Episode 168: You’re Just 11 Items Away from a Great LinkedIn Profile
In just a few steps, our resident hosts Brynne and Bob will help you create a value-centric profile for your buyers! If you are in sales, whether you’re leveraging social selling or not, your LinkedIn profile is foundational for anything you do in your job. This is because everything you do on that platform is designed to direct people to your LinkedIn profile.
So tune in on this episode and listen closely as you’ll be walked through exactly “what” you need to update on your LinkedIn profile and “how” to do each one—you won’t be left guessing anything.
Bob Woods 00:00
Hey everyone, and welcome to Making Sales Social Live! Brought to you by Social Sales Link. I’m Bob Woods and I’m joined by fellow LinkedIn and Social Selling Pro, Brynne Tillman. Brynne, How’re you doing today?
Brynne Tillman 00:14
How are you? I’m excited to be here. This is such a fun topic.
Bob Woods 00:18
This is such a fun topic.
Welcome to Making Sales Social Live! As we share LinkedIn, and social selling training strategies and tips that will have an immediate impact on your business. Join Brynne Tillman, and me Bob Woods every week, Making Sales Social Live!
Bob Woods 00:38
For those who are in sales, whether you’re a social selling practitioner or not, your LinkedIn profile is foundational for anything you do in your job. Now, that’s a strong statement but it’s borne out by this simple analogy. Imagine you have a house, and you don’t build it with a strong foundation, what’s going to happen to the house, whether it’s a slab or whether it’s a full basement, that house is going to fall down.
In this analogy, your LinkedIn profile is your foundation, it’s the foundation for everything that you do on LinkedIn, because everything you do on LinkedIn, is designed to push people to your profile. So if you want to attract, teach, engage your buyers, it’s time to convert your profile from a resume to a resource.
And before we get started with doing that, let’s talk really quick about our ebook. Speaking of resources, it’s at socialsaleslink.com/profilechecklist, all one word, socialsaleslink.com/profilechecklist, that’s a checklist that you can download, you can read or you can do it to follow along.
Brynne Tillman 02:02
I’m very excited, because, you know, we’ve been talking about for over a decade now, about converting your profile from a resume to a resource. And that’s what we call the “Value centric profile” And the reason that this is so important, if you’re in a business development role is if your buyers get to your profile, and they show up, and it’s your resume, they don’t care that you are the best negotiator, or that you’ve hit President’s Club three years in a row. In fact, that could be a deterrent, because they’re afraid they’re going to get sold.
So when we create this resource positioned profile, we’re actually rather than telling them how we help them, we’re actually going to help them. They’re going to experience us right from our profile and this is why I believe that this is so exciting and we need to make sure that everyone is positioned well.
Just a caveat. If you’re in a career seeking role, if you’re looking for a job, this is not for you. This is definitely if you are in a business development and sales role. So Bob, what’s our first one?
Bob Woods 03:15
Actually, just two quick things. One, remember, it’s not about you, it’s about them when it comes to your profile. Number two, I have heard of people who have gotten hired from value center profiles, because they built their profiles in such a way that the potential… they attracted.
Brynne Tillman 03:38
would say, though, that would be a salesperson who got hired. If you are in any other role, you have to make sure that you are following the job seeking, like what the robots, right, what they are looking for, and all the other things. Let’s jump in, jump into number one.
Bob Woods 03:57
Yep, and that’s the background banner. With background batters, you know, we’re all highly highly visual creatures. So you need to convey your brand’s message through that background banner and there are just so many different ways that you could do that. I mean, you can click around to LinkedIn banners all day long and get all kinds of ideas from that because people have just so many different interpretations of that.
Brynne Tillman 04:23
So what are some things you’ve seen?
Bob Woods 04:24
You know, it goes from everything from a simple background of the city, that they’re in with a logo there to like, if they have like a production line, for example. It’s like that with the logo. It speaks highly visually to what it is that they do, essentially and because people do so many different things, it’s mind blowing, what you could potentially do with that.
Brynne Tillman 04:52
Some of the things that I’ve seen, which I think are incredible, and we know we do a little bit of this, is If you have an event that’s coming up, you can use that as a billboard. This is an opportunity. If you have an e-book that you want people to download, of course, there are other places on your profile that you can link to but this is your billboard and so there’s a great opportunity with calls to action at the right time.
