Donna Serdula is the founder and president of Vision Board Media, a professional branding company that helps individuals and companies tell their unique story on LinkedIn and beyond. Bringing dynamic brand storytelling to the masses and empowering people to dream big – that’s the ink in her pen.
It's her Website LinkedIn DASH Makeover DOT com where she and her team help people collide with opportunity and transform their lives via future forward career branding. She has authored two editions of LinkedIn Profile Optimization FOR DUMMIES. Donna also hosts the podcast, Dream Big with Big Dreamers.
She's shared her LinkedIn expertise at global conferences, presented keynotes and workshops and featured on a number of high-profile news outlets.
To contact Donna:
LinkedIn profile: https://www.linkedin.com/in/todonna
Free resources: https://www.linkedin-makeover.com/linkedin-headline-generator/
If you'd like to talk to Terry McDougall about coaching or being a guest on Marketing Mambo, here's how you can reach her:
Her book Winning the Game of Work: Career Happiness and Success on Your Own Terms is available at Amazon.
Hey everybody. It's Terry McDougall with another episode of marketing Mambo. And we're going to talk about a topic today that involves more than 700 million people around the globe. It's also a place where you can gain access to 15 million job postings. And it's an organization that generated $8 billion in revenue last year.
And finally you can make friends there without even leaving the comfort of your own home or office. So what am I talking about? Well, I'm talking about LinkedIn, of course. And my guest today, Donna sedula is the author of two books, LinkedIn profile optimization for dummies and LinkedIn make-over professional secrets to a powerful LinkedIn profile. Clearly, she's an expert on LinkedIn. She's been out there using it almost since its inception.
And advising professionals on how to use LinkedIn more effectively since 2009. So I can't wait to share the conversation that I had with Donna. She brought so many great tips and perspectives on how to use LinkedIn effectively. And I learned a time and I know you will too. So now without further ado, let the Mamba begin.
Hey everybody. It's Terry, Nick Dougal with another episode of marketing Mambo, and I am so excited to have as my guest today. Donna, sir, She's the founder and president of vision board media, which is a professional branding company that helps individuals and companies tell their unique story on LinkedIn and beyond.
Now I am a huge. Advocate of LinkedIn. It's been a really important social media channel for me. And so I am so excited to welcome Donna here today. Donna, welcome to marketing mono. How are you?
Fabulous. Terry, thank you so much for having me.
really excited to have another LinkedIn or on the podcast today. I hope you don't mind that I'm characterizing you that way.
No, I don't mind. I don't mind at all. I've been called like the LinkedIn queen I've been called, like anything you can come up with attached to LinkedIn. And I'm cool with it because I've been on it since 2005. Do you remember when you joined?
Yeah, I joined in 2007. And the funny thing is the person that introduced me. I never heard of LinkedIn. And whenever I got the invite, I called her on the telephone and I said, is this a scam? You know, what is this thing? And. now I've got 10,000 connections on LinkedIn. So that's a long, long time ago.
I'm definitely a convert now. So I know I just sort of scratched the surface of what you do and what vision board media does, but would you like to go into a little bit more detail?
Sure, we help people tell their story. And normally people contact us when something cataclysmic, not fans in their world. And I mean, it could be something like, they lost a really big client. They've got a press release going out. They missed a promotion.
Maybe they're looking for investors, maybe they're starting up a new company or they're doing a side hustle. It's a whole bunch of things of that nature where all of a sudden. Oh, wait, maybe I should be on LinkedIn. Maybe people are checking me out on LinkedIn and how am I representing myself?
Oh, no, I've just copied and pasted and out of date, resumes
gonna work. And that's when my phone.
Yeah. We were talking about this a little bit before I hit record that. For a lot of people, they never really think about their LinkedIn profile until it's time to look for a job, their company's gone through a merger and there were layoffs or something like that.
And, I really think that that's a little late. Don't you think?
I would say, you want to dig your well before you're thirsty, right? That's the best way, but here's another thought. And that is, and I think it's an old Chinese proverb that says the best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. But the second best time is today.
