Episode 16 - 5 Ways to Increase Your Credibility on LinkedIn and Attract Potential Clients

In this week’s podcast I interview Kyla all about her strategy for Linkedin and connecting with potential clients in an authentic way. For more than a decade Kyla has been using this platform to build her career and also her business and it has proved to be so valuable in growing her network steadily and consistently making good business sense.

With 260 million monthly active users, LinkedIn may seem like your pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. Who wouldn’t want the opportunity to sell their product or services to 260 million people?

However, if you think blasting LinkedIn users with connection requests is the way to go, put the brakes on your plans and rethink your strategy.

Since you’re not approaching LinkedIn with a sales approach mindset, you need to make every aspect of this platform work to your advantage in order to both attract prospective clients and then convince them that you are the expert they’ve been searching for. One way to achieve this is by showcasing your expertise in a natural, informative way which leads to increasing your credibility as an expert.

Dive into this episode and learn 5 ways you can increase your credibility to attract your ideal clients on LinkedIn. There are even a couple of bonus tips at the end to really sky rocket your profile to give you that unique edge.


5 Ways to Increase Your Credibility on LinkedIn and Attract Potential Clients | Mums in Biz Podcast | Emilia Ohrtmann and Kyla Neill

See the whole transcript below!

Episode 16 - 5 Ways to Increase Your Credibility on LinkedIn and Attract Potential Clients

Kyla: Welcome back to episode number 16 of the Mums in Biz podcast.

Emilia: This podcast today is with Kyla and me sitting across each other and seeing each other through the screen again and we have a really good topic for you because it's a social media topic which you have been requesting for a while. You want to hear more about social media.

We will start talking about the different social media platforms in the next episodes and today we will start with Linkedin because Kyla is actually really active on LinkedIn and it has grown her business massively on LinkedIn and it has really helped her. She's going to give us her five best tips for LinkedIn. I'm a total Linked in novice I would say or non user. I've been on there for awhile but I don't really know how to use it or what's best to do and you know, I'm on that once in a while and posting some articles and doing whatever. I'm really looking forward to her tips as well. So welcome Kyla.

Kyla: Yeah. Welcome to our podcast. I cannot believe like how many we've done just in a couple of months and we have some exciting guests coming up but as you said, social media has been a big push and we have seen that the most downloads that we are getting are from those podcasts that we have been talking about social media and linking that with branding.

This topic on LinkedIn is super perfect for that and I know that I think LinkedIn has become a bit of a trend during like 2019 as well. It's become a little bit more social. It's been interesting to see people who I haven't seen posting on LinkedIn now using it as a platform to connect with people and attracting potential clients. Really

Do you have a website?

Emilia: If you already have a website, jump ahead. You don't need to listen to this. However, if you don't have a website and you're either thinking about having one but you don't know how to do it or who to hire or you don't have the money to hire anybody or you're thinking you have all these social media accounts to manage and you really don't need to have a website as well.

Well listen up. First of all, yes, you have all these social media accounts but they are not yours. Your website, however, is your own. It's your own virtual little office, your virtual space to meet and greet people your way. And I also hear you hiring a website designer might seem a bit overwhelming and also too expensive for many of you. I totally get it. And that's why this episode today is sponsored by my online course, Squarespace Startup.

Emilia: I love the platform Squarespace to design websites on because they make it super easy and simple for all of us. They have great customer support, they have great templates and they're just super user friendly. And with my online course you can learn how to design your own user friendly, mobile friendly, and just a beautiful website that helps you grow and scale your business and sell your products or your services. So head over to my website, and check out Squarespace Start-Up if you want to learn how to design your own website in no time. Let's continue with the episode.

Emilia: Yeah, because it used to be like a pure business platform, right? Where companies on and people were looking for hires and new employees and, and that's why I've always been on them but I've never been active on that. And now during the past year I would say it has changed and now you can actually call it a social media platform I would say.

Kyla: Yeah. Rather than, yeah, rather than like a professional networking, a connected online piece. Cause when I got on there, it was when I first came to Dubai really? Well obviously now I'm back in Australia, but when I landed in Dubai, so that's a good 13,14 years ago now that's when I open my LinkedIn account because I want you to start connecting and getting jobs because I was working for companies back then and so that's what it was predominantly used for.

