LinkedIn – Endorsements vs Recommendations

by Christine Till

What value do endorsements have when people endorse you without even knowing you?

Have you noticed that many times you receive a connection request and immediately after you accept, the new connection endorses you for every specialty you have?

What use is it to receive these endorsements?

Let me share a story to explain the value of endorsements on LinkedIn.

I was invited by LinkedIn to attend a major conference they were holding in Vancouver a few years ago. I was excited to attend because first of all, it was free and second I wanted to meet all the local gurus that I had met online and at networking groups.

When the day of the event arrived, I enthusiastically entered the large conference center in downtown Vancouver. It was gorgeous, on the water, sunshine, light breeze blowing, many people arriving!

As I started looking around the room, I did not see many of the so-called LinkedIn gurus that I knew. Perhaps there were 5 or 6 that I knew. The rest of the audience was totally new to me.

Here is what happened!

At the end of the day, as the LinkedIn presenters wrapped up their presentation of all the latest features of LinkedIn, suddenly my headshot appeared on the huge video screens at the front of the room!

Shock! What was this all about?!

The person on the podium announced, "Would Christine Till please come up! We have an award for you!"

Of course I jumped up and approached the stage?

As I approached the stage, they announced that I was receiving an award for having the most endorsements of anyone in British Columbia!

More shock! I could not believe my ears!

Big lesson!

Here I had thought all along that endorsements had little or no value and that they were pretty much bogus things to have, but this experience demonstrated to me the true value of accepting endorsements and allowing people to find great things to compliment me on, and that I should be more open to doing the same.

Today I endorse people every day, multiple times a day. Here is my caveat: I endorse the people I know and/or have done business with, or have had recommended to me by someone I trust.

Mind you, the written recommendation still carries more weight, because that means someone has taken time to actually type out how they have felt about doing business with you. These are the best by far.

There is a secret when it comes to written recommendations. Never ask for a written recommendation on LinkedIn! Be pro-active and write one for the people you do business with first. People love to receive a glowing compliment in writing that is heart-felt and honest. Then guess what happens? They feel inspired to write one for you!

In all the years I have been using LinkedIn, I have never asked for recommendations from anyone. I now have over 200 written recommendations on LinkedIn. They have all come to me from people who responded to my recommendation that I sent to them first.

So the next time you are wondering what else you can do with LinkedIn, sit down and write some recommendations for the people you have done business with. They will love you for it, and write you one back.

It is all part of building your brand and making money on LinkedIn.

Endorsements and Recommendations keep your face in front of your audience, so the next time someone on LinkedIn needs what you have to offer, they will think of you first.

For more tips book into our series of complimentary webinars. The next one is April 12th at 4pm Mountain Time :

Find me on my blog or here on LinkedIn

Do feelings belong on the business playing field?

by Christine Unterthiner

I say, "Yes" and, "Why not?".

In Michael Devenney's article last week, "How the F Word Could Save Your Business", he thoughtfully unfolds the "everything is great" facade we often wear as entrepreneurs. Sharing from his own difficulty to acknowledge feelings vs always coming from logic or thought, Michael, as always, generously offers some great tools to help us bring the "F" word to work.

I believe when we allow emotions and feelings to have a voice, they can give us access to a variety of things including: a new level of understanding – of others and ourselves, uncovering a belief that may not be valid, or connecting with people in a whole new way.

It's not about just letting everything spill out (although sometimes that is exactly what we need) but rather to acknowledge our feelings and talk things through. Suppressing our emotions and trying to hide them can lead to stress. Plus it's not fun. Not only that, pretty much everyone has a sense something's going anyway which, depending on how it seeps out, can also have people be on edge around the person who's doing the suppressing.

I've been thinking a lot the past while about how living as a whole person includes bringing all of ourselves to every aspect of our lives, work or play. When did it become the norm to separate ourselves, to be one person at work and someone else at home and/or another person somewhere else? Has that always been a thing?

What if we could bring all of ourselves everywhere, to everything and everyone? Would we choose different career paths, different ways of playing, would work even occur as work?

In our branding discovery sessions with clients, we've noticed it's easy for them to talk about, and relate to, the numbers, metrics, and facts. However, when we ask them questions about brand personality or emotions, we notice a subtle difference in how they answer. And, having gone through our own personal and brand journey, we get it. We make sure they know there are no wrong answers and that they really can say anything. What I especially love is when they connect to something they hadn't seen before, or get moved by what they're doing and who they are.

I encourage you to keep looking at your emotions, acknowledge them, embrace them, be curious about them. What are they telling you? It could be something new, it could be a pattern, whatever it is, enjoy the journey!

Please let me know in the comments how you've successfully integrated your emotional well being into your life and if not, what you've been encountering on your journey or. let me know what you thought of Michael's article and if it made a difference for you.


Why Blog?

by Christine Till

Why does your blog need to be at the center of your online marketing?

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Blogging achieves several business objectives.

It can help you get found online. It allows you to include keywords that people might search for in order to find you online. Blogs help engage people and then they want to share your stuff with their connections. The more you blog, the more people sign up for your blog.

