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Taking Your LinkedIn Profile to the Next Level

With­out doubt, LinkedIn is the most pop­u­lar social net­work­ing tool for busi­ness­peo­ple, but is your pro­file work­ing as hard as it could be?

We all know that get­ting a great pro­file in place is cru­cial, but there are a range of tools you can use to real­ly enhance your presence.

Mak­ing Your Pro­file Work for You

By claim­ing your van­i­ty URL you can instant­ly add a more pro­fes­sion­al feel to your LinkedIn pro­file. This can also be opti­mized to dri­ve more traf­fic to your pro­file. You can also add a pro­file badge to your per­son­al web­sites and blogs so vis­i­tors can click straight through to your LinkedIn pro­file and it’s well worth mak­ing your anchor text more appeal­ing so you get more clicks through to your websites.

Ensure your pro­file is sprin­kled lib­er­al­ly with key­words. By mak­ing the copy in your pro­file key­word rich, you can make sure you come up in the search results when­ev­er someone’s look­ing for a new employ­ee or an expert. You can also cre­ate a com­pa­ny pro­file too, if it’s appro­pri­ate. By cre­at­ing a busi­ness pro­file you have the oppor­tu­ni­ty to cre­ate not one, but two net­works and you can cross-pol­lenate – gath­er­ing oppor­tu­ni­ties from both net­works and real­ly lever­age your per­son­al brand.

Rec­om­men­da­tions and endorse­ments are all part of the LinkedIn pack­age and gath­er­ing these is also cru­cial to your suc­cess. How­ev­er, it’s the qual­i­ty of these that will attract peo­ple to you, not the quan­ti­ty. By giv­ing and obtain­ing endorse­ments you can rank and be ranked on your skill set, and those that have endorsed you will be clear­ly vis­i­ble to any­one view­ing your profile.

For the More Advanced User

For those who pre­fer some­thing a lit­tle more advanced LinkedIn also gives you the option to use a host of apps to make your pro­file real­ly stand out. If you’re a pub­lic speak­er or deliv­er lots of pre­sen­ta­tions, the SlideShare App can help you show­case your lat­est reports and speech­es from your LinkedIn pro­file. Since its 2006 incep­tion, the con­tent-shar­ing tool has seen more than nine mil­lion pre­sen­ta­tions shared using its ser­vices. It was acquired ear­li­er this year by LinkedIn in a deal rumoured to be worth almost $120 million.

The Word­Press app will help you import your WP blog posts into your pro­file. You can even import only those posts tagged as ‘LinkedIn’. The ‘Tweets’ app will give you access to Twit­ter from the com­fort of your LinkedIn profile.

If you’re using the Answers fea­ture to increase your knowl­edge of indus­try devel­op­ments you will undoubt­ed­ly have noticed that after a while the abil­i­ty to answer ques­tions is closed. Did you know that by using the ‘My Q&A’ tab with­in Answers you can extend the life of a ques­tion so oth­er users have more time to answer?

You can reach out to peo­ple that you’re not con­nect­ed to by using Open­Link. This is a great way of con­nect­ing to some­one when there’s no oth­er way, how­ev­er be mind­ful that LinkedIn users are wary of those who appear too intru­sive. They are a reserved bunch and will not appre­ci­ate the ‘in your face’ com­mu­ni­ca­tion tac­tics that are used reg­u­lar­ly on Face­book for example.

Per­haps the biggest way to improve your pro­file on LinkedIn is to join groups. A free mem­ber­ship pack­age allows users to join up to 50 groups and by being an active mem­ber, join­ing in dis­cus­sions and post­ing mean­ing­ful con­tent you can improve your stand­ing with the peo­ple in your sec­tor who hold posi­tions of influ­ence. You can bypass the need to be a con­nec­tion in order to mes­sage anoth­er mem­ber and you can view their pro­files too. By join­ing more groups, your oppor­tu­ni­ties to con­nect and com­mu­ni­cate increase.

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