While there has been a lot of fuss about Facebook lately, LinkedIn is quietly updating and upgrading its platform and is becoming incredibly valuable to its Members.
In this week’s video, I share with you three LinkedIn updates that should encourage you to check in with your profile and make some updates.
Click here to watch the video:
These updates are super helpful for those of us who want to keep an updated profile and make sure we are appealing to and connecting with the right people. The updates I discuss are:
1. Who’s Viewed Your Profile
This is the most viewed section of LinkedIn, and now they are giving us more information about who is finding you and more importantly – how people are finding you. Use this data to tweak your profile headline, summary and experience to make sure you are discovered by the people you want to connect with.
The snapshot looks something like this (will vary based on your own profile results):
You can now learn more within categories:
Industries of your viewers
What your viewers do
Where your viewers came from (how they found you, i.e. in a Group or via Search)
Keywords that led to you
Where they work
Where they live
My results definitely encouraged me to adjust my summary section! Please remember that your headline, summary and experience section should be peppered with your keywords, as these sections play in the search function and help you get discovered.
2. LinkedIn Opens Publishing Platform
LinkedIn has now opened their publishing platform to its membership. This provides all of us greater opportunity for exposure and to offer greater value to our network. If our articles consistently receive many views, likes, comments and shares, they we have the chance to become a LinkedIn influencer.
This is being rolled out over the next few months, but if you’d like to send in an application for early release (I did) then you can fill out a short form, provide two examples of the type of content you’d be publishing, and cross your fingers.
Apply early: http://specialedition.linkedin.com/publishing/
3. Encouraging Professionalism in High School Students
In August, LinkedIn dropped it’s minimum age for Members to fourteen. This was done in an effort to encourage students to begin thinking about their future, the moment they enter high school. LinkedIn wants to provide an advantage to ambitious students, recommending they follow university pages to connect with admissions and alumni.
One high school student wrote for the LinkedIn blog,
“I’ve discovered that the sooner you put yourself in the professional community, the better your chances of finding the opportunity you want.” – Rutha Nuguse
Perhaps this attitude will spill over into behavior on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook, too. That’s why I love this push from LinkedIn. It reinforces that you are never too young to build your professional profile, polish your personal brand and manage your reputation.
This news has really made me think twice as to how I use LinkedIn and inspires me to be more proactive with my account. I hope it encourages you to do the same!
When I have the opportunity to speak with college students – student-athletes, Greeks or graduate students – I am always curious which point of the presentation will resonate most. Of course, college students believe they already know everything they need to know about social media and assume they are “doing it right.” So when I use examples from their own profiles, posts which are embarrassingly bad, they do tend to perk up and realize they have room to improve their communication skills.
This week, I was so pleased to speak with student-athletes at Cal State San Marcos. Athletic and Club Sport athletes joined me to learn how they can use social media and communication to achieve their goals.
During the presentation, I pointed out that one’s reputation also stands upon the types of posts and things you like and the people you associate yourself with online. Some of the students have liked more than 1000 Facebook Pages. I cannot even fathom what these Pages are, but with a quick glance over many profiles, they are not Pages which work to build a good reputation.
We also discussed the accounts they were retweeting. When Twitter handles like @ReallyStonedPanda and @WeedReport pop up in someone’s news feed, it’s a clear indication that they enjoy the content these accounts produce. Retweeting them is associating yourself with them and their content. And as you can gather from these two examples, this type of association does not work to build a good reputation.
Wouldn’t we love to believe that it’s just college students who do not take care with what they like and who they retweet? Many seasoned professionals have room to improve their skills, as well. So in this week’s video, I mention a few social networks and what you need to take care of to maintain a positive profile and manage your reputation.
A quick breakdown:
Facebook – Be mindful of the Pages you like and the posts you like, comment on, and share. Make sure your “friends” are people you actually know.
