Today's LinkedIn Nugget

How well do you stand out?

spotlightTo a stranger you are a blank stage, a blank canvas, a blank screen, a blank page.

It’s up to you to fill in the void.

You must make magic and transport the observer, jaded and skeptical, to a better place.

It’s your words, action, sound, art. It’s your experience and skills, learned along the way.

Your past makes your present.

Your presence (not a typo) has to incline the observer to invest in you and also him/herself, so much to gamble on you and later after the first interaction, enough to want to make you a part of their future. Or at least consider you among a short list of other competitors for it.

Bask in the spotlight for that fleeting moment. Make it last long enough for the reader of your LinkedIn profile to contact you to know more. or a competitor will soon eclipse your spotlight.

 

Today's LinkedIn Nugget

A-B testing (sometimes it takes getting to all the way to Q)

roadsigntestA-B testing is a marketing term that entails using different messages and testing the reaction to each, in  clicks, laughs, purchases, etc., based on the version the measured test audience seems to prefer.

More elegantly and generally, it is defined by Wikipedia:

A/B testing (bucket tests or split-run testing) is a randomized experiment with two variants, A and B. It includes application of statistical hypothesis testing or “two-sample hypothesis testing” as used in the field of statistics. A/B testing is a way to compare two versions of a single variable, typically by testing a subject’s response to variant A against variant B, and determining which of the two variants is more effective.

So returning to brand marketing, and at the risk of dismaying my statistics friends, you may have 2 versions of a product/service, a commercial message, a LinkedIn profile (you knew that was coming) that you want to run and absorb reactions.

Turning to LinkedIn, once you are finished renovating your LinkedIn profile, and it’s time for the “big reveal” ask for comments, criticism, inquire if you left anything out.

Run it again as a test. Sometimes we are travelling too fast to pay attention so you may want to ask again.

Sometimes it takes more than one test. Sometimes it takes dozens.

Test. Test again.

This sign was seen on the side of a highway for three straight weeks. Perhaps the highway department intended us to notice, but very soon we won’t. Not even a whimper.

Be visibly interested in the reaction you receive. Be consultative to test and be your best.

Today's LinkedIn Nugget

Greetings tell a lot…be better than others

telephone-3840285_1920I called my 2 Senators and Congressman Sunday. Not that I expected to reach them, but to leave a voice mail on a subject I felt strongly enough about that I wanted them to hear from me in my own voice.

Full disclosure: I like them all. I voted for them all. They represent my opinions and ideals.

But what struck me was how I was received….electronically.

One has a standard electronic (robotic) “Leave a message for Representative { }.” So I did.

The next had a young female voice greeting me and asking me to leave a message. I did.

The third had his recorded voice welcoming and asking me to leave him a message, my name and phone number so they could follow-up. I did and told them not to call me back, as that was not required.

As I reflect back on the three messages I left, the best one of the three was the one I left for the Senator’s recorded voice.

He was being himself. Perhaps subliminally I was thinking I was speaking directly to him, instead of to a junior staffer, or an answering service, as in the cases of the other two.

Flip this on its ear (I know, a bad pun): a reader of your LinkedIn profile will engage with you so much more personally, more professionally, respect you more when your profile is individualized, in your own words, in your timbre, in your authentic voice, as you express your “why.”

End with a call to action: “Call me.”

Don’t be flat; be a brand marketing version of yourself on LinkedIn. I’ve said it before, no one dances with wallflowers.

Today's LinkedIn Nugget

Starting: “Back to #LinkedIn Basics” every Tuesday

balckboard_successI’m starting a new “Back to Basics” tip every Tuesday for the foreseeable future. These come from FAQs at my open mic sessions or SOS emails I receive. Feel free to suggest questions you would like me to answer in subsequent Tuesdays!

One question I get is why, and then how, to shorten your LinkedIn URL.

First, when you signed up for LinkedIn you were assigned a specific URL to identify your LinkedIn page. Like much of your earliest profile page, it was rough and needed additons and refinement.

Perhaps you still are seeing your LinkedIn public profile URL as something like

linkedin.com/in/marc-halpert-0a077414

with letters and numbers after it (not a real link or mine).

Yes, it works but wouldn’t you rather show that you care enough to refine your profile and similarly, to put your best foot forward and show your profile URL with just your name (no letters or numbers)?

There’s nor guarantee you will get “linkedin.com/in/john-jones” if another JOhn JOnes already claimed it. One to a customer. So get going and capture your name at the end of the URL. Here’s how.

