Revitalize Your LinkedIn Profile with These 7 Best Practices

Posted by Handshake 2.0 at 6:30 AM on February 23, 2011:

From Patsy Stewart:

While there’s no substitute for a face-to-face handshake, LinkedIn provides the ability to establish a credible profile that can lead to and expand relationships. To give new power and life to your LinkedIn profile, use these seven best practices.

Give new power and life to your LinkedIn profile. 1. Complete your profile 100%.
You can see your score on the right side when editing your profile. Here are the areas that will help you get to 100%.

  • List your current job
  • Include two previous positions
  • Add your education
  • Add a profile summary
  • Upload a personal photo (no kids, no pets, no logo)
  • Include your specialties
  • Earn at least three recommendations

2. Edit your public profile URL.
I suggest you choose your name if it's available. Add this URL to your business cards, your signature file and include it in other profiles. (Here's how to create a personal URL for your public profile from Handshake 2.0.)

3. Write a detailed summary. 
Your summary is one of the most important parts of the profile because it is indexed by the search engines. It should be written in first person and should include your keywords, your skills, your experience and what differentiates you from others. You can use up to 2000 words. Suzanne Vara outlines How to  Pack A Powerful Punch With Your LinkedIn Summary.

4. Include links to your company websites on your profile.
Tip: Select the “other” option so you can add the name of your website. You can then add additional links to your blog, Facebook page and any other websites you have.

5. Give your profile a boost by showcasing your expertise and adding your skills.
Skills is a new LinkedIn feature that allows users to search for a specific skill across its platform. To add a skill you must first search for a skillyou have. When the results appear you can add the skill to your profile. Hubspot has more info on how to add skills to your LinkedIn profile.

6. Earn recommendations.
Recommendations add credibility to your profile. LinkedIn has made it simple to give and receive recommendations. Good sources of recommendations come from your clients and people who have worked with you. Tip: In order for your profile to be 100% complete you need 3 recommendations.

7. Update your status several times a week with links to your blog posts, news about projects you’re working on or links to your industry news.
You can schedule LinkedIn updates using a desk client like Hootsuite, Seesmic or Tweetdeck. You can also tag a tweet to post on LinkedIn by adding "#in" to the tweet. I do not recommend sending all of your Twitter updates to LinkedIn, but selectively choosing which tweets go to LinkedIn with the #in tag. Your updates show up on the feed and are searchable using LinkedIn Signals, the new search feature on your home page below the status window.

To get the most out of your revitalized profile you need to make sure you are well-connected. LinkedIn provides tools to help you find connections. There is a toolbar for outlook and you can import your contacts from your mail client to see if they have a LinkedIn profile. Review LinkedIn’s suggestions of people you may know and browse the connections of your connections. And, of course, download the Handshake(TM) App for Handshake 2.0 to your smartphone so you can directly connect to LinkedIn profiles of people featured on Handshake 2.0!

Patsy Stewart is a social media practioner and owner of The Social BUZZ Lab. You're invited to connect with Patsy Stewart on LinkedIn.

A Social Media Do-Over

Posted by Handshake 2.0 at 6:30 AM on February 18, 2011:

When I received an invitation to join Quora from a friend and colleague, I thought, "I do not have time for another social network."  But when I read this about Quora in Time magazine:

On an Internet that can feel as if it's inhabited largely by belligerent know-nothings, Quora is a place where the average citizen is an intelligent, well-informed person - and where, in a Lake Wobegon–like effect, most everybody seems to be above average. If you ask a question about a particular Web start-up, odds are that you'll get one or more thoughtful replies. And it won't be the least bit startling if one of them comes from a founder of the company in question.

She Chooses, the social network for women

I experienced the same longing I feel when I read about Enlightenment salons and meetings of the like-minded.  So I found the invitation to join Quora I had received from a friend and colleague, and followed the link to the site.  My plan was to simply register and have a look.  I would view the online sharing of new people with new ideas and if I found myself drawn to what I saw, I would participate.  I would have a fresh start to join a new community in a new and thoughtful way.

I did not join Facebook or Twitter thoughtfully.  I leaped in.  I participated willy-nilly, accepting friend requests on Facebook from people I knew, following people on Twitter whom I knew or found interesting, finding the feeds from both of those sites increasingly populated and diverse.  In both, I was connected to people I am connected to off-line - friends, family, and colleagues - and with people I've never met.  One of the college professors I revered most told me, "Separate personal and professional."  But that was before social networks, right?  That wisdom didn't apply now, right?

Then my cat died.