So I love that. And I don’t switch mine out enough, but when I do, when I do, I get like traffic. And remember your headline, especially if you’re in creator mode, means your banner is going to follow you people will see that visual. So also make sure you don’t have too many words, because it does get small, and it’s pretty easy to read.
Bob Woods 05:44
Right! Exactly, exactly. Second one is a profile picture, just real quick. Before we do that, we have a couple people ask about the web address for the ebook, socialsaleslink.com/profilechecklist, all one word, socialsaleslink.com/profilechecklist
Brynne Tillman 06:04
Ah, and I will keep putting it back in because I look at chat and then I take out the Link
Bob Woods 06:13
It’s a little clumsy on our end sometimes folks, sorry about that. So next, let’s get to the profile picture. So you know, the statistics are out there. members who have a photo on their profile, get 21 times more profile views than someone without and they also get nine times more connection requests. These aren’t percentages, this is like 21 times and nine times. So you absolutely need to represent yourself with a photo, no doubt about it.
Brynne Tillman 06:44
So just a couple of things on this, you may not know what your settings are on your photo, if you go to your public settings on the right hand side and scroll down. There are times that people have first degree connections only can see their photo, which is going to really reduce to Bob’s point, the people that are not connected to you that you come up in a list and they want to look they’re going to skip over you without that profile photo, even though you have one. So you want to make sure that that toggle is public to all and then people even when they’re Googling you, your picture can come up and if you have a common name that makes it really easy for people to find you as well.
Bob Woods 07:27
Absolutely! So let’s go ahead and move on to the headline. So the headline, which is now 220 characters, sometimes people still don’t know that it used to be 120 characters, LinkedIn, thankfully expanded it to 220 characters. It’s one of the most valuable places in your profile simply because it grabs people’s attention and if it is properly constructed, one should encourage them to start scrolling down and discovering more about who you are, what it is you can do for them in your profile.
Brynne Tillman 07:58
Yeah. And really, there’s a few things that we want to include. It’s a little bit formulaic, and it doesn’t have to be in this order but if you know, well, let me just back out for a second. The goal of this headline is to get people to be curious enough to keep reading, connect enough to keep reading. So let’s take a look at the elements that make a headline work for you If you’re in sales.
Number one, who you help, they need to resonate with it, then you say, “Oh, they work with people like me.” right? So who you help, how you help them. For example, it might be like transforming the way sales professionals go to market through LinkedIn and Sales Navigator training, right? Who do we help? -Sales professionals. How do we help them? -We help them go to market. How do we do that? -With LinkedIn. Maybe it has a competitive edge when they go to market, right?
So you want it to be compelling enough and then how do we do that? Through LinkedIn and social selling training. If you have enough space because you are limited to the to 220 you can talk about what you do, we can say membership elearning profile development if you have enough there.
So who you help, how you help them, you can even have the results you bring, so and what you do. So take a look at your profile and make sure that headline is working for you.
Bob Woods 09:24
Next item on the agenda is the About Section. This is another huge one. This is 2600 characters of just absolute gold that you could use. This is where you really start proving that you are the person who can solve their problems but you’re not doing it in a salesy way you’re doing it by bringing value, by teaching them rather than you know, saying “here’s how we can help” help them.
Brynne Tillman 09:54
Yeah, so you know, often we think the About Section is our passion, our Mission, our years in business. We can push that down into our experience. That’s where that goes. So we talk about this being value centric, to Bob’s point like, this is that opportunity right here to do that. So what goes into a successful About Section? Number one, you need to resonate with them, and do that in a way that gets them continuing that curiosity. So that first line is something that you know, what is the challenge to your buyers? So talk about that in a line or two about what your buyers are facing right now because now they’re gonna go, “They get me, oh, my gosh, like, that’s exactly where I am, or that’s exactly my problem.”
And then after that, give them some vendor agnostic insights, that means it’s not how you fix that challenge. It’s what they need to do to fix that challenge, right, and they go, “Oh, I need that, oh, I want that.” And that’s how we are in the right to then ask for a conversation. You know, and actually, we can have a line or two after we’ve provided them value in it, what success looks like.
