(This post has been updated; see Excellent CMO/VP of Marketing LinkedIn Profiles)
When you’re the head of a marketing department, people expect you to be an expert in all aspects of the field—including social media. They look to you as an example for creating a strong personal brand, gaining online exposure, and sharing thought leadership.
It’s particularly important to provide a strong presence in the space when you are the one advocating the use of social media to your executive leadership and your sellers. You gain much more credibility when everyone can see you are walking the talk.
Elements of an Impressive Marketer LinkedIn Profile
Fortunately, LinkedIn provides a customizable platform that’s perfect for telling your story. And there are certain elements that need careful attention in order to create an exceptional profile.
- A great profile picture. Not a selfie or photo where you’ve cropped out your significant other, but a well-lit, recent, professional headshot where people can see your face — and get a sense of your personality.
- An interesting header graphic. Take advantage of this prime real estate to tell people something about you. Good choices include a photo of you speaking at a conference, a graphic that showcases your company’s new branding, or a cityscape.
- A thoughtful summary. Your Summary/About section is like the cover letter to your profile. Use this opportunity to tell a story, give people a sense of who you are, and share why you have such a passion for your work.
- A complete work experience. This section is for more than simply listing your past jobs. Share details about what you were responsible for, what you accomplished, and what you learned. Make this section richer and more colorful by adding links to relevant videos and uploading articles.
LinkedIn is a platform where you can showcase your ideas through professional blog posts and articles. Make it a priority to post blogs from time to time — and stay active, share content, and engage with people on a regular basis.
Profile Examples Worth Checking Out
As you work on creating or updating your LinkedIn profile, you might want to review these excellent examples from CMOs and marketing VPs. They will spark your creativity and give you ideas you can use to improve your own profile.
- Chris Capossela
Chief Marketing Officer at Microsoft
Capossela is the CMO at one of the largest companies in the world, which owns LinkedIn, so it’s no surprise that his profile is excellent. His background image is bold yet practical (a tilted shot of the Microsoft headquarters in Seattle), and his profile picture is both professional and friendly. He publishes thoughtful articles on a regular basis and keeps his more than 100,000 followers abreast of the goings-on at Microsoft while providing a more personal look at what causes matter most to him.
- Dan Harbison
Global Senior Director Digital – Jordan Brand at Nike
Harbison makes the most of LinkedIn’s option to include media (uploads and direct links) in your profile’s summary and experience sections. Having worked for major companies like Nike and Caesar’s Entertainment in Las Vegas, he’s chosen a select group of their high-quality websites, graphics, and videos and peppered them throughout his profile. This content provides people with instant insight into his impressive body of marketing work.
- Michelle Draper
Chief Marketing Officer at Silicon Valley Bank
In Draper’s summary, she includes her go-to quote: “Clarity is underrated!” and her profile reflects that idea. Exceptionally succinct, her summary is short, but it effectively communicates her personality. Her background graphic and profile picture match the sentiment.
- Landon Johnson
Tenacious Growth CMO | Cybersecurity & Technology Thought Leader
Johnson’s profile includes three publications and two videos on the topic of cybersecurity and security risk management in the Accomplishments section. This is the area of your profile where you can feature awards, honors, patents, publications, languages, projects, and organizations. You don’t need to include every award you’ve ever won, but it’s nice to include the most recent and most prestigious.
- Patrice D’Eramo
Vice President, Cisco Americas Marketing & Communications
D’Eramo uses her LinkedIn profile to share her career accomplishments, but also addresses her work/life North Star: the people in her home, work, and community. She invests time engaging in her professional and personal communities, and the media on her profile page reflects that passion. By including existing Cisco presentations through LinkedIn SlideShare, she highlights easy-to-digest information without creating more work for herself.
- Shashi Bellamkonda
Chief Marketing Officer at Surefire Local
Bellamkonda’s header graphic accomplishes two things: it showcases one of his employers (Georgetown University, where he’s currently an adjunct professor) and establishes him as a professional speaker and expert in the field of marketing. He also has 43 recommendations — an impressive number.
- Margaret Pacheco
Global Chief Marketing Officer + Head of Business Development
Pacheco gets right to the point in the first two sentences of her summary, which is a smart move since LinkedIn only shows the top three lines before making visitors click to see more. Strategist, revenue-driver, demand generation, product innovation, brand experiences, digital transformation — these are all keywords that will grab people’s attention, and they’re included in the first few lines of her profile.
- Gerry Moran
Global Social Media & Digital Marketing Leader
When your profile appears in LinkedIn search results, users can see your name, headline, and location. This makes the headline an important place to differentiate yourself. Moran has done this, opting for a value-oriented headline that lets users quickly learn more about what he brings to the table.
- Julie Porter
Chief Rocker at Front Porch Marketing
Porter’s LinkedIn profile looks exactly like what you’d expect from an energetic marketing expert — fun, bright, and filled with activity. She shares posts from her company page regularly and likes a lot of content, which is an easy way to show her followers what she’s about and gain more connections.
- Chris Capossela
Today’s marketing VPs and CMOs have a huge job and a multitude of responsibilities. With new campaigns launching and a million other priorities, there’s a tendency to put all your effort into promoting the company, the products, and other leaders. But don’t neglect promoting yourself.
If you don’t have time to craft your own profile, or you’re unsure how to put together something that truly reflects you and what you have to offer, work with a writer who can take your thoughts and turn them into a powerful presence (Hint: We can help!). You’ll be proud of the way you look, and you’ll set a good example for those in your company who look to you for direction.