TheWebMarketer - LinkedIn 101 Guide

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This is a high level guide to the basics of LinkedIn that all professionals need to know. …

This is a high level guide to the basics of LinkedIn that all professionals need to know.

This guide addresses what LinkedIn is, the benefits for any professional being on LinkedIn, how to get started and some recommendations to get the most out of your LinkedIn profile.

More in: Business , Technology , Design
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  • 1. TheWebMarketer LinkedIn 101 GuideWhat is LinkedIn?LinkedIn is the world’s largest social network for professionals with over 120 million members andgrowing rapidly. LinkedIn connects you to your trusted contacts and helps you exchange knowledge, andideas with a broader network of professionals.Benefits • Establish/Control your professional identify: LinkedIn gives you the keys to establishing and controlling your online identity. Have you Googled yourself lately? You never know what may come up. LinkedIn profiles rise to the top of search results, letting you control the first impression people get when searching for you online. • Stay in touch with colleagues and clients: In today’s professional world, people change jobs and locations constantly. By connecting on LinkedIn, your address book will never go out of date. Your contacts update their profiles, keeping you current with their latest jobs, projects and contact info. You can stay in closer contact with tools to communicate and collaborate. • Find experts and ideas: Sometimes your immediate circle can’t resolve a unique business challenge. Tools like Answers and Groups let you locate and interact with experts through trusted introductions. LinkedIn Search lets you explore the broader network by name, title, company, location, and other keywords that will help you find the knowledge you’re looking for. • Explore leads: Whether you’re looking to build your professional reputation or winning new clients, LinkedIn connects you to sales leads and ideal business partners. With the LinkedIn search engine, and company research tools that shows who you know at listed companies, LinkedIn is the place to turn for researching new client and partner leads. Page 1 of 6
  • 2. TheWebMarketer LinkedIn 101 GuideGetting StartedSign Up • Go to LinkedIn website: www.LinkedIn.com • Enter the required information in the sign up form • Click the Join Now buttonYour LinkedIn ProfileThe first place to consider is the build-out of your overall profile. Its a very good idea to fill out as muchinformation as possible. Although it is not necessary to have a professional and formal photo taken foryour profile, your profile photo should be professional in tone (photo of you on a lounge chair and a drinkis not appropriate). This alone will say much about who you are as a professional, which essentiallyconstitutes your personal brand.If you havent started yet, you can use the profile completion tips that LinkedIn provides to help you getto the 100 percent completeness level. Once you achieve this, your visibility and credibility will increase.Here are the things you will need: • Your current position • Two past positions • Your education • Your profile summary • A profile photo • Your specialties • At least three recommendations Page 2 of 6
  • 3. TheWebMarketer LinkedIn 101 GuideAs you work on building or rebuilding your profile, you may want to consider some of these points belowthat will help make a good profile even better.Identify Your KeywordsTake the time to do a little research on keywords you want to be known for. Think about what keywordspotential clients and business partners might use to find you in a search. So you should anticipate thewords they will use in their search.As you then work on building out your profile, make sure you use these keywords. By doing so, youshould get a higher rank for those terms when someone does a "people" search on LinkedIn. Higherrank means more visibility and may lead to more opportunities.Position Yourself in Your Headline and SummaryConsider your headline to be a personal branding statement. So project yourself as you would wantpeople to perceive you. You can edit your profile manually in the "edit profile" section. So take the time tocraft a statement about yourself that will be distinctive and unique using your targeted keywords.Next, your summary should add clarity and detail to your headline in just a couple paragraphs. Think ofthis as your elevator speech to send the kind of message that supports your personal brand.Customize Your URLDo you know what your LinkedIn URL is? Having your name in your LinkedIn URL provides you a betteropportunity to be found in search engines as well as in the LinkedIn search bar. Page 3 of 6
  • 4. TheWebMarketer LinkedIn 101 GuideTo find out, go to "edit profile." Then look down to where it says "public profile." See screenshot below:It should appear to be "http://linkedin.com/in/yourname." If its something unrecognizable, then youshould change it. Just click on the edit link next to the URL. Then you will have the opportunity to inputyour name. If you have a common name, you may need to provide more detail to secure the URL youwant, like a period between first and last name or adding your middle initial. Page 4 of 6
  • 5. TheWebMarketer LinkedIn 101 GuideTake Advantage of LinkedIn ApplicationsThere are many applications you can use to help enhance your LinkedIn profile. Check out theApplication Directory (http://www.linkedin.com/static?key=application_directory) to see a full list of theseapps. Heres a short list of those that you may want to look at first:The SlideShare app will allow you to link to your SlideShare presentations to share with others. If you orparticipate in many events, then Events might be an app you can use.RecommendationsMore and more professionals are turning to network sites like LinkedIn to get the information they needon people, potential clients, and business partners. Having positive recommendations will help you leavea great impression.Take the time to reach out to business colleagues and past clients to make a recommendation for you.The more recommendations, the more believable it will be. Page 5 of 6
  • 6. TheWebMarketer LinkedIn 101 GuideGroupsOne of the best features of LinkedIn is the opportunity to join professional groups that relate to yourbusiness, industry or profession. Joining groups allows you to keep up with industry news and to makenew connections (you’ll be able to view the profiles and chat with other group members, even if you arenot personally connected)Participation: Ask Questions, Answer QuestionsAs with most things, the more you put into something the more you get out of it. If you want to be foundand be viewed as a leader in your industry, you should take the time to participate. Share your thoughts,and ask and answer questions. Some successful people on LinkedIn take the time to answer questionsand help others daily.LinkedIn can be a very powerful tool to help you build your personal brand. Its a great idea to have aLinkedIn profile thats polished and up-to-date. Page 6 of 6