Online Profiles Can Make Or Break Your Social Networking Success
Almost every social networking site offers a feature called a "profile" that
allows members to include their picture, a biography, live links to their
websites and other detailed information. Most of us have multiple online
profiles that are empty or only partially completed. It is this profile that
helps other users decide if they want to work with you. Another perk of online
profiles is that the live links pointing to your website may impact your search
It is very important that you think of these profiles as your own "Public
Relations Department or Media Room", specifically designed to sell you and your
business. Imagine that you only have a few seconds to sell a new prospect on why
they should want to get to know you and possibly do business with you. What is
said and offered during these few seconds can make all the difference in the
world. This is EXACTLY why your online profiles need to be completed to capture
the attention of anyone who visits these sites.
Let’s look at the different aspects of social networking profiles and what
information and content you should include to ensure that you get the maximum
results. The following information may or may not be included in every profile
but the majority of it is standard:
Your Picture - Your photo is the first thing people will see upon visiting your
profile or when reading your posts. How does it represent you? Wearing a tank
top while giving the peace sign with a beer in your hand is not the way to
impress potential clients. If you are looking for clients, then professionalism
is a must. You can show SOME personality in your photograph but try to strive
for conservative whenever possible.
Your Biography - This is your chance to tell others more about you, such as
interesting aspects of your life and what makes you, YOU. Take your time here,
as this area is the equivalent of sitting down with a prospect and telling them
exactly why they should do business with you. Include specifics about your
expertise, your business, how you have helped others and even your personal
philosophies. You want others to be excited about connecting with you and this
is YOUR opportunity to shine.
Links - Make sure to include helpful links in order to allow others to find you
online. A link to your website, your blog and additional information about your
business is crucial. However, some people make the mistake of including each and
every link that points to a profile of theirs online. If you have 25 social
networking memberships, it is NOT advisable to list them all here. A good idea
would be to vary these links on every website where you have a profile.
Contact Information - You have to include contact information if you want people
to have the ability to contact you. Do not try to hide at this point. Many
people have the wrong opinion that they should NOT put contact information in
their profile, assuming that people contacting you for business purposes is a
bad thing. Would you include your contact information in a yellow pages ad?
Then why not offer it online? Please only include information you want to be
Interests - Do you like to play golf, workout, volunteer or build model
airplanes? You might be surprised that many people would be interested in
connecting with you just based upon similar hobbies and interests. This
connection can lead to a deepening friendship that may lead to business and even
referrals down the road.
Education - While some people may or may not care about your schooling,
including specifics about your education can do two things to help you increase
the number of responses. First of all, those who went to school where you did
may want to connect. Secondly, by offering details about your education, it will
help others to see your experience and expertise in various areas.
Favorite Movies or Books - While you may not see the correlation between your
favorite movie and a potential new client, trust me, it exists. Just like much
of the information above, the information in your profile is designed to help
you connect with potential clients and to build business relationships.
Sometimes, simply sharing your favorite movie can be the start of a beautiful
Testimonials from past clients - One of the best ways to demonstrate your
ability to help others is by including testimonials from past or current
satisfied clients. These testimonials will help others to get a snapshot of some
of the work you have done in the past and help to build a foundation of a great
Looking at the list above, there is a lot of information that should be included
in each and every social networking profile. Because of this, many people decide
to skimp and their profile winds up being about 3 or 4 sentences long. This is a
mistake. It is better to leave a profile blank than to create such a lackluster
one. If you need inspiration, visit some of the most popular social networking
sites and read a few profiles to get some idea of how to get started.
If filling out multiple social networking profiles is too much for your busy
day, you might look at getting help from a virtual assistant. Many of them have
experience in this area and can create a compelling COMPLETE profile that will
best represent you AND your business. We live in a world of social networking...
making it a part of your business marketing simply makes sense. Take the time to
do it right or hire someone who can do it for you.
© 2010 Davis Virtual Assistance. Publication rights granted so long as article
and byline are reprinted intact, with all links made live.
Bonnie Jo Davis creates and manages social networking strategies for her
clients. She is a published author, expert in article marketing, and feels
comfortable working in a virtual environment. For more information on how she
might help you get the most out of your social networking efforts, visit
http://www.your-marketing-assistant.com. If you need help marketing your local
brick and mortar business visit http://www.local-map-listings.com
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