How to make your LinkedIn profile stand out

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Lorraine Duncan, owner of Business Gone Social and author of the book “Shout it Out: A Social Media Marketing Guide for Business Owners,” shared tips on creating a LinkedIn profile that will attract business clients and grow your network during the Power Network’s monthly meeting Thursday morning.

When someone wants to connect with her on LinkedIn, the first thing Duncan looks for is a photo. If someone does not take the time to upload a photo to their profile, Duncan will not accept them as a contact.

“You need to have a professional photo done,” she said. “Not one of those stupid selfies. They look horrible. You have to look professional. It’s not a dating site.”

LinkedIn profiles with photos are 11 times more likely to be viewed, according to a statistic Duncan shared. She said a picture should also be current.

“I put a picture of myself on all my social media platforms,” Duncan said.

Some people opt to use their logo instead of their photo, but unless your company is as well-known as Nike, Duncan recommends using your photo for that face-to-face connection.

Duncan was the featured speaker at the Power Network’s meeting. The Power Network is a leads group sponsored by the Monroe and Newtown chambers of commerce. Professionals from different industries meet on the first Thursday of every month at the Re/Max Heritage office, 458 Monroe Turnpike in Monroe, from 8 to 9:15 a.m.

During the meetings, members take turns giving elevator pitches, strengthen relationships and share referrals. A featured speaker presents on a business topic they can all benefit from.

For information on the Power Network’s Speed Networking event to be held at Roberto’s Restaurant, 505 Main St., Monroe, on Oct. 3, visit the Monroe Chamber of Commerce’s website.

What do you do?

Duncan said the professionals with pages on LinkedIn make it worth it to join for the networking opportunities.

“I get more of my leads from LinkedIn than Facebook,” she said. “I think it’s 10 to 1. You know when you’re on LinkedIn you’ll have quality business connections.”

To give an idea of how active LinkedIn is, Duncan said in the next 90 minutes LinkedIn would have 37,500 more shared links, 900,000 page views, 170,000 members and 10,000 new members.

When making new connections, Duncan said to avoid using the canned messages on LinkedIn. “When I connect with people, it’s personal,” she said.

“Some people, as soon as you accept, they try to sell you something,” Duncan said of not being too pushy. “That’s like skipping the date and going right to the kiss.”

She said it is important to get a vanity URL (so it has your name rather than numerals) for your LinkedIn profile and to take the time to fill in everything in your profile completely. Have recommendations, a video testimonial from someone is a plus, according to Duncan, who also said to include all of your certifications, even if it is not relevant.

Another tip is to make sure your headline explains what you do, rather than saying where you work.

“You want to tell them what you’re doing in 120 characters,” Duncan said. “Your current job probably doesn’t say much about what you do.”

Duncan said you have to think about what sets you apart from others in your field.

One example Duncan gave of a good headline was: “I help businesses get known, get customers and get the edge over their competition.”

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