Your LinkedIn Profile: six ways to make it more effective

By | April 30, 2012

Your LinkedIn Profile: six ways to make it more effective.

Sarah Orchard, Orchard Marketing AssociatesGuest blog by Sarah Orchard, Orchard Marketing Associates.

LinkedIn can be an excellent tool for networking. With some care and attention your profile page can work harder for you in terms of its  networking value.

1. Be visible, don’t hide!

It’s a given that you must show your face with a decent picture of yourself.

If you don’t have a decent ‘businesslike’ photo of yourself then make sure you take one or better still get one taken by someone who know what they’re doing behind a lens (or iPhone 4 camera) and use it on your profile page. LinkedIn is all about networking and building relationships, so being visible and looking approachable is really important.

2. Make your profile more than just a CV.

LinkedIn is not a CV so don’t make your profile look and read like one. You can control how your LinkedIn profile page appears – were you aware, for example, that you can change the order in which the sections appear? Your recommendations could be much more effective near the top of your profile than the bottom.

And remember you can add Apps like WordPress to share your latest blog posts into your profile to enrich and broaden the content.

3. Be creative with your title.

Although LinkedIn is a business-to-business networking site this doesn’t mean you have to be formal and corporate when it comes to your job title. The line beneath your name is your Professional Headline and it should describe succinctly what you do. Think of your title as a proposition. Think about your target audience and the benefits you can offer to them, and what makes you different. On LinkedIn you need to stand out so use a title that will convey exactly what you do; but remember you only have a maximum of 100 characters.

4. Optimise your profile.

Your LinkedIn page is just another web page so ensure you include the most relevant keywords that your audience would use to search for your type of business (including in your title if possible). If done properly within your Summary and Specialities sections, your profile page can start to appear in search engine results on Google.

5. Recommendations really count.

Try to have at least three client or customer recommendations on your page. Although colleague recommendations are worth having it’s customer and client recommendations that you really want, so don’t be afraid to ask, even those with whom you haven’t had any very recent contact. They’ll often be willing to recommend you and it gives you an opportunity to get in touch with them again.

6. Use your website links allowance.

You can include up to three website links; your own website and blog (use your blog’s specific URL if its part of your main website) are absolutely givens to include. You could also include your Facebook, Twitter or YouTube page.

Thanks for reading.

Sarah Orchard.

P.S. Get my free e-book: Small Business Marketing: the 10 biggest mistakes and how to avoid them‘.