So in my mind, you can't be too late.
let's do it. And let's be honest who wants to write about themselves? I mean, really like any odious task in the world is more attractive than writing your LinkedIn profile. I mean, you'll be out there, rearranging your kitchen cabinets and cleaning out garbage cans. You're going to sit down and write it.
Yeah, it's so funny, what are some of the basic things that people can do or that they should do? I kind of look at it like LinkedIn is not something that you have to do. It's sort of an iterative thing. Right? You can do a little bit, and then you can do a little bit more and then you can do a little bit more, when someone finishes listening to today's podcast, what is the thing that they should do immediately on their LinkedIn profile?
Terry, I'm going to share with you my methodology. It's a four point methodology and it just takes all of this together. And, and then I will answer your question in the most direct way possible.
So. I've been using LinkedIn since signed up 2005 started my company in 2009. We have worked with over 6,000 people from all over the world. And. Doing this. I realized that so many people make LinkedIn into this really complex, hard to master just behemoths. And it's not, it's really simple.
I've got a four point methodology and I call it soar to success on LinkedIn and each letter of the word. Stands for a tier. So the first tier is S strategize. No one really thinks about this, but what are you doing? What are you on LinkedIn? What's going to make you feel like your time has been worth while why are you on, are you looking for a job?
Are you looking for reputation management? Are you looking to brand yourself? Do you want to be seen as an expert? Are you doing this to forge a stronger network? let's put it up.
cause if you don't know what you're doing, you're never going to get there. So let's the very first thing, figure out why you're there.
And then let's go a little deeper. Let's start thinking about your target audience. Who are you really writing this LinkedIn profile for? Cause like, yeah, I know it could be anyone, but there's really a person that you're targeting. What do they need to know about. What do you want them to know about you?
And then I would even go so far as to say, because everyone wants opportunity to just drop in their lap. Right? Like that's what, no one wants to
work for it.
Right. They want the recruiters reaching out. Hey, I've got this half a million dollar a year job. I'd like to offer you.
Yeah. I hang board opportunities here. So, figure out what would a person be searching for? If they had this big bowl of chocolatey heaping opportunity for you, like, well, wouldn't be those key words, would it be. The board director, would it be executive in technology? Would it be CE oh, Dallas, Texas.
Would it be someone who knows business operations and lean manufacturing, figure out what that person would be searching for?
And then you want to take those words. Those are your key words, and you got to make sure you massage them. You sprinkle, you integrate them throughout your profile because only then will you get found for those words.
So that's like huge. That's foundational. That's the strategy. Once you have all of this, like percolating in your brain, then you got. Oh, so we're going with the soar S O a R S a strategize. Oh, is optimize. You've got to optimize the profile. You got to get in there and you got to look at it and you got to go like, wait, you know, this is branding me as I was five years ago.
Or this is selling me as someone from 10 years ago and that's terrible. Right. And it's so easy. It is so easy to lose track of that brand and your story, because we're so busy getting the ball to the other side of the court, but take that moment to say, okay, who am I and where am I going?
What does my future look like? What do I want to align myself to? Who am I, what do I stand for? You need to be thinking about that and you need to optimize the profile from top to bottom.
that makes makes a lot of sense. And It's funny everything from, I've seen people's, LinkedIn profiles where clearly the photo is from, . 95 or something. Or they're on a catamaran with their wife snuggled up to them with sunglasses on, off the coast of Hawaii or something.
And I'm like, okay, is that the brain? I don't know. Do you own that catamaran and you're a tour operator or, is that just a happy memory that you're putting out there? Because I. you know with you're an investment banker. I'm not sure that that's the right, image.
you know what , look I phones shoot amazing, photographs, I mean really high quality and, you could. Enlist a friend, a spouse, and have them shoot you. But I'm going to tell you this. I really believe that you want to really present yourself as a success
because people work with successful people.
That's who they want to associate themselves with. And the best way to look successful is to call up a photographer and get a professional headshot. It's so easy. It's surprisingly.
To me, it's just a no brainer, and you should be getting one every other year, every two years, maybe three years at most.