She was my cat.  In so many ways and for so many reasons which I have written about elsewhere, I was so deeply and profoundly attached to her.  When I get hurt, emotionally or physically, I keep moving, assessing the damage as I go.  It's been three months and I'm still moving.  But there was damage.

I posted my grief on Facebook.

People were so kind.  They posted updates to my Facebook page expressing sympathy and support.  As I do, I kept moving, answering each one, trying to keep up, wanting to feel touched by their words, feeling only shock and pain and sorrow.  I started to feel like a fraud, especially when trying to respond to kind words expressed by someone I knew in a business context.  My heart was broken - how could I reply in a professional way?  I felt so uncertain about how to tend these relationships with so many people from so many realms and to care for my own sore self that I did what I don't do.  I stopped.

I want to be close and connected to people in mind and heart.  I have trouble doing that casually.  I have started following my professor's advice, separating personal and professional in my Facebook and Twitter updates, sharing primarily business news in both places.

But I feel called by the closeness and connection possible in a social network, just like by those Enlightenment salons.  That's why I joined Quora.  I wanted a fresh start, a social media do-over.

Quora somehow imported all my Twitter and Facebook contacts.  "Wherever you go, there you are," writes Jon Kabat-Zinn.  I stopped.

I feel called by the closeness and connection possible in a social network. I do have time for another social network.  What I don't have time for, or don't want to give time to, is the struggle with the personal and professional whirlpool that my cannonball dive into social media created for me.

We will release the beta version of She Chooses, the social network for women, in a few weeks.  I got to write this piece:

She Chooses is for women who want to feel deeply, think seriously, and communicate meaningfully with each other.

Women are invited to use She Chooses as they choose.  I will use it to feel deeply, think seriously, and communicate meaningfully with other women.  Personally rather than professionally.  I'll get my social media do-over.

Interested women are invited to register on the home page of She Chooses to receive an invitation to our upcoming beta release. She Chooses(TM) was featured on Beta List.

How to Add Links to a Facebook Page

Posted by Handshake 2.0 at 8:00 AM on September 25, 2010:

I truly enjoy setting up Facebook pages for Handshake's clients.  Many ask me how to add a link to another site to a Facebook page, so I made a demo video, another fine release from Handshake's video production studio.  Typing around a tiny tripod was a bit of a challenge.  I posted the resultant blooper on Handshake's Facebook page.  After readjusting the camera, I noticed that the bottom of the screen is missing when I point out the Share button on YouTube, so I've included a screenshot of the missing URL below. 

How to share the link to a YouTube video 
 

Social Media Public Relations

Posted by Handshake 2.0 at 8:55 AM on June 21, 2010:

Handshake specializes in social media public relations, not in social media marketing for social media sales, because the latter use of social media remains unproven as a research-based way to achieve results. 

Social media public relations can create word-of-mouth buzz Research shows that traditional marketing can result in sales, although less so in an age of media fragmentation and in today’s economy.  In contrast, the challenge with social media marketing is that the only results of its effectiveness with regard to generating sales are anecdotal.  Just this month, David Cooperstein, a senior advisor with Forrester, probably the top marketing research firm, said as much:  “So how can we move beyond the abundant proof that social media impacts buzz to proof that social media positively affects revenue?”

I define marketing as attempting to communicate with a specific customer segment in hopes of generating sales, and public relations as offering information broadly to a wide audience in hopes of engaging interest, memory, and mentions to others.

Whether using an offline strategy through traditional means such as hosting a networking mixer, or an online strategy through updating a corporate Facebook page, PR’s purpose is the same:  awareness.  If people are aware of you, they can buy from you.  If they’ve never heard of you, they can’t because they don’t even know you exist.  Awareness can result in word-of-mouth referrals from people who know you to people who don’t.  Is PR buzz correlated positvely with sales? Yes. Does a direct one-to-one-correspondence exist between being known through PR and sales?  No. And that's also not one of PR's claims.

For businesses, I don't see social media as A Good Thing. I'm not a social media evangelist.  I’m not a fan of social media any more than I’m a fan of a hammer.  It has no ethical or moral value.  It’s a tool that works well for certain tasks. 

Handshake is in the “abundant proof that social media impacts buzz” business - social media PR.  While big corporations and big marketing research firms with big budgets are in the process of collecting data about the relationship between social media and sales, we’re doing what social media is really good at - generating buzz and awareness for our clients through social media public relations.

A Warm Handshake with Allen Fuller

Posted by Handshake 2.0 at 10:11 AM on May 31, 2010:

Public speaking is the number one fear reported by people in the U.S.  That's probably why some companies have challenges making corporate videos.

