Skip to main content

By Rosalie Berg, President, Strategic Vantage


When a marketing and communication platform goes as mainstream as LinkedIn, I guess it shouldn’t come as a surprise that many people still don’t know how to effectively use it. I thought of this as I was attending an industry conference a few weeks ago and needed to find out what someone looked like. To my dismay, they had no headshot on their LinkedIn profile.

That got me thinking of all the easy-to-fix errors people make on LinkedIn. Chances are, if you’re reading this blog, you’re making some of them.  So here’s a list of common mistakes.  Let’s see how you do!

1. Unprofessional headshot

Do you have a snapshot as your headshot instead of a professional photo? LinkedIn is a professional networking service. If you’re in a tux, if the photo has the background of your living room, or if you have someone else in the photo with you—it’s time to replace it.

2. Poorly sized photo

You have a headshot, but it includes your full torso.  In our industry, chances are your target audience is not a Millennial and may not have 20/20 vision.  As such, you want to make it easy for people to see what you look like.  So go to your profile, double click on your photo, zoom into it and crop it with the LinkedIn tool.  That way, your LinkedIn thumbnail will feature your face, not your face and your body.

3. Ineffective headline

The text that appears under your name is often the only thing a prospect or client will read about you. Make the most of it!  If you check out my LinkedIn profile at,  you’ll see how I used this space.  Don’t limit yourself to your business title!

4. No personalized URL

That brings me to personalizing your LinkedIn URL.  Did you notice that my LinkedIn page is on LinkedIn/in/RosalieBerg— a URL featuring my name, not random letters?  You can do the same, too.  Click here if you’d like detailed instructions on how to get your own LinkedIn Public Profile URL.

5. Being silent

Not posting messages regularly on LinkedIn is a major oversight. LinkedIn can be used much like email marketing to distribute content to a group of people. By posting content, you can attract the attention of prospects, customers and partners. It’s an inexpensive form of marketing. Why not use it?

6. Missing the visual appeal

Many people post text on LinkedIn but don’t think of including an image or a photo. LinkedIn posts that have images or photos attached to them attract much more attention.  In fact, posting images has been shown to result in a 98% higher comment rate.

7. Going the generic route

Keeping your LinkedIn profile with its default generic banner is not a great idea. Instead, create a custom banner at the top of your LinkedIn page to make it far more memorable. You can place a photo there, something tied to your company’s branding, or any graphic you’d like.  It’s your opportunity to be more memorable. Take it!

8. Under-selling yourself

Once someone comes to your LinkedIn page, don’t be shy about your accomplishments. You want to make sure visitors to your page learn about you and your company. As such, make sure your LinkedIn page provides a compelling description of you and your business.  Why should people want to work with you, hire you or do business with you? The answers should be there.

9. No photo

As I mentioned at the start of this blog, not having a photo on your LinkedIn page is a big mistake. Think of this. People feel a far greater connection with a person who has a photo than with one who they only know by name. People also want to be able to identify you when they meet you—or they may want to remember what you looked like after a busy conference. Plus, if there are any other people on LinkedIn with a name similar to yours, you are making it difficult for people to connect with you.

Think LinkedIn is not that important? Virtually every business executive you know in this industry is on LinkedIn, and 35% of LinkedIn users visit LinkedIn daily. Don’t miss this huge opportunity to engage with them!

If you don’t have the time, knowledge or inclination to update and proactively use your LinkedIn profile, then get the help of someone else to do it.  We’d be happy to help you leverage this amazing medium in no time. Just reach out to me at