ABOUT THE CONTRIBUTOR

Natalie Alaimo
Natalie Alaimo Natalie Alaimo is a social media marketing expert who teaches small business owners & entrepreneurs how to build the brand of "YOU" via social media & online marketing to create an avalanche of clients ready to buy from you. She runs workshops around Australia and is the creator of The Social Media Blueprint - Managing Your Social Media in 10 min per day. A Gold Coast, Australian local she enjoys networking, painting and spending time with her family. Natalie is an international speaker and has spoken at events such as: BNI International Members Conference, Business Women Incorporated, GBC Australia Sales Conference, Self Storage Association, Central Chamber of Commerce & Women's Network Australia on the topics of: social media marketing, branding you, online marketing & networking. She is also a blogger for Telstra and has been published in the international magazine The Mompreneur.

Natalie Alaimo has written 31 article(s) for us.

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LinkedIn Groups: Are You Converting To $$$$?

August 9, 2012 | Natalie Alaimo

Find out how your LinkedIn profile should look and how to get the most out of it for you and your business.
Find out how your LinkedIn profile should look and how to get the most out of it for you and your business.

If you are on LinkedIn, you’re probably a member of at least one or two groups. I’ve personally purchased many programs which include access to private groups for the interaction and networking alone. These groups are great for meeting new people, building relationships, gaining more from the program and of course gaining new clients. If you are reading this blog and are a member of Women’s Network Australia then you should be involved in their Members only LinkedIn Groups.

All interaction in groups is done via your profile, which is great as you can build relationships, but sadly many people aren’t able to leverage these relationships into business as their profiles aren’t optimised for people to find out more about them.

In a LinkedIn Group when someone clicks on your profile image they aren’t taken to your whole profile, just a snapshot. In order to get maximum benefit from your group activity here are the three areas that you should optimise first.

Profile Picture

We all like to think that first impressions don’t count, but they do. You are judged on your profile pictures and it’s generally people’s first introduction to you and your business.  However many people get this profile image so wrong.

Here are some tips to make sure it’s always making the right impression;

  • Current Professional Photo – yes invest in professional photography, they are worth the money
  • Make sure you still look the same age as your photo – no photos which are 20 years old
  • Front On Image – People need to see your face
  • No logos
  • Only you in the image
  • Make sure it’s a photo of your face that people can see clearly
  • Your photo should match your profession

Here are some examples of inappropriate LinkedIn images:

If your LinkedIn photo isn’t up to scratch, go and update it now.

Headline

Your headline is located directly under your name and is the area people look at next after checking out your profile image. By default your headline is the title of the last job you entered. But you know what – this is boring. Why? Because no one is interested in connecting with the owner of ABC Pty Ltd.  No, they want to connect with people like them, people who inspire them.

Customise your headline and make it interesting.  Add your keywords (the ones people are searching), and words which describe you.  You can use multiple keywords or phrases. There are two main ideas behind your headline – firstly to evoke curiosity (so people want to click on your profile and find out more) and secondly, to help you come up in search results.  When people are searching for people on LinkedIn, if you want your profile to be found, make sure you include the right words in your headline.

Area/Location

People like the idea of “thinking global and acting local” and for this reason it’s important to list your location on your LinkedIn profile. In the new Internet age we are living in, we have the whole world at our fingertips but we just want to connect with our neighbour.  This is especially true for the small business owner, they want to be able to do business with people just down the road, as closeness increases trust.

You need to make sure that you list your location on your LinkedIn profile and as this is the default setting, most people will already have this. You may however like to check that you have the right location listed and you haven’t moved.  Your location is used for search and LinkedIn will default it to its closest area.  For example I’m on the Gold Coast but I’m listed as Brisbane – the closed location LinkedIn has, and hopefully in the future, this will be updated and more areas will be available.

To get results, go now and make sure you have updated these three areas so you can get the most from your group interactions.