How to Avoid Profile Errors in LinkedIn

LinkedIn has been hailed as ‘Facebook for professionals’, as is by far one of the most popular and unique networking sites for all industries today, bringing together contacts from across the globe and changing the way we do business forever. When used properly and to its full potential, LinkedIn is one of the key resources for the growth of any business and any professional individual’s career, but if errors are made, as they commonly are, it can have a detrimental effect to the business growth and your professional reputation. That’s why we have put together our guide to the common errors people make on their LinkedIn profiles, and how to avoid making them. 

Spelling and Grammar

One of the major mistakes that could impact your professional career and reputation is so simple it is something people rarely even think twice about. But grammatical and spelling errors are far more common than they should be on professional profiles, and for those looking to make the right impression of both themselves and their business this simple mistake could prove fatal when it comes to building business relationships and attracting new prospective clients or employers.

Would you really want to work with someone whose profile didn’t read well and was riddled with mistakes? So how do you avoid this happening to you? Simply write up any changes to your profile using Microsoft Word first as it has a built in spelling and grammar checker, and if in doubt, ask someone else to proof read it for you to ensure it reads well and is mistake free.

Bios, Skills and Expertise

The LinkedIn profile is designed to read like your online CV, and like too many people do on their own CV, people often exaggerate their skills and expertise on their profile. This may seem like a good idea at the time, but in reality it is a false representation and is bound to come back and bite you. Whether you are applying for jobs via LinkedIn or just wanting to connect with other professionals, be honest and proud about what your achievements and skills are.

When you connect with people you have worked with, if the relationship is on good enough terms it is good to ask them for recommendations or endorsements for your skills and expertise, as this shows future clients and employers that you have a proven track record and help you stand out above the rest.

Profile Images and Status Updates

Although LinkedIn shares these traits with the social networking site Facebook, that doesn’t mean they should be used in the same way. Too many individuals on LinkedIn use unprofessional photographs and update their status with things such as “Just finished Christmas shopping, yay! J”. Consider the people you are connecting with and the purpose of your profile on LinkedIn.

Do your professional contacts really want to see a picture of you and your partner on holiday or hear about your Christmas shopping? The purpose of the profile image is to put a professional face to the name, so ask someone to take a headshot of you especially for this purpose, and as for the status updates, keep it professional and tasteful.

Don’t forget your Please and Thank Yous

Politeness costs nothing, and just as you would exchange pleasantries if you were networking face to face, you should do the same on LinkedIn. If someone gives you a recommendation or endorsement a Thank You email goes a long way, as does a Congratulations to someone who has just achieved a new position, and a Please when asking someone for their help.

For many more ways in which LinkedIn can help you AND your business, check out the 55 Ways to Use LinkedIn e-book, available for download now.

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