will be highlighted more prominently, encouraging your viewers to check them out.

Action step: Take advantage of this improved position for some of your very best documents, videos, Power Points, and links to your website. Show the reader why you're the best at what you do and how you can help them. Click here to read an article I wrote about how to add media to your profile.

That's it. Again, there aren't a lot of updates, but because they're all at the very top of your profile, it's important to make your revisions ASAP.

SPECIAL OFFER: With these important profile changes, this would be a great time for you to take advantage of the $175 special I'm running.

In addition to my detailed critique of your profile, I'll spend a full hour on the phone with you and share my computer screen. We'll focus on your business and career goals and discuss how to spend your time effectively on LinkedIn. Click here to book your slot.

Here's what a recent client said about her session:

"I highly recommend Wayne's 1:1 LinkedIn coaching session. Per Wayne's guidance, I reached out to the SVP of Client Success for a company I saw a suitable role. I used language Wayne provided in our 1:1 session to initiate the contact. The SVP responded within an hour, stating they are looking for someone in the Chicago market, that he liked my background, and that I should email him once I apply so he could ask the recruiter to reach out to me. Since then I've had an initial interview and interacted with the SVP multiple times, adding a valuable contact to my network. Wayne, thanks for giving me the tools I needed to move a little further outside my comfort zone and amp up my networking."

Get your slot booked with me now by clicking here. I have a limited amount of these slots at the $175 special price.

The post Here is What You Need to Know About Your Brand New LinkedIn Profile appeared first on Wayne Breitbarth.

Have You Taken Advantage of the Changes to LinkedIn Skills?

LinkedIn's Skills & Endorsements section has been rather confusing from its inception, but they have been improving it over the years and have now added a couple really cool features that are easy to use and could have a significant impact on your business and career.

Because LinkedIn has made at least four revisions to Skills & Endorsements over the six years of its existence, we can assume this section is fairly important in the overall scheme of how LinkedIn works and, most importantly, in the way the critical search ranking algorithm works. I can't prove it, but I don't think LinkedIn would spend this much time and effort unless it really matters.
.

How to optimize your Skills & Endorsements profile section

Because the Skills & Endorsements section is confusing to many people, I will give you some overall strategies for capitalizing on it in addition to discussing the exciting new features. Implementing these strategies will help the viewers of your profile better understand how you can help them, and the result will be great, new relationships that should lead to improved business and career success.

1.  You can only receive endorsements from 1st level connections and for skills you have acknowledged you possess. If you receive a pending endorsement notification from LinkedIn saying, John Jones wants to endorse you for basket weaving, don't say yes if you aren't a good basket weaver or don't want basket weaving listed as a skill in your Skills & Endorsements section.

2.  You can manage them to a certain extent. Scroll down to the Skills & Endorsements section of your profile, and then you can:
.

Add any skills that show what you're good at from a professional standpoint. If your job duties include sales, add keywords that relate to the products and services you sell. After you click Add a new skill, type a skill in the box. LinkedIn will then suggest other skills based on the words you put in the box. If those skills are part of your skill set, be sure to add them to your list of skills.
.

Delete a skill. Click the pencil icon in the top right corner. Then click the new trash can icon to the right of the skill you want to delete, and it's gone—along with any endorsements of that skill, of course.
.

Pin and reorder your skills. This brand new feature enables you to pin your three most important skills at the top of your new subsection titled Top Skills—providing greater visibility and credibility for you. Simply click the pencil icon next to Add a new skill on the top right of your Skills & Endorsements section, and then click the pin icon next to the three skills you'd like at the top of your list. Viewers will only see these three skills until they click Show more. These should be your three very best keywords.

Next, review the skills in the other new categories (Industry Knowledge, Tools & Technologies, Interpersonal Skills, and Other Skills). Then reorder the entries in each category, from most important to least important, by dragging the four-line icon on the right.

