I was recently at an awards night late 2016 where our company was ranked in the Top 100 Coolest Companies in Australia.
The team and I were enjoying a few drinks and waiting for our name to get called so we could accept our award of the coolest company in Australia.
Unfortunately though, this year wasn’t to be, we came second in our category.
We stayed around to talk to some of the other finalists and the businesses that are striving to be finalists next year. In attendance were a few start ups who were obviously there to learn a thing or two from the companies in the finals.
After our company was given a mention on stage, we went to a break and during that time, a startup founder by the name of Greg came up and started talking to me about LinkedIn.
For a strange reason he seemed familiar, his company had marketing reporting software that assisted companies in tracking multiple advertising sources and the conversions. Curious about our LinkedIn training he told me about his experience with the LinkedIn so far.
He said that he had been connecting with his target market on LinkedIn, but was struggling to get them to convert to a meeting or even a phone call.
Greg hadn’t been following any type of system and was hoping our program could help him.
After I gave him a bit of advice and told him to download our Free Digital Guide and Video on our 3 step methodology to generate leads through LinkedIn, he gave me his business card.
The next day I was sitting at my desk and noticed his card protruding out of my wallet. Interested by where I thought I knew him I checked my LinkedIn, searched for him and saw we were connected.
I also saw that he had connected with me and sent me a sales letter straight to my inbox after I connected with him a few months ago. Now I remember him, I’d put him straight in my spam bucket.
I then looked at his LinkedIn profile, his website and did a quick Google search on him and remember why I never replied to that message.
His branding and communications were really poor.
Due to this, I felt inspired to write an article sharing the 3 reasons why branding is so important on LinkedIn to help other people who might be finding that they aren’t getting in front of people from their LinkedIn marketing efforts.
Without further ado, here are the 3 reasons.
1. Don’t make your first impression your last
When I talk about branding, I’m talking from a holistic standpoint of your website, LinkedIn profile, communications and even your company social profiles. Any touch point that might be in front of a prospect.
The main reason why people won’t connect with you offline through LinkedIn is because your branding is either nonexistent or horrible.
Let me explain using the Greg example, when he connected with me I looked at his profile picture, he looked like he had put a picture of himself at a party.
I checked out his website, it looked cheap, pixelated images and there were many spelling mistakes.
Then when I looked at his LinkedIn profile it was barely complete and didn’t communicate what he did effectively or what his company’s mission was.
Unconsciously I think to myself he doesn’t care, and if he doesn’t care about his own company – is he really going to care about mine?
And then the question pops up – is his business even going to be around in 2 years time?
I don’t think so. Therefore from me it was an immediate ignore.
Funnily enough though, when I did speak to him he did come across very passionate about what he did and it piqued my interest to check him out a little bit more the next day like I did.
Now he just needs to bring this passion into all of his assets, not just his offline persona.
2. Be aligned with your target audience
I see a lot of people completely disconnect from their target market through their branding.
If you’re targeting high end corporate companies, your branding needs to resonate with them. You’re not going to be able to sell a $50,000 website if your own company website looks like it cost $200.
Sure more established companies that have had clients for a long time can get away with having a poor presence due to their length in the marketing place, but for someone new entering the market or for a company looking to grow – you need to be setting the standard.
If you look at beer brands like Victoria Bitter (VB) which is an Australian beer for those that don’t know, their branding really appeals to their target demographic which is working class Australians who love their sport and to have a beer on the weekend with their mates. See their website here.
Where as you look at say a Crown Lager, by the same company (Carlton United Breweries), it appeals more to the higher class more affluent beer drinker. See the website here.
So how can you apply these same principles in your LinkedIn marketing?
Ask yourself this question, who is my target market and will my branding resonate with them. If it doesn’t – redevelop it to get cut through.
With Greg’s branding it did not resonate with me at all and therefore I did not communicate back with him.
This is where you might need to invest in a quality designer who can help you resonate with your target demographic.
3. All digital assets need to be consistent
The final piece of the puzzle is to ensure all your branding and communications are consistent across all platforms.
Maybe the about section on your website is different to how you explain your company on your LinkedIn profile.
Maybe you haven’t updated your Facebook page with your new branding and it looks different from your website.
All of these inconsistencies raise doubt in your prospects mind. If you want to be the best you need to resonate, look superior and stand out.
This may sound extremely superficial, but you need to understand how the brain works, it takes shortcuts based on the information available. If that data is incohesive, unconsciously the prospect makes an assumption and that assumption is never a positive one.
That’s why if you can work hard on getting your branding right and invest where you need to, I can promise you will start to get more meetings and improve those conversions rates.
Hope you enjoyed the article and now start to see the importance of investing in your all important digital footprint for your LinkedIn success.
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