Last week, LinkedIn released a free eBook titled “Executive Playbook: 12 Steps to Become a Social Leader”, (You can find it here). We want to take an opportunity to pull out a few key points from the book and highlight why they’re important from a PR perspective.
Create an effective executive profile
There can be nothing more frustrating when the public face of a company has not finished filling out their LinkedIn profile. If an executive of an enterprise software provider can’t take the time to fill out their LinkedIn profile, why should their customers want to connect with them or worse trust they know what’s best for their company.
From our perspective, once we have scheduled a meeting with media or an analyst, more often than not, that person has done preliminary research to find out who they are going to be meeting with, and what they have to offer to their story. Why not use this opportunity to make a strong first impression before meeting for that first phone call.
Here are a few tips from the guide as well as a few things to consider from our perspective to make a LinkedIn profile worth noticing:
- Provide a friendly and professional profile photo that shows your willingness to connect as well as your understanding of the professional platform.
- A custom URL will make profile sharing easy through email and again assert your knowledge of the medium.
- Avoid listing bare titles and years in the experience section and take this opportunity to show prospective customers and media what you’ve done and why your opinion is worth something.
- LinkedIn provides the unique option to link multi-media project directly from your profile. Use this section to share blog posts and other content demonstrating your thought leadership and talents.
- Connect with customers and new leads to build on your growing relationships.
For more information on what makes a perfect LinkedIn profile, see Lois Paul’s “What’s Missing from your LinkedIn Profile?” here for reference
Here are a few additional “steps” the guide calls out:
Demonstrate your leadership
According to a recent study cited by the eBook, 80% of employees say they would rather work for a social CEO, and 2 out of 3 customers say that their perception of the CEO impacts their perception of the company. Coordinate with your PR department to learn what company news, content marketing, and industry articles you should be sharing with your connections. Active and well-informed executives can help ease the mind of customers and let them know they’ve made the right choice.
Social executives set the bar for the entire organization from a social level. Socially active executives spawn socially aware employees.
Staying on top of industry trends
Why a compelling LinkedIn Profile Matters:
The upside to creating a well-connected profile, is the unique perspective it can provide your customers. Following prospective, and current, clients lets you know exactly what they care about and allows you to craft your management and sales tactics on a more personal level. Use your highly customized feed to stay on top of what’s happening in your industry and the industries of your customers.
I thought it would be fitting to end this post with a quote in the eBook from Nike CEO, Mark Parker, on why social matters.
“Social Media is helping us unite and expand. We have never been closer to our customers” – Mark Parker, CEO of Nike
There has never been a time, in the history of media, that consumers and business can have a nearly uninhibited two-way dialogue. Use this opportunity to connect with your customers on a personal level and give your brand personality.