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7 mistakes you’ve probably made on LinkedIn (and how to fix them)

If you’re not getting the results you want from using LinkedIn, there could be a number of reasons why.

Having been actively using LinkedIn for over a year, I’ve made some mistakes, and I’ve learnt from them too.

So here are my top tips for how to get the most from using LinkedIn.

They’re not rules. Think of them more as an etiquette that could help boost your presence and lead to some valuable connections.

1. When commenting on someone’s post, you’ve written something like ‘thanks for sharing’ or ‘great post’

Adding a comment to someone else’s post is a great way to demonstrate your expertise and add value. But simply writing ‘Great post’ or ‘Thanks for sharing’, isn’t going to cut it.

You have 1,250 characters to play with for comments, so you can afford to expand on your point. Aim for a couple of sentences that add value. And try and break your text up into paragraphs to create some white space and make your comment more readable.

The aim of the comments section is to encourage debate and spark conversation. So if you don’t agree with a post, say so. But do it in a constructive way.

Most importantly, the comments section is not the place to promote yourself and your services. It’s spammy and a good way to get yourself blocked.

2. You don’t comment on other people’s posts at all

Commenting on other people’s posts is a great way to boost your visibility on LinkedIn, especially if you haven’t had the time (or inspiration) to write your own post.

If you see a post that resonates with you, don’t just react to it, comment on it too. The poster has essentially done the hard work for you by coming up with an idea and writing a post. All you need to do is add your thoughts.

When you comment on someone’s post, it’s seen by a range of people, not just your own followers. So your comment could lead to new connections, and even potential new clients.

3. If you’ve announced a promotion or new role, you’ve said ‘I’m delighted to announce’ or ‘I’m happy to share’

With so much content on LinkedIn, you need to stand out from the crowd.

Starting a post with ‘I’m delighted to announce’ or ‘I’m happy to share’ is a snoozefest and is likely to make your followers scroll on by.

So don’t be lazy and just use the default content that LinkedIn generates for you. Get creative and add your personality to your post.

If it’s worth sharing, it’s worth putting in some effort and really grab people’s attention.

4. Not responding to comments on your posts

If people take the time to comment on your post, you should, at the very least, react to their comment. But it’s even better to reply.

The comments section is there to spark conversation and encourage debate, so get chatting. You never know where it might lead. You could make new connections and it could even lead to new clients.

5. In your profile you talk about you and not how you can help your clients

Your LinkedIn bio is basically like the ‘About’ section of your website. It’s a place where people can find out more about what you do.

But despite what you might think, your ‘about’ section shouldn’t be all about you and your life story. It should focus on your target audience – how you can help them and why they should choose you. If your bio could lead your target audience to think ‘so what’, you need to rethink your content and focus on them.

6. Your headline just states your job title

Job titles these days can be irrelevant, overly complicated and full of jargon. Your headline shows up whenever you comment or react on someone’s post, so it’s your chance to sell yourself and what you do.

You’ve got 220 characters to play with, so use them. Tell people what you do, who you help and how.

7. When you connect with someone, you don’t add a personalised note

I used to accept every single connection request I got. But I’ve learnt to be a bit stricter when it comes to making connections.

If I don’t know the person, why should I add them to my network?

It’s very easy to hit ‘Connect’. But I want to know why they want to connect with me. Yes, it takes a bit of effort, but adding a note on your connection request is more likely to be accepted.

However, it’s not the time to go hard sell and promote your services. Connect with them first and build a rapport before you start pitching to them.


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