Now you've seen the wave of entrepreneurship and people opening businesses and really using it to connect with and with 260 million monthly active users. I mean it's basically a bit of a thing to do, a bit of a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow type thing with that many people connecting with each other at the end of the day. So, and I think now is a great time to get on board with that.

If you're looking at the platforms that you're wanting to use, and we've talked about this a lot of times, like making sure you're choosing like one or two platforms to concentrate on because when you're spreading yourself so thin, there's no focus there, right? So if you're looking for something and you're getting sick and tired of Facebook or Instagram or Twitter or whatever, you know, maybe focus , re- focus back in on LinkedIn and give it another go because it's an incredible way to connect with people. But there is also a way to do it that is different too because no one, you know, you don't want to be attacking people on LinkedIn.

It is still a connection, social network platforms. So really going in with the intention of connecting with people, creating relationships as you would in like a networking event, but thinking about it online again, if that makes sense.

What is the difference between LinkedIn and other Social Media platforms?

Emilia: Okay. Yeah. And what would you think is like the biggest difference between the other platforms and LinkedIn? Because I mean actually all the platforms are for connection, right? I mean even if you're only posting on Instagram, on Facebook, but you're still looking for reactions and you're looking for conversations in a way. . So what's the biggest difference then? What would you say?

Kyla: I think that biggest difference is really, I mean you can see a lot more in people's LinkedIn profiles then you can do like on an Instagram profile for example. So you can like delve into like people's past experiences and really get a good idea of their background and you know, love. We're talking about business owners here and entrepreneurs seeing if you connect with them, seeing the work that they've done previously, how they're speaking, interacting, the content that they're publishing out there. I really think it gives a great credibility.

I find that when I connect with people at networking events, the first thing they asked me is yes, they asked me about Instagram, but they certainly asked me if I'm on LinkedIn and I can see that they've gone in because you can obviously see who's viewed your profile to look at my like hashtag like CV, really my CV is on there.

Your professional credential are on there. So you know, making that impression and making sure all of that's up to date and polished and correct is key and making sure obviously the content that you've got on there is of right. Because I think you can fudge it a little bit on Instagram. I'm going to get probably slayed a little bit by those Instagrammers now, but I think you can embellish on Instagram, right? But I don't think you can when it comes to LinkedIn because it's a professional network, it's like an online CV. It's fact at the end of the day for sure. Which is why making sure that the photo that you've gone on there is professional, is not you at the bar on Saturday night like you would post on Facebook.

I think you said that you've been sort of diving into LinkedIn a bit, especially on like the branding side and maybe you can like, like help on this because personal branding and this is where I started creating like a personal brand quote unquote was through LinkedIn. So the words that I was saying or you know, the photos or the content that I've been putting out there because it's not just pictures like Instagram, right. It is through texts a lot more. And then, and the content that you provide then reflects obviously your personality as well. Yeah.

What images should I use for LinkedIn?

Emilia: Talking about the images, because there's two photos you can upload. One is that your personal photo and of course it should be your personal photo and not your logo or something. And then there's the big banner image which you can also use for your brand. It's so important because that's when people type in your name and search for you on that. That's the first thing they would see before they started reading your CV and so on. Anything else before they get to anything else?

So again, you have these few, you know, few seconds where people like on your website where they either stay or leave again. So your photo is the first impression and it's like so important of those two photos use them intentionally so they shouldn't be blurry. Obviously they shouldn't be at any bar. There should be a professional photo.

But saying that for example, let's say my husband, he uses a proper like CV photo on there, but me being in like the more creative side, I use just a regular photo that a photographer has taken that shows me, my personality. You know the difference. I can't even remember what my background banner I was, but I think it's something with like pens and a creative image showing immediately that I'm in the creative design industry. So your banner image can display something else. I mean, if you are a speaker for example, you could even have an image of you speaking or something like that.

