Did you set up a LinkedIn profile ages ago but haven’t gotten around to updating it or sorting out the details yet? One very good reason to devote more attention to it is by Googling yourself – your LinkedIn profile is probably the first search result.
If your LinkedIn profile is just the bare bones of a short summary, your previous job titles and not a lot of connections, you are not alone but the good news is improving it is quick and easy.
An increasing number of companies and individuals are benefitting from the opportunities that LinkedIn offers. From communicating with potential prospects and developing your personal brand to increasing awareness of your skills and business, tapping into your LinkedIn network is a smart way to reach your key audiences.
Whether you are starting from scratch or looking to connect with a wider network, here are my top five tips for getting started on LinkedIn.
1. Optimise your LinkedIn profile
Do this by keeping it up-to-date and making sure you have covered all the basics. A LinkedIn health check is essential as your profile is the first chance you have to make a good first impression for anyone searching for you and your company.
Here are some basic ways to create a strong profile:
– Keep your headline current by updating it with a promotion or a new job title
– Add your industry into your profile
– Include keywords that stand out in your summary (areas of expertise or key skills)
– Add a photo that is appropriate for LinkedIn’s professional audience (adding a profile photo could result in 14 times more profile views than without one)
– Include some detail about your past roles (you can use dot points if you like)
– Reorder your skills so that the most important are at the top
– Be specific about your education and don’t be afraid to show off a little
– Pay attention to detail and ask a friend/colleague to double check your page
2. Connect with the right people
Networking can occur offline or online but connecting with potential clients has always been an important part of business and is fundamental to success. As the world turns to the web for an informal way to build these relationships, it is vital to know how to capitalise on platforms like LinkedIn.
Simply search for the people you wish to connect with in the top search bar, review their profile and click connect. You can also use the Advanced Search function to narrow your search based on criteria such as location, company, title and so on.
To help you grow your network, LinkedIn also provides automatic suggestions of people to connect with as you sign in. Admittedly, using LinkedIn is much easier than searching through directories for contacts.
3. Boost your credibility by contributing to LinkedIn Groups
Similar to forums, LinkedIn Groups provide a platform for professionals in the same industry or with similar interests to share content, find answers, post and view jobs, make business contacts and establish themselves as industry experts.
You can find groups to join by using the search feature at the top of your homepage.
Simply choose your keywords and search. You could start by following these LinkedIn Groups: Financial Services Professional Network, Social Media Today, Public Relations and Communications Professionals.
4. Stay active by posting status updates
Remember these key points to writing a great LinkedIn post:
- – Make it personal
- – Include statistics wherever possible (numbers stand out)
- – Pose a question to illicit responses and opinions
- – Include a call to action Eg. click here, find out more, further information.
- – Include a relevant link to support your call to action
5. Publishing a blog on LinkedIn Pulse
Publishing blogs on LinkedIn Pulse not only positions you as an industry thought leader but can help you reach a wider audience and drive more traffic to your profile, company LinkedIn page or website.
Your blogs appear on your profile in chronological order.
By following these five recommendations you’ll ensure your personal online brand is well represented and that your professional network grows.
Still unsure about LinkedIn? Lansons’ digital and social media experts have plenty of experience in optimising LinkedIn company pages and individual profiles. Call us on 020 7490 8828 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more.