LinkedInScreenShot1I’ve been making a costly mistake, and it’s a doozy. When it comes to social media, I’ve been treating LinkedIn like a red-headed step-child (I was one of those for a while so I can say that – well, I’m still a step-child, but now I’m back to being a brunette).

I got on LinkedIn when I was in the corporate world, and back then it mostly was a place to post your resume. LinkedIn has come a long way and offers many opportunities to increase your brand’s visibility. It’s the place a potential partner, client or colleague can quickly get a sense of who you are professionally. It’s also the place to personify your business, your philosophy and your personality.

I noticed some pretty cool features when I was tooling around on LinkedIn the other night. Hmm, time to end my sabbatical. After about 30 minutes I realized LinkedIn’s got serious storytelling power coaches, consultants and other service-based entrepreneurs. And the more places you share your story, the more people will want to know about you.

Here are six places to tell your story on LinkedIn:

LinkedInScreenShot2Headline: Most people use the field under their name to post their title but that’s a waste of prime real estate. This is the first and most visible place to define who you are and how you help people.  My headline states who I am, who I help (and how) and invites people to connect with me.

Background: OK, this is the obvious place to tell your story. Most people pop in their (often stuffy) professional bio here. I know, it’s LinkedIn and it’s got a traditional vibe. Guess what? If you let your true voice and personality shine here, you’ll stand out. Tell the story of why you do what you do, why you help who you help, what you believe and what makes you the person to lead your community (I’ve even included my story video here).

Projects: This field is my favorite recent discovery on LinkedIn. Do you have a free report, audio or other gift that people can sign up for (aka your opt-in)? Here’s another place to work on building your list. Immediately after my summary, I’ve posted the title and description of my free report along with a call to action of “Click here to download”, which sends people to the page where they can sign up for my report (aka my squeeze page).

LinkedInScreenShot3Recommendations: Of course you’re all telling your professional story in the Experience section (you are right?) but are you asking everyone under the sun to recommend you? Don’t limit yourself to current clients and colleagues. I have recommendations from former managers, clients, co-workers and colleagues.

Endorsements: You’ve got skills. Make sure you’re letting the LinkedIn world know what they are. Then invite your LinkedIn buddies to endorse those skills. Once I got the first handful of endorsements, it seemed like everyone wanted to get on the bandwagon. It’s an easy way to collect many thumbs up (LinkedIn’s version of Facebook’s “Like”) from your following and boost your credibility.

Advice for Contacting You: Hooray! Another place to get people to take the first step with you. Instead of providing details about my availability and the types of opportunities I’m interested in (as LinkedIn suggests), I’m directing people to grab my report or schedule a free consultation.

Your Business Page and Groups are two other places on LinkedIn where you can share your story and connect with your ideal customers.

Where else are you strutting your stuff and telling your story on LinkedIn? Leave a comment and let me know.


  1. Krista on August 22, 2013 at 10:24 am

    Gayle, this is great. LinkedIn is one place I know that I need to up my game! I’ll use your suggestions to get started with that project. Thank you for dr-mystifying it!

    • prwriter on August 22, 2013 at 11:22 am

      You’re welcome Krista. I know there’s more to be uncovered in LinkedIn too so I’m happy to share more nuggets as I learn more.

  2. Wendy on August 22, 2013 at 1:27 pm

    This is great – I never considered LinkedIn for sharing my story, other than just the facts. But essentially, it’s another way for people to have their first encounter with you (not just your website), so it makes sense to polish it so that you shine!

    • The Story Stylist on August 22, 2013 at 1:30 pm

      I know Wendy. I actually feel really silly for not recognizing that. of “the big 3”, LinkedIn has a story framework built right into the platform. Glad I finally got that “aha”!

  3. Sandra on August 28, 2013 at 6:50 am

    Thanks for the reminder about this, everything you pointed out is true. I am going to update mine to make more fresh and to coordinate with my new website. Also, groups are a great way to show your expertise – having a conversation with possible prospects. I love the group aspect and also that anyone can create their own group, that is really awesome.

    • The Story Stylist on August 28, 2013 at 9:19 am

      Thanks for the comment Sandra. You’re right. Groups are an excellent way to let your strengths and expertise shine. Starting your own group gives you even more clout and visibility . . . and more opportunity to wrap your knowledge in story.

  4. Jamie Wilson on July 26, 2022 at 1:23 am

    I would love to tell my personal story and how it pushed me to start my own business, but, I don’t have the writing skills and feel a bit insecure about hiring a professional writer. What would you recommend?

    • storystylist on July 26, 2022 at 3:40 pm

      Hi Jamie,
      Thank you for sharing your desire to tell your story and how it inspired you to start your own business. I hear that you believe you don’t have the writing skills and feel insecure about hiring a professional writer. Before jumping to the “how” of it all, I invite you to reflect & journal on these questions: What are you hoping to achieve by telling your story? If you had that, what would that make available? Why is that so important to you right now? Who else would benefit?

      What are you now noticing after your reflections?

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