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How To Create A Winning LinkedIn Profile

First impressions count. That is both true offline and online. Think about what you do when you are checking out a business, potential client or otherwise. You do a google search, right? You want to check out people and businesses to see what you can find out. So really, when you’re considering doing business with someone, you’ve probably already come to a few conclusions before meeting them. This should tell you a little something about how you present yourself online. Your business representation starts online.

With LinkedIn, which is very much like your online resume you have an enormous opportunity to market yourself and your business.Click To Tweet People can make decisions about pursuing you for opportunities just by simply looking at your LinkedIn profile. How you set up your profile, in every aspect, what you say and choose to highlight is essential.

Often times I see that people don’t take the time to upload a good looking photo. Their headline tells you very little, they skip the summary altogether or if they do, it reads the wrong way. We can be the biggest barrier to our own opportunity when we aren’t careful to put our best foot forward online. And LinkedIn is where you want to have your buttons buttoned, your shoes shined. Am I judging you? Yes. And everyone else who goes on a search on on LinkedIn is also judging you. How does your profile look?

Do you..

  • Have a unique URL?
  • Have keywords in your headline?
  • Have a summary sharing your unique selling position
  • Have your summary written in the first person?
  • Have accomplishments listed and recommendations added?
  • Have a high quality professional profile photo?

Let’s explore step by step how to create a winning LinkedIn profile in this infographic below from  Akken Cloud and Ghergich & Co. Position yourself to stand out, grow your network and your business.

Breaking Down the Anatomy of a Successful LinkedIn Profile

Via AkkenCloud

rock linkedin

Utilize These LinkedIn Tips To Rock Your Profile

LinkedIn can be a powerful platform for professionals and entrepreneurs alike. When used properly, you can attract the attention of job seekers, recruiters or potential customers who want to utilize your services. In order to do that, you need to take the right approach to setting up your profile. Utilize LinkedIn’s platform and features to highlight your strengths and stand out.

Don't treat LinkedIn simply as an online resume. Set up your profile to help accomplish your goals.Click To Tweet

Here are  some tips to do just that:

Customize Your URL

It’s much easier to publicize your profile with a customized URL. Ditch the assigned numbers that you get upson sign up and make it personal, (ideally with your name, such as:www.linkedin.com/in/saranickleberry

On the Edit Profile screen, at the bottom of the gray window that shows your basic information, you’ll see a Public Profile URL. Click “Edit” next to the URL, and specify what you’d like your address to be. When you’re finished, click Set Custom URL.

Make Your Headline Sizzle

Skip the standard job title and company. Instead, use that space to succinctly showcase your specialty or value proposition. The more specific you can be about what sets you apart from the competition, the better.

Own Your Summary

Own your summary by writing in the first person.  Writing in the third person appears odd. Everyone assumes you wrote your summary anyway. No need to separate your accomplishments with your identity. Writing about what you did shows confidence and just makes sense.

Highlight Your Experience

Not unlike like your resume, your LinkedIn profile is a place to highlight your best accomplishments. Use your profile experience section to describe what you did, how well you did it, and who it impacted.

Show and Tell

Do you know you can add video, publications, documents and presentations to your LinkedIn profile? You can and you should! This is a site where people ARE interested in what you can do. On LinkedIn you can tell them AND show them!

Be Strategic About Endorsements

Endorsements on LinkedIn are great. But make sure you manage them. You can edit the recommendations listed on your profile. Keep your skills updated and don’t over list them. Be sure they reflect relevant skills.

Connect With Intent

How connected are you? On LinkedIn, you should connect with at least 501 people. This is because LinkedIn will show how many connections you have until you hit 500. People like to connect with “connected” people. Just make sure you connect with intent and purpose.

Don’t Default

LinkedIn has a default connection message that states“I’d like to connect with you on LinkedIn.” Don’t settle for that. Use this opportunity to stand out. Tell them why you want to connect and use this as an opportunity to show how much you value making this connection.

Use LinkedIn’s Publishing Feature

The Pulse publishing platform is a valuable way to share original content that is relevant to your business, increase your exposure and establish yourself as a thought leader. It’s also a great place to repurpose older content from your blog that is still relevant. You’ll get new life from your “evergreen” content and expose it to possibly a whole new audience.

Take advantage of these great ways that LinkedIn has made it easier to network and spotlight your skills in a digital way. You’ll stand out and maximize your chances of gaining opportunities for new business.

