…there will be a little bit o’ rock & roll here like all things Rock The WorldTM.
Technology professionals have it both good and bad on LinkedIn. For the good, there are all those great people that can provide the opening to the next client, the next job, the next friend. LinkedIn is loaded with peers and clients for technology people. Lots of great music out there, you could say.
The bad part of LinkedIn for technology professionals is that everyone and his uncle is out there on LinkedIn and it is harder than ever to STAND OUT. How many people need a T1 nowadays? One call can get you 20 bids! It’s a tough business.
An irresistible tip right from me – “Fit In and Stand Out”. If you must wear a tie, make it a Jerry Garcia tie and a colored shirt. Make sense? Read on…
LinkedIn Recommendations Set You Apart
For the bad, there are so many people just like us out there that it’s easy for us to get lost in the shuffle. There are so many bands that all sound the same. The LinkedIn Profile and specifically, the LinkedIn Recommendation can help a LOT. It can help show the Rockstar that you are in your line of work.
You don’t have to be a LinkedIn Rockstar to understand the importance of LinkedIn Recommendations. Chris Brogan (@ChrisBrogan) did an excellent write-up in a recent Blog Post. See the post. Some of our readers have reached out asking for my to jump in on the conversation, specifically since the topic has great application to my fellow technology professionals, whom I now train to use LinkedIn. Why?
First of all, a recommendation shows that you were there, it is proof that you DO the things that you SAY you do. It is a way to “Back it up” as Kid Rock might say. A good book is like a good album isn’t it. Songs are chapters.
We were in the studio cuttin’ a record, oops I mean writing a LinkedIn book, and it came out pretty good. Rock The World with your Online Presence is 188 pages devoted entirely to LinkedIn Profile development and SEO optimization. Over the last year, readers have contacted me and suggested that I share some of the material and the LinkedIn Recommendations part was suggested. I couldn’t resist the request, so here is the single best LinkedIn Recommendation tip we talk about in the book.
This tip is particularly well suited to technology professionals with whom I most closely relate, but it really works for just about everyone. One should speak from what one knows and you can see that 250 LinkedIn Recommendations (from real customers, co-workers and partners) can show you a nice array of what this looks like in action. Notice that they are spread out so that they paint a broad, yet detailed picture.
I suggest that most business professionals have 10-20 LinkedIn recommendations from customers, partners, co-workers and maybe even investors. This is your 3rd PARTY VISUAL PROOF. Spread them out.
My Best Recommendation advice…
…for technology professionals: Ask others to describe projects you worked on together and say some nice things about the result of your contribution. Ask them to use numbers where it makes sense. It paints a picture of what it is like to work with you in business. LinkedIn is about business after all.
A recommendation that is not specific has deflated value. Should it say: “I really like their music” or: “Once I heard that 7-minute guitar solo on Free Bird, I had to go to the show, get the album, join the fan club, play it for all my friends”. You decide!
Describe Project Results
LinkedIn Recommendations cater especially well to projects and that is where technology professionals can benefit especially well. An example:
“Franklin and I worked on a 20-city telecom roll-out. He helped us design it and was with us all the way through the turn-up including the ribbon cutting ceremony. This project was a success because of Franklin. I suggest you reach out to him!”
The advice of friends
Sales professionals everywhere know the power of testimonials. For those in sales roles, we suggest you check out our partner Townsend Wardlaw’s wisdom on the subject - Top 10 ways to Use LinkedIn for Sales Success. Townsend rocks the sales world but he’s into a bit more modern music than the “analog-driven” vinyl-recorded LinkedIn Rockstars.
About me and why I can write this particular focus
I spent 20 years in technology sales and started training on LinkedIn over 4 years ago, showing others how to become accomplished with LinkedIn by following our LinkedIn Business Methodology.
I lived the technology sales life: I carried a monthly sales quota, went to President’s Club, worked in a cube at a branch office, worked at Corporate HQ, home-officed, VPN’d in, got LAID OFF (more than once). I did it all.
Networking for me was Twisted Pair, DS3, Servers. Now my networking is all LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, WordPress, Meetups and everything that goes with it. You might call what I do now Layer 8 networking.