Today’s post comes from guest contributor Janet Slack, Business Coach, Social Media Trainer, Consultant and Solopreneur Expert at Solopreneur.Biz

LinkedIn doesn’t get the attention and press that other social media sites like Twitter and Facebook do, but it is one of the most powerful despite the “lack of love”. There are more than 65 million members of LinkedIn and it is growing at over 2 million members every month. One of the most vital uses of the site is as a resource for learning about other people. Not long ago, people started to Google someone when they wanted to know more about that person. Now they Google them and then look them up on LinkedIn. Regardless of your field, it is now imperative to have a very strong LinkedIn profile.

Here are the important elements to a strong profile.

1. Professional headline
: this is the second line of the profile and is displayed with all your LinkedIn activity. Make sure to use keywords that build your credibility and describe how you solve your target market’s problems.

2. Photo: use a professional style headshot. No logos, casual pictures or photos with your spouse, pet or children.

3. Website: customize the link for your website to a short phrase that is appealing and will get people to click through to your site. Do not leave this as “My website” or “My Blog”.

4. Public profile: this is the URL address of your LinkedIn profile. Customize this by editing to your name or your business name.

5. Summary: tell your story and be interesting here. Do not worry about length, this can be as long as needed. Be sure to use keywords that describe your business and your target market.

6. Specialties: you must include this section for your profile to be considered “complete” by LinkedIn. Again, include those keywords.

7. Experience: this is what you have done in your career and your accomplishments, not just a listing of jobs like you might include on a resume. Include special trainings, licenses, seminars you have conducted, awards, companies you have helped, whatever shows your experience. The first item I have listed on mine is my Facebook page!

8. Recommendations: these are important on LinkedIn, especially if you don’t have any. Get at least 3 other LinkedIn members to write about you and your work. The best recommendations come from someone related to your most recent position.

9. Email address: include your email address somewhere in your profile as you want to encourage people to contact you if they are interested in your business. LinkedIn does not give you a standard place for an email address.

Many thanks to Janet for sharing this with us. If you’d like to take a look at her examplary LinkedIn profile, go here. Mine is here or you can click on the button on the right sidebar to follow me on any of my main online profiles: Twitter or Facebook.

Let us know what you think of these tips. Did you do all these ? How did you set up your profile and how do you like it ? If you’re a business, how does it fare in terms of lead generation ?

  1. Sims says:

    Yeah, it’s good, very useful, thanks 🙂

  2. Liva Judic says:

    I would add to this great list (thanks again, Janet): SEO your picture. When saving it, don’t just name it with your first and last name but add in the keywords that best describe you or your business. It should be short (think of a tweet, no more than 140 characters) and have no blanks (use underscores instead).

  3. I should recommend you!


  4. I think LinkedIn is vastly underutilized. It is an “essential” online tool Good post.

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