And then a call to action, “If you’re exploring more efficient ways to do X, let’s chat whether or not we decide to work together, I’m confident a call will bring insights and value, you know, on X topic, you can email me or here’s the link to schedule, 15 minutes.” Something like that, at the end of the day, they get to experience you and if you do a really good job on challenge and insights, you’re going to earn the right to get those conversations.
Bob Woods 11:39
100% 100%. Next is what we call the scroll stopper. And this is because it’s a very visual section but yet, it’s a great way to provide that value added educational material and a lot of people don’t even know that this section exists. So whenever I’m doing LinkedIn profiles, and I set one up for them, people are just amazed that this is even there and they don’t even realize it. It’s the featured section.
So with the featured section, you know, you can put so many visual types of things in there that have an accompanying graphic for it. And what this happens is it builds, as you put in more items, it builds kinda sort of like a carousel right in the middle of your profile. So with that information, we call it a scroll stopper, because people will just naturally stop to see this stuff because it’s, like I said, it’s graphical content. Imagine if you’re scrolling down a page as much text, and there’s graphics, all of a sudden, the pop up, you stopped to read them. It’s pretty simple.
So with this information, it’s got to be educational, though, in design, it can’t be your latest sales sheet on something because people are going to feel like they’re being sold, you have to have educational content there.
Brynne Tillman 13:00
That featured section is so important and I agree it does need to be educational. Look at it as ebooks, you know, videos, and you can connect your posts. If you have a post that’s doing exceptionally well, highlight that there, you’ll continue to bring traffic to that. And look at this, as you know, it’s not a permanent, you know, rotated out, put out what’s most useful, just do the litmus test, is this piece promoting me? Or is it bringing value, if it’s bringing value it belongs in the featured section.
Bob Woods 13:32
That’s a great way to put it. The next section that we’re talking about is the Experience Section. So again, this is a little different. This is slightly different from what most people do, but yet it will show your experience. but it doesn’t have to be you know, like the typical list of responsibilities. You can talk about how you help your clients, what value do you bring to your clients? How do you make a difference in their lives, in their professional lives? Whatever it is you do and that’s like the quintessential part of a really, really good profile section, because you do that with your current position.
Brynne Tillman 14:11
Yeah, absolutely! And so your experience, you know, let’s think about the experience of your reader. What do they care about? Your story, especially if you’re an entrepreneur, you know, they want to know, why are you where you are, but even if you’re in a sales role, why did you pick this company? Why did you pick, you know, to work here? And that’s a big deal, right? Like, that’s where people will connect with you. Why does this industry matter to you? We often work with financial professionals, bankers.
They could have gone to any bank in the whole world. Why this one? They could have chosen any really any sales role. I mean, a commercial banker in a sense, you’re in service, but sales, why did you choose this and why is this your career path? Is it the impact you’re making on your community? You want to touch a little bit of those heartstrings in the experience, which is, again, pretty different from a resume. It’s really about them experiencing you and getting to know you a little bit.
Bob Woods 15:16
Absolutely. Next we’re going to talk about a little hack, and I do firmly and totally put hack in air quotes, you’re not really hacking anything, don’t worry about that. The experience hack, sometimes people use this feature within LinkedIn that lets them show the progression that they’ve made within a company, if they start in the proverbial mailroom, then they’ve become an assistant salesperson, salesperson, sales manager, VP of sales, they can chart that throughout, within one position. within LinkedIn, we’ve hacked again, air quotes, hacked that idea, so that you can proudly display your deliverables or solutions that you provide.
So this is where you get to say, hey, here’s what I sell, essentially and if it’s just one thing, that’s fine, if you sell one thing into different types of verticals, you can actually list the verticals there. If you have several different products or solutions, you can go ahead and just list those down there as well, it’s a really great way to take advantage of something that was meant for something a little different, but yet bring it over to what it is you do so that you know, you obviously have to talk about what you sell at some point, right? So this is the place where you can actually do that
Brynne Tillman 16:30
Right. In the experience. There is another place that’s new that we didn’t talk about also, which is the Providing Services is the only other place right where there are two.. that will talk about that at the end, because there’s two bonuses, I think providing services is one of them. But I agree with you so much because this is such a great opportunity to highlight your deliverables and what your solutions are and I would still soften it … definitely talk about that solution. This is an opportunity to tell folks how you can help them and what they could buy from you but also talk about the value of it right? Look at this piece as a marketing page, right? Where you’re talking about what people are getting from this, and I may even recommend getting a quote at the bottom of each of those deliverables from one of your testimonials or recommendations on LinkedIn.
