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Making Your LinkedIn Profile and Page Work for You

Brian_Linked_InThere are a few best practices that you should be aware of when creating a LinkedIn profile. If you pay attention to what you’re doing, LinkedIn can be very lucrative for you when it comes to finding new clients and maintaining relationships with current ones.

  • Know Your Why – If you don’t know why you’re starting the profile, then you should not do it yet. But if you know that you want to attract your specific audience and why, then go for it. If you don’t know your purpose, it can be hard to stay focused.
  • Post a Professional Photo – This was mentioned before, but let’s be extra clear about photos. You need a real head shot that is your face and head. Don’t get creative with headshots and assume it’s going to stay up there at least six months to a year or more.
  • Don’t Let Contact Info Get Out of Date – It can be easy to create a profile and forget about it, but it’s important not to do that if you want to get the most out of LinkedIn. If your contact info isn’t updated, they can’t contact you.
  • Spend Extra Time on the Summary – Even though you want your audience to look at your entire profile many will not get past the summary. Therefore, spend extra time and focus on the summary portion to ensure that you attract your audience to you.
  • Customize Your URL – Under your headline and image there is an area with a URL that you can give to people to send them to your LinkedIn profile. You can customize this URL. Use your name when possible. Keep it professional.
  • Publish Content Regularly – When you first sign into LinkedIn, you can share an update, upload a photo, or publish a post. You want to publish a post regularly. You can do it monthly or weekly (or even daily if you want to). This will help you get information to the people you’re connected with and they might share it with their connections too. Do not replace your normal blog with this feature and only post original content.
  • Ask for Recommendations – Once you have all your work experience and education listed, you can start asking for recommendations. Don’t be shy. When you do ask people to recommend you, take the time to write a personal message. Remind them about what you did for them and ask for a recommendation. It’ll be added automatically to your profile after you read it and approve it.
  • Be Thoughtful with Your Updates – When you share an update with LinkedIn it should be extraordinarily relevant. Also, most LinkedIn users who are successful with LinkedIn don’t share updates daily, but most definitely do not share updates more than once a day.
  • Project a Professional Attitude – When you’re posting up dates, commenting in groups, and participating in other activities on LinkedIn, keep your professional hat on. LinkedIn is not the place to share what your kids or cat did or anything personal in nature, unless it is directly linked to a business aspect. It’s all business, all the time.
  • Don’t Connect With Everyone – When you’re on LinkedIn, you may get connection requests from people you do not know. Look at their profile and determine if there is any real reason to connect with them. Are they part of your target audience? Can they connect you with someone who is important? What value do they add?

It’s important to remember that LinkedIn is not like other social media networks. LinkedIn is a place for professionals. When someone tries to connect using the wrong tone or strategy, it can cause businesses to lose followers and credibility. So, keep it professional at all times.