I know that seems like really often, but men, we expire.
You don't. Oh, I mean, I used to work in marketing for an investment bank and, part of what I did was, every quarter would coordinate a headshot day, and have a photographer come into the office and do headshots. And I've always been. Shocked and surprised when it's not an exaggeration that sometimes people will have 20 year old headshots that they're using and when a client or somebody in their network meets them in person.
And, they used to have a full head of hair and now they're completely bald or, completely different hairstyle look complete. You know, you don't want people to be shocked and be like, Oh, my gosh, who is this? I think it undermines the trust.
Oh, yeah, the transparency, the authenticity level, kind of behind the profile picture is the background graph.
And if the people listening, look at their profile, if it looks kind of grayish green and stripey, that means that they have the default background. And this is a really easy way of putting forth your message to subtly say, Almost subliminally suggest who you are and what you do in an image.
And so, I always say, illustrate your brand through this image. And again, just because you like a field of flowers, unless you're a horticulturalist, there's probably a better way of doing it. But the background image is huge. My area of the profile that I think is so important.
And so often ignored is the headline and the headline is right below your name,
The headline. It's not just relegated to the top of your profile. This headline follows you. So if you recommend someone on LinkedIn, if you post on LinkedIn, if you're messaging people on LinkedIn, it doesn't matter.
Whatever you do that headline follows you. And so the default is your current title and your current company, which, like boring does not compel anyone. But this is it's 220 character. And, if you can integrate and infuse keywords, the keywords that people are searching for are going to be more apt to turn up higher and the search results.
I hired a developer to create a LinkedIn headline gen. For me and it's on my website. It's totally free. Anyone can go and visit to go to visit LinkedIn dash make-over dot com. Click on free tools and you have access to this headline generator. And you just click, click, click, answer a couple of questions and put a couple adjectives and some nouns, almost like the old fashioned Madlibs.
Do you remember Madlib? It's kind of the same concept. But it will spit out. It'll generate a headline that you can copy you paste directly into your profile. And what you're going to find is not only are you, you're turning up higher in the search results, you're getting more hits because you're getting more hits.
You're getting more opportunity.
I love that. I love that. Circling back to the photo, I have a couple of thoughts that I want to share. One is that, when I first got my coaching certification, I worked for a couple of years for an outplacement firm, which these are the companies that are hired by corporations when they lay people off and they'll match them with coaches to help them get a job. And so I did that for a couple of years. And of course, part of that was like helping people, their resumes and LinkedIn profiles. And it was not uncommon for people not to have photos. And some of the research that they shared with us coaches was that I think it's like 70 or 80% of recruiters will not.
Consider a candidate, if they do not have a headshot photo. And I, usually will not accept somebody's LinkedIn, connection request If they don't have a photo, because I don't really have any way of knowing who they are. If they're not willing to share that,
Yeah. If you think about it, Harry, like if you went to Amazon, like everyone goes to Amazon. Everyone buys things on Amazon, but if you went to Amazon and there was a listing you were interested in, but there was no picture of the product.
You just keep going,
You wouldn't, you would not, but I will say this and this is something I see all the time and it looks like a person has an uploaded, an image, but in fact they have, but they have the visibility settings
too for only first degree connections.
Oh, I've seen that too.
Which is a shame because who wants to connect with that person? They think it's a bot or they, who someone who's just not serious or not relevant. So you don't ever get the chance to see that. Oh, if you do accept it, then suddenly you're going to magically see their picture.
And your first degree connections already know you,
about this, right? We talked about this a little bit earlier the first two or three years that I was on LinkedIn, I, wasn't very adventurous about connecting I actually was only connecting with people that I really knew, like people that I worked with and stuff like that.
And then I guess one day I woke up and I realized, well, this is kind of silly. I already know the people that I work with. Maybe there's somebody that I meet and I don't know them or. , I, see that we all went to the same conference or we're all in the same networking group or something like that.
This is a great place to meet them. And I've become very adventurous on LinkedIn an I've made friends. I got business opportunities. I actually mentioned to you earlier. Somebody that I met on LinkedIn and I've only met him virtually, had me write a chapter for his book on leadership.
