Cats are pretty badass. They can make over 100 sounds, they can sprint at 31 miles per hour, and their pee glows under black light. Pretty impressive, right? These aren’t exactly the kinds of qualifications you’re likely to read on a professional LinkedIn profile, but if you’re looking to take your own up a notch, you might just want to hit up your feline friends for some advice on LinkedIn marketing.
According to an article on USA Today, the Internet’s favorite cats can teach you a thing or two about being captivating, engaging and memorable – all traits that can give your LinkedIn profile some serious star power. To harness the lolcat mystique, you must first understand it. Why do cat videos do so well on the Internet? According to USA Today:
She distills their popularity down to three points:
- They tell universal stories.
- They engage regularly. (Apparently, people regularly post their amazing cat feats).
- They are surprising, original and action packed.
I’m afraid, though, that most people’s LinkedIn profiles don’t have nearly the same effect or appeal.
In fact, they can be quite blasé. And they aren’t particularly surprising, original or action packed either.
Yep, it’s hard to stand out from the crowd when you describe yourself using the exact same words that your competitors do. You’re “creative?” So is everyone else. “Dedicated?” You’re not alone. You’re a real “people person?” So are all the other people people. There’s nothing surprising, engaging or original about the way most LinkedIn users describe themselves, and that’s exactly where they go wrong. USA Today offers a solution:
Instead of saying you’re creative, share action-packed examples of how you have been creative: “Spent months researching then developing a system that tracks sales information and cut days of work down to minutes.”
Tell stories that employers can identify with and apply to their problems: “Devoted hours of thought on how to target our market and created program that doubled sales.” Engage them regularly by posting more action-packed details and relevant, useful ideas as they come to you. Read more at At Work: Make LinkedIn Profile as Engaging as a LOL Cat
If you’ve ever sat through a college writing workshop, this last concept might be familiar to you. It’s the same advice professors give young writers when they say, “Show, don’t tell.” The same principle that makes fiction shine also does wonders for LinkedIn profiles, cover letters and pretty much any type of writing. Details and specificity are your friends. Because here’s the thing: in business, as in life, being an individual counts. Lolcats intuitively know this, and they want to help.
You might think that a profile full of business jargon and passively voiced sentences makes you seem important and serious. But remember this: you’re not “lolcat serious” until the day you can rock your MBA while wearing a top hat and staring fixedly through a hole in a slice of wonder bread. And don’t forget to update and interact. If YouTube users can post hundreds of videos of the same chubby tabby, surely you can write recommendations or comment on a few threads. So get out there and start making your mark. We believe in you, you crazy cat, you.
What’s the most creative job title or description you’ve seen in a resume? Tell us about it in a comment below.
By: Alayna Frankenberry, staff writer at The Content Factory.