Other than the three entries you've pinned in the Top Skills category, you cannot move skills to a different category. Also, you may not have all four of the categories on your profile if LinkedIn doesn't think you have skills in all four categories. For instance, I don't have Tools & Technologies on my profile.

Because you can now put your best skills at the top of these new lists, your connections will be more likely to endorse you for those skills—and soon they'll be the most endorsed skills on your profile. This will help you get closer to the top of the search results when people search for those skills.

Choose (1) whether or not you want to be endorsed, (2) whether you want LinkedIn to suggest endorsements to your connections, and (3) whether you want suggestions for endorsing your connections. Click the words Adjust endorsement settings on the bottom of the page to revise your settings. I recommend choosing Yes for all three settings.

3.  You can be endorsed for up to 50 skills. These skills are essentially keywords, and LinkedIn and other search engines love keywords; so I would use all 50 slots if I were you.

4.  You don't have to endorse everyone who endorses you. If you want to endorse them, go ahead, but don't feel obligated to do so.

5.  I'm pretty sure endorsements and the skills they attach to are part of the LinkedIn search algorithm. LinkedIn doesn't publicize its algorithm, but my guess is that skills are an important part of it, because LinkedIn doesn't invest this much time and effort into something that isn't going to help their top-line revenue. They are making a lot of money on their Recruiting Solutions product, and they obviously think this feature helps them deliver the "best" candidate for a certain skill ("best" meaning most endorsed).

6.  List skills that are important and consistent with your current or future business strategy. The skills you include, especially the ones you pin and move to the top of the other categories, should be important for you on a moving forward basis—and these may not be the same skills that have been historically important for you.

Also, don't worry about putting new skills in the pinned section or near the top of a category. You may not have any endorsements for them yet, but you'll get them over time.

7.  You might get someone's attention if you endorse them. Your face and name may appear on the person's profile, and LinkedIn will also send the person a message saying you just endorsed them.

8.  Endorsements may be the differentiator. If two profiles look similar in all respects but one has 120 endorsements for the skill you're looking for and the other has only 20, you may be inclined to choose the person with 120.

9.  Endorsements are great, but LinkedIn recommendations are still important. I recommend you get at least two recommendations, because LinkedIn now displays them very prominently and in full on your profile. This is especially important if you're a job seeker. Great recommendations will increase your credibility—and the more the better.

You should now be ready to impress readers of your profile with your specific skills and affirmation of those skills by LinkedIn members—and greater visibility and credibility is sure to lead to increased revenue.

 

SPECIAL OFFER

If you’d like help with developing a LinkedIn strategy that will catapult your business and career, take advantage of my limited time offer: a one-hour, one-on-one LinkedIn consultation for just $175 (50% off my regular fee). This offer also includes an in-depth critique of your profile.

I will share my computer screen with you during the call and send you a marked-up copy of your profile prior to the call.

There are limited spots available, so don't delay. Book your session today by clicking here.

The post Have You Taken Advantage of the Changes to LinkedIn Skills? appeared first on Wayne Breitbarth.

Have You Taken Advantage of the Changes to LinkedIn Skills?

LinkedIn's Skills & Endorsements section has been rather confusing from its inception, but they have been improving it over the years and have now added a couple really cool features that are easy to use and could have a significant impact on your business and career.

Because LinkedIn has made at least four revisions to Skills & Endorsements over the six years of its existence, we can assume this section is fairly important in the overall scheme of how LinkedIn works and, most importantly, in the way the critical search ranking algorithm works. I can't prove it, but I don't think LinkedIn would spend this much time and effort unless it really matters.
.

How to optimize your Skills & Endorsements profile section

Because the Skills & Endorsements section is confusing to many people, I will give you some overall strategies for capitalizing on it in addition to discussing the exciting new features. Implementing these strategies will help the viewers of your profile better understand how you can help them, and the result will be great, new relationships that should lead to improved business and career success.