So you just never know what you might come across. One other thing I want to mention is my husband he was a banker and then he stayed home with our kids for a long time while I was the primary bread winner. And during that time he started his own photography business and he did a lot of headshots and his studio was in our house.
And I wouldn't be in the studio, but I could hear him talking to people. There are many, many people who feel very self-conscious about. Their image, and going back to what you were saying earlier, it is the reason why you should work with a professional because they will make you look your best.
And it's understandable sometimes that people feel a little funny about, if for some reason they felt self-conscious about the way that they look. The bottom line is though everybody sees you. Okay. Like if they're seeing you in person, they see you and so work with a professional to have them do a headshot,
and, they can do amazing things with angles and lighting. And, my husband Scott would work with them to like get people to be comfortable so that he could really get the best. Image possible. And then, there's, after touching to, like
Smoothing things out and, getting rid of the stray hairs or the blemish or whatever.
there's also a difference in photography now there's the portraiture photography, and then there's the business headshot. And that's something to pay attention to because that portraiture is sort of like, the glamour photographs from the mall.
Right. Yeah. And then there's the business headshot where it really should be.
It's a marketing image and really positions you in a different light. And I don't know where your audience is located, but it is hard to find. A good photographer depending on where you are. I always say go to headshot, crew.com.
It's a great database of headshot photographers. And what I like now is, like 20 years ago, the headshots used to be so uncomfortable and awkward and there'd be like, either like, kind of like. Smokey background.
And nowadays the photographers are so much more sophisticated and the images come across so much more naturally and high level.
Yeah. It's very cool. And I think going back to what you were saying earlier, it really depends on. What your personal brand is, right. If you're, the owner of an advertising agency, you're probably going to try to portray a different image than somebody who is a wealth manager or an insurance broker or something like that.
You're going to probably dress differently. You're going to have a different type of backgrounds. But, .
Yeah. So anyway, don't want to beat to death. The whole idea of like, please put a photo on your LinkedIn profile. And I actually have written a couple articles on the LinkedIn, photos, one of them.
You should get a professional photographer, but some people will be like, I can't really afford that. I actually have written an article, which I think is on my website about doing DIY ones. Just what you need to take into consideration if you're going to do your own that could be a good place to start.
And then maybe later you get a professional headshot.
Hi, when people say that to me, I can't afford. A photographer. I'm like, how much do you think a photographer costs? I mean, just do anything. What do you think? Like, do you think it's like a thousand dollars?
Like where do you, where is it? And a lot of times they never even thought they just, because it's outside of their comfort zone, right?
People are like, no that's for people who are successful and I'm not successful.
well, it's a good place to start look successful. And then the success
will follow ,
but a lot of times it's a block. It's a block more than anything
Yeah, It's a huge block.
you can totally afford a photographer. There are so many out there. You can walk down the street, there's a rock. You pick up the rock. And underneath that rock is a photographer. They're everywhere.
Yes. when my husband was first starting his business, he was doing a lot of photography for free to build his portfolio. He had all the equipment and the lighting and, the training and all of that, but he was just doing, so he had images for his website. So you never know.
A lot of times networking groups will have headshot nights or days, so, you can always check into that because sometimes there'll be like, okay, come to this event and, pay the entry fee for the event.
And it's like an extra 50 bucks to get your headshot done. They just have them lined up and They're just doing, one after the other.
Yeah, I really liked what you said though, because to me it is a ladder, right. Do it yourself, you know, don't extend your arm and do a selfie, but get enlist a friend, you know, check out networking groups, check to see what is the cost and you're eventually gonna keep getting.
each year, the further you are in your career, you're going to find that, eventually you do get into the studio. And you're working with a real professional who is an amazing photographer. But up until that point, there are varying levels that you can utilize to gain a pretty decent image of yourself.
exactly. Well, and this is a long conversation about the idea of optimization, but that's what we're talking about. Start with something and then just keep, step-by-step laddering up from there, something is better than nothing. Don't leave that, Greg.