 

linkedin

These LinkedIn Mistakes Are Deal Breakers

LinkedIn is a professional network for the serious networker and professional. As in any platform don’t disrupt the culture by being odd. If you want to be taken seriously, take the platform seriously. On a weekly basis, I receive connection requests that make at least one of these mistakes. Don’t let this be you!

1.Your Name In Lower Case Letters.

Please capitalize your first and last name. Period. Once again, keep in mind the context of the social network. Your LinkedIn Profile Name is not your twitter handle.

2. No Profile Photo.

There is no excuse for this. Upload a professional picture of yourself.

3. Incomplete Profile. 

By this I mean that there is barely anything there. Clearly I don’t know your work history but I know it shouldn’t be blank. Take the time to fill in your education, work history, organizations, etc;. This is information you want to share on LinkedIn.

4. Bizarre Job Title.

Your job title is not “Money Maker” or “Dream Builder”.  If you want to be taken seriously, take the process seriously.

5. Creating a Profile with your company name.

Profiles are for people, pages are for companies. Just simply do the right thing and follow the rules. I can’t network with a company, I need to network with a person. You have the opportunity to list and describe your company, the link to your site and other social links. Your company will get attention as well. But LinkedIn profiles are for YOU.

If you want to be effective on LinkedIn, you need to approach it as a professional. Complete your profile correctly. Connect with a purpose. Don’t race to get 500+ connections. LinkedIn Expert and Entrepreneur Alex Pirouz gave this great tip to Forbes magazine about connecting on LinkedIn, “Every connection needs to be linked to your goals and objectives both now and in the future.”

Be sure to communicate effectively with your connection requests.  When you send a connection request, don’t use the default message, craft your own. Connect and network with LinkedIn groups. Find groups to join related to your industry, organizations you are associated with or other business interests.

One thing that does translate from platform to platform: you must build relationships and this process takes time.  Here are some more great LinkedIn tips from Social Solutions Collective, 5 Smart Ways To Embrace LinkedIn.

 

 

linkedin

Tips To Creating A Solid LinkedIn Profile

If you are looking to network for your career, for business to business purposes, or to find a new job, LinkedIn is a great place to be. LinkedIn is a social networking site designed specifically for the business community. It is the largest PROFESSIONAL social network. The goal of the site is to allow registered members to establish and document networks of people they know and TRUST professionally. A LinkedIn member’s profile page emphasizes employment history and education, has professional network news feeds and a limited number of customizable modules. Basic membership for LinkedIn is free. Network members are called “connections.” LinkedIn requires connections to have a pre-existing relationship. Keep in mind, you’re there to network, find and be found. So remember, when setting up your LinkedIn profile, be sure to fill it out with 100% completeness. Otherwise, your profile will not show up in search.

First Things First
On LinkedIn,keep your name simple. First and last name. Don’t abbreviate. Don’t use the name of your company. There are LI company pages available to create. Use a simple headshot. Preferably the one use use on your other social network business pages for consistency and so you are recognizable. Don’t use a logo. Remember, your name and headshot are your first impressions on LI. Make them count!

Professional Headline
Your LinkedIn Professional Headline is perhaps the most important field in your LinkedIn profile. Focus on choosing the right keywords and phrases that best reflect what you do. You have 120 characters here. Demonstrate your strengths and value with the right keywords.

Updating Your Current Title and Websites:
1. Current Title: this is an important section for Search Engine Optimization or how you will be found on LI. Include the keywords or phrases people will need to search for you.
2. Websites: You can insert 3 websites in your profile. Always customize the labels of your sites on your profile by clicking other so instead of it saying My Company, you can type in the actual name or a description. If your blog is about web design, you could make the link say Web Design Tips.

Vanity URL
Just like with other networks, you can change the URL for your LI Profile to what is called a “vanity URL”. It is recommended to choose your name before someone else claims it. If it’s not available, try using your name with perhaps, your middle initial. Choose edit profile under the Profile tab of your LI menu. Scroll down to your profile link just below your photo and click “edit”. This is where you set up your vanity URL.

LinkedIn is a fast growing network that allows you to find and connect with people in your industry or other organizations. There are groups, company pages, the ability to showcase your skills, embed videos and to give and receive recommendations. It’s a great opportunity to professionally network online.

