LinkedIn is an employment-oriented social service that works great especially for B2B businesses to gain contracts and clients.
LinkedIn is a great platform for lead generation and sales, but when a prospect stumbles upon your LinkedIn profile, it takes only a few seconds to decide if they would like to know more about you and work with you.
The key is to create a great first impression that makes people actually desire to work with you and you get only one shot at these first impressions because once they leave unimpressed, the chances of them coming back is very low.
A profile that is sales appealing doesn’t only talk about just you, your positions, your achievements and awards. Those are great too, but your prospects are more interested in knowing how you can help them solve a problem, how you can add value that improves their quality of lives and businesses. Then, how far you’ve come in doing that for others. Remember in business, it’s not about you; it’s all about the customers.
So below are the best tips cumulated tips for optimizing your LinkedIn profile and creating that great first impression.
First thing you should note is that; it is very unprofessional to not have a profile photo. Everyone would want to at least see the face of who they are considering to work with or buy from. Your profile photo is like your identity. So if you do not have a profile photo, put one up, ASAP!
Furthermore, your profile photo shouldn’t be any casual photo you pull up from your photo album. Do not do vacation photos or photos of you holding alcohol unless your business is about travel and alcohol.
Avoid putting up a cropped blurry photo, a casual picture and just a logo.
Your picture should have a high resolution, 60% should take up your face and it should be a shot against a clear background, preferably a plane background.
Your picture should be professional but then you should also smile. People would prefer to work with or buy from who looks approachable and friendly.
Your headline should quickly capture the interest of your prospects with relevant information. It should appeal to your target audience and attract the right kind of prospects.
Your headline should read a value proposition, it shouldn’t just be about you and your job titles. It should tell a story and show your ability to solve your prospect’s problems.
Your summary should have 3 basic components following the 3×3 formula. This means your summary should have 3 paragraphs with 3 sentences maximum.
The first paragraph should describe what you do and why you do it. The second should talk about you solving a specific problem of theirs, more like how your business would benefit them personally or professionally. The third should be a call to action, this should specify how you want to be contacted.
This is one part of your profile that tells people why they should patronize you. Let them know what motivates you to do what you do, everything you have to offer them and what they stand to benefit from your business.
Remember to keep it simple, straight to the point and very professional. Write like you would speak if you were physically talking to your customers directly.
LinkedIn allows you to customize your profile URL to an SEO friendly version. When you work on your page’s SEO, you increase the odds of being discovered not just by LinkedIn users but also by relevant web searchers.
To optimize your profile, you need to use keywords. Keywords are the words and phrases people are using to search online, they are the words people use when talking about your kind of business.
Include these keywords in your headline and summary and these keywords should relate to your business.
This helps build credibility. People will always want to do business with those who have the right skills and knowledge.
In addition, users who list their education appear in searches up to 17 times more often than those who don’t.
Add all the skills and certifications you have to your profile, but do ensure they are all related to your job role as you don’t want to contradict yourself and confuse prospects. Your prospects are likely to notice any slight misalignment in your profile.
LinkedIn allows you to list up to 50 skills but common, do you have up to 50 skills? You need to be selective with the skills you list especially at the top, that’s where prospects will have more attention focused on.
Get recommendations from people you have worked with. Aim for at least two recommendations from your most important former positions. Also get recommendations from former customers, these are more or less testimonials.
Good testimonials say good about you and your services and this will make prospects feel more secure getting into business with you when they see all these good things other people have to say about you.
A lot of people on LinkedIn forget to fill in their contact information, it is one of the most overlooked aspects when setting up profiles.
You should make sure your prospects have a way to contact you. Your profile should include your email address or phone number whichever works for, social media and links to website.
This very important as prospects may want to know more about you and what you do after going through your profile.