How to Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile in 5 Easy Steps
Even if you’re not currently looking for a new job, having a polished, up-to-date LinkedIn profile is a must!
Original article by Tanya Hall, Inc.com
If your online presence is not optimized for discovery, you (or your business) aren’t relevant, point-blank.
Within minutes of receiving a referral or researching a new job, business, or client, you start typing into a search engine to research that person or business. This is standard means your online platform can make or break whether a lead converts to a win.
One mission-critical cog in the online visibility machine is your LinkedIn profile. You may know how effective an active LinkedIn profile is, but being active alone will provide little to no return. Here are some simple optimization tips to add to your profile to improve your search rankings and start converting those potential leads into conversions.
Your headline content is critical for search visibility. Include applicable keywords and search terms that will help surface your profile when being searched.
For example, if you are an author, speaker, or consultant, include that in your headline along with your title and company. The best way to do this is by using a pipeline to separate searchable terms. Pro tip: adjust the headline using the LinkedIn app, which gives you more characters in your headline versus editing on a desktop.
Example: John Doe, CEO | Speaker | Platform Builder | Author of “LinkedIn Profile Optimization” | Expert Search Engine Consultant
Profile Photo and Cover Image
A professional photo is essential for a strong LinkedIn profile. Headshots and professionally taken photos work best for LinkedIn. Save the selfies or candid poses for your Instagram feed. Editable cover images are a relatively new feature on LinkedIn and can be used as a powerful asset to introduce someone to your personal brand. Your cover image should reflect your most current role or project. If you are a recent author, your cover image can be your book along with the title and release date. If you are in a customer-facing role (recruiter, consultant, business development, or sales ) your cover image could be an image related to your industry with a call to action.
Having a CTA in your cover image helps bridge the gap from potential lead to possible conversion.
The About section is the first thing a new profile visitor will read. This introduces who you are and what you do. What are the key takeaways you want people to know about what you do? Think of the About section as a digital elevator pitch where you introduce who you are, what you do, and the key points from your profile.
Be sure to use all 2,000 characters allowed for this section and emphasize the section using both media spaces. The media spaces allow for a link or a direct upload. Some examples include your company website, company brochure, digital one-sheets, or other informational assets.
Current Position Experience Section
In this section, capitalize on the value you have brought to your work. Have you spearheaded/launched any projects, services or campaigns? Your Current Position description should use all 2,000 characters to explain in detail what benefits you have brought to your company in your current role. There are two media spaces allowed for this section, too, so accompany the language in this section with links and content assets. For example, if you have launched a new marketing service, boost the description with a visual digital asset (one-sheet, brochure, web page, etc) to convert a potential lead into an interested customer/client.
Did you know the skills on your LinkedIn profile contribute to how you appear in search results? Most people haven’t updated their skills section since first creating their LinkedIn profile. To appear in your desired search results, your skills must reflect your strengths in your current industry.
There is also a “pushpin” tool on the skills section as well. Pin the top three skills you want to accompany your profile in search results. These should include one or two major industry skills and one or two title-specific skills.
Keeping up with digital trends is difficult, but maintaining a strong online platform is essential. For a business professional, a killer LinkedIn profile is your golden ticket to the expressway to a strong online platform, increased search rankings/results and transforming leads into conversions. The Power Formula For Linkedin Success by LinkedIn expert, trainer, speaker, and consultant Wayne Breitbarth, is an excellent in-depth resource on how LinkedIn can kick-start your business, brand, and job search.