Crazy times, eh? But self-isolation is not all business doom and gloom.
Almost everyone I know is working from home now and, inevitably, some businesses are already suffering at this challenging time. A couple of people have even asked whether it’s a good time to cut back on marketing? No! Of course it’s not. This situation won’t last forever, and – once life goes back to ‘normal’ – hopefully by the summer, businesses that have stepped back from marketing themselves effectively will be at a huge disadvantage.
Anyway, there’s no excuse to sit back and procrastinate… Kick back and get going! One great thing about home working, if you’re not used to it, is the time you’re saving on commuting. Skype and Zoom conference calls mean you’re not wasting time travelling from one meeting to the next, therefore freeing up valuable marketing hours.
So this is a perfect time for focusing on your business growth post-virus – and what better place to start than by getting your LinkedIn profile spick and span?
Here are a few quick tips to think about in between Netflix box sets and panic buying:
- Choose a fantastic profile picture
Can’t stress enough how important your photo is. People do business with people – especially on LinkedIn, so don’t have a logo, group photo or cartoon. Be your lovely, smiling self – engaging and ready to connect.
- Add a background image
The large banner space behind your photo is a wonderful opportunity to show off what you do. Make sure it grabs people’s attention, is branded and self-explanatory.
- Let your headline work for you
Your headline (or tagline) doesn’t have to be your job title – you can give a clear description of what you’re offering to potential clients. Loads of people will see this if you’re active on LinkedIn, and it’s a brilliant opportunity to sell yourself and your services.
- Summary or story?
Your LinkedIn summary doesn’t need to be a boring rendition of your CV. Write as you speak – enchant people with your personal story or explain why your work matters. What can you do for them? Why should they connect with you?
- Be convincing
LinkedIn’s rankings of over-used buzzwords include: ‘experienced’, ‘specialised’, ‘focused’, ‘strategic’, ‘passionate’ and ‘expert’. Nothing wrong with describing yourself like this, but make sure you’re able to actually demonstrate to people that you have these qualities.
- Show off your skills
List skills that are relevant to you – one that you actually have. This means that other people can endorse you, which strengthens your credibility. I sometimes meet people who don’t rate endorsements – and it’s true, I’ve been endorsed from time to time by people who’ve never actually experienced whatever it is they’ve endorsed me for. But there’s no doubt that a good bank of endorsements helps to increase your credibility. And it’s nice to endorse other people – we could all do with a quick boost at the moment.
- Ask for recommendations
A personal testimonial from someone who can genuinely substantiate your work is fantastic! Don’t feel shy or embarrassed to ask – if they’ve been happy with your services, there’s really no good reason why they should object to spending a few minutes telling the world.
I received an email this week from the British Association of Women Entrepreneurs (BAWE) to remind us that we’re not falling into a black hole; we’re entering a tunnel – and there is always light at the other end. Normal life’s on hold right now, but it’s not cancelled, it’s simply postponed. It’s true, right?
My ‘normal’ includes providing training via Skype and Zoom anyway, so if you fancy some 121 support please get in touch. I’m not going anywhere for the next few weeks… And, during lockdown I’m happy to help out by providing 90 minutes coaching for the price of 60 minutes.