In today’s fast-paced social media landscape, most B2B fintech executives are aware that LinkedIn is an essential platform for not only connecting with industry peers, but also generating brand awareness and communicating your company’s message. For professionals looking to establish themselves as thought leaders in their space, it is imperative that their online persona positions both their personal brand and their organization’s brand in the best light possible.
Unsurprisingly, there’s much more to being “follow-worthy” on LinkedIn than liking a post here and there. In our recently published guide, “Best Practices for Managing Your LinkedIn”, we break down specific steps you can take to optimize your LinkedIn profile and maximize awareness of yourself and your firm. Designed to support fintech thought leaders, the guide contains proven approaches to setting up and maintaining your LinkedIn profile to boost its reach and impact. To get a better sense of what you’ll learn, read on.
Setting Up Your Profile
In today’s digital age, many industry relationships are first established online, so an informative and well-composed LinkedIn profile can make all the difference when facing your peers. If you are marketing yourself as a spokesperson for your firm, it is crucial to look the part via your digital presence.
For starters, using a professional headshot as your profile photo makes a positive first impression on individuals who stumble across your LinkedIn page. A high-quality portrait with a simple background conveys confidence and positions you as a credible and trustworthy professional.
Your headline, located directly below your profile picture, should include your current role at your company. Be sure to keep the headline tight– when it comes to your credibility, your title and experience should speak for themselves. In addition, your profile should include a banner image that further communicates your or your firm’s brand, and you should create a custom URL for a more personalized feel. Finally, while your first-degree connections automatically see your posts and articles in their feed, any LinkedIn user can follow your profile, even if they’re not in your direct professional network. Our guide teaches you how to include a “Follow” CTA button to further amplify your LinkedIn authority and reach.
Highlighting Your Experience and Brand
The subsequent sections of your LinkedIn profile – About, Featured and Experience – allow you to establish your credibility as a thought leader by highlighting your career path and active participation in your industry. Executives should take care when filling out these sections, as they can help users appear more frequently in search results and attract pageviews.
The About section is comparable to the summary many people include at the top of their resumes – here’s where you can give visitors a high-level overview of your career and areas of expertise. This is an ideal opportunity to set yourself apart from the crowd by showcasing your unique experience and skillset, as well as your firm’s value proposition. This section should include information on your current role, what your firm does and anything else that might give your industry peers a sense of who you are and where you fit in. You may also want to include a link to your firm’s website or a CTA to reach out via email.
The Featured section of your profile allows you to link to any news articles, blog posts or other pieces of media you’d like to display to your network. For fintech executives, these will typically include thought leadership articles published on your LinkedIn page or links to notable news from your company, such as a funding announcement or product launch.
The Experience section is where you can add information on your past job roles to provide a comprehensive look at your career history. Think of it as your professional journey on paper – your past experiences paint a picture of the breadth and depth of your skills. When inputting previous positions you’ve held, be sure to include all relevant titles, a description of each firm and any noteworthy accomplishments to get the full value out of this section.
Establishing Credibility and Increasing Impact
Once your profile is complete, the work isn’t over – building an impactful LinkedIn presence requires you to frequently engage with your audience. There are two primary ways you can achieve this: by posting original content on a consistent basis, or by regularly interacting with posts from others that appear on your feed. Posting engaging, industry-relevant content makes it more likely that other users will see your profile, broadening your audience in the process.
To be a true thought leader, it’s important to focus on topics that lie at the intersection of your expertise, your interests and the interests of your community. You should always strive to help shape the industry conversation and offer a forward-thinking point of view. When it comes to original LinkedIn content, fintech executives should promote important firm-wide news (M&A activity, partnership announcements, etc.), career updates, event attendance/sponsorship, shoutouts to colleagues/industry peers and thought leadership pieces on timely industry topics.
To boost engagement, be sure to tag all relevant people and companies in your posts, and don’t forget to include photo and video elements when possible. In addition to posting your own content, it’s equally crucial to comment on your peers’ LinkedIn posts and reshare items from both your firm and other friendly industry stakeholders to establish yourself as an active member of the community.
While the success of your LinkedIn presence may be hard to pinpoint – brand awareness, openness to sales conversations and the like are often difficult to quantify – there are a few primary and secondary KPIs you can use to evaluate your profile’s growth and success. The impact can be seen in your number of profile views, post impressions and search appearances (all visible in the “Analytics” portion of your profile). Other metrics include average number of comments per post (primary), as well as feed views, follower growth and post likes and shares (secondary).
Our full definitive guide for fintech thought leaders – complete with helpful visuals and step-by-step how-tos – delves into further detail on how you can build your LinkedIn network, promote your personal brand and position yourself as an influential person in the space.
Request your copy of Forefront’s “Best Practices for Managing Your LinkedIn” guide here and learn how to make your mark on the fintech industry.