LinkedIn is a quickly growing social media platform that appeals more directly to business individuals than Facebook or Twitter; particularly, business-to-business (B2B) opportunities. You most likely know that. Most of those people are looking to prosper with LinkedIn promotion and produce new leads, business, or career options. What you may not know is how profoundly you can fail on LinkedIn as a busy entrepreneur or small business owner. It’s effortless! Just follow these 10 simple steps.
1. Don’t fill in your Profile Summary section
This is vital to failure on LinkedIn. Many people want to show up in People searches, but not a radical like you. Leave that Summary portion empty since it is the primary area that the LinkedIn search, and Google for that matter, index to evaluate about your value. Who needs it? Invisibility rocks!
2. Limit Visibility and Contact
People can be totally annoying, so keep your settings so that you’ll minimize contact with them. Go to your privacy controls on the Settings tab and choose the most minimalizing restrictions, like shutting off your activity broadcasts (you’re not doing them anyhow!), making sure only you can see your activity and networks, and ensuring that you snoop other profiles anonymously. Victory is yours.
3. Only post present job
Truth says that no one is worried about your recent work history anyhow, so only write about your current work. Bear in mind the KISS principle, so keep it simple and short and refrain from using unnecessary phrases that these SEO types call ‘keywords’. By uploading just one job, you won’t have to worry about having to mess around with the monotonous writing of keywords in your previous roles either.
4. Don’t load a photo
Photos are for models. As a developer, specialist or other business professional your work speaks for itself and your face ain’t your bread winner, so screw the personal comfort that humans since birth seem to feel when they see a real person’s face behind the computer lingo. This is work, not warm and fuzzy socialization!
5. Avoid References
These are fabricated and everyone knows it, so why make an effort. Who cares if LinkedIn references actually hyperlink back to the referrer for easy proof of who’s doing the talking? If I ask other business schmos for references, they’ll just want something back from me, and who has that kind of time?
6. Don’t connect with just anyone
Hold your connections close to your vest and only have that handful of network contacts that you presently work with, that way you can contact any of them with a request and not feel guilty about it. What good can a large number of connections do for you anyway, they will just pester you for their little jobs you have no interest in whatsoever. It’s not as if LinkedIn works like Google and those connections are like backlinks that boost your search relevance to get on page 1 when your keywords are– Ouch! No keywords written on our profiles in an user-friendly way.
7. Don’t display your work
LinkedIn provides Applications for you to post more info about you, supposedly to differentiate you from other pros. The “theory” is that when people get to your profile, you stand apart by already showing what you flourish at via slide presentations, case studies, video (ah-hem!) and so forth. Balderdash! Just something else to maintain. Why put something up that only 10 or 20 people may check out or look at.
8. Groups are for wussies
Subject matter interest groups abound on LinkedIn, from job hunt groups to industry verticals. Who has the time to listen to a few “experts” spout off about one topic or another and post links to their blogs to generate conversations. Besides, why must I share my valuable knowledge about my market for FREE? I’m not insane! I get paid to deliver expert commentary. Damn straight!
9. Fill it out and quit it
The beauty of a LinkedIn profile or any site is that once you get it ‘live’, you are finished with it forever. The more you transform it the more you can upset your search engine ranks, no? That is the perfect motto for LinkedIn failure. Don’t you wish you came up with it? Changing things around takes a lot of time on top of it all. Post the dang thing and be finished with it.
10. SPAM your contacts
If you’ve got a few connections, you can make it even less by making persistent request or pitches to sell your product or service or go to your site. Connections will leave you quicker than if you attempted to eliminate them, because they’ll do it in bulk, so send a few extremely smarmy emails each week and your LinkedIn failure will be finished.
The reality is, you aren’t trying to fail on LinkedIn. You would like to succeed also and generate more LinkedIn business leads and use LinkedIn as an authentic marketing tool for your site, but maybe you just don’t know how. If you’re like a lot of business owners, however, and can look at yourself under the microscope and see any of the Top 10 LinkedIn Failure Techniques listed above in your talk or actions, maybe it’s time to question assumptions and alter your approach. It’s opposite day and this ain’t Seinfeld, so have a look at what NOT to do, and do something else and then notice your LinkedIn statistics soar and your phone start to ring.
About the Author:
If you actually want to SUCCEED on LinkedIn, check out LinkedIn Profile Optimization help by Smart Company Growth, a company owned and operated by Karl Walinskas to provide unique lead generation tools to white collar professionals. He’s authored Getting Connected Through Exceptional Leadership and many, many articles published in print and online.
Image: Coletivo Mambembe / Flickr