Yesterday I attended a networking/business lunch at The Georgia Golf Club as part of the Alpharetta Business Association's monthly educational series. The topic was "LinkedIn," and the speaker was none other than the "LinkedIn Guy," Gregg Burkhalter.
Microsoft is the proud new owner of LinkedIn, so changes are underway to integrate the personal and company profiles into Office 365 products, Skype, Lynda.com and anything else controlled by the giant software people. Next month, you'll be able to walk into a convention hall and pull up on your phone which of your LinkedIn contacts are in attendance. How cool (or creepy?) is that!?
According to Mr. Burkhalter, "The secret to building a solid LinkedIn reputation for you and your company is to be helpful, humble and consistent."
If you are not very active on LinkedIn already, start slowly. On your personal profile page simply begin with sharing one update per week and be sure to "like" or "comment" on your connections' posts occasionally. The best time to post are on Tuesdays and Thursdays, from 7am to 9am and from 5pm to 6pm.
Burkhalter reminded us that LinkedIn is one of the most powerful social media channels for B2B marketers and professionals. It is also one of the hub/homes of your personal brand.
The personal profile page is the foundation of your LinkedIn presence and serves as the hub of your professional personal brand for your career. Be sure to use a professional image/headshot. Use your personal page to share information or knowledge that will help others. Do not use your personal page to sell products or services. Reserve that for your business page.