And to your point earlier, give people access to be able to see you. That's what LinkedIn is all about. And I don't find it to be too smarmy either. Over the years, I've gotten a couple. Flirtatious messages, which I just I'm linked from the person.
But it's very, very rare and so much less often than on other social media platforms. So I don't really think that there's a lot to be afraid of on LinkedIn.
No. find that with LinkedIn. They're very professional. Even though now it's getting more personal, we're seeing a lot more fun posts and posts that aren't always, a hundred percent, professional, but it doesn't stray too far. But I find that, when I'm on Facebook and I'm getting hit with the divisiveness and the anger and the hatred, I can retreat to LinkedIn and it's delightful because People are people, it just has a warmer, friendlier feel.
Yeah, I think because there's some boundaries there it's a place where professionals come to talk about professional things.
And I think some people keep themselves in shock because
Yeah. Yeah, exactly. Well, yeah. Because, anytime that I'm meeting with someone, or if I'm introduced to someone, I'd go out and check them out, see, okay, where do they work?
How much experience do they have? Where did they go to school? Where are they located? What kind of posts do they put out there?
And, that's the other aspect of the profile, right? Is there's the featured section, but right underneath the featured section is the activity. Section, and this is where you can really time date stamp that profile in terms of your recent activity. At one time people would get onto LinkedIn and once every six months, once a year, you've gotta be on there more often.
And it's a good idea. If you can't post or you don't want to post. Interact with the posts that are there from your network and get in there and start liking and commenting and having conversations. Those conversations do show up on your profile and people can see, okay, this person is active. They have something to say, they're friendly, they're interacting.
You know, it's a good thing.
Yeah. So I think we've gotten through S and O so what's the.
Oh, so a, and believe me with optimization, it keeps going. I mean, there's the about section? There's so much that you can do, but I think ultimately, if there's one thing you do definitely look at the intro card, your background, picture your profile, picture your headline, get that look and great.
And then you can start to move through.
Can I just comment on something you said earlier, how, some people are kind of overwhelmed by. Populating their profile. I remember whenever I was beating mine up that LinkedIn guides you and they kind of game-ify It in a way because I kept getting These percentage.
Okay. You're 65% of the way to superstar status. Right. And I was like, oh, I want to get to superstar. But all I had to do was just keep doing the next thing that it was guiding me through to do. So it wasn't really like rocket science. You just have to follow the directions. It's not too hard.
I find that, unfortunately, because how hands-on LinkedIn is it does frustrate. People are like, leave me alone. What do I have to do next? Like, it depends. I think on how you view the world
Your mindset. But I agree like it's just one of those things. It's there go through it and always be thinking, is this how I want to represent myself?
Is this focused in, on my future? Is this telling the world what I want? Because no one can give you what you want. If you don't tell them you, there has to be a level of clarity in your desires and your goals. So we have strategized, we have optimized. The next one is. And the really the only way to truly analyze through your network.
So you've got to build your network. You've got to connect with people. Now, you had said how you were very, very conservative in terms of your network and you only connected with people that you know, and you trust. And then you started to see what makes the band out. And you're like, wow, this is. Fun. This is great.
I'm meeting people, I'm getting more opportunities. The more people I connect with. And there's a lot of truth to that, yes, you can keep it small. And I think for executives, I do like when an executive has a small network, a network that's really, really. Focused on the people that he or she knows and trusts, it's like the real network.
And then they have a lot of followers if a person has that, that's the hallmark of someone who really is who they say they. But there is the new followers and I mean, it's not even really new anymore, but at one time the only way that you can connect with people and listen to their updates and pay attention to them was through connecting.
And so, , we had to connect and connect and connect and connect to get heard. But now you've got the follow button people can follow you.
Yeah, I'd love for You to talk a little bit more about that because I have noticed that, I was very active getting connected with people for many, many years, and then I don't even remember when the follow button popped up, but, is There an advantage to connecting with people over following or vice versa?
are two totally different things. And it really depends upon the relationship you have. With the other person. So you connect when you know the person, when you want them in your network and the LinkedIn network extends three degrees. So when you connect with someone there a first degree connection, when they come into that network, by accepting that invite, or you accept, they're invited, it doesn't matter.
