Dalai Lama, Nelson Mandela, and Martin Luther King Jr. are just a few names of the world’s most influential leaders. Knowingly or unknowingly, the world has been under the influence of some great names who have showered us with their wisdom.
Today’s leaders live in a very different world–the digital world. There’s also another term for many of them: influencers. In today’s market, if you want to be credible, it’s critical to build that credibility through your digital footprint.
For some leaders, developing their digital footprint is a tough pill to swallow. The fact is, 99% of employers check candidates out on LinkedIn when making hiring decisions. Did you just watch a presentation made by someone you didn’t know? What’s the first thing you did? You checked out their digital footprint to judge their credibility.
Today, it’s more than charisma, authority, communication skills and competence, but branding. That’s what LinkedIn is, your digital brand. To be an influential leader, your brand has to resonate; it has to frame you as an expert that can solve a particular problem.
These tips are a great place to start leveraging LinkedIn to build that brand:
Create a Headline That Pops
The LinkedIn headline is not a place to write an opinion or explain what you are “passionate about.” It’s a place for others to look to succinctly, at-a-glance, know the one thing in which you are the go-to person. If you don’t have a professional banner (or any banner at all), a professional picture, and a strategic headline, you’re not going to build credibility. Here’s what you can do:
- Your headline should include three elements: your role (or general function), your industry/expertise, and your unique value add (with a measurable result, if possible).
- Your headline should contain keywords from job descriptions (of ideal roles).
- Your entire profile must reflect this brand as a narrative, or story.
Create Meaningful Relationships
In other words, network! For many people, that seems icky. They have a hard time reaching out to people they may not know. But, in order to build connections and get endorsements and recommendations that help build your brand, you have to get out of your comfort zone! Ask yourself, what would an influential leader do? What would a successful person do? No one is going to yell at you for reaching out; it’s what LinkedIn is for! You can say something along the lines of “Good morning. I noticed you in my suggested connections, and I really like your background. I also noticed you worked for Acme Company, which I’ve been following for years. I’d love to connect to continue the conversation about how we can best help each other.”
You’d be surprised what people would do if you just ask.
Create a Narrative
Each role should include a high-level highlight reel with some major accomplishments and results. It’s important to be succinct. Again, LinkedIn is a marketing piece–a narrative, and it’s not meant to list every duty nor regurgitate your resume. It can also be created in a more conversational tone than your resume can.
Fill Others’ Cup
A critical step to being influential is being grateful. It’s not about what you want to get, but what you want to give. The quickest way to lose credibility and never get responses is to sell and promote you and your services in everything you do. Instead focus on how you can help others by creating truly valuable content and, if you do, people will come to you.
Summing It Up
You might not be a born leader but you can definitely become one. Remember the best, most influential leaders always advocate for others and put their needs over their own.
To attend the best leadership training seminars, get in touch with Paul Bickford Solutions. We help awaken your inner leader by focusing on your strengths, and developing a truly impactful brand strategy by removing all the guesswork. So, start your journey with us today and become the leader you were always meant to be. No excuses. Grab a free consultation today to discuss how to optimize your brand as the influential leader you are!