7 Top Tips for Creating A Linkedin Profile That Markets Your Business

by Alan Underkofler on August 16, 2010

Creating a great Linkedin marketing strategy which generates consistent leads and business for you all starts with having a dynamic and complete Linkedin profile.  Your Linkedin profile is often the first impression someone linkedin_down_wizzardreceives of you, your brand, and your company.  The profile is not just for Linkedin but for your entire online presence.  When searching on Google for any name, the Linkedin profile should be one of the first 10 sites.   You control what prospects and customers read about you on Linkedin, therefore having a stand out Linkedin profile is an essential first step for your Linkedin strategy.

To guide you through making the best possible profile or redesigning your current Linkedin profile, use the following 7 tips:

#1 Use a professional picture and create a great headline

linkedin_professinoal_picture_alan_underkofler

Use a professional picture – I am amazed at how many Linkedin profiles do not have a picture.  Linkedin is a professional network and your profile must include a great picture.  Choose the picture that represents you and reflects how you want people to see you.  If you do not have a professional head shot get one!  A temporary solution to a missing professional picture is to  have someone take a picture of you with a white wall behind you using great lighting.

Create a great headline – Your headline is a great description of what you do.  Are you a speaker, consultant, or writer?  Are you a serial entrepreneur with many business ventures?  The headline should include what you want your prospect and customers to read about you.

Remember: Your picture and headline is often the first and only part of your Linkedin profile that creates the first impression.

#2 Add all current and past positions as well as education

linkedin_current_past_positions_alan_underkofler

Current and past positions – Why did you join Linkedin?  Are you looking for opportunity, a new job,  to grow a network, or to attract more business?  If you answered yes, then you want to make it easy for a Linkedin user to find and connect with you by adding your current and past positions.

Education – Who better to add to your network then those friends from college.  Past friends and acquaintances from college could hire you for your next job, be a new customer, or possibly a great referral source for you.

Remember: Current and past positions and education is one of the top ways you can be found on Linkedin.

#3 Include your websites and blog using brand titles

linkedin_websites_industry_connections_alan_underkofler

Use brand or company name titles for your website – We all know how important it is to have a website or blog and Linkedin it makes it easy for you to include this information in a profile.  When creating a profile or redesigning a current Linkedin profile, you want to select “other” instead of “website” or “blog”.  Selecting other allows you to name the link as you can see in the example above.  This creates more brand awareness for your profile rather than the Linkedin standard of “My Website”.

Remember – Only list the websites you want prospects and potential customers to use.  List sights that are inline with your personal and business brand.

#4 Take the time to create a great summary that compels Linkedin users to connect with you

linkedin_summary_alan_underkofler

Create a great summary – The Linkedin summary is typically the one area everyone can improve.  It’s often used like a resume cover letter or short bio which is a common Linkedin profile mistake.    The best practices in creating a Linkedin summary is to include why you are on Linkedin, what you can do or offer, and what you are looking for on Linkedin.  If done correctly new connections will know what you are looking for and how they can help you.

Remember: Your summary alone can jump start your Linkedin referrals.  Spend some time on the summary, compare it to your competitors or experts in your field, make sure the message is clear.

#5 Use keywords and phrases throughout your profile especially in your specialties

linkedin_specialties_alan_underkofler

Using keywords and phrases – Do you know the number one search engine online?  Internet users have been trained to Google everything!  Even if you prefer Yahoo! or Bing the term “Google it”  is the action you are taking when you type what you are looking for in any search box.  This carries over to all websites, internet users “Google it” to find what they are looking for.  On Linkedin you can search for any word or phrase and see profiles that match within your network and extended network.

Remember:  A name, company, industry, brand, title, or phrase can all be searched on Linkedin.  Make sure you are using keywords and phrases to insure the Linkedin network finds your profile when they are searching.

#6 Complete your contact settings, personal information, and groups

linkedin_interests_groups_alan_underkofler

Complete your Linkedin contact settings, interests, and groups – This is the one area where you can show part of your personality or personal interests on Linkedin.  You want to include keywords and phrases as well as what you enjoy outside of business.  Make sure to include any past or current groups and associations as this is another way for connections to find you.

Remember:  People do business with people they know, like, and trust!  Adding a few personal activities and groups encourage or start the relationship moving beyond just a Linkedin connection.

#7 Grow Your Recommendations!

linkedin_recommendations_alan_underkofler

You must grow your recommendations – Have you ever purchased a product, seen a movie, or hired a company solely based on the recommendation of  one good friend or colleague?  This what Linkedin recommendations can do for you and your company.  By asking for and encouraging Linkedin recommendations you have the opportunity to leverage your Linkedin profile as a referral and credibility tool.  The more recommendations you have the more credibility you create in and out of your Linkedin network.

Remember:  The best way to receive Linkedin recommendations is to give them.  Look within your network for people you have done business with and make a point to give one or more recommendation every month.

If you create or redesign your Linkedin profile with these 7 tips in mind you will position yourself to attract more connections, prospects, and business from Linkedin.

Please add me as a connection by searching for Alan Underkofler on Linkedin. If you are ready to take the next step in Increasing Business Leads with a stand out Linkedin Profile make sure to register and attend our next Linkedin training where you will learn more ways to enhance your profile as well as different areas of Linkedin that can generate business and referrals for you.

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