LinkedIn can be a powerful thing for your company’s brand.
Trying to corral a bunch of people to follow some LinkedIn best practices is always a challenge, especially since there’s a lot of feelings around LinkedIn for people.
What I’ve created here is a LinkedIn best practices template. You can download it, fill in your company’s information—tailoring it to fit your brand and your company—and then distribute it out to your team as a first step in trying to get everyone on the same page for LinkedIn.
Basically, we start out with why LinkedIn is important: it’s an important way to connect with your target audience.
It also acknowledges in this paragraph that LinkedIn is very personal. This is not something that we’re going to make mandatory. This is very much presented as a voluntary thing: “If you’d like to participate with our LinkedIn, this is how you can do it.”
The second paragraph introduces the idea of branded images. We have here a snapshot of what LinkedIn looks like when you do this people search. You can see that everything here looks very cohesive.
If you pull up other people’s brands, this does not look this way: every single person on the team has a different branded image in their background, and that can lead to a very chaotic view. So the idea here is just to give them a visual snapshot of why this is important: because when the company is pulled up in this way, this can either make a chaotic impression or it can make a cohesive impression.
One of the things that we did as a company is that we asked our design team to create three different versions of a banner—you’ll see how these get progressively more aligned with the brand—to create that cohesive view of the company and to give everybody the option to choose how involved they wanted that visual presence to be.
The first one is just our colors: it’s going to provide us with that beautiful background in LinkedIn where everybody looks like they belong together. But it’s very, very subtle. It doesn’t scream our company name.
Option B, we stuck the logo and some of our brand images into this one.
And then if you want to really go in and embrace the company vision, you’ve got this third option, which is basically our tag, our logo, and our branded elements.
This gives everybody a choice to do what they feel comfortable with—or, of course, to do nothing—but these are some options for them. And then we make sure that we give them instructions on how to get and upload those images.
Having some similarities in how we do our titles and how we talk about our company and roles goes a long way to making the whole team look aligned.
We start with instructions on how to upload the banner. This is actually a link that goes to the LinkedIn instructions on how to add or change your banner. It also gives some small best practices here on creating your profile.
I also provided a link to a profile of ours that was done really, really well. So if you have somebody in the company that really stands out, who can be a leader, who can be looked to as an example, put their profile here.
Next, we offered the opportunity for them to request a feedback session so they can have somebody to walk them through it and brainstorm off of.
We’ve got some more best practices in this template on the kinds of things you should post and not post. And again, your organization has to decide if this is a company policy, if you put this into your onboarding paperwork, etc.—but again, this is really meant to be more of a “best practices” document rather than policy: “Here’s what we suggest for you to do on your personal LinkedIn page to align with the company.”
What we’ve listed down here as “Extra Credit” in the template is giving the heads up to the team that occasionally we’re going to have really big news to share and we’d like their help with that. This whole section talks about what that could look like and how the instructions will come to them and what that will mean for them. So this extra section talks about boosting company posts and then also posting on the company’s behalf for really big news on a case-by-case basis.
I hope this template helps you at least start down the process of putting out some kind of guidance to your team about how you can really make an impact on LinkedIn.
Theresa Anderson @theresa
I work at Agorapulse and love everyone I work with so much!