They're not coming in alone. They're coming in with all of their first degree connections. All of those first degree connections are now your second degree and all of those second degree connections. First connections are coming in as your third degree. So it really does extend your network. Huge. By making that connection.
And when people are on LinkedIn and they are searching now, I'm not talking about a name based search I'm talking about. They're like, you know what? I'm trying to fill up these board seats. And I'm looking for a high-level executive in the manufacturing industry who, whatever it is, they're typing in keywords and they're only using like a bullion, phrases.
Now, are you talking about like sales navigator or the recruiter level
Even at the free,
even at the free level, and sometimes they're doing it from Google, they're doing an x-ray search and they're only searching LinkedIn. So , it all depends. But regardless when a person's inside LinkedIn and they are doing a keyword based search, whether it's the free version or even a the paid version.
They are searching they're first degree network, their second degree network and their third degree network. Now, the more money you pay, bigger you can search, but not everyone pays that amount of money. So if you want to get found, you need to be in a lot of networks,
Right. Right. So if you're a fourth degree, you're not going to show up, you're going to be out of network.
The last name's not going to be available. So, that's the reason. To connect is because you want to get found or you want to find people. You want to have a bigger pool to be looking at like, so recruiters they want to have a very extensive, true network of connections. The only problem there's a maximum limit of 30001st degree, which might sound huge, but let me just tell you I'm hitting up against it. And when you've been on for, close to 15 years, it's easy to get to
So then, then we have the follow button and the follow-up. Is look, I don't want to bring you into my network. I'm not even gonna pretend that we know each other, but you are an interesting human being.
And I want to pay attention to your updates.
Oh, yeah. Cool.
I want to hear you. I want to see what you're doing. I want you in my feed follow that's what the follow button is for it's to pay attention to people who are outside your net. And have their updates, part of your LinkedIn feed.
What's nice about that is if you follow a person and maybe there's someone that you really do want to know, like this is someone that, could be really an instrumental figure. Someone that you really do want to get to know, but you don't know them yet. You could follow. Once you had followed, there's a star that shows up in the upper right.
Part of their profile, you hit the star. That means now whenever they do update, you're going to get notifications that the person has. And then once you hit that thing, then whenever they do posts, you're going to see it. And you're going to jump in to the comments and You're going to start to interact and, chat with them, offer some interesting feedback.
And you're going to do that for a few weeks. And then after a while that person's going to know you because they see you interacting very organically. And then at that point you can send them a connection request. And at that point they do know you.
Yeah. That makes a lot of sense. And thank you for explaining that because I was sort of wondering, it just seemed to sort of pop up and I was like, what's the difference? You know, but, okay, so amplifying. It's the third step. So what's our.
Alright is relate. So relate means now you're on it, you've got the beautiful profile you've got this strong network of connections. Now you got to start relating to them. You've got to, get in there to the LinkedIn feed and start to interact.
Don't just like comment, you know, really get in there and comment on what people are writing. And then once you start to feel really comforted. Then it's time to start posting and you can share articles. You can share advice, you can share tips, you can share stories, you can share books that you've read.
There's so much that you can post. But with that said, I don't want to intimidate people and make them think that they've got. Posting five, 10 times a day or even five times a week, with LinkedIn, there's a beauty to their feed.
And the beauty is you can post once a week. And that post lives quite a while it keeps popping up on people's, feed and the more, popular it is, the more. Engaging in interactive, these comments are the longer it can live. It could live a week or two. I mean, I still see posts that pop up out of nowhere that people engage with.
So, if you can post even once a week, once every two weeks, heck once for three weeks, but here's the thing that's for you to create content, the days that you're not. Make sure you at least go in there and comment. And the other nice thing about the feed is when you do comment, that comment shows up on the LinkedIn feed.
