Do you stand out on LinkedIn?

LinkedIn_logoLast night I had the pleasure of presenting on the above topic to a group of UTS Alumnus. I faced the unenviable task of squeezing a one day workshop into a little less than an hour. The gathered group were most patient with me!

There were three big things I wanted to get across last night. I’ve uploaded the presentation onto Slideshare to give you a taste of the presentation (

You can’t stand out on LinkedIn. There are over 430million LinkedIn members and about 3.5million in Australia alone. If Heads of State, Nobel Prize winners and world famous entertainers/sports people can’t stand out on LinkedIn, then you & I have little chance. But there is good news. You don’t have to stand out on LinkedIn – all you have to do is stand out in YOUR part of LinkedIn! By your part I mean your community, your networks, your tribe.

Have a decent profile photo. The big point I want to get across here is that LinkedIn is not Facebook or Instagram or Tinder. A professional looking head & shoulders image wearing the type of clothing you wear when working is all you need.

Use your headline the right way. The headline section of your profile (i.e. those 2-3 lines that appear under your name at the top of the profile page) is in my humble view the most valuable real estate on your profile. So don’t waste it one something like your position title & the business you work for. Get creative! Here is my headline to get you started – Helping professional services firms better understand their clients & markets.

Hope the above helps!

Until next time.





Is social media a waste of time for accountants? (1 of 3)

I’ve lost count how many times I’ve been asked this question by clients & friends.

By way of setting some context,  lets look at where social media is currently “at” in the world today:

  1. One in every nine people on Earth is on Facebook ( This number is calculated by dividing the planets 6.94 billion people by Facebook’s 750 million users)
  2. People spend 700 billion minutes per month on Facebook
  3. Each Facebook user spends on average 15 hours and 33 minutes a month on the site
  4. More than 250 million people access Facebook through their mobile devices
  5. More than 2.5 million websites have integrated with Facebook
  6. 30 billion pieces of content is shared on Facebook each month
  7. 300,000 users helped translate Facebook into 70 languages
  8. People on Facebook install 20 million “Apps” every day
  9. YouTube has 490 million unique users who visit every month (as of February 2011)
  10. YouTube generates 92 billion page views per month (These YouTube stats don’t include videos viewed on phones and embedded in websites)
  11. Users on YouTube spend a total of 2.9 billion hours per month (326,294 years)
  12. Wikipedia hosts 17 million articles
  13. Wikipedia authors total over 91,000 contributors
  14. People upload 3,000 images to Flickr (the photo sharing social media site) every minute
  15. Flickr hosts over 5 billion images
  16. 190 million average  Tweets per day occur on Twitter (May 2011)
  17. Twitter is handling 1.6 billion queries per day
  18. Twitter is adding nearly 500,000 users a day
  19. Google+ has more than 25 million users
  20. Google+ was the fastest social network to reach 10 million users at 16 days (Twitter took 780 days and Facebook 852 days)


Lets get local now. Here are some interesting growth statistics in Australia of the more popular social networks (source:

January 2011 (UAV – unique Australian visitors)

Facebook – 9.8 million users in Australia.
Youtube – 6.7 million UAVs
Twitter – 1 million UAVs
LinkedIn – 760,000 UAVs

Compare the above to the same statistics in August:

Facebook – 10.5 million users in Australia.
Youtube – 10 million UAVs
LinkedIn – 2 million UAVs
Twitter – 1.8 million UAVs

In just 7 months the big social networking sites have grown in Australia by:

Facebook – 7.1 %
Youtube – 49%
Twitter – 80%
LinkedIn –  163%

These are big, big numbers. The point of showing you these stats is simply to say that social media is not a fad – it is here to stay. Of course, you might be thinking to yourself that the above is all well and good but the majority of the traffic going via social media is personal and trivial. For the most part you’re right, but there are some interesting business facts that you just can’t ignore!

Tune into the next post and see how people are using social media for business.

All my best,

James E

“Do you know anyone … ?” (part 2 of 2)

In the last post we were talking about the the importance of helping clients with introductions to people that may help them in their business and personal lives.

You might have thought to yourself , “James … its fine for you to be introducing people to your clients that’s your job and you have a huge network of contacts and you get paid for it.”

The above thought has two parts to it. Firstly, yes … I do have a large network of  friends, associates, contacts & acquaintances. But I’ll show you a way that is both inexpensive and quick to allow you to build a circle of friends and others that will help you in your business and career if you use it the right way. Secondly, I do a lot of favours for clients and others that I don’t get paid a brass razoo for. For me, its all about strengthening relationships and giving before receiving. To some of you this might sound corny and trite – but I’ve found it is the best way to become a long-term professional that people will trust.

Many of you have heard of LinkedIn and a few of you use it. For the uninitiated, LinkedIn is an online business networking site that connects people through 3 degrees of separation: your friends, friends of friends and friends of friends of friends.

LinkedIn (I prefer this business network because I have spent the most time and effort in building it!) is akin to a huge virtual bucket of business cards. You can search LinkedIn members by criteria like name, position title, company, university/college and location. It is seriously useful if you use it correctly.

At the time of writing my LinkedIn network numbered just under 20 million people around the world. This of course didn’t happen overnight, but through a regular investment of a little bit of time my network has got bigger and bigger. Some of you might be thinking – so what? What is the use of being linked to people in Botswana when I’m in Australia? With complete respect … thats not the point. By having access to these type of networks you can reach people you wouldn’t normally know or even think of contacting.

As mentioned in the last post my client needed access to someone within a specific field in Australian Agribusiness industry based in Sydney. I used LinkedIn to start an initial search and within about 10 minutes I had 20 contacts. Now from experience I know that not all of those contacts will be the right ones but with some further screening I will find my client 2-3 high quality people with whom he can meet.

There is absolutely no reason whatsoever that you can’t do the same for your clients. To help get you started send me an invite to join your LinkedIn network. By doing that my 2nd degree of separation will become your third degree which means about 3.3 million people will be added to your network instantly.

If you’re not a LinkedIn member then sign up otherwise you’re missing out on a quick and inexpensive way to help your clients – accounting or otherwise.

See you next time.

James E