8 tips to optimize your LinkedIn profile

Whether you are a salesperson, recruiter or job seeker, optimizing your LinkedIn profile is crucial to your professional success. Check out the tips below to help you fully optimize your LinkedIn profile and look like a pro.

1. Your name – Is your name the same on all the social networks you are on? If not, you are missing precious search engine optimization or SEO juice on for your personal brand, both on Google and LinkedIn. Whatever name you use, and as long as it’s professional/appropriate, be sure to put that same name on every social network you’re on. This will make it much easier for your colleagues, recruiters and prospects to find you.

2. Title and job title – By default, your profile title is always your current job title. Take advantage of the 120 characters to influence how people perceive you on LinkedIn. Ask yourself, “When someone or prospects read my LinkedIn headline, does it stand out from the crowd?” If the answer is no, there is room for improvement. Remember that in groups, chats, and other places on LinkedIn, people will see your name, photo, and title first. That said, don’t forget to insert the keywords you want to rank for and find online.

3. LinkedIn Profile URL – Help your audience (and Google) find you by adding your first and last name to your LinkedIn profile URL. Keep in mind that this feature is on a first-come, first-served basis, so if you have a common name, chances are your full name is already taken. If this is your case, try changing the order. For example, www.linkedin.com/in/GabeVillamizar or www.linkedin.com/in/VillamizarGabe. If these options are also taken, I recommend adding the first initial of your middle name between your first and last name. Symbols, spaces or any other special characters are not allowed. Ultimately, your goal is to communicate and make it easier for Google crawler Where Googlebot to connect the dots and help identify who you claim to be online. (Pro tip: Check out this step-by-step tutorial on how to do it: How to Customize Your LinkedIn Profile URL)

4. Complete your contact information – If I had to guess the most incomplete section of someone’s LinkedIn profile, it would be their contact information. There is a ton of SEO value just by filling out this section. Start by adding your work email address, work phone number, Twitter account, and three websites related to your personal brand or the company you currently work with. Under Websites, if you choose the “Other:” tab, be sure to edit the label with a keyword that stands out and describes the website you added.

5. Professional Summary – Think of your recap section as your written 60-second elevator pitch. Focus on a few action words that describe you, and again try to stand out from the crowd. Keywords are essential in this paragraph, so don’t rush into writing anything. Take some time to think about the specific verbiage you want to use to construct your summary paragraph, which will be 2-4 sentences long.

6. Types of Rich Media – Your LinkedIn profile isn’t your online resume, it’s your online reputation. Don’t make the mistake of having a very long, boring, wordy profile. By adding rich media assets to your profile, you’ll make it more visually appealing to showcase the work you’ve done. These types of media include images, documents, videos, and presentations. Ask your marketing team to help you identify the top rich media assets in your organization that have been optimized for LinkedIn so they display correctly. Think of the power of rich media types if everyone in an organization had the same consistent branded video, gated resource, or Slideshare displayed in their profiles. Money in the bank.

7. Professional Skills – When was the last time you checked or updated your job skills? When done strategically, the skills you add and list will create what I like to call an instant “credibility trigger” for anyone who views your profile. Before adding or updating your skills, put yourself in your buyer’s shoes. What skills, keywords, and pain points do they currently care about? Write down at least 10 of these keywords and these will become your skills. Once you’ve chosen your new skills, simply rearrange them by dragging and dropping them to the top of the skills list to increase their visibility and number of endorsements. If you have a skill that was approved in the past, but currently does not add value to your current position, remove it and replace it with a relevant skill.

8. Professional experience – As you reach your personal and team goals, update your career experience section with qualitative and quantitative results. Focus on the keywords you want to rank for and be known for. Try to be as specific as possible, but keep it short and to the point. Nobody wants to read a long will 🙂 This is also another area to create “credibility triggers” for your buyer or reader as they browse your LinkedIn profile.

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About Gabe Villamizar

Gabe Villamizar is Head of Social Media Marketing at HireVue. He has over five years of experience in social media marketing, social selling and social audience development across multiple industries. Prior to joining HireVue, he was Head of Social Media at InsideSales.com, where he worked with Ken Krogue to build his social media brand and thought leadership in the social selling space.

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