So someone in your network will see that you made this comment and that person's post is now on their feed. So you've really promoted this other person. By commenting or liking, and this other person sees it, but they're also seeing it because they see that your name is associated with it. So you're still getting this sort of a viral, outburst
on the LinkedIn world without
Yeah. Yeah. You know, when I first started posting to LinkedIn, what I would typically do is just share articles, that were germane to marketing or financial services. That's what I worked in marketing and financial services. And so if I found an article that I thought was really interesting, I would just share it with a few comments.
Right. So felt like that was a really. Safe way to start. One of the other things I think is really cool that LinkedIn has started is the ability to do the surveys, where you ask a question, the polls. Yeah.
And those. Tend to get a lot of interaction because who doesn't want to give their opinion.
And then see like, oh, what does everybody else think? Because as soon as you answer it, you can see what the tabulated answers.
Holes are by far, at least right now in time. One of best performing types of posts that you can do on LinkedIn, for summary. They tend to explode, tend to do really well. You get a lot of hits, a lot of, results. It's a fabulous thing. So polls are a great thing to do.
You can also upload documents like a slideshow, you can upload, and each time a person clicks through to see. The next slide that tells LinkedIn that this is a relevant post. This is something that's intriguing. People, people are hovering over it, they're dwelling on it. And when they dwell a little bit longer on that post.
That post is going to do better. That's the other reason why we see on LinkedIn slightly longer posts than just like 140 characters or 220 characters, because we want that show more link to pop in there. And when a person clicks show. And it expands that also really clues LinkedIn in that this post has relevance.
It's intriguing. It's interesting. There's value to it and that's what LinkedIn wants. They want that LinkedIn fee to be the people, you know, talking about the things that you can. And that's the other reason why I'm like get in there and comment on other people's posts. Because when you comment, you're showing that you have these relationships with these people who are also active on LinkedIn.
So when you do post, they get to see that post and, suddenly you're doing a little bit better than you would normally.
Yeah. Talk to me about, I know that you can pin content to your. Homepage, or I don't know exactly what you would call it, but, talk to us about pinning content and why that might be advantageous for somebody to do on their LinkedIn profile.
So it's called a featured section and you can pin your posts. Like, you have a really great well-performing post or just a post. Maybe it's not performing all that well, but it's opposed that you want people to pay attention to, you can pin it and it shows up on your profile. But it's not just.
Posts. I mean, you can upload, documents, brochures, PDFs, you can attach, , videos, maybe a YouTube video. You could actually link your website. So the featured section is really robust in terms of the information that it displays. And so whether it's you petting a post or you sharing a document or images or videos, it just is there to allow people to see more of you.
It allows you to send trucks. To other areas outside of LinkedIn, which typically on a post it's not one of those things that LinkedIn links, right. Because LinkedIn wants people to stay on LinkedIn. So if you link outside, those posts tend not to do well. That's why you see people going, Lincoln first comment, because they don't want
algorithm to ding them.
I was going to ask you about that because I'm on a lot of podcasts and I put my own podcasts out there and I got advice awhile back put your artwork up there or maybe put like a short little audio gram or something like that. and you can write about the podcast, but don't put the link in the original post to say, see below for linked to podcast.
And then after 24 hours, you can edit and remove that and put the real link in. So you can actually go back after 24 hours and edit it and put the link in. So that's the other thing to
keep in mind.
Oh, that's good to know.
You know, Terry, it would be interesting for you to go back and see, did those posts where you put it in the comments, did they fare any better or the same as if you put it right there in the body?
I know for a fact there are differences, but for someone who is just actively creating content and pushing it out there, I say, don't get too hung up. Don't get too hung up. If you're sharing good, valuable information, you're going to have some posts that catch and have some posts that thud and that's very natural.
It could just be the time of day that you posted. It could be that, you know, other things were going on in the world. People were paying more attention to will Smith than they were to
Yeah, exactly. I had one that was a featured post. I think I shared an article, but I made some comments about it and whatever it was. It was very timely. And, somebody reached out to me and said, oh, I saw your post was a featured post. And I was like, oh, wow. I mean, I was just lucky in terms of it being a trending topic that I kind of rode the wave.
