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1/17/2018 16 Tips to Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile and Your Personal Brand | Lisa Dougherty | Pulse | LinkedIn

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16 Tips to Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile


and Your Personal Brand
Published on July 8, 2014

Lisa Dougherty Follow


245 56 2
Marketing Leader | LinkedIn Optimizer | Blogger | Social Media …

Editor's note: Because LinkedIn is ever-evolving, this post has


been updated on the Content Marketing Institute blog: 60+
LinkedIn Profile Tips for Marketers.

LinkedIn is a great channel for personal branding and can help you build a powerful
presence on the most popular professional social network with over 377 million
professionals. LinkedIn can be extremely useful for job search, networking and also for
lead generation—especially when you’re aware of all the hidden tricks and ways to
optimize your profile. If your "Who's Viewed Your Profile" chart is flat lining week after
week like a body without a heartbeat, here is a character count cheat sheet and sixteen
tips to optimize your LinkedIn profile that will help bring some life into your profile and
generate more profile views.

LinkedIn Character Count Cheat Sheet

Before you get started, here is a cheat sheet of each area so you know up front how
many characters or keystrokes each field allows. Letters, numbers, punctuation and
spaces count towards character count.

Name: 60 maximum characters.

Professional Headline: 120 character limit.

Summary: 2,000 character limit.

Contact Info:

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1/17/2018 16 Tips to Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile and Your Personal Brand | Lisa Dougherty | Pulse | LinkedIn

Website Anchor Text: 30 maximum characters.

Website URL: 256 maximum characters.

Phone number: 25 maximum characters. Only your 1st degree connections can see
this information.

IM (Instant message): 25 maximum characters. Only your 1st degree connections


can see this information.

Address: 1000 maximum characters. Only your 1st degree connections can see this
information.

Experience:

Company Name: 100 maximum characters.

Job Title: 100 characters.

Position Description: 200 minimum and 2000 maximum characters.

Other Areas:

Personal Interests: 1,000 Characters

Skills and Endorsements: You may add up to 25 skills using 61 characters per
skill.

LinkedIn Status Bar Update: You can use up to 700 characters unless you want to
update your Twitter status at the same time. Twitter updates are limited to 140
characters. If you go over the 140-character limit, only the first 140 characters will
be visible on Twitter.

Here’s Your 16 Tips: bikin anak poin berdasarkan tiap sectionnya


1. Completeness. Make sure that every section of your profile has been completed and
that there are no blank spaces or obvious gaps. Your LinkedIn profile is your online
resume, so treat it with the same level of seriousness you would your normal resume.
Here’s what you need to have completed to have an ‘All-Star’ status:

You need to add your industry and location

A current position

Two past positions

Your education information

A minimum of three skills

At least 50 connections

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1/17/2018 16 Tips to Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile and Your Personal Brand | Lisa Dougherty | Pulse | LinkedIn

A definite “No” for a


LinkedIn profile photo.

A professional profile picture that represents your industry. This is critical for
your LinkedIn success! Adding a profile photo could result in 14 times more profile
views. So, if you are a Creative Director, you might want to have more of an edgier
photo as opposed to a CEO, who would want to have a suit on in a traditional pose.
Having the same picture on multiple social media channels like Twitter, Facebook,
LinkedIn and Google+ will help build your personal brand. Whatever you do, don’t
use a selfie, your company logo, you and your furry friend or something like the
below photo. These types ofphoto’s could damage your personal brand which
defeats the whole purpose of being on LinkedIn. An ideal pixel size is between 200
x 200 to 500 x 500. If either width or height exceeds 4000 pixels, your photo will
not upload.

2. Create Your Vanity URL. When you create your LinkedIn profile, the default URL
that you get doesn't exactly roll off the tongue. Instead of a URL with a million
confusing numbers at the end, you need to create one like this:
http://www.linkedin.com/in/lisadougherty. This URL is far more friendly from an SEO
point of view and is a vital opportunity to have your profile rank higher in Google and
to make it easier for people to find you. Go here and click “customize your public
profile URL” on the right-hand side.  

