Using LinkedIn for Your Business
LinkedIn is the most widely used professional networking site on the Internet, and it will likely remain so for many years to come. Establishing a presence on LinkedIn helps grow your solopreneur business. In fact, positioning yourself as an authority is the single most important thing that you can do to increase your perceived value for your target market on the site. Luckily, there are a number of ways that you can optimize your LinkedIn profile to appear more often in search engine results and make connections that can help your business.
Optimize Your Profile
Think keywords: What will your ideal client search for on LinkedIn to fine the solution to the problem you solve? The most-searched terms on LinkedIn are in fact “consultant,” “web designer,” “speaker,” “author” and “social media.” That should give you an idea of what terms you should focus on. Once you identify the right words and phrases, they need to appear in 5 locations: headline, summary, current position description, skill and — when possible — training experience. The LinkedIn algorithm puts a lot of importance on the words used in the headline when ranking people, which means making certain your keywords are present.
Knowing your character limit while preparing the content is important, too.
- Name: 60 characters, maximum.
- Professional Headline: 120 character limit.
- Summary: 2,000 character limit.
Now you should be prepared to begin writing your content. It’s more important to focus on what can you do for your audience than what you’re seeking in your summary. Think about what sorts of “pain” your readers might have and how you can eliminate it. Talk to the person visiting your page.
Expand Your LinkedIn Network
LinkedIn has more than 250 million members, but many users isolate themselves by only connecting with others who they know.Click to tweet
Reach out to influencers in your field. When you are connected to other authorities, it gives the impression that you are one yourself. When users search LinkedIn, they also are able to search three levels deep. Having a large network can help individuals find you on the site. Email contacts are another great way to find people you have interacted with on a professional level whom you could add to your network.
Join Relevant Groups
To get in touch with others who are involved in your field, you should join groups that are relevant to the industry. In addition, these groups often have ongoing conversations amongst members. Staying active and joining in is one of the best ways to establish yourself as an authority figure in your niche, because people will be able to see the information that you are contributing to the conversations.
Add Certifications and Professional Association Memberships
While most people will add their education when creating their profile, many do not realize how important it is to include professional association memberships and certifications. Finding others who are members of the same professional organization as yourself is also a great way to expand your network and ultimately show up more often in search engine results pages.
Get as Many Skill Endorsements as Possible
While this can be one of the more difficult steps in optimizing your LinkedIn profile, getting others to endorse your skills will add credibility to what you claim you are able to do. However, you will generally need to rely on others with whom you have actually worked to get endorsements. The best way to do this is to begin endorsing other people’s skills. This helps them add authority to their own LinkedIn profile, and many people will often return the favor.
If you have any media exposure be certain to include on your profile, as well. References to appearances on ABC or in Time Magazine can show your authority.
Don’t be shy. If you have worked with or for your connections, then by all means ask for a recommendation. The easiest to do this is to give recommendations first.
Be certain to reach out to everyone who views your profile and ask them if they would like to connect and continue the conversation. Once you start earning more than 7 views per day, it is time to pay for the Premium account, which can benefit you.
Follow these tips and it won’t be long before you begin closing new business while networking on the best professional network.