1.  You can only receive endorsements from 1st level connections and for skills you have acknowledged you possess. If you receive a pending endorsement notification from LinkedIn saying, John Jones wants to endorse you for basket weaving, don't say yes if you aren't a good basket weaver or don't want basket weaving listed as a skill in your Skills & Endorsements section.

2.  You can manage them to a certain extent. Scroll down to the Skills & Endorsements section of your profile, and then you can:
.

Add any skills that show what you're good at from a professional standpoint. If your job duties include sales, add keywords that relate to the products and services you sell. After you click Add a new skill, type a skill in the box. LinkedIn will then suggest other skills based on the words you put in the box. If those skills are part of your skill set, be sure to add them to your list of skills.
.

Delete a skill. Click the pencil icon in the top right corner. Then click the new trash can icon to the right of the skill you want to delete, and it's gone—along with any endorsements of that skill, of course.
.

Pin and reorder your skills. This brand new feature enables you to pin your three most important skills at the top of your new subsection titled Top Skills—providing greater visibility and credibility for you. Simply click the pencil icon next to Add a new skill on the top right of your Skills & Endorsements section, and then click the pin icon next to the three skills you'd like at the top of your list. Viewers will only see these three skills until they click Show more. These should be your three very best keywords.

Next, review the skills in the other new categories (Industry Knowledge, Tools & Technologies, Interpersonal Skills, and Other Skills). Then reorder the entries in each category, from most important to least important, by dragging the four-line icon on the right.

Other than the three entries you've pinned in the Top Skills category, you cannot move skills to a different category. Also, you may not have all four of the categories on your profile if LinkedIn doesn't think you have skills in all four categories. For instance, I don't have Tools & Technologies on my profile.

Because you can now put your best skills at the top of these new lists, your connections will be more likely to endorse you for those skills—and soon they'll be the most endorsed skills on your profile. This will help you get closer to the top of the search results when people search for those skills.

Choose (1) whether or not you want to be endorsed, (2) whether you want LinkedIn to suggest endorsements to your connections, and (3) whether you want suggestions for endorsing your connections. Click the words Adjust endorsement settings on the bottom of the page to revise your settings. I recommend choosing Yes for all three settings.

3.  You can be endorsed for up to 50 skills. These skills are essentially keywords, and LinkedIn and other search engines love keywords; so I would use all 50 slots if I were you.

4.  You don't have to endorse everyone who endorses you. If you want to endorse them, go ahead, but don't feel obligated to do so.

5.  I'm pretty sure endorsements and the skills they attach to are part of the LinkedIn search algorithm. LinkedIn doesn't publicize its algorithm, but my guess is that skills are an important part of it, because LinkedIn doesn't invest this much time and effort into something that isn't going to help their top-line revenue. They are making a lot of money on their Recruiting Solutions product, and they obviously think this feature helps them deliver the "best" candidate for a certain skill ("best" meaning most endorsed).

6.  List skills that are important and consistent with your current or future business strategy. The skills you include, especially the ones you pin and move to the top of the other categories, should be important for you on a moving forward basis—and these may not be the same skills that have been historically important for you.

Also, don't worry about putting new skills in the pinned section or near the top of a category. You may not have any endorsements for them yet, but you'll get them over time.

7.  You might get someone's attention if you endorse them. Your face and name may appear on the person's profile, and LinkedIn will also send the person a message saying you just endorsed them.

8.  Endorsements may be the differentiator. If two profiles look similar in all respects but one has 120 endorsements for the skill you're looking for and the other has only 20, you may be inclined to choose the person with 120.

9.  Endorsements are great, but LinkedIn recommendations are still important. I recommend you get at least two recommendations, because LinkedIn now displays them very prominently and in full on your profile. This is especially important if you're a job seeker. Great recommendations will increase your credibility—and the more the better.

You should now be ready to impress readers of your profile with your specific skills and affirmation of those skills by LinkedIn members—and greater visibility and credibility is sure to lead to increased revenue.