Then use it (and where it’s important to look your best):

  • in the signature lines on your emails
  • added to your next set of business cards
  • on your resume/CV/speaker bio
  • on every PowerPoint you show (and slide handouts!) and/or
  • on all other marketing pieces you create.

When a reader or attendee clicks this link, they see you telling your career story in the best and latest version possible. Now you’re making this basic task help brand you better for future success! I don’t think you need another reason why!

Today's LinkedIn Nugget

The texture of change

canvasI create a lot of slide decks in my work. I try to mix them up: different backgrounds, fonts, illustrative graphics, etc., yet they all ultimately tell the same story. You know my spiel…

But recently I was challenged to address a couple of all new audiences, yet still convey the same “get on the stick” LinkedIn message:

  1. female political candidates and
  2. performing artists.

1. I’ve already presented to an all-female audience at the national Women in Auto Care conference. Then, as is the case this time, some adaptations to my usual core slide deck have to be made. Certainly some of the graphics need either a gender change, slides reshuffled due to a shortened period for me to speak, or perhaps it just takes a complete overhaul. That part’s fun. You just need to know what to say and what to leave out, given the time allotted. Luckily I do.

Take this comment as me speaking honestly: I believe from my courses that women are more visual learners than men. That said, the female group will get more emphasis on multimedia, including video, both “native” and scened.

Following rules a master presenter taught me a long time ago: a) always customize to the audience, b) realize there are sub-audiences too, c) see rule a. I love knowing I can shake it up and simultaneously freshen my commentary on freshened slides. It makes me a better trainer to engage my attendees.

2. I spoke to an arts guild, a long time ago. That class was off-the-routine-session, more abstract (excuse the adjective). So the upcoming class for performing artists will be best delivered as a pure “ask me anything LinkedIn” session, unscripted, all Q&A, and free-form. They’ll run the show. I’ll just be there to interpret and pontificate.

I’ve offered these “open mic” sessions a few times, most recently at the NY Public Library, where it was very well received; you can see it here. It’s actually fun, for them and for me, yet it takes a lot more energy from me and I leave exhausted knowing I gave them everything I have. The questions are on point, the follow-up comments are amazing. Curiosity abounds and it makes me answer in ways that rise to the top.

Indeed I like to start with a fresh canvas, or at least better paint the images the attendees will cling to for their future. It makes me better too.

How do you customize your work to your audience(s)?

 

Today's LinkedIn Nugget

Guest Blog Post: Anthony Lofrisco

guest blogAnthony provides his “read” on some new information that can help us all. His role as owner of an accomplished digital marketing agency, coupled with his years of experience in SEO and internet marketing, make this post titled “Battle of the Social Networks – Facebook vs. LinkedIn advertising” especially pertinent reading! Thanks, Anthony, for contributing your viewpoint.

If you’re an agency or marketer on top of trends in digital marketing, you’ll know all about Facebook’s coolest new advertising tactics including retargeting, video advertising and the latest, Facebook Live which allows for live online video streaming. Here at AdEdge Digital Marketing, we have seen Facebook advertising outperform LinkedIn, both on cost and clickthrough rates over the last few years.

But LinkedIn has just arrived at the party with a very promising new targeting tactic for B2Bs. It’s called LinkedIn Profile Targeting and it actually happens on Microsoft Bing’s Paid Search platform, not LinkedIn. Thank Microsoft who owns both companies. LinkedIn Profile Targeting combines the benefits of Bing paid search with the relevance of LinkedIn targeting that includes selections for industry, company size, professional title, group affiliations and more.

This new tactic can be especially effective for those who are promoting services that appeal to both consumers and B2Bs. For example, let’s say you offer cloud-based storage solutions for large enterprises. You may want to run a campaign on Google Ads and Bing for search terms like “Cloud Storage”, “Cloud Computing” and “Cloud Backup”. Sounds reasonable, right? The problem is, large enterprises aren’t the only organizations using and searching for cloud-based storage solutions. In fact, Google, Amazon and a host of others offer cloud storage for consumers and small businesses. Running such terms, most clicks to your ads are likely to come from consumers and others who are not in your sweet spot and those clicks are wasted dollars.

With LinkedIn Profile Targeting, you can now filter search results such that your ads are presented only to those who fit your LinkedIn profile targets. For example, you can select users who are employees of fortune 1000 companies and up, employees in the insurance industry, individuals with data, programmer, networking or other target terms in their title and/or by their title level such as Director or VP. While you may be concerned that you are reaching only a small fraction of users, those users you are reaching meet your targeting requirements exactly. They are in the market now for a solution, they are employed at a company that can use your solution, they are in a role involving data and based on their title level, they are in a position to recommend and/or decide to engage with your company.

