“80% of B2B leads come from LinkedIn, and 94% of B2B marketers use LinkedIn to distribute content”

LinkedIn has grown to be the most popular professional network channel in the world. No wonder given the possibilities it offers, it can drastically determine the speed and direction of your career. Needless to say, it’s a great personal branding tool.

Stand out from the masses

With so many networking opportunities standing out can be quite a challenge. This post will help you stand out from the masses. I will explain why adding your background banner is one of the most important factors when it comes to creating a successful profile. It’s an excellent way to personalise your message and show what your personal brand or a company is about.

I studied dozens of profiles and I noticed that many professionals ignore and leave it blank. For me, it’s a bit like driving a sport car with the handbrake pulled up. You’re only using a fraction of the potential your profile has. It’s 600,000 square pixels of space to create a great first impression within seconds. Now the thing with the first impression is that, sadly, you only have one shot here.

How to go about changing the banner

So now, with no further due, let’s dive right into it.  Although creating a good header is not rocket science, there are a few things you have to take into account. Let’s break it down:

  • An attention-grabbing background photo. It can be you, it can be a pet if you’re selling dog food or a travel destination for a travel agency
  • Make sure the graphic element looks neat and professional. No amateur, off-putting smartphone shots or selfies. People will judge you as a person based on whatever their perception of you will be.
  • Make an engaging text a part of the background picture. Ask a provoking question. Point at the problem and evoke curiosity for the solutions you have
  • It’s also ok to list the services you offer right up front. Now, that will only work in one scenario. If you know that prospects visiting your profile are already “warm” and they know who you are and what you can offer. If you, however,  generate your leads through cold-prospecting, go for curiosity hook. You can do it by asking an issue-related question. As an example, let’s say you are a content writer. You could say  “is your poor-quality blog or website content driving your business down the drain?”
  • Another way to boost the credibility of your profile is to add “awards and recognition” to your banner. You can find them at the very bottom of your profile. This doesn’t help much you because no one will likely notice it. Instead, make these logos a part of your banner. Now, if you’re not a Photoshop master, it can be quite a challenge but that’s not a big issue. There are some simple and free tools out there. You can try “Canvas” for that matter.

Keep on personalising

Once, you’re done with that, congrats, you made a big step forward. But the complete optimization is actually not yet done. It’s key to also personalize your tagline (the description following your name, at the top of your profile). No one said you have to stick to a dull job title there. Add an attention-grabbing slogan relating to your prospects’ pain point instead. How?

Let’s take a look at a great example of that. Shannon Kuykendall is a LinkedIn Lead Generation expert. Her tagline reads “Is your Digital Marketing Agency, struggling to bring in a consistent flow of new leads each month? If so, we can help!”. the

Last but not least, make sure you also create a killer description in the Page Details section. You can do it by editing settings of the profile. This creates an opportunity for making a deeper connection with the visitor.  You can use up to 2000 characters which is not that little. It gives you enough space to write quite a decent “copy”. If filling such space with text freaks you out, delegate it to a freelance copywriter. Upwork or Fiverr are the most popular to-go places for that. A good copy should touch on the issue, relate to the visitor on a deeper level and follow it up with a closing call to action.

It can be different things: link to your website, sign up for a free consultation or driving prospects to your landing page. There you can collect their email in exchange for a free e-book or a video or what have you.

LinkedIn has all the cards

Let’s bring it home with some figures. Let’s take a look at what  LinkedIn published on their branded blog. They state that “80% of B2B leads come from LinkedIn, and 94% of B2B marketers use LinkedIn to distribute content”.  You can read the whole article here. This shows the impact a well-optimized profile can have on your business or a personal brand. If followed by an intense outreach work, it can actually multiply your monthly income.

Have you ever wondered what’s the cost of missed opportunity here?

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