3. Get Written Recommendations. It is still important to have written


recommendations from colleagues, management, people you manage, vendors or
customers, however, LinkedIn no longer requires three recommendations to have a
complete status. It is still considered a best practice. Recommendations that are written
for specific roles show up underneath each position in which they are written. They are
very different from Endorsements and serve a different purpose. Each person that writes
you a recommendation will have a thumbnail of their profile photo right next to their
recommendation.

4. Add Skills And Get Endorsements. Endorsements are one-click acknowledgments


from your network showing that you are being recognized for a certain skill. If you
would like to learn more about Endorsements, check out this earlier blog post. The
reason endorsements are important to your profile is for search results. The more
endorsements you have for a specific skill, the more likely that you’ll come up in the
search results when someone is searching for that skill. For example: I have 99+ people
who have endorsed me for Social Media Marketing. When a hiring manager or recruiter
is searching for people with the skill "social media marketing," it is more likely that I
will come up somewhere on the first few pages of the search results.

5. Create Custom Links For


Online Properties. Don’t list
the generic “website” but brand it with your company name or blog name to make those
links more appealing to people who view your profile. For example, if you want to
include a link to your blog, rather than choosing LinkedIn’s standard “Blog” anchor
text, customize it to include keywords that indicate what your blog is about like, “Social
Media Blog or BrandLove, LLC Blog.” This will help optimize your profile and drive
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1/17/2018 16 Tips to Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile and Your Personal Brand | Lisa Dougherty | Pulse | LinkedIn

Google PageRank to your other web properties. Each profile can display up to three
website links like this, and they can be customized by editing your profile, clicking edit
on your website links, and selecting “other” in the drop-down menu to customize the
anchor text.

6. Rearrange Your Profile.


LinkedIn enables you to
reorder the sections of their profile in any way you prefer. When in edit mode on your
profile, hover your mouse over the title of each section. Your mouse will turn into a
four-arrowed icon, at which point you can click then drag and drop to another position
on your profile. If you have won awards, for example, you may want to move these
below your summary section.

7. Search Engine Optimize Your Profile. You can also optimize your profile to get
found by people searching LinkedIn for key terms with which you want to be
associated. Add these keywords to various sections of your profile such as your
summary, specialties, job title, career history and personal interests.

8. Incorporate Branding Into Your Profile Background Image. This is an expanded


custom profile background image (1400 x 425 pixels) that is only available to premium
members at this time. You can choose to either upload your own background image,
keep the default blue gradient background, or select from a gallery of background
images should you need design inspiration. As of right now, the new custom
backgrounds are only visible on the desktop site, not on mobile devices. Whether or not
this will be updated in the future remains to be seen. If you are interested in receiving
the new profile early, you can submit a request to LinkedIn here. Signing up multiple
times or contacting LinkedIn after you’ve signed up on the waiting list won’t enable the
feature any faster.

9. Use Keywords in Your Headline. The headline is the first thing people see when
they go to your LinkedIn profile. Unless you change it, your headline will appear as
your current or last position held. Since this headline will appear in various places on
LinkedIn, you want it to be more descriptive. The LinkedIn algorithm seems to put a lot
of emphasis on the words used in the headline when ranking people, so make sure it
includes your key attributes, benefits your company offers, or your geographic location
if you serve a specific area. Thank you to Dianna Huff, President of DH
Communications for allowing me to use a screenshot of her profile as an example.

10. Add Projects. I highly recommend adding a projects section to your profile,
especially if you are a Consultant or Freelancer. By adding this section, it will
allow you to name your project and input a URL. This then turns the title of the project
into a hyperlink, leading the viewer to the project’s website and thus creating an
inbound link. You can specifically relate your project to a position that you hold or have
held. This can be a great way to show off your expertise in a current or previous
position by showing viewers evidence that you know your stuff. The best part is that
you can add “Team Members.” If you are connected to your collaborators on LinkedIn,
you can add them here and their name will appear as a hyperlink to their LinkedIn
profile.