In Why the Contest Prize is a Flip Camera for the Blacksburg Foursquare Swarm Party, we restated the bottom line about online marketing with videos, though:  Gotta do it.

Sometimes if someone else goes first, it helps us get started.

We asked Allen Fuller.  He went first.  And his friends went, too.  That's leadership.  Thanks, Allen.  Great friends, too.

***

Allen Fuller is a freelance writer, photographer and aspiring entrepreneur.  He blogs at AllenJFuller.com, you can find him @AllenJFuller, and read more Allen Fuller on Handshake 2.0.

***

We invite you to share your company video on Handshake 2.0 with a Warm Handshake.

Why the Contest Prize is a Flip Camera

Posted by Handshake 2.0 at 7:00 AM on May 28, 2010:

"Not only are video results increasingly common in Google's search results, but your videos stand a much better chance than your text pages of being shown on the first results page."
-
Forrester Research

"You have to see it for yourself."
- Morpheus,
The Matrix

"It's still who you know."
-
Handshake 2.0

At the Foursquare Swarm Badge Party in Blacksburg, Virginia, we're giving away a Flip UltraHD Camcorder. 

It's not a "re-gift" that someone gave me that I'm passing off as a prize.  I took this cheesy picture to show that I ordered it directly from Amazon.com brand new for the contest winner. (Yes, I did want to open it, but the plastic tab closure is intact. I hope the contest winner will let me have a look!)

Flip UltraHD Camcorder Prize at Handshake 2.0's Foursquare Swarm Badge Party!

Why is the contest prize a Flip Camera?

We cited the stats in Should My Company Use Online Video Marketing in 2010?

According to experts, to know us and to know our companies - and to do business with us - people want to see us for themselves.  So we have to video ourselves.

Okay!  Our Flip Camera contest winner will get us started!

We'd love the contest winner to take a company video, upload it to YouTube, buy a Warm Handshake for $49, and let us feature the video on Handshake 2.0.

How are we doing as a company with video at Handshake 2.0?  We have a Handshake 2.0 YouTube channel and a magnum opus, The Handshake Video.  The Energy Check video is solid.  After that, we're a work in progress.  We continue to experiment, including with bad hair days, Handshake 2.0's cat and Mr. Handshake 2.0's cat.

Is making corporate videos sometimes hard, sometimes embarrassing, sometimes baffling? Yes.  But, first page matters. According to iProspect, 68% of search engine users click on first page results.  For 32% of search engine users, results on other pages essentially don't exist.

We exist!  First page, here we come! We've got another Flip Camera in the game!

How to Rock on a Twitter Chat

Posted by Z. Kelly Queijo at 6:15 AM on May 26, 2010:

How to be the rock star of a Twitter chat! Is being a featured guest on a Twitter chat akin to being a public speaker or presenter? Oh, yes, but with a few differences: 1) the potential audience size is roughly 75 million and, 2) you have fewer than 140 characters to get your point across and keep the audience engaged.

So, what do you, as the person taking center stage, have to do to become the rock star of Twitter chats? Easy: Be prepared. Be on time. Be friendly. Be quick.

BE PREPARED

Prepare 10 - 12 key talking points as you would for any presentation and write them out in an email to yourself or in a document to make it easy to copy and paste from.

Keep the word count of these messages to 120 characters (or fewer) so as to allow room for the 11-character hashtag string (ex: #CampusChat) and retweets (RT). This post on the anatomy of a Twitter tweet may be helpful.

Decide which Twitter support tools you are going to use and install or configure these hours before the chat begins (not ten minutes before).

BE ON TIME

About 15 minutes prior to the start of the chat, set up your tools, browser windows, the document with your prepared statements, and whatever else you are going to use to track and respond to the chat conversation. (I recommend TweetChat or something similar since it automatically applies the chat hashtag to each statement you post.)

Be prepared to greet the chat participants, introduce yourself, and/or respond to the introduction made by the host.

BE FRIENDLY

Respond to any questions posted with the hashtag in the tweet. Some participants will post a question to you, the speaker, directly. For example, tweets on the next #CampusChat could read:

@RealYaverbaum What was the best advice from the GCs you interviewed? #CampusChat.

while others may state their questions as if to the group expecting you to respond:

What's the best GC advice you ever got? #CampusChat

It's fine to post a welcome to everyone and to individuals, esp. if you know them.  People appreciate acknowledgment.

Say thank you when appropriate for RTs, good points made by others, etc.