 

SPECIAL OFFER

If you’d like help with developing a LinkedIn strategy that will catapult your business and career, take advantage of my limited time offer: a one-hour, one-on-one LinkedIn consultation for just $175 (50% off my regular fee). This offer also includes an in-depth critique of your profile.

I will share my computer screen with you during the call and send you a marked-up copy of your profile prior to the call.

There are limited spots available, so don't delay. Book your session today by clicking here.

The post Have You Taken Advantage of the Changes to LinkedIn Skills? appeared first on Wayne Breitbarth.

Here is a Really Easy Way to Spruce Up Your LinkedIn Profile

Media can be the great differentiator. It can take your LinkedIn profile from ho-hum to phenomenal—and compel viewers to contact you about your products and services, job opportunities, and more.

Screen Shot 2017-08-25 at 3.56.06 PMMy most recent LinkedIn User Survey showed that less than half of the respondents are taking advantage of this powerful profile feature. Don't tell anyone at LinkedIn that I said this, but I think it's so good that they could probably charge for it.

In a nutshell, prominently displaying media or links to media on your profile is an awesome way to share your professional brand with the whole world. And if you're part of the 52% of users who aren't taking advantage of this incredible feature, I doubt that's because you don't think it would be helpful and pretty cool but because you can't figure out how to do it or you don't know what you should share. So let me help you with both.


How do I add media to my profile?

You can add media to three sections on your LinkedIn profile—Summary, each Job Experience entry, and each Education entry—and it will be displayed at the bottom of the Screen Shot 2017-08-23 at 2.50.51 PMselected section. These entries not only add additional information about you, but they add a certain level of visual appeal and interest to your profile.

It's as simple as clicking the pencil icon for the section you want to add the media to and scrolling down to the Upload or Link button. Then cut and paste the link or upload the media file. For more detailed instructions, follow the steps outlined in the LinkedIn Help Center by clicking here.


What type of media should I share?

Like most of the information you share on your profile, it depends on your specific LinkedIn strategy. Here are some suggestions of what you might want to include, and I've categorized them by some pretty typical LinkedIn strategies.
.

Improving your overall branding and market presence
.

  • Screen Shot 2017-08-23 at 2.55.46 PMPictures, slide presentations, pdf files of some of your work samples
  • Articles or videos where you are mentioned
  • Certificates or awards you have received
  • Articles you have written or coauthored
  • Link to your personal blog or other social media pages
    .

Generating sales leads
.

  • Slide presentation of your company's capabilities, products and services offered, and markets you serve
  • Articles or videos of your products in action
  • Case studies or testimonials from your customers
  • Registration page for upcoming events
  • Link to sign up for your company newsletter or other free resources (ebook, tip sheets, white papers, etc.)
  • Link to your company's blog or other social media pages
    .

Finding a job
.

  • Upload of your resume (traditionally written or video)
  • Pdf upload of letters of recommendation
  • Video links or uploads of examples of your work
  • Detailed list of references
  • Personality test results or strengths-related information
  • Slide show summarizing your career or job experiences
    .

Helping your favorite nonprofit or school
.

  • Screen Shot 2017-08-23 at 2.56.11 PMVideos or articles that mention the organization
  • Links to register for upcoming events
  • Articles highlighting accomplishments of members, alumni or students
  • Uploads or links to examples of student projects
  • Link to sign up for the organization's mailings
  • Link to a form for updating alumni contact information

Now that you know how to add media and what types of media you should share, take a few minutes right now and add some media to your profile so I can not only read about your accomplishments and interests but I can also see them. Trust me—a few keystrokes can greatly enhance your professional image.

If you'd like me to show you other hard-to-find, "can't miss" LinkedIn features, help you formulate your personal LinkedIn strategy, plus provide an in-depth critique of your LinkedIn profile, sign up for a one-hour, one-on-one consultation with me for the significantly reduced rate of $175. (This is a limited-time offer.)