What is your experience with LinkedIn? What tips can you offer? Please share in the comments below.

photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/coletivomambembe/4305859251/”>Coletivo Mambembe</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/”>cc</a>

Using Tweetchats To Network And Learn New Techniques

Social Media Marketing takes place where? On Social Networks, right? It makes sense that networking is a key objective to social media marketing. You have to be where people are to network. Offline networking events are important because it gives you the opportunity to interact with people, have conversations, find common interests and make bonds that ultimately lead to a mutual business benefit. Can this happen online? Absolutely!

There are many ways that you can interact with other people online in arranged settings: Facebook Groups, Google Plus Communities, Online Chats. One of the ways I’ve found that is ideal for networking are tweet chats.

Tweetchats are virtual gatherings held on Twitter. A group of people all tweet about the same topic using a specific hashtag. The chats are at a specific time and often repeat weekly or bi-weekly or are only at announced times. You simply go to tweetchat.com, sign in with your twitter id, enter the assigned hashtag, and you are in a “tweetchat room” where all the tweets assigned to that hashtag with that particular group are housed. It’s fun! You can use Tweetchats to network and learn a few new things.

On Monday evenings, The Social Solutions Collective hosts a Tweetchat for an hour on a particular subject. The most recent subject was on Content Calendar creation and management. Just like with most Tweetchats I got an opportunity to do a few things:

1. meet new people
2. chat with new people
3. gain followers and follow new people

and the added bonus: I learned some new things!

Because the Tweetchat host asks questions around the particular subject aimed at the participants of the chat, people willingly chime in. These chats give you the opportunity to learn something new, gain a new perspective, get new ideas and learn some new techniques. I always learn something from the other tweet chat participants.
From this Tweetchat I learned some new content creation tips, bookmarked a resource to help me with it, learned about a new WP plug in that I’d like to incorporate, and I also got the nudge I needed to go ahead and dive further into Google Drive.

Tweetchats are typically an hour. The time goes by fast. You’re able to do all this in an hour’s time. So if you’re looking to network and learn new things, I encourage you to try out a Tweetchat. You may also want to consider hosting one. Tweetchats are a great way to showcase your expertise and brand. It’s also a great hands on learning experience if you’re not so familiar with Twitter. It will help you “get it”. It can be fast paced depending on the number of participants so you may need to participate in a couple before you’re comfortable. The important thing is, to give it a try. If you never try, you’ll never know.

Have you participated in Tweetchats? What do you like about them? What other online networking activities do you participate in and find beneficial? Please share in the comments below.

Using Twitter Lists To Enhance Your Twitter Marketing Experience

Twitter is a great place to post your latest blog posts, connect with brand new people and find real time information. Twitter is also great for networking. You can very quickly and easily connect with people and brands. Because you are limited to 140 characters, coupled with the help of mobile apps, tweeting is a simple and convenient process. For that reason, people who are active, tend to tweet regularly. The more people you follow, the busier your newsfeed gets. To keep up, you need to find ways to manage your Twitter feed so you can easily access and target certain people, brands and topics.

A great way to organize and manage Twitter is by using Twitter Lists. Twitter lists allow you to organize Twitter users into groups so that you can view the tweets of the people in those lists only. People on this list don’t have to necessarily be people you are following. You can add anyone to a list. Lists can help you keep up with people you are targeting for different reasons. Let’s say that you are a travel professional and you would like to keep a list of Twitter accounts of hotels. You can do that. Say, you’re looking for news or sales or events from hotels, you can easily access that list to view only their tweets. Or you may way to keep a list of cruise lines, all inclusive resorts or travel niche specific blogs. You can make your lists public or private. There are many possibilities.

Here are some examples:

Niche or Industry Specialists:

Keep up with others in your industry to network and share ideas. It is helpful to both you and your audience to share great content from sources other than yourself. Don’t be afraid to do just that.

Prospects:
You might consider creating a private list of local small businesses who may be interested in your service or product.

Brand Ambassadors: Keep a list of those who share your content, share your product or service information. This list could include those who are your customers and potential customers.

Industry News Outlets:

Keep up with the latest news, changes and information related to your industry. Follow those people or organizations connected with your industry. If you are a WordPress expert, follow technology brands and experts who share news and information relative to your field.

Keeping these lists will help you stay on top of what is important. However, don’t neglect the most important piece: building relationships! Be sure to interact and engage. Start conversations, ask questions, give feedback. This is how great things begin.

Do you manage Twitter with lists? If so, what other list suggestions can you offer? Please share in the comments below!