At the closing, thank everyone for attending and tell them how to contact you. For example:

@koofers:  Thanks to everyone for coming out tonight! Thank you @CollegeVisit for organizing this. #CampusChat

@koofers: Stay tuned - many exciting, new things coming this Fall to @Koofers! #CampusChat

@koofers: If you have any additional questions or comments, please feel free to E-mail me at michael AT koofers.com #CampusChat

BE QUICK

Respond quickly to direct questions. The more quickly you respond, the more time you have to post more of your content/message and engage with participants. Participants are the ones who can make your messages go viral. The more often you can communicate clearly and quickly, the greater the chance of having your message spread across the Twitter-universe and keeping your audience engaged.

Type fast and stay focused so you can respond quickly. It's impossible to know how many people will attend your chat or how fast the tweets will fly across your screen. One of Matt Collier's #blogchats rocked with over 2,500 tweets and 300 participants.

You can, of course, "wing it." Many subject-matter experts are completely comfortable doing this, and if you do, please take a few minutes to make sure you technology tools are loaded and working. Even rock stars need a sound check.

***

From Handshake 2.0:

Z. Kelly Queijo wrote about the history of #Blogchat in An Interview with Mack Collier, Founder of Blogchat, covered the biggest blogchat ever in her interview with Mack Collier, and wrote Drink Up - The Morning After Blogchat with Amy Africa.

***
Z. Kelly Queijo is the founder of SmartCollegeVisit and a frequent contributor ro Handshake 2.0. You're invited to follow SmartCollegeVisit on Twitter, @collegevisit where she hosts #CampusChat on Wednesdays at 9 PM Eastern.

"Checking In" to Location-Based Networks

Posted by Allen J Fuller, III at 8:07 AM on May 25, 2010:

Allen Fuller on FoursquareStarbucks recently implemented a discount for all Mayors of their shops around the US.

Facebook has confirmed it will be adding location-based features soon.

Gowalla recently offered free Nets tickets to anyone who found the digital tickets they scattered in the surrounding area. (Here's a case study by VaynerMedia.)

Foursquare (which turned one in March 2010) was rumored to have been offered $100M for acquisition by Yahoo.

Mayors, millions of dollars, weird names.  What exactly is going on here?

The last year especially has seen the growth and proliferation of location-based social networks and social games.

As Anne Clelland has posted in the past, her formula for a killer app is:

Game Mechanics + Social Networking + GIS + Business Data
+ Algorithm, Formula and/or Idea + Mobile = Killer App

Anne Clelland on Foursquare Location-based apps are killer. 

In Foursquare I can compete with my friends to get the most badges and to become (and stay) Mayor of my favorite shops.  I can leave my mark by reviewing a business in Yelp or leaving a tip for others about my favorite item.  Gowalla lets me collect items left by other members and leave them at new locations, and add photos of the decor and food.  Plus, I never know when I will unlock a mayorship special or find an item that gets me a free ticket to a basketball game or a free ride from Chevy to SXSW.

And these are the benefits to the users.  Each system is offering real-time location-based promotions and advertising for businesses.  Foursquare also recently launched a whole suite of analytic tools to let businesses glean valuable data from those members that check in to help plan specials and marketing campaigns. No wonder the rumored offer from Yahoo for Foursquare was so high and Facebook is trying to move into the space. 

This new way to interact with friends in the digital and real world is not without its concerns. PleaseRobMe.comis a caution to be careful how much information we post online and where we let our check-ins be posted. At the end of the day, however, it is an exciting new way to explore a new town or your hometown.

Hey, Jeremy Hart, I am coming after your mayorships! Watch out!

***

Allen Fuller is a freelance writer, photographer and aspiring entrepreneur.  He blogs at AllenJFuller.com and you can find him @AllenJFuller.

Who Sees My Tweets?

Posted by Handshake 2.0 at 7:15 AM on May 25, 2010:

I find watching Twitter's public timeline of world updates by over 75 million Twitter users fascinating.  Every language and symbol flows along in a stream of human expression, from the sublime to the profane. 

Is someone watching my tweets stream by?

When I post an update to Twitter, who sees it?  When I repost an update - retweet a tweet - who sees it?

The answer is not tweet-short.

When I began using Twitter in October, 2008, thanks to the encouragement of Jeremy Hart, I opened the  corporate account @handshake20.  In the past month, I have begun using @anneclelland as well. 

When I use the @handshake20 account and tweet directly to someone with @ preceding the Twitter user name - in this case from @handshake20 to @anneclelland - that tweet shows up directly in @anneclelland's Home Twitter feed.