Book your personal session today at https://calendly.com/waynebreitbarth/special1on1linkedinconsult.

The post Here is a Really Easy Way to Spruce Up Your LinkedIn Profile appeared first on Wayne Breitbarth.

Do You Look Like an Expert on LinkedIn or Just a Bragger?

A few years back my mom said, I thought I taught you that bragging is not nice! I Screen Shot 2017-08-04 at 4.48.22 PMlooked at your LinkedIn thing, and you're tooting your horn all over the place.

Well, there definitely is a fine line between being real and authentic on your LinkedIn profile and appearing boastful or pretentious. However, it's extremely important to clearly show people why you are expert at what you do and share valuable information with your network.

As a guy who looks at probably a hundred profiles each week, I can definitively tell you that most people are not displaying and sharing enough information, and this puts them at a distinct disadvantage when someone is comparing them to others in the same or similar position.

.

Best ways to use LinkedIn to display and share your expertise

If you need to beef up your profile and boost your presence on LinkedIn, here are seven simple ways to accomplish that without getting scolded by your mom.

1.  Recommendations. It does take time to secure recommendations, but it will be worth the effort, because nothing is better than someone else saying you're the best. It will differentiate you from others when people are comparing you to your competitors, and you'll undoubtedly receive lots of positive comments about the quality of your recommendations—which should lead to new business.

2.  Skills and related endorsements. Even though this feature has caused a lot of confusion (and rightly so), it still has great value. You can display what you're expert at, and, if done correctly, it will help you get to the top of the list when people are looking for your products, services, and expertise.

Screen Shot 2017-08-01 at 10.19.58 AM3.  Adding media (available in the Summary, Experience and Education sections of your profile). These are great places to display or link to documents (Word, Excel and pdf), video, Power Point presentations, blog entries, and photos that allow the readers to see for themselves the depth of your expertise.

4. Separate job experience entry for industry leadership position. If you hold or have held an office or position in an industry related association or organization, highlight that fact by adding an additional current or past job experience entry to your profile. Share specific details about your responsibilities. Also, if you're a speaker at your association's events or a contributor to their newsletter or blog, share that as well.

Screen Shot 2017-08-01 at 10.21.43 AM5.  Accomplishments profile sections. Don't be bashful about adding these special profile sections and including details related to each entry. Remember—you're the only one who is going to tell your story. Also, if you don't list any accomplishments on your profile, people may assume you don't have any accomplishments!

6.  Individual status updates. Because everyone in your network will not receive or read every status update you post, share your best resources regularly. This also gives Screen Shot 2017-08-01 at 10.24.10 AMpeople who are new to your network an opportunity to see your best stuff.

7.  Publish an article. This is the newest way to share your thought leadership. It's like having your own blog, and your network is notified whenever you post an article. And because it stays on your profile, people will see your expertise on display whenever they visit your profile.

Don't let your competitors get an advantage over you on LinkedIn. Be real and authentic as you proudly display who you are and what you have to offer—and hopefully your mom will say, That's my awesome kid!

The post Do You Look Like an Expert on LinkedIn or Just a Bragger? appeared first on Wayne Breitbarth.

Are You Still Confused by LinkedIn Skills and Endorsements?

Happy 5th birthday, LinkedIn Skills!

Birthday cakeYes, it has been five years since LinkedIn Skills appeared on your profile and probably caused a bit of confusion for you. Then a few years later the confusion ramped up when endorsements started showing up alongside your skills. And because LinkedIn started asking its members to endorse their connections, people began endorsing others for everything and anything—even skills we never added to our profile.

And just when most of us started to understand and take control of this profile section, LinkedIn gave us a five-year "birthday present" as part of the new desktop layout—an updated profile section titled Featured Skills & Endorsements and what they call "skill endorsements." And I thought birthday parties were supposed to be fun!
.

