LinkedIn Tips for Entrepreneurs

Do you want to focus on promoting your business effectively in social media? Are you LinkedIn savvy, or is it a mystery to you? Social media can be an effective tool to promote your business, but you need to know how to reach your target audience…and not turn them off.

Marketing experts recommend using social networking (typically Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn) to reach potential and existing clients. Twitter and Facebook allow for business networking and promotion, but they’re also focused on entertainment. For example, I will share pictures of my unhealthy ice cream obsession on my personal Facebook profile, but I do not post about it on LinkedIn. 

Is LinkedIn Applicable to Business Owners?

It’s important to acknowledge that LinkedIn is not only for job seekers or companies looking for employees anymore. This is a common misconception.

Business owners can – and do – use it for connecting with potential clients, mentors and referral sources. However, to be successful at this, you need to know what (and what not) to do to make this happen.

Here are four tips to get started, or help you critique your current profile:

  1. Speak directly to your audience. Think about what you offer through your business. What are the features and benefits that will make people want to add you to their network, or send you a message to learn more about what you do? This article from The Balance explains how to incorporate features and benefits into your profile.
  2. Use keywords to help people find you. These are the words that people will type into the search bar of LinkedIn. Create a list of keywords related to your business, and use them throughout your profile. For example, I assist clients with resumes, cover letters and LinkedIn profiles. I intentionally use these terms in my headline, summary and experience sections.
  3. Sanity check your profile. I see many spelling mistakes or blatant grammar issues on social media. However, you can easily avoid them. I tell all of my clients not to directly input information to LinkedIn. Instead, I recommend creating sections in Microsoft Word, as well as printing and reviewing a hard copy of your draft. I also advocate for sharing the draft with another person to get their perspective, as well as asking them to check for errors.
  4. Focus on quality connections. On Twitter and Facebook, it is impressive to have lots of friends. This is not true to the same extent on LinkedIn; the platform does not display your exact number of connections once you pass 500. Grow your network by adding people you actually know. Resist the urge to reach out to people you do not know. The only time I deviate from this advice is when I use a personalized note to tell the potential contact specifically why I want to connect (e.g. I saw you present at a conference, and I was so impressed that I would like to refer a client to you).

If your goals for 2018 include growing your professional network and referral sources, an optimized LinkedIn profile should be part of your plan.

While time is precious for many entrepreneurs, I hope that you add either “create a LinkedIn profile” or “update my LinkedIn profile” to your to-do list sooner than later.

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Overwhelmed by the transition to entrepreneurship?

I’ve been there. When I left the corporate and small business worlds to start my own business, I didn’t know what I was in for. I saw other women living lives that I wanted to be mine, and wondered, “How are they doing it?” Knowing something had to give, I totally changed the way I’m running and building my business.

As a mother, blogger, mentor, speaker and business owner, I am used to balancing the demands of many roles. It is hard to “do it all,” and I have learned how to adjust to those expectations. Stick with me and you’ll be diving into your business with fresh eyes and a growth-centered mindset faster than you ever imagined!

It all came to a head in the Fall of 2015. With my daughter’s autism diagnosis and my postpartum depression following my son’s birth, my Spring/Summer that year had been pretty rough. I was feeling pretty kicked around — to say the least. As I was crawling out of the dark and twisty places life had cornered me in that year, I knew that everything had changed.

For many reasons, I couldn’t go back to my corporate life. One of the biggest reasons was that my perspective on how I was going to live my life had changed. A shift had happened. My time away from my children was going to be spent doing things that I was passionate about. Doing things that got me pumped about life. In May of 2016, I went out on my own and started my business. It was great. I was finally doing things that had me pumped about my time away from my kids. I had the flexibility to spend more time with them. At the end of the day, I had the energy to work in my household and my marriage.

But, while I was living my passion and excited about my life again, it wasn’t all sunshine and roses. Previously, I was a teacher, a sales professional, marketing leader and client services manager. By setting clear objectives, I succeeded in each role, even though they were in different industries.

But being an entrepreneur was a whole new world. I felt the loneliness. I had self-doubt. I didn’t know where to start…and I wasn’t the only one in this boat.

Whether I’m out speaking to a room full of female entrepreneurs or leading a workshop, one of the things that I hear over and over again from these amazing women is how great it is to be out from behind their desks and surrounded by a group of like-minded women. And as our conversation continues, it becomes clear that they are looking for a tribe of women that they can connect and collaborate with regularly in an environment that is welcoming, encouraging and safe enough to let their walls down and share. I needed a community like this too. One that encourages fellow members as they conquer fears, overcome obstacles and achieve their dreams. A tribe that leaves me with a new comfort level and the confidence I’m craving to expand my growth and limits — both personally and professionally.

And most importantly, I wanted a place that would offer me more than inspiration. One that would give me the actionable advice, education and mentorship, support and accountability that we all need.

And from these conversations and my own needs, Fempire Builders was born.

You see, it’s not just me. And it’s not just you. We are not alone. And when we come together, it’s a powerful thing. With the Fempire Builders community supporting me and holding me accountable, I have experienced the business growth that previously I had only dreamed about.

Just as it has been for other Fempire Builders, it will be the same for you, too. Wait and see!