Due to COVID-19, we are now relying on digital spaces to connect and conduct business. Why not use this time to boost your presence on LinkedIn and stand out from your competitors?
As you may have noticed, LinkedIn has become a pervasive part of the GovCon ecosystem. My annual census of Feds on LinkedIn from early this year shows 2.1 million Feds identifiable by agency on LinkedIn.
Most people are “on” LinkedIn, but a remarkably high percentage are on in a passive way, not doing much of anything to attract attention. Many have no photo and very little information on who they are or what they or their company does. The background (or banner) area behind the headshot remains blue, with lines and dots.
Yawn….time to click through to the next profile…
Keep These Profile Elements in Mind
To get you started (or re-started) in the right direction, here are my suggestions for three key elements for your profile that your visitors see immediately. What you see when you click on someone’s profile is:
The background screen
The background screen, that blue area with the lines and dots, is the most unused free space on LinkedIn. It provides you the largest space for creating a graphic about you and/or your company, something that grabs their attention and says something about who you are and what you do.
You can size your company logo to fit the background area. The background (banner) area accepts 1584 x 396 graphics. I used www.canva.com to create my background. Canva offers both a free and paid service. I was able to do my background in the free section, and while it is not great, I do think it is good and it conveys the message I want to get out.
Your headshot, or photo, should simply be you, in business attire, smiling. Preferably a headshot, or head and shoulders. This is not a fashion, family, or sports shot, but a business photo. LinkedIn has consistently told us that profiles with headshots get 11x more views than profiles without photos.
Your headline, the space under your name, is editable space. If you do not edit it, your current job title will show up. Your job title conveys little useful information for the visitor. I recommend saying what you do and who you do it for- not your company, but the client.
For example, if your sales job entails IT modernization and your customer is USDA, your headline could read “Assisting USDA to migrate to more efficient IT platforms” or something similar. That way visitors know you focus on USDA and you are helping them in the IT modernization process. If you are a subject matter expert, this is the first place you need to start establishing your credentials.
These three, background, headshot and headline, are critical to getting people to read more and possibly reach out to you.
Why Does Your Profile Matter?
If they click on your profile and see a blue background with lines and dots, no headshot, and your job title (Account Executive, Contract Manager) in the headline, they will most likely leave immediately.
You have all seen both types of profiles, those that resonate with you and those that make you yawn and move on. Which would you rather have?
Remember, the opening screen shot is the first impression you make, and it needs to be quite good if you want people to read more and reach out.
If you are interested in boosting your impact on LinkedIn and reaching your target market, contact Mark Amtower. After you make these important connections, reach out to Global Services for assistance with your bid and proposal development strategy.
About Mark Amtower
Author, consultant, speaker, LinkedIn coach and radio host, Mark Amtower has focused on one market – Global One – doing business with government – for more than thirty years. Known in Washington, DC for his all-black attire and extreme candor, Amtower is by far the most influential and candid voice in business-to-government marketing, quoted in over 250 publications, doing interviews on business-talk radio around the country, speaking at 20-30 conferences and seminars each year. Each year Amtower consults with senior management in selected companies on government marketing programs. He is the author of Amazon best seller Selling to the Government(2011) and Government Marketing Best Practices (2005). His e-newsletter, The Amtower Report, is widely read by the Federal contracting community. He is widely recognized as a leading authority on Federal marketing and consults with senior management in several companies on government marketing programs. Amtower has advised over 2,500 companies since founding Amtower & Company in 1985. His consulting services have led to well over $30 billion in sales, helping many companies become category leaders in the government market. If you would like assistance reaching your target market, please reach out to Mark at firstname.lastname@example.org.