Time to read: 3 minutes. Here is a quick guide to creating your LinkedIn summary. I’ll include tips you probably haven’t heard before … and give you 3 summary examples for sales professionals.
Take these tips and structure your profile summary to provoke more response from prospects.
This will help nudge your prospect on LinkedIn.
Your new Summary: Simple, fast and provocative
The job of your professional headline and Summary section is to:
- earn attention
- spark curiosity in prospects so you can
- earn a response (a lead)
Sometimes you need to give prospects a nudge … a little push. This creates inertia you can work with.
Avoid using the Summary section like most people do: As a summary of your experience. Instead, strike a balance between your personal experience and these 5 elements:
- What you do
- Who you do it for (your target customer)
- How you can help
- How you what you do differently (why customers should choose you)
- Exit points (words that encourage & direct prospects to LEAVE your profile)
Here’s how to make your profile’s Summary section more provocative … able to nudge prospects … in 3 simple steps. Or you can join me in this live online training.
#1: Convince prospects to read your summary
Start at the top of your profile. The job of your professional headline is to create curiosity about your Summary section. Your summary section creates curiosity about you. It’s a constant stream of curiosity.
It all starts with a small nudge. Your professional headline.
Use the headline to:
- get found by prospects searching for you (with LinkedIn’s internal search engine)
- bond with buyers using bold, clear words
- give an irresistible reason to read the Summary section
WARNING: Avoid listing your professional title in this space. This won’t help you get found, nor bond with your potential buyer … nor create curiosity in what you’re all about.
Here’s what to do instead—an effective template to follow.
Summary Example #1
Use words or phrases that your target buyer would use.
For example, if you sell copywriting services to natural health marketers make sure you do not emphasize your service. Instead, focus on what your service does and for whom.
Look at how David Tomen of Swift Current Marketing does this on his professional headline.
Appeal to the deepest desire of your buyer—what the end result is. Help buyers become curious about your ability to put out a fire, scratch a bothersome itch, solve a problem or help them fast-track a goal. As David Tomen says, “I help people who sell natural health products get more customers.”
It’s no wonder a natural health marketer would want to read more about David’s qualifications! He sparks curiosity with this approach. You can learn more about how David improved his profile here in this LinkedIn profile tutorial.
#2: ‘Chunk’ your LinkedIn summary section
Nothing sells you better than simplicity and brevity.
This creates distinction. It also allows prospects to scan.
In a world filled with people positioning themselves you’ll stand out. Rip out ALL adverbs and adjectives. Don’t position. Don’t prop yourself up. Use less words. Less is more in copywriting. Also, create easily-scanned “chunks” or sections for your prospect to scan.
Make it easy for buyers to scan your Summary section.
Write these sections with as few words as possible. These are your sub-headlines. Make each sub-headline appeal to what your prospect really wants to know in most cases. Keep it simple. And remember, no selling, no positioning. Speak only about your prospects’ pain, goals, desires or fears.
Help them start to want … want to ask you questions about what you just said in the Summary section.
Summary Example #2
Check out how Andrew Torgerson helps commercial property owners increase cash flow. He allows customers to quickly scan his profile’s Summary section.
See his “chunked” sections? They’re simple … and aimed at creating points of distinction for himself … and helping buyers find their way OFF of his LinkedIn profile (onto his phone, into his email inbox).
His “chunks” speak to:
- What he does
- How he’s different
- How he can help customers
- Specific deliverables
- His contact information
You cannot get lost in Andrew’s Summary. His copywriting is simply structured.
It’s easy to scan with the eyes and speaks to what clients want to hear about most. It’s built for speed.
#3: Get back to basics: Less is more
I can show you many LinkedIn summary examples for sales pros. If you’d like more, just ask and I’ll send them. Bottom line: Your success depends on getting good at one thing.
Borrow from the classic, time-tested, proven techniques of B2B copywriters. Speak in simple terms. Be pithy. Leave out all the descriptors.
For example, avoid writing that you have “exceptional skills.” Just have skills.
Stop trying to position, sell or convince. Just say it. Plain talk is refreshing, creates distinction and helps people want to learn more about you.
Being brief, blunt and basic sparks interest in humans. It’s a fact.
Remember, make sure your summary is not a recital of your experience. This is not optimal for sellers. Yes, you may wish to have an “Experience” section but don’t make your experience the focal-point.
Here is how to take action on this idea:
Make sure the Summary section of your LinkedIn profile communicates:
- What you do;
- who you do it for;
- how you do it (why customers choose you) and
- how potential buyers can act on their curiosity.
I recommend using a similar (provocative, less-is-more) approach when sending email and InMail messages to targets.
Summary Example #3
One of the best LinkedIn profile summary examples I’ve seen is Kelly Watt of 3D Technology Sales. Kelly created a chunk section called “How I can help.” His career is based on selling 3-D scanning solutions to law enforcement agencies and teams… what is called “forensic reconstruction.” It’s an amazing field of work.
When he worked previously for FARO Technologies, here’s what his action-oriented chunk looked like. You can see how it looks today now that he started his own business.
HOW I CAN HELP
♦ CONNECT with myself or team to see if 3D Scanning is right for you
♦ ASK our experienced team to assist with funding options, grant writing or government financing
♦ TALK to our customers to see why they chose FARO
♦ SCHEDULE an on-site demonstration — see how the technology works first hand
Action, action, action. Notice how Kelly applies verbs here. He’s guiding the eyes and the minds of his prospect.
Use Kelly, David and Andrew’s profile summaries as guides. Borrow from them. When you’re done drafting, go back and try to remove the “I’s” and adjectives/adverbs. This focuses your writing on what the prospect wants to hear.
Use your summary to get the prospect OFF LinkedIn
Once you’ve executed the first 3 steps above, it’s time to get your prospect off your profile—and on the phone or into your email inbox. Make clear calls-to-action and, yes, include shortened web links. While not click-able, buyers will cut and paste or right-click (in Chrome) to visit your landing page.
Be sure to land prospects at places where the call-to-action promise is fulfilled in exchange for a bit of information about the prospect (a lead)..
Remember: Give your prospects what they want. They don’t want to know about you—they want to know what you can do for them. Good luck!
Photo credit: Markus Spiske
I’d love to do something like this, if I wasn’t required to use the summary templates that are approved by our compliance department.
Kurt, it’s likely possible to balance your compliance department’s needs with your own. After all, your LinkedIn profile is YOURS, not your employers. That said, I know some orgs are very rigid. Too rigid on “guidelines” that are actually counter-productive to selling — in the name of some PR wonk who makes every employee sound character-less!
LinkedIn is a very powerful channel that helps professionals. With a great summary, it will be easier to establish your strong points. Your profile can easily speak on your behalf. It really matters a lot to know the aspects that must be given the right amount of attention.