Kyla: Yeah, for sure. And it then creates that sort of essence about who you're going to connect with and it is a photo says a thousand words. Doesn't it? You're either going to like when you're on Instagram, you're either gonna click on it and like it or you're going to end to somebody's profile on LinkedIn or not. You're going to skip it and go to the next person.

personalise your LinkedIn url

I don't know whether anyone knows this as well. If you're on LinkedIn that you have your own personal LinkedIn URL, so a bit like your website, like you were talking about, you can obviously create your own personal LinkedIn. So that could be your name, it could be your business name, whatever you would like it to be. Because usually when it comes up, when you create a profile, it just comes up with numbers. So I one five, six, seven, eight, whatever it is. But you can actually go in and change it because then that link you can put on your business cards, on your flyers or you know, your workbooks or whatever you're creating. If this is where you're wanting your audience to. Yeah.

And you speak about this a lot when you were talking about personal branding with websites as well with the actual, it's the same thing with that URL. Making sure it's like, yeah, individual views.

Emilia: I actually, I didn't actually know that because I must have because it's my LinkedIn is my name, but I didn't know that. I must have changed this at some point.

Kyla: Yeah, yeah.

Emilia: I forgot about it. Do you know where you can change it?

Kyla: I think it's on the right hand. Like say if you're looking at your computer and you've got your LinkedIn profile, it will be on the right hand side, up the top. I think it even has a drop down now. It took a while. I've changed a long time ago, but it took a while for me to even find it. But now I think it's really quite clear where you can change it. So that is a definite, so obviously your professional photos, your branding, the customized banner as you said, creating your unique URL. And then it's what we were talking about before it was publishing regular content and which is why when we talk about all the time picking one or two platforms, I mean you can obviously re create and re-publish other things that you've printed somewhere else.

But it's again, that consistency. We were just talking about this before, where it way about consistency on social media.

Emilia: So you do hear it all the time. All these platforms want their own content. They have slightly different specifications, they want slightly different things. So it is good to modify it a little bit. So I am reusing my content, but I do modify it in a little bit. And for example, also LinkedIn, I heard now, and I'm trying it, I don't know if it's true, but I heard that these articles within LinkedIn, publishing articles within LinkedIn is so important. You can just link to a blog posts like you do on Facebook for example, but you actually, well basically copy and paste your blog post or your article into LinkedIn. So it's in specific. LinkedIn likes videos like all the other platforms, but they all have slightly different sizes, regulations and so on. So it's not so easy to use the same video for everything.

I know from experience and that's why it's so good to like focus on one or two platforms. And then the other thing is, and I was actually talking about that yesterday with my assistant who helps me a lot with Pinterest for example. Then we also said that it's so difficult to outsource social media now to outsource the content creation and the content, the posting, the actual posting because it needs to be personal and you need to react in time and so on. And you notice the difference when somebody does it themselves. Instagram and LinkedIn and everywhere else actually or if it's outsourced, you do notice the difference.

The best content to post on LinkedIn

Kyla: Yeah. You know, if it's coming from that like third party platform or like meet Edgar or like there's quite a few of them or whether you'd like posted spontaneously because it's something that you might be feeling or thinking or helping a client with or you know, create a solution. And that's the content that you want to share right now with your audience. For sure. Yeah.

And I think that organics reach and that organic touch as well, the only thing is we're all time poor. So that's where I think even just scheduling out, you know, maybe it just a set time that you post every day if you're physically posting yourself, that would help obviously with the consistency factor instead of always, or having the mix of using a system to post and then you also posting content.

I think that's what works. Having that mix.. But people want to touch, like be in touch with you and get a flavor of you, which is where, don't know whether you have noticed that groups on LinkedIn have become super popular. So people, like you know, groups on Facebook now they're doing groups on LinkedIn. So even a lot of like colleagues of mine who are like coaches have like got their own little private groups as such, which I pretty much the same as a Facebook group.

We can post content, you know, share experiences, support each other. But again, really as we always say, you know, if their groups are there to build relationships, it's not about being spammy or salesy or going in, it's about helping somebody, you know really authentically if they've got an issue and just showing up and sharing, you know, some professional advice. But groups have become really big in the last I reckon sort of six to eight months.

Emilia: Wow.

Kyla: I mean quite a few now.

should i start a LinkedIn group?

Emilia: What do you recommend starting in LinkedIn group as well? Cause that's an additional, it's really an additional platform because you know you have your own LinkedIn account and you have the group.

Kyla: I think a bit like I still think that LinkedIn is still very, you can see the content still a lot like on the feed, unlike Facebook where the algorithm has mixed that up and it's not as good anymore and that's why people created the groups. But I still think that LinkedIn still has a great feed, but then off of that has the groups as well. And I think these early adapters of groups will probably reap the benefits over the next sort of 12 to 18 months.

