Optimizing your LinkedIn profile is one of the most important steps you can complete in moving forward with social networking today. It requires a little time on your part, but will be well worth the effort as more prospects receive a fuller picture of your worth to their company and also a greater trust in your skills.

Five Steps To Get Your LinkedIn Profile Optimized

linkedin profile completeness for your linkedin profileFirst, if you are not at 100% for your LinkedIn profile completeness then you will not get the traffic and quality visits to your LinkedIn profile that you want. What I am referring to is your LinkedIn profile completeness  graphic that shows up on your profile until you have completed all of the steps for having a full profile on LinkedIn. This is your chance to shine, so make sure it is an all-encompassing effort for perfection. Complete all of the steps that LinkedIn lists, so you can get the most out of LinkedIn.

Second, this goes along with completing your LinkedIn profile, but people still sometimes ask me if they have to do this. Do you need to get the referrals from others? Yes! I just did a comprehensive study on LinkedIn referrals for a client. Most people do not use LinkedIn referrals effectively or at all. That means that they are losing out on prospects understanding what they have done in the past. Further, there are so few profiles that have great referrals that I would even want to read. “Johnny is great and is a go-getter.” Great Johnny, go get me some coffee and get a referral fLinkedIn Video Testimonialrom someone who actually knows you and has seen your abilities. I love it when I get requests from people that I have not spoken with in over two years that I barely knew then asking me for a referral. Seriously, I am your best choice for a positive referral?

What I have done to stand out here is to get my video testimonials from clients and then put it on my LinkedIn profile through Google Presentation. It is amazing how a few video testimonials from clients can really make you stand out. It is completely different from everyone else who just does the traditional recommendation.

Third, fill out your headline for your LinkedIn profile to be found and entice people to look for more. IT business systems analyst, C-Level Executive Financial Manager, Operation Analyst. My question to you is, who cares what your title is? You are a C-level exec? What type of C-level, are you? Perhaps a financial whiz who saved millions for the company? That sounds better  then C-Level exec. What in the world is a IT business systems analyst? Sounds like a scrabble game of different business words. Bingo! Oops, wrong game. Stop putting me to sleep!

My headline is: Social Networking Schmoozer Providing Social Networking Bite Sized Services For Businesses To Grow Their Online Revenue. Do you now know what I do and how I help businesses after reading this?  Sound better than a litany of titles thrown in together to sound important.

Fourth, you need to do some keyword research for your LinkedIn profile. One of the things that is emerging about LinkedIn search is that millions of users are searching for people that they know and want to know by different keywords. That means you have to be very conscientious about what keywords you put into your profile. I use the word social networking repeatedly through my profile, so people can find me by this keyword. It is my hallmark, and I assume that people who search for this keyword could use my services. Make sure your keyword is in listed throughout the different sections of your profile.

Fifth, use LinkedIn applications to make your profile stand out even more. I briefly alluded to this earlier. I use Google Presentation, which is an application in LinkedIn that allows you to put presentations you have done in the past in your profile. There are dozens of other applications that you can include in LinkedIn to get your profile more engaging. One of my favorites is the WordPress plugin. My blog’s RSS feed goes straight to my LinkedIn profile, so every person on my profile can see my most recent blog posts. This automatically adds authority to what I am discussing, and also is more engaging than just a plain profile.

When you are optimizing your LinkedIn profile, just keep in mind what others will think when they see your profile. Will they like certain items and be annoyed with others. You will not please everyone, but making sure that the widest possible audience understands and appreciates your Linkedin profile is crucial to your success on this social network.