LinkedIn expert Lucy Bingle spent 20 years in the marketing industry before flying solo with her own business. She now runs a digital marketing agency, LucyBingle.com, that specialises in teaching people how to get the most from the LinkedIn platform.
As Lucy Bingle tells Robert Gerrish and Lucy Kippist in this video, her dad was the inspiration for jumping off the corporate train.
“I have always had a strong interest in running my own business. My father was really entrepreneurial and has always been an inspiration. I saw a real opportunity about five years ago and I could see that LinkedIn was opening up as a platform and I could see an opportunity,” says Lucy.
“And being a marketing expert I thought to myself – you know what, this is an opportunity that lots of people should be jumping on and LinkedIn isn’t just a sourcing platform anymore, and that was my lightbulb moment. LinkedIn was new, innovative and nobody else was doing it!”
Why is LinkedIn becoming so popular?
According to Lucy, LinkedIn 600+ million users worldwide and a new member joins in Australia every 2-3 seconds.
“There is no competition to it. That’s fundamentally the biggest reason. It’s a social/professional platform. It gives an individual the opportunity to showcase what they do, position themselves in a great way and improve their career trajectory. They can set themselves up as a subject matter expert and it also allows people to sell their products.”
LinkedIn’s other major drawcard, according to Lucy is that it keeps improving the offering and will eventually be a full marketing solutions platform.
“So much has changed over the past five years, and more changes just keep coming. For example, I know there is a new feature that would be of interest for small businesses, consultants and freelancers, where you are going to be able to add services to your profile pages,” explains Lucy.
“You will be able to identify your service offering on your LinkedIn page. So it will immediately come up with service you provide.”
Does your stage of business affect your LinkedIn strategy?
The most crucial strategy when it comes to LinkedIn is ensuring you constantly update your profile.
“You have to remember that it’s a dynamic document. So it doesn’t matter what stage you’re at, you just need to make sure you are positioning yourself and your business in a true light. That means making sure you are updating what you are doing, and the same goes if you have a small team that everybody has a synergy that’s being correctly positioned on the platform.”
What are the common pitfalls and mistakes on LinkedIn?
Lucy says the most problematic LinkedIn accounts are those without a careful strategy.
“You need to position your people in the best way. Common mistakes are not having a good headshot or background images, and not adding any rich media to your profile pages,” says Lucy.
“Also it’s important to watch your tone and communicate in the right vein – it’s best to avoid getting political or sharing silly things, like memes.”
Finding your tribe on LinkedIn
Lucy told Flying Solo that connection is one of the best things you can do on LinkedIn.
“Strategically connecting out to the people you are working for is a big part of the LinkedIn puzzle. And that’s not just a scattergun approach, it means having a strategy in place to connect and spread the word,” says Lucy.
“People need to find their voice. Everyone has social fatigue, so ‘liking’ something just doesn’t cut it anymore. Finding your voice means contributing to the conversation and sharing your knowledge. This can be uncomfortable at first, but if you are an expert and you know your lane, you will have something interesting and important to say.”
Can you copy someone else’s LinkedIn strategy?
Sometimes copying what others are doing on the LinkedIn platform is a great way to start finding your voice.
Lucy recommends looking at thought leaders in your industry and other people who inspire you.
“Look at the strategies they have in place. You don’t want to cookie cutter what they’re doing obviously, so find your tone and point of difference. So if they are using great images and doing video really well, or in a certain way, then do the same thing but with your badge and branding.”
What’s the best way to spend 10 minutes a day on LinkedIn?
- Connecting out with one or two people by sending a connection request.
- Engaging with your networks activity. Not just liking, but commenting on content that resonates with you and where you have something to say.
- Once a week, find a high quality piece of content that you have authored (or was written by others) and share it with a really great insight or comment. And that will solidify you as a subject matter expert who has something to say.
Sign up for the long haul, it’ll be worth it
According to Lucy, LinkedIn is tipped to be the world’s largest online publishing platform for the next few years.
“It’s a busy platform. There is a lot to leverage there. They are never going to move away from being a sourcing tool that’s people focused, and that is good for marketing. So if you can share your stories, set yourself apart by finding our voice and have something interesting to say that informs your clients and prospects, then you can make a difference on the platform.”
Lucy Bingle is a B2B marketing LinkedIn expert and founder of Lucy Bingle.com
NSW Small Business Month is a series of hundreds of events to help your business succeed. Gain valuable support, be inspired to start, run or grow your business, and connect with like-minded people. Find an event near you, or join one online.