How to optimize your Featured Skills & Endorsements profile section

Let's raise the fun factor just a bit with these nine facts and tips to maximize your use of this new profile section.

1.  You can only receive endorsements from 1st level connections and for skills you have acknowledged you possess. If you receive Screen Shot 2017-05-10 at 2.31.40 PMa pending endorsement notification from LinkedIn saying, John Jones wants to endorse you for basket weaving, don't say yes if you aren't a good basket weaver or don't want basket weaving listed as a skill in your Featured Skills & Endorsements section.

2.  You can manage them to a certain extent. Scroll down to the Featured Skills & Endorsements section of your profile, and then you can:
.

  • Add any skills that show what you're good at from a professional standpoint. If your job duties include sales, add keywords that relate to the products and services you sell. After you click Add a new skill, type a skill in the box. LinkedIn will then give you suggestions based on the words you put in the box. If those suggestions are part of your skill set, be sure to add them to your list of skills.
    .
  • Screen Shot 2017-05-10 at 2.33.26 PMDelete a skill. Click the pencil icon in the top right corner. Then click the "X" to the left of the skill you want to delete, and it's gone—along with any endorsements of that skill, of course.
    .
  • Reorder your skills so your most important ones are near the top. These are your best keywords, and they'll improve your search ranking. Put them in the order you prefer, from most important to least important, by clicking the pencil icon and then holding down and dragging the four-line icon to the right of the skill you want to reorder.
    .
    Then your connections will be encouraged to tick off endorsements for the skills you think are important, and within a short period of time they'll be the most endorsed skills on your profile. This will help you get closer to the top of a search for those critical skills.
    .
    The reordering process is especially important now because only the first three skills (LinkedIn refers to them as "featured") and the related endorsements show up until the reader clicks View XX more.
    .
  • Choose (1) whether or not you want to be endorsed, (2) whether you want LinkedIn to suggest endorsements to your connections, and (3) whether you want suggestions for endorsing your connections. Click Adjust endorsement settings on the bottom of the page to revise your settings.

3.  You can be endorsed for up to 50 skills. These skills are essentially keywords, and LinkedIn and other search engines love keywords; so I would use all 50 slots if I were you.

4.  You don't have to endorse everyone who endorses you. If you want to endorse them, go ahead, but don't feel obligated to do so.

5.  I'm pretty sure endorsements and the skills they attach to are part of the LinkedIn search algorithm. LinkedIn doesn't publicize its algorithm, but my guess is that skills are an important part of it, because LinkedIn doesn't invest this much time and effort into something that isn't going to help their top line revenue. They are making a lot of money on their Recruiting Solutions, and they obviously think this feature helps them deliver the "best" candidate for a certain skill ("best" meaning most endorsed).

6.  List skills that are important and consistent with your current or future business strategy. Because your skills that receive the most endorsements will be at the top of the list—and most people will probably only look at the first few skills—you want them to be your most important skills. If you list extraneous skills, you may get a lot of endorsements for them, and then no one will even notice your most important skills that are now further down on the list.

7.  You might get someone's attention if you endorse him/her. Your face and name will appear on the person's profile, and LinkedIn also sends the person a message saying you just endorsed him/her.

8.  Endorsements may be the differentiator. If two profiles look similar in all respects but one has 120 endorsements for the skill you're looking for and the other has only 20, you may be inclined to choose the person with 120.

9.  Endorsements are great, but LinkedIn recommendations are still important. I recommend you get at least two recommendations on your profile. This is especially important if you're a job seeker. Great recommendations will increase your credibility—and the more the better.

You should now be ready to impress readers of your profile with your specific skills and affirmation of those skills by LinkedIn members.

If you'd like more information about this topic, check out LinkedIn's complete discussion in the LinkedIn Help Center by clicking here.

The post Are You Still Confused by LinkedIn Skills and Endorsements? appeared first on Wayne Breitbarth.

