Social media platform LinkedIn sees an accelerated growth, with about 1 billion members on the platform. It stands out through its business focus, networking opportunities and personal and professional branding. In 2024, it’s a must for startup founders, regardless of their industry.
Compared to other platforms, LinkedIn sets the expectations from the beginning – this is a professional platform, which means that people who are using it will be open to content and conversations that are more about work, productivity, growth, and less about personal lives.
For startup founders, it can be a great platform to build their personal brand, alongside their business brand. The results one can see from being active and engaged on LinkedIn include: attracting new leads or investors, growing a community, positioning as a thought leader, facilitating media mentions, and even learning from others.
If you’ve decided to invest more in your personal brand and give LinkedIn a go, here are some of the things you should take into account:
Build a strong profile
From my experience until now, I’ve seen that posts published from a personal account perform better in terms of engagement and reach compared to those published on a business account.
This doesn’t mean your business account doesn’t matter, on the contrary. That is your business’ channel of communication and can drive significant results if used properly.
As a founder, your to-do list on LinkedIn starts with your own profile. Here’s what to make sure you pay attention to:
- Your profile should be updated and include details about your most important roles and achievements. Don’t just list a “job”, but write what you did that was significant from that role.
- Have a relevant bio, that talks about your experience, your expertise, creating a hook for your potential partners or investors. You can also include a CTA.
- Use professional cover and profile pictures. Instead of a profile picture, you can also go for a profile short video, that’s more engaging.
- Use a tagline that summarizes what you do, the need you cover or an important accomplishment stakeholders might be happy to learn about yourself. You can also include a CTA.
- Add a link to your website or your calendar for booking meetings.
- Make use of the Featured module and upload your most important media coverages.
- Make sure to constantly connect with other professionals. You can do this manually, by using LinkedIn’s filter to sort the members you’re interested in, or use a tool such as Waalaxy, to automate the process.
- Verify your account – it’s not too complicated, but it does look more professional.
Have a good strategy in place
A good LinkedIn strategy is, first and foremost, realistic. It’s not about how often you should post, but how constant you can be. It is recommended to be present, to create content and also to interact with other members, so choose a rhythm you are comfortable with.
When creating a content strategy for your personal brand, think of topics you want to cover and you want people to associate you with. Choose 2-3 topics you are not necessarily an expert in, but that you are passionate of.
I’ve seen very good performance in posts that share knowledge and personal experience, resources, or news. For example, I talk about PR, startups, and freelancing.
Two examples of well performing posts:
My recommendation is to go for a mix of posts about your company and posts that actually emphasize your opinions on different matters. Direct posts perform better than posts that are shared from other pages, but it doesn’t mean you cannot do both.
When it comes to format, there’s a wide range of options to choose from: just text, photos, carousels, videos to polls, articles or newsletters. You can now also contribute to collaborative articles on various topics and share your knowledge alongside other experts. By doing this frequently, LinkedIn will recognize you as an expert in your field and give you the Top Voice badge.
My advice is to test them and go with the ones you’re most comfortable with and that drives the most results.
When it comes to hashtags, stick with 3 to 5#.
Use the platform
LinkedIn works well if you use it actively. Even if you decide to work with someone to help you manage your account, it’s still very important to navigate through the platform, to interact with other members, to engage with other posts. Adding new people, commenting on their posts, and posting content is not enough.
To build a personal brand here means to treat the platform as a resource and make the most out of it. Share and learn, be active, connect with relevant people, send personalized messages and see your brand grow!