The Partially Definitive Guide to LinkedIn Personas

Here’s a take on some of the personas and publishers you might find familiar from LinkedIn, Twitter and maybe even Facebook.

Persona: The Guru of Gurus

Where: Twitter and LinkedIn
Special Skill: Wisedom but in annoying smart ass snippets

Yes, it’s the 140 characters of glory from the serial twitter socialite whose repeating something they heard at a meet up. You get a push notification from another Twitter big dawg who’s already all over it with an almost instant retweet. Is it worth one of your retweets? Think carefully… Maybe a bit of their DNA will rub off on to your tippytap finger if you do. Remember they work at a unicorn – so they must be right. At least ‘Like’ it? You hate them really for being clever. Then you tap retweet… totally conflicted but seems like a win.

Top Tip: The Guru can be useful, just be grateful you’re not married to one. Total arsehole in reality.



Where: LinkedIn and Twitter
Special Skill: Disrupting/riding unicorn to moon

Starts their day after 1 hour of sleep with a 72 mile run and a bowl of quinoa. Works at an aspiring unicorn. Arrives at the office, a sustainable converted shipping container filled to the brim with 67” Macs powered by a never-ending beam of sparkly digital venture capitalist cash energy. This persona either falls into one of two poster categories. 1 ‘The Guru’ covered above or 2 ‘My team – the family’.

The later normally involves a stream of content letting us all know how the team building offsite went (on Tristan de Cunha) or how great the free fresh food (132 varieties of quinoa), infinitely stocked beer fridge or fuss-ball table is this week. Today he’s tweeting a photo of an insanely motivated pack of hungry MBA graduate staff that have been in the office for the past 19 days straight working on a prototype mobile app that’s so disruptive, space and time itself has been torn during the wireframe/mood board stage.

Top Tip: Follow only to make yourself feel more normal, you have a real job.



Where: LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter
Special Skill: Knows what happens next, but won’t tell you

The old favourite this person is still pumping them out, like the guy that refuses to stop saying Big Data – they just keep at it. Posts generally include a photo so tantalising that you can’t afford not to tap on the link. The fear of missing out is strong with you. You click to view it then almost immediately have baiters-regret. Poor you.

Top Tip: Try not to click on their articles you’re just making it worse for us all.



Persona: The Successful 1-man company CEO

Where: LinkedIn
Special Skill: Can make your dreams come true.

This chap posts a photo of his yacht or vast home, his beautiful wife and their 3 perfectly formed highly educated kids. A photo that just a few years before discovering the secret to success seemed like a distant fantasy. You can have it too remember – all you have to do is sign up to be a worker ant in their pyramid scheme. What are you waiting for? You can even do it part-time…

Top Tip: Unfollow before you start posting leaflets to your neighbours. You’ll make more money as a mechanical turk.


Persona: The Righteous One

Where: Facebook, but growing LinkedIn
Special Skill: Ability to share guilt and sorrow.

Prepare for a dose of the higher moral ground and possibly a disturbing photo of someone in poverty suffering. This person wants to let you know that they’re a true humanist, or up there with the divine beings – and that you can be too. It’s either guilt trigger or virtue sprinkle time for you my friend. You can’t scroll past this post without ignoring their request for an ‘amen’ as a comment. Like that will help. Remember, “one like = one prayer”. You click ‘Like’ or a sad face emoji to cover the karma in a millisecond decision, before scrolling past and almost instantly forgetting whatever the tragedy was.

Top Tip: Say amen in the comments or you will go to hell and damnation for eternity. Just kidding – ignore it… but Amen.. just incase.


Persona: The Motivator a good Soul but simple

Where: LinkedIn and Facebook
Special Skill: Desire to make others wear lycra and feel great

This inspirational person wants you to feel as great as they do – having just viewed a truly inspiring meme she or he’s bouncing off the walls with joy and desperate to share with her followers. Tap, there it is – shared. You’ve probably already seen it a million times but this poor naive soul has just discovered it and wants to share it… again. It’s about as inspiring as a weak coffee and your retina have been burned by it for the billionth time.

Top Tip: Introduce them to the Success persona – they’ll get on well.


Persona: The partially sighted heavily jpeg’d, artefact riddled image reposter

Where: LinkedIn and Facebook
Special Skill: Ability to see images where only a few pixels exists

A post taken on what appears to be a 19th century camera prototype at a resolution equal to that of a Windows 3.1 icon and then resized about 50 times, saved from someone’s Facebook, whatsapp’d to a friend who’s then printed it and faxed it to his mate in Butan via a 56k modem. That has now been reposted on LinkedIn and is right there, front and centre on your retina screen. There’s a 98.9% chance it’s a picture of a cat and a cucumber with a 197,032 likes.

Top Tip: Click like to further perpetuate the destruction of humanity via heavily compressed JPEG or 16 colour GIFs.


Persona: The Getting-a-bit-Political poster

Where: LinkedIn and Facebook
Special Skill: Covert bigot that drip feeds political bias

This poor soul has chosen his or her most valuable social network to share what seemed at the time a really insightful slightly biased argument about gun laws/women’s rights/the EU/racism/Donald Trump… Instead their post goes viral and generates a billion negative comments almost all of which wish career destruction on the original poster.

Top Tip: Unfollow before it goes toxic or you drunkenly wade in.


Persona: The closet xenophobe

Where: LinkedIn and Facebook
Special Skill: Doesn’t trust anyone foreign

Maybe some kind of marketing or sales folk at a small manufacturing business desperately trying compete on a global stage telling you how bad the quality of everything is apart from the stuff they sell, which you should buy obviously cos it’s made by people like you. They say you don’t want that thing from China or whatever. Cos it can’t be as good. Obviously. I mean, what do the Chinese make anyway.. apart from… iPhones. and errr. Everything.

Top Tip: Unfollow.


Persona: The ComedIAN with no audience

Where: LinkedIn and Facebook
Special Skill: Short sharp ruthless humour

Drops in on any one of the above type of posts and sneaks in a hysterical well timed comedy reply. He or she thinks it’s really funny and is convinced legions of LinkedIn-ers are secretly giggling in their office cubicles. Get’s about 5 likes. Then lost between the other 345,651 comments. No one can be bothered to click ‘Read previous comments’ a trillion times so the moment of elite comedy is lost for eternity.

Top Tip: Follow for the occasional glimmer of humour – a rare thing on LinkedIn.


Persona: The Faker / The Hacker

Where: LinkedIn and Facebook
Special Skill: Laundering your cash

The Chief Universal Head of Global Talent at Google just decided to get in touch, they’ve sent you a LinkedIn request! You’ve hit the big time my friend! You can see from their profile they’ve got no job history whatsoever and graduated from Stanford last week. Although they started working at Google in 1982. They also strangely have chosen to omit a profile photo and have only 5 connections. They must be new to LinkedIn you think and have chosen you to connect with first… Surely it can’t be fake? You connect anyway just incase. The chance to pass up a ride a Google bicycle is too high. You obviously immediately send your bank details and your mother’s maiden name as all Google applications require this.

Top Tip: You’re a loser and you should change your password more frequently.