How to Discover if You’re Really a LinkedIn All-Star

A pin being used to pop a green balloonCongratulations! You're an All-Star.

If you received this message from LinkedIn, well, I hate to burst your balloon, but an All-Star profile rating has very little to do with how successful you'll be on LinkedIn. And because of the significant profile changes that are part of the new desktop redesign, you need to rethink many of the profile strategies that have worked in the past.
.


Be sure to check out my special, limited time offer below for 50% off a one-hour LinkedIn consultation that includes an in-depth profile critique.
.


In my opinion, to have a truly exceptional LinkedIn profile that will help you accomplish your most ambitious business goals, you need to embrace these two important strategies:
.

  • Capitalize on the LinkedIn search algorithm in order to come up higher in the search results
    .
  • Provide a very clear description of what you do, who you help, and why you are better than your competition

Each and every entry you make on your profile should be made with those two strategies in mind.


Simple ways to create an extraordinary LinkedIn profile

When I work with my individual and corporate clients to create LinkedIn profiles that get results, I focus on the following features and techniques:

Keywords. Include your most important keywords throughout your profile but especially in these three sections: Headline, Job Experience Titles, and Skills. This will significantly improve your placement in search results.

Headline. Make sure your Headline grabs your reader's attention and encourages him/her to read more.

First Job Experience entry. With the new profile layout, your first Current Job Experience entry is completely visible and doesn't require the reader to click See Description to view the details. This is your opportunity to make sure the reader gets a full picture of what you and your company do, the types of clients or customers you serve, and what makes you better than your competitors. Only the job title and company name are visible for all other Job Experience entries.

There are 2,000 available characters for each Job Experience entry, and you can also add media. So don't hesitate to "show and tell" the world why you're the best at what you do.

Other Job Experience entries. With the new profile layout, all the details of your other Job Experience entries are hidden, requiring the reader to click See Description to view any of the details you've outlined. Therefore, I highly recommend that you expand your Job Title entries. Screen Shot 2017-04-27 at 8.13.40 AMThere is a 100-character limit, but that's ample space to give the reader a preview of what specific things you did in each job.

As an added bonus, any words you add to your Job Experience titles seem to have increased weighting in the search algorithm, thereby helping you move up on the list while improving the clarity of your story.

Recommendations. Two recommendations are given a very prominent position on your new profile, so work hard on getting a couple that really highlight your strengths and differentiate you from your competitors.

Remember—this is the only part of your profile that other people contribute, and readers will appreciate hearing about you and the great work you do from the perspective of others.

Screen Shot 2017-03-23 at 4.07.18 PMAccomplishments. This one is simple—if you don't have anything listed in your Accomplishments sections, it looks like you didn't accomplish anything.

Subsections of the Accomplishments section include Honors and Awards, Test Scores, Publications, Projects, Certifications, Organizations, Languages, Courses, and Patents. Include any appropriate subsections and provide details that will inform readers of your unique and important accomplishments.

Contact Info. Add business-related contact information if you feel it's important for Screen Shot 2017-04-27 at 8.18.12 AMreaders to get ahold of you without sending you a LinkedIn connection request. I recommend you include contact information in the beginning of your Summary and in your current Job Experience entry.

Once you complete these specific steps, I'm confident you'll stand out from the other players on the field, and you may just earn a spot on the real all-star team—the team that gets all the new business, secures the perfect jobs, and has the most effective relationships. Good luck!

Special Offer

If you'd like me to provide a detailed critique of your profile and help you develop a winning LinkedIn strategy, be sure to take advantage of my May special offer: A one-hour, one-on-one consultation for just $175 (50% off my regular fee).

This consultation will take place on the phone, and I will share my computer screen with you. There are limited spots available, so don't delay. Book yours today by clicking here.

The post How to Discover if You’re Really a LinkedIn All-Star appeared first on Wayne Breitbarth.