As such as it starts growing it's still a professional network is still a professional platform, so people still don't want to see those bikini posts or anything like that that you post it. You're not going to be posting that on LinkedIn that is still a Facebook thing. But I still think that there's an element of sort of relaxed speech, but still supporting people professionally in a way as well. I think it's still finding its feet, which is why I think it's a really good time. If people aren't actively on LinkedIn that they may be give it a go like over the next, you know, three to six months for the rest of the year and into 2020 for sure.

Emilia: Just to summarize, you would say start now with your LinkedIn account, get your personal URL, have a professional photo and a branded profile, think about the texts that you're writing that you know, use some keywords. I'm just adding that now. Customize your banner image and then publish regular content. Something like per-prepared and somethings spontaneously so that you notice that it's the personal side of you.

Kyla: Yeah, for sure.

Emilia: That's what you would recommend. Then just test it out. Yeah,

Kyla: And test it out and it doesn't mean like then creating your own group, like maybe jump into other people's groups, search on there, do some research or maybe there's for me, you know, for example, there's coaching groups in there, leadership coaching where we all jump in and we might help each other. Or there's even big huge HR groups at the moment in there where if you're a coach, if you're a trainer, who can jump in and you can support that way.

find LinkedIn groups that align with your audience and business

Finding groups which align with what you're doing or aligned with that audience that you want to reach and then jump in and support, support, support and then obviously attracting those potential customers or clients will come to you. It's all about really broadening and enriching your credibility on that LinkedIn profile, especially if you're like brand new for sure.

And I was thinking also where before, obviously looking at reaching out to people. I get this a lot actually. Then people just like asking you to connect all the time, like connect, connect, connect and you end up with like 50 profiles. I don't connect with anyone just anyone anymore. I'm very selective of who I connect with on LinkedIn because obviously I'm mindful of people who want to like then spam my inbox.

customise your LinkedIn message request

I want authentic connections of maybe partnerships or collaborations or maybe they're just genuinely wanting my support with something. If you're connecting and sending those messages to people, personalize them. There is a, there is a button there that you can personalize and add your "Dear Emilia, I am really loving your profile", whatever it is to connect with that person. I personalize it before you're sending it because people are more likely to then accept you as a LinkedIn friends if they know what your intentions are at the end of the day, rather than just saying yes, you know, just friend me.

Emilia: Because I so you would recommend also to reject people because I get a lot of like connect, connect.

Kyla: I reject all the time.

Emilia: I don't have a clue who those people are so I honestly just accept because whenever I have time, but you would say reject.

Kyla: Yeah. I don't connect with everybody and not anymore. I did at the beginning and I think I'm about, I'm up to about like maybe 3000 connections or something, but I would be double or triple that by now if I like connected with every single person. But you know, if you're looking at somebody's profile, you know why people are trying to connect with you without me actually verbally saying on the podcast?

Cause we want to be, you know, kind. No, you know, people are wanting to spam your inbox. You know, if people just want to, for me, especially when I was really immersed in the HR consulting side, sending me their CVS because they're looking for jobs like that was not what I was doing. You know, so they haven't read my profile of what I do, you know, for, for companies.

I would reject them, but there would be some people who would write me personal messages saying, I'd love your advice or I'd really love to connect because you know, such and such person and also having those introductions through LinkedIn is amazing.

If you're meeting people at networking events and they know such and such, who would be a great partner for you, connect on LinkedIn and ask them to personally introduce you to that person through the professional networking group of LinkedIn. So a great way because then they get to look at your profile straight away and you are then backed or supported or recommended by that person who you've met face to face - gold, perfect introduction and then you can go in and create and build that relationship with that person as well.

Emilia: Great. That's a great tip. So you would recommend to basically see it, how can I help someone else? So you introduce, you get introduced it's just yeah a networking platform and you are probably on the premium membership. I would guess.

premium membership in LinkedIn

Kyla: I was, I was on the premier membership, I'm dropped back again now but I'm about to go back on it. So it just depends on like what sort of season I am in business. If I'm like wanting to ramp things up again cause you can purchase and then stops, you can purchase like packet, like a time frame. So premium is amazing because you can send things like in in mails. I I "N mails" to people who you're not even connected with and reach even deeper into LinkedIn.

