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21 Steps To The Perfect LinkedIn Profile

linkedin trainingSigning up for a LinkedIn account is easy enough but if you want to know how to create a LinkedIn profile that will attract your target market, this article is probably the most complete breakdown I’ve ever done on the subject outside of my advanced LinkedIn training course, the LinkedIn Profit Formula.

UPDATED February 27, 2013: Even though the last update for this LinkedIn training was December 2012, LinkedIn has made so many more changes recently that it became necessary to update every single graphic. You will notice a few steps got removed and a few more got added – this is because things have become much simpler with your LinkedIn profile thanks to all the recent changes. Even if you have already gone through this post before, make sure you go over it again so you don’t miss anything when creating your perfect LinkedIn profile!

The key to your success on LinkedIn begins with a powerful and professional presence.  You must strategically write your profile with your ideal client in mind before you start connecting to maximize the impact of your first impression online.

I’ve outlined 21 different key points that I believe are important to fully optimizing your LinkedIn profile. Follow these 21 steps and you will have much greater success with LinkedIn!

Go to this link to see the profile used in the examples below.

LinkedIn Training: How To Create A LinkedIn Profile In 21 Steps

linkedin training1. Photo Should Always Be Professional – Take the time to get a real professional picture taken by a photographer. Anything else doesn’t leave nearly the same impression so get off to a good start with a great headshot.

2. Your Name Should ONLY Contain Your Name – Avoid adding any additional titles, acronyms or credentials. Keep it clean and concise!

3. Your Headline Should Be Catchy & Have Keywords You Want To Be Found For – Create a headline that captures your target market’s attention to encourage them to check out your profile.

4. Connect With At Least 501 People – The reason I suggest this is because LinkedIn will show how many connections you have until you hit 500. People like to connect with “connected” people.

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5. Provide All Necessary Contact Info – Not everyone will want to message you on LinkedIn when they find your profile so it’s good to give multiple options. I chose not to put my address and instead put an alternate email – you can do the same, if you want but make sure you at least have an email!

6. Customize Your Website Names – On my own profile, I didn’t just put my company name or my website names. Instead, I used words that would be more attractive to the type of person I aim to attract.

7. Customize Your Profile URL – When customizing your LinkedIn profile, aim to just have your full name without anything else. If you have a more common name (sorry, John Smith) then you might have to resort to a slight modification.

linkedin training8. Update Your Status Daily – One of the pillars to social media success is consistency so be sure to update your LinkedIn status daily with something that provides value to your target market.

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9. Keyword Load Your Summary & Profile – Notice again how I’ve strategically placed my chosen keywords through my profile and summary. Be careful not to overdo it or else your profile loses it’s impact.

10. Write In First Person – Your LinkedIn profile is not your resume so make sure you are always writing in first person.

11. Speak Directly To Your Target Market – Always write so that you’re speaking directly to the type of person you are trying to attract/sell to. Every word should be positioned with that goal in mind!

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12. Add Video To Your LinkedIn Profile – There’s no better way to introduce yourself than with your own voice and face. Fortunately their latest update has made adding video or slideshow presentations to your LinkedIn profile ridiculously simple by allowing you to paste a link instead of the grueling process it used to be.

13. Tell Them To Click Play! – It might not be obvious enough that the video on your profile is actually a video so be sure to actually tell people to click play in the text area.

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14. Skills & Expertise Should Be Filled With Keywords – This is a keyword haven on your LinkedIn profile so think about every skill you promote through your business and list it here. Everything you put here will show up in your Endorsements section so choose carefully!

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15. Use The “Projects” Section To Promote Products – This is a great section to showcase products you are selling currently. Offer a free report, white paper or something that will give value to your target market to drive traffic and opt-ins for your website. I have also used it to promote a couple free reports and checklists that I have available for download.

linkedin training16. Keyword Load Your Current & Past Work History – Notice how in my profile I used keywords like “Social media speaker” and “social media trainer”.  These are some of the keywords I want to be found for.

