Five mistakes on LinkedIn that everyone should avoid

With more than 660 million users globally, LinkedIn has had something of a resurgence in the social media stakes.

Previously, it may have typically been thought of by many individuals as being ‘too corporate’ or a place to advertise jobs. But when it’s reported that around 80% of leads come in via this online network, why are some individuals still not using their personal and company pages to their full potential?

Being active on LinkedIn, we’ve come across some – dare we say – ‘interesting’ profiles during our daily scrolls through the B2B newsfeed. But rather than ‘name and shame’ the particularly poor posts and pages we’ve endured, it’s perhaps more helpful to let you know about the online faux paus you should be avoiding. So, here goes…

1. Uploading bad photos… or using no photos at all

Whether it’s your profile image, hero banner or everyday pictures to showcase what you’re up to, if they’re out of focus, unprofessional or criminally cropped, it’s time to stop.

Think about it – that selfie in the badly-lit bathroom is the first impression your connections will have of you. So, when you’re trying to sell yourself to new and existing customers, that shocking snap might turn people off rather than spur them on to get in touch.

Keep the profile photo simple – and clean. It doesn’t have to be a professional image per se, but it’s best to upload something that you wouldn’t be horrified about if your nan saw it. The hero banner is important too so make sure it’s the right size (typically 1400 x 425 pixels) and represents another element about you or your business.

2. Too much or too little posting

If you’re in people’s faces every day, expect them to scroll right past you (or unfollow you completely). In the same breath, if your newsfeed is gathering dust, prospects and customers will soon forget about your brand and move onto your competitor.

The thing to do here is keep posting at a rate your audience wants – that means analysing as you go along. Everyone is different on LinkedIn and engagement happens at various times and days, so there’s never really a ‘one size fits all’ approach.

Try out a few posts and see which ones are landing well, getting shares and gathering comments. Then, ensure you discard the ones that have a distinct ‘tumbleweed’ moment.

If you’ve got a global audience but are UK-based, it might be an idea to try some posts in the wee hours and seeing how they do. For us, it’s all about the content and delving into the subject matter that resonates with your customers. An easy place to start gathering insight from your company profile is via the LinkedIn ‘Analytics’ section.

3. Ghastly grammar and shocking spelling

Nobody is expecting you to roll out Shakespearian-style posts every day, but if they’re littered with typos, it could be off-putting for a consumer that’s looking for a credible business to believe in, and buy into.

However, again, it does all come down to the content – that’s absolutely critical – so just spend a minute or two checking your work first. If your company page is struggling for status updates, have a look through the ‘Content’ section and see what others in your industry are talking about. If you’re still unsure, SoAmpli has a ‘Discover’ option that alerts you to what’s trending in your sector.

4. Forgetting your audience

As much as it’s your profile that you’re putting out there, LinkedIn isn’t actually about you – it’s about the people you’re speaking to.

Keep them in mind whenever you put up a status, update your summary or pen an article. Tell them about the benefits that you can provide to them and how investing in your business will make their lives better.

Customers are great at letting you know what a knockout post is – and when to throw in the towel. Listen to them, ask questions, gather their responses and engage.

5. Going in with a ‘hard sell’ straight after connecting

This is a total ‘no-no’ for us and something that tends to tune out our SoAmpli workforce whenever it happens.

You know the drill, someone sends a connection request, you think all is fine and accept and then… BAM! In comes the notorious direct message which says something along the lines of…

“Hello, hope you’re well!

I work with some fantastic [insert job here] in the UK, they can get you the best deals. If you want to talk with a top [insert same job title here] then here is my website.”

This is an actual message – likely from a bot – sent to one of our SoAmpli team members. And their response? An instant delete.

Roll out relevant connection requests if you want to build your following, but don’t then hit them between the eyes with everything in the first breath. Develop a relationship, engage on posts that resonate with you, share knowledge and figure out how – and when – to collaborate if you really want to.

There are so many other LinkedIn letdowns to avoid if you’re looking to up your B2B game on this platform.

For us, we suggest getting your profile in order first, being authentic in your summary, keeping your experience and skills up to date, requesting recommendations and exploring endorsements where appropriate. Be human and perhaps most of all be present for your customers… as much as they want you to be, of course.

To continue the conversation about how your colleagues can generate leads via social media and create a thriving workplace culture, email: or call 0845 2725990. Make sure you also connect with us via  LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

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