The do’s and don’ts of professional networking on social media

On LinkedIn, the lines between personal and professional posts are often blurred. What should you avoid posting in order to protect your personal brand? Consider these insights.

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These are the kinds of headlines many PR pros expect to see when logging in to LinkedIn:

We just had our first baby, and isn’t she beautiful?

Please think of my family member in his time of need.

This politician said that, and it makes me so mad.

Many are often prefaced with “I know this isn’t appropriate for a professional networking site, but…”

PR and marketing pros, listen to your gut. LinkedIn is a place to pitch yourself as an expert in your field, not your life story.

Posting personal content feels more similar to the moments on “Shark Tank” when the pitch has failed and the contestants resort to their inspiring—yet irrelevant—personal stories.

Knowing your audience

Personal content isn’t inappropriate for a professional networking site. It often stands out in a way that it wouldn’t on Facebook or Twitter.

Although human interest stories that evoke emotion will naturally attract more eyeballs than boring listicles about office etiquette, to see shares and “likes” in LinkedIn, there must be some tie-in to the poster’s professional image or personal brand.

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