Why your LinkedIn name matters
Do You Know Me?
Do you know me? No, but you sent me a request on LinkedIn. You must want to get to know me or you wouldn’t have done that right? I replied to your request and I sent you a note so that I can get to know you better. I personalized it because I really do want to know you. So I typed, “Hi Patrick,” but no one calls you Patrick accept your mother when she is angry. You find it funny that I would call you Patrick and maybe even a bit annoying. But the funny thing is, that’s the name you used on your LinkedIn profile.
So what’s in a name? A lot. If you are being authentic and working to build relationships online that means you want people to know your name. Not the one your parents gave you, the one you want everyone to call you; unless they are the same.
Elizabeth or Liz, Roderick or Rod?
People have this problem with business cards too. Your name may be Elizabeth and that may be the way you sign checks, but if you don’t want to be called Elizabeth, don’t put it on your card (or your LinkedIn profile). I asked a friend of mine about this once. I asked why he put Roderick on his card instead of Rod, the name everyone calls him. He told me that he was trying to trick salespeople. If a salesperson got a hold of his card and then tried to call to sell him something they would ask for Roderick. That’s how he would know that person didn’t really know him.
I replied, “That’s crazy, what if it’s a prospect calling and they ask for Roderick, the name you put on your card? P.S. Most salespeople are smart enough to figure that out and would probably ask for Rod.”
LinkedIn is not a legal document. It’s a networking platform. When you meet people at a networking event and introduce yourself, what name do you give? That’s the name you should use on LinkedIn. Your LinkedIn name matters.
Are you hurting your image?
Whatever your reason is for putting your given name on your marketing materials and social media, consider this: you may be hurting your image, you may be making it hard for people to find you and you may be putting people off.
People buy from people they know, like and trust. This hasn’t changed. How do I get to know you if you don’t even let me know your name? Great things come from being genuine and authentic. This is essential online if you want to build a brand that people trust and refer to.
So what’s in a name? Your image, your brand, your ability to get people to know, like and trust you. What’s your name? The name you want me to call you? Please use it on your LinkedIn profile.
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Originally posted on LinkedIn on 25th August 2015