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How should you behave on a professional social media platform?

Recently, a solicitor on LinkedIn asked what exactly people expected from his LinkedIn posts. Did they want to get to know him as a person? Did they want to hear about his expertise in the law? Did they want to know about how he runs his business? He received lots of comments and feedback that he clearly took on board. His posts since then have been a mix of informal/personal posts, which he said he preferred, as well as business-related posts. More importantly, his authenticity came across through adopting this new approach.

There isn’t really a right or wrong answer, though LinkedIn has often been called ‘grown-up Facebook’. Your connections probably aren’t interested in photographs of what you had for dinner – unless you are a restaurant critic, perhaps! Nor do they necessarily need your opinions on religion or politics.

What’s right for you and your business?

If you are a one partner firm, then your personality is likely to be a large part of your business persona. If you are an employee in a larger organisation, the company persona will be more prevalent.

If you have ever found yourself asking ‘Can I trust my employees to represent the company on LinkedIn?’, then consider introducing a company policy on social media usage or restricting who can post on the company’s behalf. This will help maintain a consistent tone of voice across your company pages.

Mind your Ps and Qs

There is a saying - ‘never say anything behind a person’s back that you wouldn’t be prepared to say to their face’. The same applies for what you type. Hiding behind your screen is never an excuse for rude, unprofessional or undermining behaviour. Bear in mind that something that may seem innocuous to you, could easily be mis-interpreted resulting in a negative and often digitally indelible backlash. If you are in any doubt take a few moments before posting or run by a colleague.

The vast majority of posts we see on LinkedIn are positive, helpful and supportive. It is a fantastic, open community for discussing business and growing your network. Don’t mis-use the Linkedin community’s trust and mind your Ps and Qs.

Cal Partners is a north east based marketing and digital marketing agency and business development consultancy specialising in the professional services sector. We understand the importance of maintaining your company’s tone of voice across all communications and can help you achieve this consistency.

About the author

Alison O'Neill

Account Manager, Alison, is a former Forensic Scientist who moved into professional services marketing in 2008 and is a Chartered Marketer and Member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing (MCIM).

Marketing for Professional Services

Cal Partners

The go-to strategic marketing partner for ambitious professional services