Last summer I wrote about the importance LinkedIn can be for executing B2B SEO link building. Success derives from the amount of trust and authenticity one conveys when actively networking. And the first place to start is through your LinkedIn profile.
While I detailed several key LinkedIn profile elements that help convey trust, the objective of this post is to provide even more examples through exemplary LinkedIn user profiles found online.
Why LinkedIn Again?
As illustrated in the 2015 B2B Content Marketing report, put out by the Content Marketing Institute and MarketingProfs, 94% of B2B content marketers are using LinkedIn to distribute their content. And in Holger Schulze’s 2014 B2B Content Marketing Trends Report, LinkedIn tops the list as the most effective social media platform for delivering content.
Finally, according to IHS GlobalSpec’s annual survey of technical professionals and their use of social media, 74% of technical professionals surveyed have LinkedIn profiles. While the vast majority of those surveyed are not actively participating in discussions or sales-specific initiatives, a large percentage (69%) are looking for contacts and nearly half (47%) read product and industry news.
Bottom-line – if you’re building a B2B online marketing program or looking to further develop your network in the B2B space, LinkedIn is one of the first places to focus on and explore.
Elements of a LinkedIn Profile to Consider
As detailed in my previous post, I outlined several aspects of a LinkedIn profile that aid in establishing trust and credibility. Here is that list in summary:
- A Professional Profile Photo (Headshot)
- A Concise, Impactful Profile Headline
- A Well Written / Developed Summary
- A Well Constructed List of Professional Experience
- A Well Developed Skills & Endorsements
- Recommendations from Customers, Peers & Colleagues
- Involvement in Select LinkedIn Groups
- Education Background
- Highlighted Projects
- Publications / Written Works
As I reviewed profiles examples for inclusion in this post, consideration in part was based on this list of LinkedIn profile elements and creativity in execution. Sure the list of examples is subjective but the goal is to provide a range of ideas which in turn can be applied, as applicable, to your own initiatives.
10 Exemplary LinkedIn Profiles
As you consider LinkedIn profile development as a component of your B2B online marketing program, here are ten LinkedIn profiles to reference, with highlights and key takeaways as to why they stand out.
Brittney’s profile hits all of the fundamentals, leading with published content and a concise, bullet list of summary information. A few key highlights:
- Bulleted summary and experience information, highlighting key responsibilities and success stories
- Complete information across experience, education, and other key professional details
- Volunteer experience, interests, and active participation following groups, organizations, and influencers.
I am currently the marketing manager at an embedded computer networking company that largely focuses on the Internet of Things space. I make sure to keep my LinkedIn profile as up-to-date and complete as I can with job descriptions, volunteer experiences, groups, endorsements, etc.
The first thing that stands out when you view John’s profile is the cover photo. I like how John utilizing the group photograph to capture attention and arguably speak towards the importance of teamwork. Additional elements of the profile for example:
- Incorporation of third party references, breaking up text with visual highlights, and LinkedIn recommendations within the majority of his listings for experience and positions.
- Rounding out the profile with a comprehensive list of volunteer initiatives, honors and awards, and skills and endorsements from others.
I use LinkedIn daily and receive thousands a views a year. I have my full bio, videos, and podcasts on there and leverage the groups I am in.
As with all of the other examples, Anthony Gioeli’s profile covers all of the fundamentals, including a cover photos and published LinkedIn contributions. Additional highlights:
- A concise summary with third party contributions incorporated.
- Experience well summarized with bulleted information and recommendations where applicable.
- It also looks like Anthony organizes skills and endorsements to prioritize those more important to current professional endeavors.
My profile has been useful in promoting a book I recently released on international business expansion. The profile has enabled me to highlight my expertise in order to build credibility as an author. It has been extremely effective in positioning me for speaking engagements.
I like how Xand puts her contact information front and center in her profile and (as she indicates below) makes it easy to network with her through multiple means. Additional highlights:
- 1st person experience summaries with bulleted information and supporting recommendations and references.
- Outlined publications and project work.
- Rounding out the profile with a comprehensive list of volunteer initiatives, certifications, and third party interests.
Since I have a fairly short professional career, I knew I had to think about how I presented myself online. I broke my role down into chunks, instead of simply listing just my title, and took the time necessary to list out my projects and publications worked on. Also, once I’ve peaked their interest, I’ve provided easy ways of contacting me with my online calendar tool Calendly.
Melissa’s profile emphasizes her current publication and its interesting to see how she’s prioritized LinkedIn profile assets to support and emphasize applicable supporting information. Additional highlights and best practices:
- The use of bullet points (stars) to make for easy scanning
- Removing the endorsements which are not relevant
- Personalizing website links instead of the generic “company.”
My profile has developed over time. I love that we can now reorder the sequence of sections allowing us to highlight our strengths. Viewing your profile as a prospective client would is the best tool for determining content, flow, and information to include.
As Bryan indicates below, he uses subtle ways to make his profile standout, but the key takeaway for any B2B marketer is that his information is complete, concise, and well organized.