Bob Woods 17:27
Yeah, Yes, true. And we’re gonna go out of order just a little bit really quick and talk about Recommendations, because that’s actually a big piece as well. So you want to be not only giving testimonials, but obviously you want to be receiving them as well. So, you know, basically just involves reaching out to people having a conversation and you know, and then either depending on which one I do, either asking for the recommendation, or you know, giving someone a recommendation, both either way is great. People do look at recommendations and one thing about recommendations is that it gives you social proof that you can actually do what it is that you do.
Brynne Tillman 18:11
Yeah, it absolutely does and when people are vetting you, that’s a really good place for you to shine, right? When they look at the go, “Oh was 19 people say he’s really good at this, he must be” It can also help reduce the sales cycle. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had larger corporations say, “Alright, we’re ready to go but we need to speak with three people first that used you.” And that can just elongate that sales process in such an ugly way but if you say “Hey, great, happy to do that. Go look at my LinkedIn recommendations. If there’s anyone you’d like an introduction to let me know and I’ll make that happen.” And if you have enough recommendations, you don’t need to talk with them, they know that they’ll say the same thing. So I think that’s really important. And Bob, you touched on something that is so vital, and you went right by it. I’m gonna come back.
Bob Woods 19:03
Just come back because I’m back to it.
Yeah, giving other people recommendations. Like that’s a brilliant thing, Bob, it really is. Why do we want to do that? Well, of course we want to give. If someone does something really well, if you know, they’re our vendor, it’s the right thing to do. So vital. And you went right by it. I’m going to come back.
Giving other people recommendations. Like that’s a brilliant thing, Bob, it really is. However, what if we recommended our clients? Now you might say, “Well, why would I do that?” But let’s say Bob is my client and he is a great student, the best I’ve ever had and everything that we’ve done has been great and successful for him and I write him a recommendation and I say, “Bob, you are a joy to work with. I Love our coaching, right? Like all these things. And I’m so glad that we’ve been able to get you from here to here and you just sort.”
So I make him look good and how fast he learns and how brilliant he is and creative, and all those things but I also now have real estate on his profile. So when people are looking at him, they’ll see that he worked with me. So it’s a double win.
Bob Woods 20:25
Yep. And then in that ebook, we also talked about, I’m just gonna let y’all read about the importance of education skills, and actually on how to get symbols into your profile too to get all of those and of course, everything else that we’ve talked about socialsaleslink.com/profilechecklist, Brynne?
Brynne Tillman 20:43
I have two bonuses. One, we touched on, which was Providing Services, this is relatively new and this is a big deal, people can actually ask for quotes from you. So that’s at the top of the fold in a little gray box. You want to make sure you check that out. And the other thing is the 30 second Profile Video, that when folks get to your profile, you have 30 seconds to connect with them as a human being. So make sure you’re leveraging that.
Bob Woods 21:13
Absolutely! So let’s go ahead and we’re going to bring this one in, folks. So thank you again for joining us on Making Sales Social Live. If you’re with us live on LinkedIn, YouTube, Facebook or Twitter right now, we do this every week. So keep an eye out for our live sessions. If you’re listening to us on our podcast, go ahead and hit that subscribe follow button so that you’ll see when the new ones drop and you can have access to our older ones.
Socialsaleslink.com/podcast is where you can get information on all of the podcasts and podcasting that we do. We do two shows weekly. We do this one and our Making Sales Social interview series, where we talk with leaders and experts in sales, marketing, business and many more areas. And we’re actually getting into many more parts of many more areas too, with some shows coming up. So definitely, definitely keep an eye out for those.
So when you are out and about, make your sales social. Thank you everyone. Thank you appreciate it.
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