Twitter – Take care with who you follow AND who follows you. You are associated with both. Double check the Twitter handle and content of the accounts you retweet.
Pinterest – Follow people and businesses who have good content and who are reputable. Repinning pictures which are linked to “spammy” sites is not a good practice.
LinkedIn – Accept invitations from people you know, have done business with and who add value to your contact base. Remember my advice from my networking video – You want to be able to connect the people in your network. Help them in their business so they will help you with yours. (You can also check out the blog post on networking, too.)
YouTube and Blog Comments – Often overlooked, your comments on blogs and videos says a lot about you. What videos are you watching? What types of blogs do you interact with? If they are controversial on any level, your interaction with them paints you in a negative light. Your comments are discoverable online.
Finally, please remember that NOTHING online is private. It doesn’t take much to learn about a person with a simple Google search and a bit of browsing through social sites. When the recruiter or admissions officer, the media or your colleagues take a tour of your online profile, what will they find? And what will the things you like and the people you associate with say about you?
Tell me in the comments if you are a person who is diligent about managing your reputation. Do you already take care with what you like and who you follow? What other things do you do to protect your brand? Share your advice in the comments! Thank you!
When a high-profile person posts something stupid on social media and then gets “caught,” it seems the only excuse on the table lately is, “It wasn’t me, it was hackers.” Yawn. Who actually believes this excuse? Who ever did?
The latest to offer up this all-to-common excuse is young NHL player, Tyler Seguin. He was just traded to the Dallas Stars. The tweet in question? “Only steers and queers in Texas.” You can read more about the what the 21-year-old tweeted HERE.
Of course, he deleted his tweet, and the team has “addressed” Seguin as well as issued the obligatory, “This, in no way, represents the organization, blah blah blah,” statement. In addition to the standard apology and clarification, the Stars also included, “…and we’ll continue to work on educating our players regarding the importance of their conduct on all forms of social media.” Work on educating? That’s a fancy way of saying, “try.”
An athletic organization that doesn’t take the time to educate – not attempt or try or wish to but actually really sits their athletes down for some hard core PR and communication training – deserves the heat of the spotlight when their players behave irresponsibly. Those organizations should not be allowed to issue the empty “it was hackers” or “we’ve addressed the issue” excuses if they are not going to invest the time and effort to protecting their brand by equipping their front-line ambassadors with proper tools to represent the organization professionally, blades on or off.
My favorite quote from Seguin, not only expresses what TRULY happens when he’s online, but likely what happens when a lot of athletes and others decide it is time to tweet. “…sometimes I forget that I’m on Twitter in front of a quarter-million people and not just talking to my friends. It’s just another learning experience.” That is the mentality we are dealing with. And that is a behavioral shift that can easily be changed with good old fashioned education.
Beaming Bohemian consults with university athletic departments to establish social media guidelines, educate staff, coaches and student-athletes, and implement strategic communication and content plans which work to achieve positive and purposeful goals.
“Think carefully about the first impressions you are making on your future college classmates. You don’t want to be the person on the Class of 2017 Facebook page whom everyone else talks about when they gather, in person, for the first time.”
Sound advice, I found in this article posted to the NY Times. In addition to all of the other wonderful advice provided by author Nikki Magaziner Mills, this comment should serve as great motivation for high school graduates to take care with what do AND what they post this summer. Your future roommate will certainly look you up on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and any other network you share your life with, just as you will look to learn more about them. What impression are you giving? Will they be excited to be roomies, or have you given them enough material that they are dreading the year with you? What do you want them to know about you?
No doubt, this summer between high school and college is a special one. Take time to enjoy every moment, to strengthen the bond with your hometown friends, your family and loved ones. But also take some time to prepare for your new life and think about how you want your first year at college to play out.