Like all digital marketing, your industry, goals, audience and sales cycle all play a very important role in determining which channels of marketing you should pursue and which targeting tactics you should utilize within.

__________________________________

lofriscoAnthony LoFrisco Jr has enjoyed a 25+ year career in marketing serving a wide range of industries from startups to Fortune 500 companies including Time, Inc. Anthony has led his firm AdEdge to earn advanced certifications and win multiple awards from Google, the BBB and in 2018, the US Search Awards prestigious Best Small Digital Agency. He maintains the agency’s mission to drive fully transparent, cutting edge, cost-effective digital marketing performance for small- and medium-sized companies. 

If you’d like some insights on how to reach your targeted audience with the most effective forms of digital marketing, contact him at anthony@adedgemarketing.com or 203-682-4585.

 

Today's LinkedIn Nugget

Appalling to appealing, a process

startupofyouThe artist’s process: each visual image starts up either from scratch (as in a sketch) or from a collage/hodgepodge (as in most people’s LinkedIn profiles).

Said another way, the visual transformation from a fuzzy caterpillar to a Monarch butterfly is one of time and maturation, from ugly to glorious, from monochrome to brilliant.

If you have ever renovated a part of your house, the “before” is bad, the “during” is worse, and the “after” makes it all worthwhile. Mastering  the process from start to end is the contractor’s art, the evolution to the best visual and functionality that  can be achieved from the plan, or if you are in one of the intangible, intellectual professions, the best you can provide in the area you practice.

I always say that a LinkedIn profile renovation is not a science, but an art, achieved by my client personally expressing “why me” with a little guidance from the coach. OK, some need more coaching than others, but that’s part of my development too. I am still morphing my customization skills to coach and train as well.

If you want a great book about the development process we are all in, pick up the book in the illustration. I listen to it in the car often.

You should absorb its wisdom at least once.

 

Today's LinkedIn Nugget

Squeezing it all in on the run

accessory black and white close up eyeglasses
Photo by Johnny Mckane on Pexels.com

Never rush through a LinkedIn profile renovation.

You will embarrass yourself: typos, bad grammar, incomplete thoughts, unparallel formats, etc.

Don’t think you can eke out a few minutes to do something well with your LinkedIn branding.

Those changes take introspection, forethought, planning, testing and implementation. Just typing those words takes more time than most people give to making a lasting, indelible change to their profile and their brand.

A goof here, a miss there, and you slash a hole in your veneer. Don’t run with scissors.

Be deliberate and use the time you need to make the change(s). You can do it. Just find enough quiet time.

Today's LinkedIn Nugget

My friend, welcome to multipreneurship

multipreneur1My mailbox held a single envelope, from a friend with a new business name and return address.

I needed to know what changed, as we know many people in common with her and hadn’t caught any winds of her changing her work from the entourage we share. And I wanted to help.

I called to congratulate, as email is not the right medium, and asked if she was indeed opening a dual business, which she was.

Then our conversation went to the specific area of her field she was starting the new business, why it aligns her interests and strengths, and I then offered my observations on how to characterize these dual pursuits on LinkedIn to readers. I can do that; I am also a multipreneur, as she has now become. I blogged on this topic most recently here. {BTW, that is not her business sign.}

I offered to introduce her to several influencers in my world who could be instrumental in catapulting her in to their worlds, and then she reciprocated with some of her trusted advisors for me to meet, and an invitation to a new master mind group.

One letter, one call, many upsides between good business and personal friends. Respect and help. Multipreneurship rocks. So does giving without expecting to receive. 

Today's LinkedIn Nugget

It’s not a story unless someone is listening

mystoryAre you the proverbial tree falling in a forest, feeling there is no one present to experience, feel, or hear your impact?

How do you appear on the internet? Have you googled yourself recently? Most likely when someone googles you to find out more about you, your LinkedIn public profile is the first, or among the top, search results. That’s a good thing!

Why do you shortsheet yourself, then, on LinkedIn? Why can’t your profile be better?

Shouldn’t you portray the very best story about your career path: explaining why you do what you do, so the reader “gets” you right away? Composing one well puts you out there first, telling your own story, since no one tells it better than you!

So, make that story rich, compelling, enjoyable to read, in first person, with power verbs, telling your past leads to your present and where your future is. Make them want to listen. be an excellent, no be better…be an A+ candidate.

Do it now.

Before someone comes to read your story and contact you.

Now’s a good time.

When bored, for lack of a cohesive career story, they leave your profile and never come back. And you will never know the opportunity you lost for lack of a story they want to listen to, and go beyond to contact you to qualify you for the assignment.

See why I said now?