Then just if you are just a normal LinkedIn user, so if you're looking at like building business and especially if you've got consultancy, if you're working in a service based business like premium, just try it out and see what value you're getting back from that, but you need to give it a go for a good six months to reap the rewards.

Kyla: So now I'm, because obviously I've moved back to Australia and I am looking to build my network here a lot more. Now I'm going back onto that premium mode to connect with people individually more than actual companies because I'm doing the company side face-to-face. Yeah, there's a lot of shifting sands at the moment. I'm doing a lot of meetings face to face with companies, but personally meeting say you know somebody who's needing support in business coaching, it's a connection.

I might meet somebody in Sydney but I'm down in Adelaide but we'll meet on LinkedIn. So premium is a great way. If you want to immerse yourself deeper into LinkedIn and what it has to offer, I think you can even do adverts through it. There's a lot of other promo stuff that they've got going on and expanding. But I also feel that it needs to be a platform that you are willing to dedicate time to.

Otherwise. Again, a bit like how we have experienced, you know, Facebook ads and Instagram ads. If you're not actively, regularly doing it, it's not going to be worth the money in the end. So it's sort of focusing, you know, on that side. But I mean if you're brand new, I would just be creating that profile at the moment and connecting with people. And while you're out networking with people in live events, seeing whether they're on LinkedIn and also doing your research, is that, is that the right way to connect with that person? Because maybe they'd be like, no, I'm not on LinkedIn. I'm in Instagram.

Finding like you've discussed and we've discussed before, where are your audience? Where are they? Are they on LinkedIn? Or are they on Instagram or are they on Facebook or where their hanging out at live events. So again, it's doing the research, but I still think it's a way to dig deeper into branding and connecting with people.

Emilia: So doing your research, why you need to use LinkedIn or why you want to use LinkedIn. Is it for B2B connections or is is to find clients or customers? So that's, you know, is it to find the audience or is it to connect for others? But would you recommend the premium membership for newbies or not?

Kyla: I wouldn't for newbies. I think just stick with the connecting simply at the moment. I always think simple is better. Just do simple connections, get really good at posting some great content on there, connect with people, practice connecting, practice building those relationships and no spamming people, no spamming, you know, like sending things such as like what have I sent lately?

I've sent people different articles that I've read for different like HR industry staff or case studies or videos that I've seen or I've like tagged people in content that I thought was really cool and was relevant to maybe some followers that I have. And just focusing on that and then seeing what happens from there and then going and seeing whether you want to dive deeper or you might think that no, this is not the platform that I want to focus on.

Kyla: I want to go back to Instagram or Facebook.

Emilia: And how long should we give ourselves? So like six months.

Kyla: Absolutely. I for me definitely like minimum six months. Like anything, you know, when you and I were doing the networking events in Dubai it was like a good six months before people are like regularly coming. And the same with this podcast. Like we have committed, we've only been doing it since February.

We committed just to keep going because the more, again, like we say, maybe we should get this word tattooed on our arm. Consistency. He guys, we were talking about tattoos the other day because from the rise conference everyone got like a what was that? Motivational tattoo to go and have a look at Rachel Hollis's profile. You know what we're talking about about maybe we should have consistency tattooed across our forearm, because is where people are not finding success.

They are getting disheartened because things are not happening as quickly as they want it to happen. And it is usually because there's a disconnect there or me for example, we're just talking about this this week, I've been so busy I haven't posted on Instagram, I posted only once. Right? Have my followers increased? No, has my content like engage any more people? Only because Henry was wearing a really cool shirt saying believe in yourself. But apart from that, like no, that's because I haven't been consistant. I've been on LinkedIn, by the way, that's why guys get on LinkedIn. But I haven't been consistent. So whatever we do, we have to be consistent. Like Emilia and I say all the time, but even we have blips in the road at times, don't we?

LinkedIn Testimonials

Emilia:Of course. Yeah, of course. We are all humans. Another question. LinkedIn question. How important are testimonials?