When you have written a bunch of blogs, and people go to your site, they will stay there longer because they become engrossed in your content.

After you have written a blog, you have a piece of content. Then you can take that content and easily post it to all your online platforms.

Take blogging seriously and do it consistently. It may not start out as being the best written blog in the world, but people will enjoy watching you grow and improve through your blog.

People like reading your stories.

What do you blog about?

What do you love to talk about? What is it about your products or services that makes you different? How have you made a difference in your customers lives? Talk about why your customers come to you? What do people like to hear from you?

Blog boosts. Check what content most of your followers read the most. This will tell you what to write about. When you continue to write about what your "peeps" want to read, the search engines will also pick up on your content...especially when you use key words.

Great bloggers, Darren Rowse & Seth Godin, tell us to be authentic.

Blogging helps you build valuable relationships with customers. People do business with people that they know, like, and trust. It's the regular contact that endears people to you.

Your blog needs to educate, engage, empower, entertain, and inform your audience.

  1. Education - positions you as the expert.
  2. Engagement - makes your audience want to comment and share your blogs.
  3. Empowerment - encourages your audience to take charge and implement.
  4. Entertainment - exposes your lighter side and makes people laugh.
  5. Information - helps your readers better themselves or their businesses in some way.

Your blog needs to be at the center of your marketing campaign with your website and other online platforms attached. When you publish a blog, it will then instantly be sent out through all your social platforms for your connections to read.

The content in your blogs becomes an asset to your readers. You are offering real value.

Jonathan Christian taught me the true power of blogging and I am very thankful for him. Blogging has become the most powerful piece of my business.

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The Marketing Mentress

The List of Comparison

by Christine Unterthiner

So there's this long list of people in my head with whom I used to (and still sometimes) compare myself. Then there's another list that's kind of a checklist – the one I would use to know when I'm finally good enough. The problem with both those lists: comparison is not real and can lead us far away from who we really are.

The List of Comparison is like a tall tower to climb, one that is made of glass – nothing to hold onto, hence impossible. I will never be like those others because I am not them, I am me. However, what I can do is enjoy them, learn from them, take the things I admire and make them my own; not from an act of comparing but from a place of creation – to allow myself to emerge and keep becoming the person I want to be.

Even though it's taken me a while, I actually like who I am now. I enjoy my silly sense of humour, my quirky rhyming and my intense need for answers. I'm okay with the fact that I'm tall (as a teen I used to blame my dad for that one. That, and my big feet), have a nose that could rival Streisand's and talk in a rather slow, drawn out fashion (it's gotta be my European heritage). I can't be like anyone else and have stopped looking outside myself for the answer, for guidance, for creativity. It's all right here - in me!

How can we stop being lured into the world of comparison?

Of course it will be different for everyone. Here are five tips I found work for me:

  1. Notice when I'm not feeling settled in my body – this could be anything from mild discomfort across the chest to a greater sense of being scattered or under some kind of pressure. Say out loud what's actually happening in the moment. I find it a fast way to get present, especially when I say my thoughts out loud. That's often when I can hear/see if I've been doing any comparing.
  2. As soon as I start to judge others, I know I'm comparing. The first thing I do is shift my focus by saying something good or that I admire about them or the situation. If that's difficult, then I look for something easier that's in my immediate vicinity. This helps distract my mind and re-focus my attention on something else.
  3. Read emails, cards or letters from happy clients who love me.
  4. Open my journal and write a list of all the things I like about myself.
  5. Call someone with whom I haven't spoken in a while and find out how they are doing.

Start with baby steps. Find that one thing you love about yourself – or at the very least, really like – and keep comparing yourself to that. Add to the list, ask others what they see in you, connect with people around whom you feel uplifted, listen to music, dance, sing, sing in the shower... That list you have of others will get smaller and smaller. The more you look, the more you'll discover that you really are amazing, you are good enough.

Have You Heard This?

by Christine Till

"I am quitting my business because none of my clients are paying me!"

Can you believe it?

When I heard this the other day, it sent me into a dizzy! I could not imagine it happening to anyone. Why would all of the clients for one company not pay their bills?

It prompted me to ask some questions.

  1. Exactly how many of your clients did not pay you?
  2. Have you sent them bills?
  3. Did you have them sign an Memorandum of Understanding upon agreement to work together?
  4. Why didn't you get 50% paid to you up front?
  5. Are you sure that your clients knew exactly how much you charged? Perhaps there is a misunderstanding about how much you were going to charge?

Usually when I hear comments like this, questions come to my mind. It is always a two-way street. This type of situation is because of a lack of communication and lack of understanding.

Being in business for yourself is tough and sometimes we have to chase the money to get paid. However, if we set things up from the beginning with proper documentation completed and a deposit up front, the rest comes easy.

Try it with your next client and see how it works.

If you have challenges with how to write a Memorandum of Understanding, I have a simple one-page one that was written by a lawyer for my coach. He was gracious enough to share it with me. I can share it with you if you like.

To avoid getting into a situation like the one mentioned in this post, sign up for our FREE series.

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Christine Till
The Marketing Mentress