Praise from Ollie Sharp – UK Sales Manager at LinkedIn

Last week I held a keynote at LinkedIn’s SocialRecruitIn event. Fab event and you can see more from the day here. I finally had the pleasure of meeting Ollie Sharp - UK Sales Manager at LinkedIn.

I’d been tweeting with Ollie for a few months – as he advised David and I that he found edition 1 of The Business of Being Social to be highly useful – and that he was making all members of his UK sales team read it.  In fact, the main reason I’d been invited to talk at the event, was down to Ollie’s recommendation.

When David and I wrote the book, we really positioned it for business owners or those wanting to learn more about the channels. What we didn’t think about at all – was the impact our book could have on how the social media channels we featured within the book themselves, could actually use our ideas to better position their offering to their audiences.

It’s wonderful to hear that LinkedIn took sentiment from our teachings to make some changes to their proposition.  Both David and I are hugely proud of that.

Here’s what Ollie Sharp, UK Sales Manager – Staffing and Search at LinkedIn,  had to say…

“The Business of Being Social has become a useful resource within the LinkedIn sales team. The book really helped us to understand the bigger picture of social media and it was instrumental when we changed the way that we work with clients. It helped us to develop how we consult with our clients and advise them on how to build a social media strategy. We were missing the critical aspects that social media channels enable – such as continuous conversations, brand proposition and getting employees on board to strengthen both brand and message. From our learnings from the book we now advise companies to build their followers, engage them with content and this will enable them to do what they do best – recruit! The Business of Business Social is now a must read for all new recruits into my LinkedIn sales team – and has become an integral part of our training. Highly practical – yet at the same time, highly insightful. A really useful tool for all businesses, either starting out or looking at how to optimise their social media activity.”

Wonderful – even more than we set out to achieve.

Michelle x



The Business of Being Social 2nd Edition – First review and it’s a 5*****!

Always delightful to great off to a great start… David and I are delighted with the 5***** review for the book. Let’s hope there are as many as for our first edition.

“There are so many books out there that claim to teach businesses the art of using social media platforms, but they are full of wordy jargon-filled passages which give most non-web professionals a headache.
This is such a refreshing read, breaking each chapter down to focus on a specific social platform, and explaining why businesses should use the platform, not just how.
It covers the basics, like describing each platform and what they are used for – Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, and Google+ are all covered, but it goes deeper and explains how businesses need to communicate with their customers, how to engage, lead a conversation and get the best from a strategy. As a small business owner I found this actually quite a compelling read, and I have used it for creating strategies for using social media, and how to get the best out of it. Hands down the best social media book for businesses if you don’t want a heavy read.”

Wonderful – just what we set out to achieve.

Michelle x

The Business of Being Social – 2nd Edition is here…

Yay – it’s happened. The Business of Being Social 2nd Edition is here.

Why a second edition and not a brand new book? I hear you say…

Well – whilst the skeleton is similar – and some of the aspects from the original book have been retained, the majority (around 85%) is brand new.

2nd Edition of The Business of Being Social

2nd Edition of The Business of Being Social

A lot has changed in the social media space in the past two years – and so this 2nd edition features not only all the relevant updates to keep the content, fresh and relevant and as highly practical as possible – but it also includes two whole new chapters.

  • Social Media Advertising
  • Becoming an Adaptive Social Business

When we wrote the book almost 3 years ago now – when we were training and consulting with organisations and business owners, the question was ‘why should we do social media‘.  Just a few years later, the question is now more likely to be ‘how can we do social media effectively‘.

The answer to both questions will be uncovered throughout the 13 chapters.

So – grab your copy today – and be sure to leave a review. We had so much praise for our original book, which spurred us on for book number 2 – so enjoy and let us know what you think.

Happy reading…

Michelle x





Farewell product and services tabs on LinkedIn Company profiles. Hello Showcase pages!

In just over two weeks, LinkedIn will be removing the product and services tabs from Linkedin Company profiles.

These have been a useful way to highlight the different facets of your company and have allowed engagement in the form of sharing and the writing of recommendations.

However, from 14th April, this service will be phased out and replaced with Showcase Pages, which represent a real step forward for the site. So please note that p. 148 of the book is now out of date.

Showcase Pages are to Company Pages what microsites are to websites. They are a way of showing off different elements of your company, be it offices, departments, services, products and brands.

In the same way that Facebook is aiming to take on customer-facing brands’ websites with their Company Pages, LinkedIn is employing a similar strategy with B2B brands.

Combined with Sponsored Updates, the site now not only gives companies a great place to post their content, but they also allow you to promote this to a targeted audience.

Want to know how you can make best use of these new Showcase Pages, then click here to read a great blog by Hubspot which talks you through the process.

LinkedIn to introduce promoted content for Company Profiles

It seems that LinkedIn is taking the lead from Facebook and is introducing promoted content for Company Profiles.

According to Mashable, the social network will allow brand’s to promote their content to a wider audience than just those who follow their Profiles.

It quotes David Hahn, LinkedIn’s vice president of product management, who says: “Marketers can target Sponsored Updates to any segment of our premium audience based on professional profile data across more than 225 million members.”

In the same way that Facebook is looking to take on customer facing (B2C) websites, LinkedIn is doing something similar with professional services or B2B websites. This latest development makes it possible for brands to make themselves even more visible on this increasingly vital online platform.

However, having Sponsored Updates means that the content you post must be interesting, engaging and relevant to your target audiences or you will be wasting your money.

And you should also ensure that your Company Profile is well optimised and does your brand justice. Check out Chapter 7 in the book for more information on how to do this.