Summer is the perfect time to get in the habit of behaving and communicating responsibly. Post photos and updates that let your future classmates know who you are and what type of friend you’ll be come fall. Start conversations with them now, so that you won’t have to break the ice at a time when a gazillion other things are new, exciting and a bit overwhelming. Show your new college buddies why they should look forward to being in your social circle. Establish good relations now. These may very well be people you have in your life for a very, very long time.
“We’ve always behaved badly; now we can do it in front of the entire world.”
Something to think about as you grow into adulthood and take some major steps this summer toward your college career. One “behaving badly” tweet, photo or video can and will precede you. Don’t let social media be the cause for your freshman-year dreams to go “poof.” Use social media to get started on the right foot. Have fun, stay positive and tweet with purpose!
When I speak with students and professionals about personal branding, the point of authenticity usually comes up. For instance, one graduate student asked me this month, “But if all we post are positive messages and strategic images, isn’t that being fake?” It was a good question and and understandable concern. First and foremost, personal branding is all about being YOU. There is no one else like you on this entire planet. Leveraging your unique value propositions, just as a global brand would, is the best way to promote your personal brand. Just as global brands and some of the most famous personal brands work to define their image and present themselves in a positive light, so should any individual.
In this digital age, everything you post online – from pictures, to messages, to comments on a blog – leaves a digital footprint. Nothing – NOTHING – is private online. Out of context, that one drunken photo or that nasty gossip session in the Facebook group, can easily become a determining factor in your next career move. Most companies are looking at your skills and ability, but also to see if there is anything that makes you a liability to their organization. If they hire you, you are a representative of their brand. If you cannot make the effort to manage your own brand, why should they believe you will exemplify theirs? Personal branding is not about creating a squeaky clean and false representation of you. Personal branding is the art of highlighting all the qualities and characteristics which make you awesome, unique and special – YOU. Social media provides tremendous opportunities to let the world know who you are, to connect directly with your audience and to build your brand.
One often over-looked item in our personal brand is our e-mail address. While promoting my Social Media in College Athletic Recruitment event, I ran across several unprofessional e-mail addresses. If you are making an effort to polish your professional image and personal brand, please don’t forget to establish a professional e-mail address. If you’re not convinced at the impact “4crybbz@” or “puppygirlz@” can have on your career, take a moment to read this article from NBC News. An excerpt:
Tamanini collected 200 e-mail monikers from various sources, including university professors. He showed 20 of the e-mail names to each of 200 college students and asked them to rate the names on five criteria — success, ethical caring, popular fun, degree of masculinity and degree of professionalism.
E-mail names deemed unprofessional included: alliecat@, bacardigirl@, bighotdaddy@, drunkensquirl@, foxylady@, gigglez217@.
Those e-mails considered professional received higher ratings of success than unprofessional names, which correlated better with ethical caring, popular fun and masculinity.
I’m sure you’ll find that you can easily establish an e-mail address that won’t steal the spotlight away from your true talents and skill set! Just don’t forget how your e-mail address is a direct reflection of you.
“Everything you do online is like a tattoo you get late at night that can never be erased.”
This is a perfect analogy for what is happening in the world of social media. We forget that the drunk photos, snarky comments and threatening tweets remain “out there” forever once we’ve offered them to the internet. NOW is the time to take care of what you say, how you say it and what you post online.
I read a tweet just the other day which said, “Now that I’m getting to the business end of my PhD, I think it’s about time I bulk up my LinkedIn profile.” Why wait? You should worry about your online profile, your social reputation NOW. The hiring managers, recruitment officers and admissions offices do not care that you’ve been too busy to manage your reputation.
You’ll see many more articles about social reputations helping and/or hurting individuals and companies in 2013. My goal is to keep you informed as to how best to use social media to build your personal and professional brands, develop strategic communication and plan your content to stay ahead of the competition. Allow these social sites to work in your favor, not be your demise. Together, let’s make 2013 a late night tattoo-free year.
Just for fun, here’s a link to and MSN article – 30 Bad Tattoos. Warning. These are REALLY bad.