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1/17/2018 16 Tips to Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile and Your Personal Brand | Lisa Dougherty | Pulse | LinkedIn

11. Join Groups. Only 16% of LinkedIn members are in the maximum number of
groups allowed (50). Find groups related to your industry or niche then make sure that
you join them and, if at all possible, be an active participant in two or three of them.
This will get your profile noticed by other industry contacts. According to LinkedIn,
your profile is five times more likely to be viewed if you join and are active in groups.
Just remember, if you’re going to participate in group discussions, groups are about
COMMUNITY not YOU. You should participate by all means, but to support the
community not sell yourself or your services. Did you know? If you’re a member of the
same group as another user, you can bypass the need to be a first degree connection in
order to message them. In addition, group members are also able to view the profiles of
other members of the same group without being connected and more messaging and
profile viewership capabilities. For best practices on group participation, make sure to
read these tips from LinkedIn so you don't get sent to LinkedIn jail. More on that in a
future article.

12. Build Your Network. Once your profile is in good shape, work on building your
network. Here are some things to keep in mind: when asking to connect with someone,
use “we’ve done business together” rather than “friend.” Be sure to personalize any
requests to connect with how you know the person or where you met or who you have
in common. If you do decide to try to connect with someone that may not know you
well, be absolutely sure that you defend your network invite in the personal note
section, such as saying you just purchased their book or saw them speak at a major
conference. If you invite people to your network and they mark your invitation as
someone they do not know, you will be banned (temporarily) from inviting new people
to your network unless you know their email address.

13. Use Linkedin As A CRM Tool. I know this really doesn't fit into building your
personal brand, but I thought this hint would be helpful as you’re building your
network. You should know that LinkedIn has a feature that allows you to segment your
connections. Once you've made the connection, make sure you “tag” them into certain
folders turning LinkedIn into a very powerful CRM tool that allows you to target
messages to individuals or groups of people. There isn't an easy way to go back and tag
your contacts except one by one, so I highly recommend doing this as you add more
connections. Thank you to Joe Dougherty for the use of your profile.

14. Add Media To Your


Profile. Images and/or
documents add a visual appeal and will make your profile stand out among the rest.To
add media samples to the Summary, Education, and Experience sections on your profile:

1. Move your cursor over Profile at the top of your homepage and select Edit Profile. I
highly recommend using Internet Explorer. I am not able to do this using the
Chrome browser.

2. Scroll down to the section you want to add a sample and move your cursor over the
add media icon (looks like a square with a plus sign).

3. Select Upload File if you’d like to display the media sample on your profile OR
select Add Link if you want to link to content that exists on another web site. If you

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1/17/2018 16 Tips to Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile and Your Personal Brand | Lisa Dougherty | Pulse | LinkedIn

chose to add a link, type or paste the link to your content into the Add a link field. If
you chose to upload a file, select the file from your computer. A picture of your file
will display with pre-filled Title and Description fields. You can customize these
fields. Here are the acceptable file formats: Documents: .pdf, .doc, .docx, .rtf and
.odt Images: .png, .gif, .jpg and .jpeg and Presentations: .pdf, .ppt, .pps, .pptx,
.ppsx, .pot, .potx and .odp. File size should not exceed 100 MB.

4. Click Save. An update will appear on the homepages of your network, letting others
know you added the media file or link unless you have this feature turned off.

15.Jazz Up Your Profile With Symbols and Bullets. Using bullets, symbols and visual
cues in your LinkedIn profile will definitely help to make yours stand out from the
crowd in a positive way especially if you use them conservatively.Like anything else,
just make sure you don’t get too crazy or too cute with your choices in symbols. And,
most importantly, make sure you don’t overuse them. You don’t want your profile to
appear unprofessional. This will cheapen your personal brand which you've worked so
hard to fine tune. Click here for a "How To." Feel free to copy and paste the symbols
and bullets for your profile.

16.Showcase Awards, Volunteer Experience, Organizations and Causes You Care


About. What you do out of the office says as much about you as anything else and also
contributes to a higher search ranking. In fact, according to LinkedIn, 42% of hiring
managers surveyed said they view volunteer experience equal to formal work
experience.

I would love to hear if these tips worked for you, questions you may have and any
LinkedIn related success stories. Please share your thoughts in the comments below.

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If you found this article helpful, be sure to share it with your


network. If you are looking for social media marketing tips and
insights, you can follow @BrandLoveLLC on Twitter and the BrandLove Company
Page on LinkedIn. Thank you for reading this post and sharing it with your colleagues.
Your support is much appreciated!

Lisa Dougherty
Marketing Leader | LinkedIn Optimizer | Blogger | Social Media Strategist | Brand Storytel… Follow
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