Stand Out – LinkedIn Hacks for Accountants

LI-hacks-for-CPAs_LI-532x266 Stand Out – LinkedIn Hacks for Accountants

If you’re using this social media platform to engage with leads, to promote your personal brand, or to expand your firm’s brand reach, here are several hacks to help make your posts and profile stand out.

  1. Font Facelift. Did you know you can bold, italicize, or underline text in your LinkedIn profile? Using a free tool like Cool Fancy Text Generator, you can create all kinds of text features to help your high-profile copy stand out. Avoid going overboard with this feature; rather use it sparingly to make certain elements pop.
  2. Follow rather than Connect. Did you know that you can change the connection-action button on your profile from Connect to Follow? You’d do this to help reduce the number of people simply connecting to you to sell you something (they can still do it, but they have to find the connect button under the More menu). Using the Follow button could increase the quality of your connections to those who really want to connect. Here’s how to do it. On your mobile LinkedIn app, once logged in, go to the Setting icon, click the Privacy tab, and scroll to “Who can follow you?” Select “Make follow primary.” On the desktop version, go to Settings, Privacy, Blocking and hiding. Click the “Followers” option and make follow primary.
  3. Control the topics for which others may contact you. This mobile-only hack is great to help you be identified in search for a variety of things, such as paid consulting, advising companies, or hiring. There are nine options to choose from currently. Here’s how you do it. Login to your mobile app. Click your picture in the top, right corner. Scroll down to the section called “Reach out to [your name] for…” and click the pencil icon. Choose up to three subject areas you’d like to be contacted for, e.g., advising companies, paid consulting, and more.
  4. Extend your headline. This mobile-only hack carries over to your desktop profile once complete. On the desktop version of your profile, your headline is limited to 120 characters. In the mobile version, it’s expanded to 200 characters. This is a great option to expand your headline and use additional keyword terms to draw in followers, to increase your brand, and to engage leads. Here’s an example. Let’s say your profile headline says, “Managing Director Advisory Services at MyFirm’sName.” You could expand that to be more effective in search by adding specific keywords, such as “Managing Director Advisory Services at MyFirm’sName | Risk Mitigator | Business Advisor | Author | Keynote and Guest Speaker.” You could even make it fancier by using Hack #1 to add special characters or font decoration.
  5. Use an ellipsis to eclipse those with a similar name. If you put an ellipsis (…) in front and in back of your name on your profile, whenever someone is searching in LinkedIn for a name similar to your own, yours will appear first. Also, if your name is tagged in a group or list of names, the … will help your name to stand out from the others. For example, if your name were to appear in a series of names in a post, like Jody Padar, Tom Hood, Jim Bourke, Jennifer Wilson, … Your Name …, Michelle Long, etc. your name stands out due to the ellipsis. In another example, let’s say someone met you at a conference and your name is Tom Smith. If you were to use the ellipsis in your profile name, your name would appear before other Thomas Smith spellings even though “h” comes before “o” in the alphabet. It would also put your name before other Tom Smith’s not using the ellipsis.

Before giving all five of these a try, consider staggering your approach to see if there is any impact on the number of spam connections you receive, or the number of times your profile appears in search results, etc. If you were to implement all of these hacks at one time, you wouldn’t know which hack put your profile over the top. 

If you’re looking for additional LinkedIn profile tips, the AICPA’s Journal of Accountancy posted “Building a LinkedIn profile that builds your career,” Jetpack Workflow shared “The Anatomy Of An All-Star LinkedIn Profile for Accountants & CPAs,” and this Yesware blog provides several, how-to examples in, “7 LinkedIn Summary Examples That Make You Look Good.”

When you think about LinkedIn as a business tool, it can help you to grow your network, to connect with clients by sharing posts relevant to their industry, and to stay relevant as a thought leader. Additionally, sharing posts and writing articles on this platform helps to build “search cred,” which helps to maximize your personal and firm’s brand reach, as well as exposure.

Which of these hacks will you implement to make your LinkedIn profile stand out?  

This post originally appeared in the CPA Client Bulletin Resource Guide, © 2019 Association of International Certified Professional Accountants. Reprinted by permission.

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