Where this profile stands out is [that I] joined relevant groups and even created my own, all of which are directed towards the digital marketing profession. The skills section of my profile is complete and filled with endorsements, but what takes it to the next level are skills which show character and add a little fun to the profile (see: coffee, breathing, drums). Finally, one of the most overlooked sections of LinkedIn, the projects portion, is filled out.
The first thing that stood out for me was Alan’s cover image, which includes both branding for the organization he represents and a subtle call-to-action highlighting resources and content marketing assets. Here are couple other key takeaways to consider:
- It might be unintentional but Alan’s third party references, specifically the featured images, stand out against the supporting information very well. I’ve considered this factor when deciding what third party articles I’ve wanted to place in my experience and summary sections as well.
- Clear and concise information with bulleted lists, recommendations, and (as indicated previously) third party references.
A little over 6 months ago I wanted a change in career and move from design / product to a marketing role. So I optimized my LinkedIn profile to highlight marketing experience and sent out a single update to the network I had built up over the years announcing I was looking for a new job. Within the week I had 4 interviews with impressive companies from all around the world. I ended up taking a director of marketing role at the great B2B company nd have been loving it ever since. Side note: Linkedin approached me and asked if my profile could be used in some PR.
Tim’s profile is another good example of a LinkedIn profile covering all critical elements. A few key takeaways include:
- Recognized and respected third party publication references leading Tim’s summary section and key experience.
- Recommendations, project work, and honors and awards supporting key experience.
- A comprehensive list of publications, projects, and honors & awards.
I showcase articles I’ve had published in TechCrunch and the Wall St. Journal. But what’s more interesting, that helps my profile standout, is that I have created a video resume that sits prominently at the top of my profile. It showcases my work as a founder of a charity, organizing events with leading professional sports organizations, and my global work travels to places like India. Professional job coaches and universities have shared my resume as a leading example for their clients/ students. I have almost 10,000 connections and I am the CEO of a Charity and a Director of Marketing at an Enterprise Software Company.
As detailed below, it was interesting to read how Ty leveraged LinkedIn functionality to reshape his career and emphasize skills and achievements that would lead him to new opportunities. As with other profiles in this article, Ty has complete and concise summary and experience information, backed with third party publication references, project work, and recommendations.
I retired from the Navy in 2011 and started out with a typical Navy profile that was filled with Navy Jargon and items that people really didn’t care about. I read your article and a couple of other articles and created the LinkedIn Profile that I currently have. I have started to see more and more traffic and people looking at the profile and believe that I have created something very professional that includes endorsements and recommendations from a variety of people. It was important for me to create a great profile because I recently started Chief’s Touch Consulting and people want to see my experiences quickly…I am starting to see nearly 30% of traffic to my website…from LinkedIn.
Last but not least, Abbi Whitaker’s profile represents one final example B2B marketers can review for completing a thorough and well developed LinkedIn profile. I particularly like how she lists out and provides a small amount of detail in association to third party publications, project work, and volunteer experience.
I use the “articles written/published tab” to highlight recent expert positioning and also use the presentation tab to upload presentations I have worked on or been part of.
What do all of these profiles have in common? In specific context, hopefully not too much :-). When it pertains to best practices, here are four key takeaways:
- Good profile photos and cover / background images where applicable.
- Clear concise summary and experience information, often backed with third party resources and references.
- Well outlined and detailed supporting elements, including publications, project work, skills and endorsements, volunteer work.
- Thorough integration of LinkedIn networking opportunities such as group participation and following third party influencers and organizations.
Additional Notes and References
Need more information? This discussion in Quora provides more examples and opinion on what makes a good LinkedIn profile. In addition, here are some other third party resources and examples for building out various aspects of LinkedIn profile information.
- What Profile Photo Works Best on LinkedIn: A Real-Life Experiment via LinkedIn
- 10 Examples of Terrible LinkedIn Profile Photos by Andrew Macarthy
- 8 LinkedIn Cover Photo Examples from Social Sellers by Jeff Zelaya
- 5 Easy Ways To Create A Brilliant Background For Your LinkedIn Profile via Forbes
- Here’s What To Say In Your LinkedIn ‘Summary’ Statement via Business Insider
- How to Write a LinkedIn Summary via Career Rocketeer
- 3 Stunningly Good LinkedIn Profile by Andy Foote
General Resources for Building Your LinkedIn Profile
- Optimizing Your Linkedin Profile: A Checklist via the Harvard Extension School
- The 31 Best LinkedIn Profile Tips for Job Seekers via The Muse
- 8 Secrets to Building a Stunning LinkedIn Profile via Huffington Post
- How to Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile for Social Selling via Hubspot
Finally, here is a set of slides which contain a brief synopsis highlighting the wider range of the relevant fields to consider in a LinkedIn profile. That deck can be accessed here:
Hopefully these resources and examples will aid in your continued efforts to build out a successful LinkedIn initiative. I would love to read your feedback and perspective via comments below.
A sincere “Thank You!” goes out to all of the individuals who provided profiles to list as examples!