Are you are letting LinkedIn destroy your credibility, without even realising? LinkedIn credibility is important as more prospects check you out online (no, not just social media users). I was daydreaming whilst filling my car with petrol recently, when the newspapers caught my attention. I broke free of my virtual nap and paused in front of the stand, briefly surveying the range of papers for sale. They were all covering the same topic (so much for diversity).

LinkedIn credibility, while looking at a newspaper stand

The same subject but totally different headlines.

Intrigued, I skimmed through the front page of each paper, confirming my thoughts. It was the same subject and same theme – but very different language.

Why are you on LinkedIn?

Many professionals are on LinkedIn and sporadically accept connections, period. If that’s you, you may be damaging your credibility!

What is your specific objective for being on LinkedIn (HINT – not “get more business”)?

Perhaps you want to become known by hairdressers as a credible subject expert in best practice accounting for Hairdressers, thereby generating 5 leads every month (or something even more specific).

Who do you need to connect with on LinkedIn?

As you know why you’re there, you can work out who you need to connect to.

That maybe Hairdressers (e.g. your target audience), or it maybe people that know large numbers of Hairdressers. That might save you time and allow you to develop fewer relationships that are more effective for you.

What’s this go to do with newspapers?

What is your favourite newspaper? If it’s The Times, I bet you don’t readily read The Daily Mirror (or vice versa). Even if the same subject is being covered, you’d rather read your favourite paper. Why? – wrong language!

A headline that appeals to a tabloid reader is less likely to appeal to a broadsheet reader and vice versa.

LinkedIn credibility – wrecked in your headline?

Your 120 character LinkedIn headline follows you around the site and out onto Google.

It should say something more than

“Partner, NewTown Accounting”.

What will attract your target connections and enhance your credibility (in their eyes, not mine, or that of other accountants)? Just like newspaper headlines do?

If you would like to download a free LinkedIn Professional headline worksheet , it's free and waiting for you to download right nowClick here for instant access (email address required).

Have you thought about “LinkedIn: Should I add extra words to my name, or does that look stupid?

LinkedIn credibility – trashed by your summary?

Who is it written for and what does it say? Ask yourself, does your LinkedIn summary highlight your professional credibility, what you do, how well you’ve done it, and why people should connect with you – all in their language?

In the same way as newspaper copy varies depending on the reader, so should your LinkedIn summary. You’ll find our free LinkedIn summary worksheet really useful, it's free and waiting for you to download right nowClick here for instant access (email address required)..

LinkedIn for Business

LinkedIn is an incredibly powerful business networking tool that has helped many professionals improve their income. The most effective proactively engage with it, connect with relevant people and engage them in conversation. You may like to read “How can I get the most from LinkedIn, with minimum effort?

Others use it as a point of reference – but they all have a profile which enhances their credibility, in the eyes of their target audience.

What destroys LinkedIn credibility, in your view?

Written by Jon Baker The 5-50 Coach. I help professionals grow their firms from 5 to 50 employees, sustainably, profitably and still have fun. Have you got your "next step kitbag yet"? It's stuffed with guides, reports & templates helping you grow from 5 to 50 employees Click here for immediate access

Download our LinkedIn summary worksheet, it's free and waiting for you to download right nowClick here for instant access (email address required).