17. Use Keywords When Filling Out Your Experience Section – See explanation for #6. Same drill!

linkedin training18. Have At Least 10 Recommendations – This is key for building credibility. Do whatever you need to do to get your first 10 recommendations, as they are paramount to distinguishing you from competition online. Read this blog for tips on getting more LinkedIn recommendations.

linkedin training19. Add Volunteer Experience – Make sure you add any volunteer experience or causes you support as your LinkedIn profile has a special section for it.

linkedin training20. Fill “Honors & Awards” With Significant Media Attention – If you don’t have a lot of awards that are relevant to your business, I would encourage you to use this section to promote any media or press attention you’ve received.

linkedin training21. Join 50 groups – You can join a maximum of 50 groups on LinkedIn so take advantage of every one of them. If your business is primarily local then start by finding relevant local groups for your industry or wherever your target market is likely to be.

To ensure that you get the most out of your LinkedIn profile tips and take actionable steps to complete your profile properly, I have a special LinkedIn training webinar that you can attend to learn more.

LinkedIn trainingFree LinkedIn Webinar

“3 Quick And Little-Known Secrets For Harnessing The Power Of LinkedIn To Attract A Flood Of Your Ideal Clients In 60 Days Or Less!”

Register now at:

http://LinkedInTrainingWebinar.com

Comments

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  5. 601286419 says:

    This is a fantastic post, Melonie. Chock full of great information – and that comes from a LinkedIn Heavy Weight!

  6. 1091577055 says:

    Melonie, thanks for this update; it’s always useful to review our own work and keep it updated – also increases views too!
    Only thing you didn’t explain was how to add all the sexy little symbols in your own profile. I checked on LinkedIn help but it only gave a tip for adding bullets – which didn’t work – so how about sharing with us all?
    Thanks again for the terrific post and recent update.

  7. 1091577055 says:

    Melonie, thanks for this update; it’s always useful to review our own work and keep it updated – also increases views too!
    Only thing you didn’t explain was how to add all the sexy little symbols in your own profile. I checked on LinkedIn help but it only gave a tip for adding bullets – which didn’t work – so how about sharing with us all?
    Thanks again for the terrific post and recent update.

  8. 616232813 says:

    Great content as usual Melonie. Thanks for sharing!

  9. 742024309 says:

    Wow, Melonie, fantastic post, and thanks for keeping it fresh with updates!

  10. 742024309 says:

    Wow, Melonie, fantastic post, and thanks for keeping it fresh with updates!

  11. 742024309 says:

    Wow, Melonie, fantastic post, and thanks for keeping it fresh with updates!

  12. 1470715246 says:

    WOW Melonie! You went beyond and above on this one. The source for all tips for a great Linkedin Profile!

  13. 501451176 says:

    Good suggestions, Melonie. I would stress to be plain spoken. The best writing is conversation on paper.

  14. [...] Related: 19 Steps To The Perfect LinkedIn Profile [INFOGRAPHIC] [...]

  15. 1614951249 says:

    Thanks Melonie, this is so awesomely helpful. I have more steps to complete than I wish I did, but at least I have a great roadmap to get me there!

  16. 100004697437459 says:

    Superb work Melonie. Find this article really helpful. Thanks for sharing!

  17. 100001903642298 says:

    Hello, one thing is important, too: If you are able, to speak another language, make a multlingual profile: You can use more “Buzzwords” and are easier to find. The Profil Slogan goes to the Search results with about 30%, and with multlingual Profiles, you can use different Profil slogans.

    Thanks for your blog, nice work, I `ve a similar in german (1).
    best wishes
    Stephan

    (1) http://linkedinsiders.wordpress.com/

  18. 638015383 says:

    This was so helpful. Thank yo for the information. I feel like my profile now has some APPEAL.

  19. 1381252516 says:

    Great information! Just curious, do you recommend speaking in first person in the summary? Should it be I, vs our name?

  20. 100000488350222 says:

    Thanks Melonie you just open my eyes to a whole new world.

  21. 100000488350222 says:

    Thanks Melonie you just open my eyes to a whole new world.

  22. 100000488350222 says:

    Thanks Melonie you just open my eyes to a whole new world.