Yeah. You never know. You really never know. Now with you, you are an influencer. You've got this podcast, you have a lot of content that you're pushing out, you know, but I look at, you're listening to. And, most likely they don't have that podcast.
And most likely they're not, actively creating content and that's okay. Right. That's okay. It would be a good thing. find an article and yeah, articles don't do that well, but you know what? You're putting something out there and people will see it. We're not doing this for tomorrow.
We're doing this for the long run. This is a long-term commitment. This is your career. And I don't want people to get so caught up in like, will I get five more views if I do this don't worry about it. Just do it. Just optimize your profile and get on there and add value and educate and help inspire people and motivate people and give advice and ask for advice and just enjoy it because it's a fabulous platform.
Your network is your net worth it's there for you.
Yeah. I love that. What did you say earlier? You said dig the well before you're thirsty. Right? So just make this part of Your discipline, just make it a habit. Even a few minutes a week is probably all you need to nurture it.
It's sorta like having A house plant. Right. You don't have to
do a lot just like water it every once in a while.
A little bit, you know, like just a little bit. And a funny thing happens because at first it feels a little uncomfortable, right. Cause you're outside of your comfort zone. so you feel a little weird. Feel a little awkward, but you force yourself and before, you know, it you're like, wait, you know, this isn't that bad.
And I can, you know, I can keep doing this. This is not a big deal. And then all of a sudden you have this traction that you don't even know when you caught the traction, but all of a sudden you're that person who doesn't have to look for it. Job's find you, you become that person where these clients just are knocking on your door because they know of you.
They've heard of you. They've, they've gotten referrals to you and suddenly you don't even have to work so hard, but it's just now this big snowball and the effect is amazing, but you have to get started and you have to keep it up. And again, don't get intimidated by this thought of, oh, I've got to write a thousand words on.
Well, you don't.
mean, like you don't have to write that that's silly, bro. It tree, right? Like you don't have to, but share something, share something, open up a little bit, have
some fun. And here's the other nice thing. Terria do you do Instagram?
A little bit.
I love to go through Instagram.
Right. But there's nothing that I hate more than these grown mature individuals who are dancing around and they're pointing at bubbles and they're lip-syncing to some pop song.
I'm like, that's not me. I could never
do that. It's so in authentic, and that's the beauty of LinkedIn. You don't have to play
silly games. You show up, you give some value, you educate, you inspire and you get inspired and you get motivated you develop professionally and life goes on.
And you can maintain your dignity to
You can maintain your dignity and you don't have to be overly vulnerable.
Exactly. Well, Donna, I love this conversation and I learned a lot myself, even though 15 years for me on LinkedIn and 17 for you. When did it even start?
2004 to oh, wow. Okay.
was when Reed Hoffman started. I mean, you'll see, you'll see 2000 shoe versus 2003. And I think it, is somewhere in between those two years. But yeah, I mean, it's one of the oldest it's older than Facebook, older than Twitter.
here a long time.
Yeah, I was on LinkedIn before I was on Facebook.
When I was in college, that Facebook was a book with faces in it. It was printed book.
I remember those days, those young, rubber champers.
So Donna, if people are listening and they're like, man, I know I need to get my LinkedIn profile updated, but where do I even begin? I'm sure that you and your team would be happy to talk to them. So where can people find you?
So all they need to do is visit my website, which is LinkedIn dash make-over dot com. And I'm very weird in my approach to business. I put my phone number on my website so people can call me. And I pick up my phone and I also put out, exactly our pricing.
So no one has to, wonder if they're wasting their time. They can see exactly what we charge. So my strangeness is in my transparency.
Well, that actually sounds extremely refreshing. So you heard it here,
Well, Donna, it's been a real pleasure talking to you today and I'll have you back at a future date and we can talk about. Content creation writing articles or something else.
Cause there's so much on LinkedIn. I mean, there's like training and some of the more advanced things that you can use it for. So maybe we'll give people time to do their basics and then I can have you back at another time to talk, go a
I look forward to it, Terry, thank you so much.