A Twitter tweet

Except, as Hillel Fuld explains, "If someone you are following replies to someone else, you will not see that reply unless you follow both sides."

The plot thickens when I use a period before the @ or I retweet, or post someone else's tweet.

The "." before the @ can be read as, "This is a direct reply being made public."

A retweet, or RT, can be read, "The following text is being attributed to another user."

The screenshot below shows a period before the @  and two ways to retweet.  The middle tweet is a retweet using Twitter's retweet symbol.  The third tweet shows a retweet using manual typing of the letters "RT" for retweet.

A "dot tweet" and two forms of Twitter retweets

If I use the Twitter Retweet button and function, the tweet is only visible to my followers.  I don't know if it's searchable or not.  If I type "RT" manually, it's visible to everyone and searchable by Twitter.

From Twitter Support Frequently Asked Questions:

What does RT, or retweet, mean?
RT is short for retweet, and indicates a re-posting of someone else's tweet.  This isn't an official Twitter command or feature, but people add RT somewhere in a tweet to indicate that part of their tweet includes something they're re-posting from another person's tweet, sometimes with a comment of their own.  Check out this great article on re-tweeting, written by a fellow Twitter user, @ruhanirabin.

Here's Twitter's example of how its retweet button works from Project Retweet: Phase One from the Twitter Blog:

Let's say you follow @jessverr, @biz (that's me), and @gregpass but you don't follow @ev. However, I do follow @ev and the birth of his baby boy was so momentous that I retweeted it to all my followers... You'd see @ev's tweet [It's a boy!] even though you don't follow him because you follow me and I really wanted you to have the information that I have.

And here's another version from How Does the Auto Retweet Thing on Twitter Work.

Here are the results of my own research.

Retweet-view-agc

I can see the dot tweet and I can see the manually typed RT.  But at @anneclelland, I wasn't following @handshake20. So I couldn't see the tweet made using the Twitter retweet button.

That means that the Twitter Retweet button is easy to use, but it reaches only my followers, not everyone.  And, again, I don't know if it's logged for later search in Twitter or not.

My conclusion? To get the greatest possible reach for each of my tweets, particularly for those publicizing our clients, I want to manually type RT.  If someone's looking at the public stream of all humanity on Twitter, I don't want to miss a chance to be seen.

***

Update 5/27/10

From The Next Web:  Twitter responds to missing RT's saga: "Some Twitter users were noticing that anything with RT in it wasn’t being seen in certain search functions.  The community as a whole went into an uproar. It seems that Twitter heard that message loud and clear...The RT function is important to many of us, and Twitter sees that fact."

Whew!

Thanks to Allen J. Fuller for the link.

***

Dan Burdi, Allen J. Fuller and Maureen Carruthers contributed to this post.

Social Media Promotions? Better Read the Terms of Service

Posted by Allen J Fuller, III at 8:00 AM on May 13, 2010:

Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and other social media platforms provide me with unprecedented connection to friends and businesses.  It is hard to do a Google search now without coming across a few sites trying to tell me how it can make "'millions" of dollars if I make a Facebook page or use some five-step plan to exploit those connections.

Scams aside, the use of social media opens up many doors for networking and advertising.  As awesome as these new opportunities are, I recently learned how important it is to read the fine print.

As I dreamed about my future businesses, ideas for promotions came to mind.  I planned to use Facebook and Twitter to tell people about these events when they happened.  Then I found this.

Statement of Rights and Responsibilities | Facebook

Facebook is pretty strict about promotions.  No purchase can be necessary, prior approval is required, and many other prohibitions exist.  Advertising on Facebook is a whole different situation. 

IKEA executed a really innovative contest recently, but the contest completely broke these rules.  To my knowledge, IKEA was not penalized for this contest but I do not want to roll the dice with my company's web presence.

Twitter, YouTube, and Foursquare all have similar rules and restrictions for the use of their network.  Each is offering a free service that is largely ad or venture capital funded.  They deserve their cut.

Keeping track of all these rules is yet another reason to convert social media followers (or likers) to blog and newsletter subscribers. Then, only FTC rules apply.  (Handshake 2.0 has what Mark Schaefer named the "world's first social media authenticity policy" to address FTC rules.)

I am not a lawyer, so I will consult with legal counsel before trying to execute any social media promotions in the future.  At this point I can now go into those discussions with confidence with a basic understanding of the rules. I save time time and money by easily rejecting the ideas that break the Terms of the networks I want to use.

***

Allen Fuller is a freelance writer, photographer and aspiring entrepreneur.  He blogs at AllenJFuller.com and you can find him @AllenJFuller.