Kyla: Oh, very important. I still think that they are important at the bottom. I mean you have to scroll down now, which was very annoying cause it's right at the bottom of profile but I still think if you can get somebody to give you like a testimonial on LinkedIn, just like your website, it's a great obviously credibility, backer, in people can go in and read it. It's a great way for people to get a flavor of how you've supported somebody and provided solutions for sure.

Emilia: Okay. And again, you have to do that with in LinkedIn, they want you to ask or they want the other person to write the testimonial in LinkedIn. It's not something you can cross-post somehow. Any tips for the, your profile, your summary, what's it called in LinkedIn?

LinkedIn Summary Profile

Kyla: Yeah, the summary profile summary at the top. As simple and as sweet as possible because people don't have time, right? We want that instant gratification and if somebody has to read and even I'm about to slice mine in half, people don't have time to read two or three paragraphs on there. So I think really getting specific about who you work with, what solution you provide, even giving them a call to action would be amazing in there. I'd go to your website, download our free eBook, free course, whatever it might be, which isn't what I'm about to change. And then getting people that way is an amazing, amazing tool and using that snippet because when you snip up or like click on somebody's profile, it's actually the only thing you really see and maybe you might see like their current job, but that's pretty much what you see.

Emilia: That's pretty much the same like on website design. So you say who you are, what you do, who you help, how you help them and where you are and that your mission basically.

Kyla: Your mission exactly.

Are hashtags important in LinkedIn?

Emilia: Are hashtags important on LinkedIn?

Kyla: Yeah. They're getting more important because you can now follow hashtags on LinkedIn.

Emilia: Oh, okay.

Kyla: Yes, I follow hashtags. Obviously business coaching, hashtag entrepreneur hashtag HR hashtag whatever, but make sure you obviously following the one that's relevant to you. But yeah, I hashtag and it's getting more and more popular now and I think this is how people are summarizing their feeds because then the first thing that pops up is your suggested or your preferred hashtags that you're following and then everything else follows from there.

Emilia: Oh, okay. How many hashtags are you using?

Kyla: 10 you can do up to 10 I think at the moment but I just put, I'm not, no, I'm doing about five, five or six. It also depends on how much content you've got in the actual posts because if you've got a lot of content in there, so like when I was posting our podcast the other day, which I need to post obviously our latest one of course, but it wouldn't let me post as many hashtags because I'd used up the characters in the post. Yeah. So I try to not do as much content and obviously then do the, the hashtags a little bit more obviously down the bottom. Yeah, I'm playing with that at the moment. That's a new feature

Emilia: And always an image. Yeah. You always add an image?

Kyla: Yeah, I always cause right. We are visual people so we want to see pretty things.

Emilia: Yeah. At the end of the day. Okay. Kyla, thank you very much. I think you have had some great tips for us here for me as well. I think I'm going to jump on LinkedIn now and double check what exactly I'm doing on there.

Kyla: I love it. I love it. Well, I hope that people were like you and we can, we can speak about LinkedIn a bit more. We can go even deeper if you like in the coming episodes, but I know we're going to talk to people about Instagram and get really specific how we can hone down and not be so generalistic about it because people would just want action points that they can reach more people at the end of the day. And especially with the algorithms and things changing all the time. It's so confusing.

But hopefully this podcast about LinkedIn has clarified some points for everyone and can give them really actionable things to go get into a LinkedIn profile and redo theirs or create an open one and basically do some research if that's where they want to be.

Emilia: Yeah. And give it a try. You know, I would say LinkedIn to try because everybody's on Instagram now. Everybody talks about Instagram but and LinkedIn is still like the platform which has some potential, the under dog. And then Kyla has some great resources on her website, on her blog about LinkedIn. So you can look that up too under

Kyla: We've got some good interviews coming up. Ee can't wait to share that with everyone and we hope that you love it. Make sure as we always say, like our podcast, send us a review and we love hearing from everybody, right. That's why we do this podcast.

Emilia:Yeah, and share it on your social media, on your LinkedIn, on your Instagram. Take a screenshot of our podcast and share it with your friends and family and let us know. Send us your opinions, your suggestions. We listened with this episode so we will listen in the future and we will see you soon.

Kyla: Yes. See you soon.

Emilia:Yes. Bye.

Connect with Emilia and Kyla

Emilia Ohrtmann
Website Designer & Consultant

Kyla Neill
Business Coach + Mentor