Friday, November 11, 2016

"Linked-In Is A Site We All Need To Be Using"

Linked-In (although technically the name is written as a single word with a capital "I" and no hyphen) is a fantastic resource for our aging-in-place businesses.

Realizing that many professionals have yet to get on board with using this free social media site - likening it perhaps to experiences on other sites - this is a must activity. Linked-In is the number one business profile, referral and ORM (online reputation manager) site - without question. It also is one of the top search engines in the internet.

There are a few things that are very important that we do to get the most out of a Linked-In profile and page. One of the most important aspects of the site - and there are many important aspects - for making connections, attracting leads, and being believable to those that find our site is having a good profile photo.

The standard witness protection photo that comes with the site needs to be replaced as soon as possible - actually sooner than that. Don't allow it to stand even for the first day the site is active.

With digital photography being as easy to use as it is, a photo can be taken and updated as often as needed. We don't need a fancy camera - a cell phone is fine.

The important thing to remember about a profile photo is that it needs to reflect us. If someone is meeting us for the first time, would they immediately recognize us from our profile photo? If not, it's time for a new one - regardless of when the one being used now was taken. We might change hair styles, get different glasses, or lose some weight. Time for a new photo.

The photo does not need to from a studio sitting either. Just take it. Even a nicely done selfie taken with a phone is fine. It should just be a photo that captures us in a way that we want people to see.

The background should be pleasant. it can be indoors or outside. It can be bright or not. It can be somewhat busy as opposed to a blank background. It shouldn't take anything away from us. We are the central focus - the star - of our profile photo.

The photo should be close enough that people can immediately tell that it us in the photo and not someone else. If it taken too far away, we may not be that clear. Also, it's alright to reflect our personality but not to the point that the beach, our dogs, our motorcycle, or any other props that we include in the photo occupy a major portion of it.

A Linked-In profile photo is not the time to include other people - no spouses, friends, children, relatives, co-workers, or associates. People we are engaging want to see us and not have to look for us or try to find us in a photo that includes other people.

Finally, in the photo, we need to look approachable. People need to find us interesting and willing to talk with them. Anything conveying a stern outlook or unfriendly demeanor is not going to do what the profile photo is designed to do - present us to the world as someone others might want to meet and get to know - professionally first and then as a friend later.

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Steve HoffackerCAPS, C.E.A.C., MCSP, MIRM, is a licensed Certified Aging-In-Place Specialist instructor and best-selling author of universal design books. To learn about this and other programs for aging-in-place or universal design, visit stevehoffacker.com or call 561-685-5555.