LinkedIn sponsored

Launch Party – The Business of Being Social

So… what a fun event our book launch turned out to be.

Everyone enjoyed the presentation we gave sharing insights into how we came about writing the book, the gap in the market we were aiming to fill – and the practicalities of writing of book, when you’re running your own business and have small children.  The presentation ‘The Making of The Business of Being Social‘ went down really well – (and everyone particularly liked our Bloopers video- lots of hearty laughter… thanks guys).

And the stage was set in the wonderful offices of Laytons Solicitors, 2 More London. The views, as you can see from the photo gallery – were absolutely spectacular. And the word ‘WOW’ was commonplace as guests arrived. Such a vantage point from which to enjoy canapes and wine and watch the sun going down over London’s panoramic skyline – and experience the changing light on Tower Bridge.

LinkedIn – A Savvy Way to Get Round Limited Searching Without a Paid For Option

For those of you that have been using LinkedIn for a long time now – (after all it is 10 years   linkedin search, xray search, linkedin help, linkedin tips old) – you’ll have noticed that just last month – things changed dramatically with regard to the ‘search’ facility.

Yes, with the basic (free) version of LinkedIn you can still do Advanced Searches – however, the information you now receive back is far more limited within the free version than it ever used to be.

Does this mean you have to get out those credit cards and upgrade to a paid for premium version of LinkedIn?  Not necessarily. It depends what your objective for being on LinkedIn is. And there are there are still ways you can by-pass some of the limitations now placed on the search in LinkedIn’s free version – by being a savvy searcher.

Using X Ray Search

Google is a wonderful tool – and there are some very sophisticated ways of using Google Search (and if you are interested this Google Hangout Training Course  -‘Understanding The Power of Google Search’ is an exceptional piece of content).

We can also use the power of Google to help us when our searches hit brick walls via LinkedIn.

Here’s how.  Let’s say I am looking for an Accountant, within 100 miles of London, in Financial Services.

I do an advanced search on LinkedIn and the person I want to connect with comes up – however, I can’t see any of his contact details or how to get in touch with him – and he’s a 3rd degree contact so the best I can do is connect to someone who knows someone he knows (not very targeted).

linkedin help, linkedin tips

However, to find out a bit more information – I can run an X Ray Search via Google.

Optimise the Results by Switching to Private Browsing Mode

Before you run the search I’m going to show you in Google – be sure you switch to private browsing mode in your browser. Why – well, even if you log out of LinkedIn – sometimes LinkedIn knows that you are still a member. Therefore, often the results you get back aren’t as insightful to those with free membership of LinkedIn – as to those that don’t have membership.  So you can effectively trick LinkedIn into thinking you are not a member.

Private Browsing in Different Browsers:

  • Chrome calls it Incognito – and it is the three stacked lines to the far right of the browser. Click that and 4th row down you’ll see Incognito window mode – switch to that and you are ‘incognito’.  You switch back by simply clicking the new window mode.
  • IE – click the cog icon and select Private Browsing.
  • Firefox – You see the words Private Browsing
  • Safari – Click the cog and select Private Browsing.

Now you are in private browsing mode – simply type the following into your Google search bar:

John “GL Accountant” “CEE/Alpine at Lumesse” “Hemel Hempstead”

And be amazed.  What you will get is the full profile – access to email, Twitter and websites – so connection can be made directly.

Simple.  If you liked this insight – do share it.

LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google+, Pinterest and the many other networks are making changes all the time. Keeping on top of all the changes and leveraging the platforms for your own business purposes is tricky – hence why we created this blog to support our book, The Business of Being Social.  Stay tuned to this blog… and we’ll keep you tuned in on all the latest changes.  And of course, for practical insights into leveraging social media for business – buy the book. (Subtle plug… not).


Happy 10th birthday to LinkedIn

Believe it or not, the social network LinkedIn is now 10 years old. Started in May 2003 essentially as a recruitment website, it has now morphed into a fully fledged, business-focused social media site with over 225 million+ members worldwide.

To remind you what it has achieved over the past decade, they have produced their own video which you can watch here: 10 years of LinkedIn.

In our training courses, we often say there is no reason why anyone should have to go onto social networks in a personal capacity. The exception though is LinkedIn. Anyone who is a professional and wants to build their visibility online, grow their authority and network successfully needs to have a fully-completed profile on the site.

Furthermore, just as Facebook Pages are taking on consumer facing websites, in the same way, LinkedIn Company Profiles are doing the same in the professional services and B2B (Business to Business) space.

So think about ensuring that you and your business are visible on LinkedIn.

LinkedIn new Apps – LinkedIn Contacts – A smarter way to keep in touch

linkedin tips and advice

As you can imagine, writing a book about the topic of social media is challenging – mainly because the platforms are frequently making updates, changes and enhancements.

The LinkedIn chapter had to be changed a few times prior to publication – and of course, there comes a cut off point where the book has to get to print – and yet still more changes occur.

Back in September 2012, LinkedIn removed their Linkedin/apps page. Historically, you ventured here and could pick up various apps which you then plugged into your profile to enhance look and content.  The new look and feel of LinkedIn Personal Profile pages meant that many of the Apps that you plugged in to enhance the profile were now integrated (ie: ability to add presentations, video etc directly into the profile content).

LinkedIn clearly has an agenda for developing sophisticated apps around user need – and it was interested to see this App being promoted – LinkedIn Contacts – A Smarter way to keep in touch.

About the App

LinkedIn Contacts brings together all your address books, emails, and calendars, and keeps them up to date in one place.

At this stage, when you sign up you get added to a waiting list.  So once we get using the App – we’ll keep you posted.  Looks interesting though.

Stay tuned.