3 Deadly LinkedIn Profile Mistakes to Avoid
The sad truth is you are probably committing 3 deadly mistakes that turn you into a leper on LinkedIn.
If it makes you feel any better, you aren’t alone—thousands of people are making these 3 LinkedIn profile mistakes, turning their social media efforts into a giant waste of time.
Now I won’t bother tell you that you need a professional profile picture or recommendations on your LinkedIn profile. Those are a given. This article will explore the science of personal branding—why most people blend into the background and are instantly forgotten on LinkedIn.
Fix these 3 mistakes and you will immediately elbow your way past the hoards of competition and make a much better first impression on LinkedIn.
Mistake #1: Your Profile Is All About What “You” DO
Most people use their LinkedIn profiles as an opportunity to drone on and on about themselves and their profession—what they DO…
…As strange as it sounds, this is a huge mistake.
The LinkedIn-o-sphere doesn’t care about you or what you do. People are busy thinking about THEIR OWN selfish wants and needs. Until you show them why you are useful, they will not be interested in you.
Additionally, you actually need to spell it out for your readers, because they will not flex a single brain cell to make a connection between what you DO and why you are HELPFUL.
If your goal is to connect with other people on LinkedIn, your profile should be a beacon that specifically tunes in to your target reader’s frequency. Who exactly do you want to attract? What exactly do they want?
Here is an example of how most people get it wrong:
An accountant might have a tagline that says something like the example above… But look what happens when you shift conversation from what you DO, to how you help:
Granted, this guy sounds a little like Saul Goodman from Breaking Bad, so if this was a real example, I might say “Truckloads Of Cash” differently… However, if I heard this branding message, it was tax season and I was a small business owner, it would send shockwaves to my eardrums.
Could you feel the visceral difference? This second example is more powerful because you have identified a specific target reader, announced that you are looking for them, and then clearly communicated how you can help.
Mistake #2: You Haven’t Grabbed Attention.
Think about your reader’s headspace when then stumble onto your page: They’ve got 72 other distractions tugging on their limited attention span. If you don’t say something RIGHT AWAY that jolts them into the present moment like an unexpected splash of ice-cold water on their backs, they will be one Facebook meme away from tossing your profile into the trash.
In other words, you need a jaw-dropping headline in your LinkedIn profile summary, and it needs to be the very first thing that a reader sees once they check out your profile. Magazines have known this secret for ages. The headlines on the front cover of Cosmo for example, are exponentially more expensive than the actual articles inside the magazine. Cosmo knows that they’ve got to grab your attention before you will actually buy the magazine and read it.
Most people don’t bother with this step, so there’s nothing for an eyeball to grab onto. Do you see how this typical LinkedIn profile summary looks a looks a lot like static on a TV set?
Now look at this example. It catches attention visually, and it also jolts the reader into attention with one shocker of a headline:
Here’s a quick primer on writing a good headline: You can:
A: Make a bold promise to improve your reader’s life
You will be able to back up later with credible proof. E.g.
“THE SOCIAL MEDIA GOLDMINE
HIDING IN YOUR BUSINESS…”
“IS IT EVEN LEGAL TO SAVE
SO MUCH ON CAR INSURANCE?
B: Remind them about a pain point
Let them know about the pain they are experiencing but have maybe forgotten about. E.g.
“YOU ARE FLUSHING RED HOT
LEADS DOWN THE TOILET!”
“WHOSE FAULT IS IT WHEN
YOUR CHILD MISBEHAVES?”
Mistake #3: You Haven’t Painted A Mental Picture
Most LinkedIn profiles are utterly forgettable because people don’t paint a mental picture of how you make the world a better place.
In the professional world, people are obsessed with using abstract buzzwords that don’t mean anything, but in reality, people resonate with words that paint a crisp, clear mental picture of how their lives will become better.
So most LinkedIn profiles sound something like this:
“I have 10 years experience in such and such. I’m goal oriented. I’m a hard worker. Specialties: blah, blah, blah…”
But pay attention to the visual language here:
The most powerful image comes in fourth paragraph:
“I’m here to turn your website into the goose that lays the gold eggs…”
Can you see how that titillates the senses?
Change these three sections on your LinkedIn profile, and you will see a dramatic difference in the way people respond to your LinkedIn profile. You should expect more views, more connections, and more people who are eager to work with you.
Guest Author: Anton Volney is a direct response copywriter and a LinkedIn profile writing expert. If you’d like to learn how to make a jaw-dropping first impression on LinkedIn, he has created a free mini eBook called, “Look Good On LinkedIn” it will get you up to speed on how to craft a KILLER LinkedIn profile. You can get it at www.LinkedInprofilesummary.com.
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