What is a Social Network Profile?
When it comes to online personal or business branding, the creation of
social media profiles is clearly essential. Whether you are just trying to
get more exposure online, connect with your fans or customers, or
working to purify your online reputation, social networking profiles are the
way to go as they will rank highly in search engine results when
individuals search for your name.
I want you to think of each social media profile you create as a landing
page for your emblem. This landing page is perhaps the first encounter
that someone is going to have with your brand, and you will want that
first impression to be golden and make the guest want to know more
Here are the 10 elements you need to follow to create a successful social
Element #1: Your Name
For a while, I thought that your username, or the name that usually
shows up in the URL (such as http://twitter.com/kikolani) was extremely
important in getting your profile to rank in search results. I found,
however, that unlike usual website SEO that says that the URL counts in
ranking, the real ranking for social media profiles happens with your
name. So be sure to enter the name you want to be found under.
Element #2: Your Username
So where does the username come into play? Some people who can’t find
your social media links may just reckon it is something apparent and type
it in directly. Think about what people would search you under, and make
sure that is your username that is included in the URL. Be sure to think of
brand dominance when it comes to this part, otherwise you’ll end up
stranded on a desert island.
Element #3: Your Profile Pic
There is great debate when it comes to profile photos / avatars on social
networks in terms of whether you should go with your brand logo or the
face of a person.
My usual thought is that if you are a adequate enough brand or business
with a well-recognized logo, definitely go with the logo. If you’re building
a personal brand or you are a public figure like a blogger, politician,
musician, artist, etc., go with the personal picture. People are more likely
to want to engage with a person than a brand logo.
Once you have picked your default photo, be sure to stick with the exact
same picture as your default photo from one network to the next, that
way people easily recognize you across all social networks.
Another thing that helps in SEO value is naming your photo file
appropriately before uploading it. Be sure you have named it
yourname.jpg or yourbusiness.jpg as opposed to uploading IMG0153.jpg.
This might have some value, especially in image searches, which can be
particularly important now that Google has incorporated the first few
image search results in their main page of search results, as shown
above. If someone searches you by name, you will want your image to
come up, not someone else’s.
Element #4: Your Link
This varies from one social media network to the next, but be sure to
seek out any opportunity to get your website link on the main page of
your social profile. For example, many people miss the fact they can add
their link on their YouTube channel page, or in the box underneath their
profile picture on Facebook. Make sure that your link is front and center
so that people can find it quickly and click through to your website.
Another brilliant tip for your links is to create a social network specific
landing page so you can track which profiles are bringing your site the
most traffic. You can use these pages to offer a special discount for
people who have found you on Twitter, or share suggestions that is
specific to a network, like recent blog posts you have written about
Also, on networks such as LinkedIn, be sure to customize your link’s
anchor text by using the Other option instead of just using My Website,
My Company, or My Blog.
Element #5: Your Bio
Your main social profile’s bio is usually just a sentence or two about your
life or your organisation. Think of it as a perfect place to put your elevator
pitch and include your main keywords. I don’t mean in a salesy way, but
just if someone were to ask you to tell them briefly what you or your
business is about, what would you say?
Be sure to fill out your bio to its full potential. While some networks allow
you to only have a limited amount of characters, others encourage more
robust and lengthy biography. Take advantage of this to share only the
best about yourself and your brand.
Element #6: Your Interests
Some profiles allow you to have additional extended information about
yourself in the form of favorite books, television shows, movies, and so
on. A lot of people skip over this, especially when it comes to business
profiles, but that is a big mistake.
Look at these fields as an further place to get some great keyword value.
I doubt there is a niche out there that doesn’t have at least one or two
published books. Find books, documentaries, and profiles of influential
people in your industry and add those in these additional fields.
Element #7: Your Background
Although this one is limited to select networks, such as your Twitter and
YouTube channel profiles, this is one to invest in for those networks that
allow it. A customized background will allow you to share additional
information that may not fit in the fields of your profile, as well as share
additional links and icons to other networks so people know your brand
can be found elsewhere.
Element #8: Your Privacy Settings
So after you have all of your profile filled out, pictures uploaded, and
backgrounds designed, the next thing that you will need to take a look at
are your privacy settings. These change from network to network, but you
will want to make sure that the information you would like to be public is
I would suggest making sure your basic bio / summary, links to your main
website, and default profile pic / avatar is available for any person to see.
This is especially important when you are looking to connect with others
who may not necessarily recognize your name, but will recognise your
photo or website affiliations.
Element #9: Your Activity
Once your profile setup is complete, your on-going objective will be to
maintain a healthy level of activity on your main social networks, which
for most will be Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. These are three open
ended yet important guidelines to follow on any network.
Don’t just add friends - engage with them!
Don’t just join groups - participate in them!
Don’t just post updates to update - think about what your connections want to see and share!
Element #10: Your Promotion
Finally, there is nothing like a little health promotion of your social
network profiles to assist more people find and get hooked up with you,
giving you more people to engage with! Be sure to add your social
networking profile links to:
Your email signature.
Your forum signature.
Your business card.
Also, don’t forget to interlink your profiles to each other. If you can share
multiple links on a social profile, make sure some of those are to your
main social profiles!
Your Essential Social Media Profile Tips
So these are just the basic needs - what other elements do you find
essential to include in your social media profiles? Please share your tips in
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