If you’re interested in boosting your personal brand in the B2B space, you can’t go wrong by maximizing the visibility of your LinkedIn profile.
One of the best ways to make your LinkedIn profile stand out from the crowd is by applying some search engine optimization (SEO) tactics to it. It’s important to apply SEO to your profile because LinkedIn is one of the top 5 sites that Google indexes regularly (the others being YouTube, Wikipedia, Facebook, and Twitter).
2 things to think about here. (1) You want to get links from LinkedIn to your website to rank higher. (2) You want to get your profile ranking higher in LinkedIn.
We are talking about getting your profile ranked in LinkedIn here.
Here are a few SEO tricks to get your profile ranking on the largest online professional network.
1. Create a Keyword-Rich Profile
If you’ve been in digital marketing for any length of time, then you already know about the importance of creating keyword-rich titles and spreading keywords throughout your content.
You need to do the same thing with your LinkedIn profile.
For starters, make sure that your job title is using the keyword that people will likely use when they’re searching for the services you offer. For example, if you’re an expert in content marketing, make sure the phrase “content marketing” appears in your job title.
Also, make sure that the keyword you use in your job title appears throughout your profile. If you’re a “content marketing expert,” then your work history should include the phrase “content marketing” (and variations of that phrase) repeatedly.
Be wary of keyword-stuffing in your profile, though. Apply the same “as much as possible without going over” principle to your LinkedIn profile that you apply to your usual content marketing efforts.
2. Create Backlinks
If you’re a digital marketer who’s done SEO for some of your clients’ websites, then you already know about the importance of using backlinks to help rank a page.
Once again: apply that principle to your LinkedIn profile page.
Begin by linking to your profile page from your own blog. That’s especially a great idea if your blog is on a domain with high domain authority (DA).
Also, look for opportunities to link back to your profile page when you guest-post on other people’s blogs. That’s usually pretty easy because most guest blog posts include a brief biography of the author. Just use that author bio to link back to your LinkedIn profile.
This will do a couple things.
- Rank your LinkedIn profile higher in Google (resulting in more views, endoresements and activity)
- Based on the extra views and interaction your profile gets, allow you to increase your LinkedIn profile score
- Result in your LinkedIn profile ranking higher
3. Publish Some Posts
You can apply content marketing to your LinkedIn profile. Do that by publishing posts relevant to your niche.
To publish a post, visit your profile. Just below the top section of the profile, you should see a recommendation to “Add a section to your profile.” A couple of section types should be immediately visible, but you’ll probably have to expand the area to see all the types.
One of those section types is called “Posts.” You know it can help increase your visibility because LinkedIn explains that section as follows: “Write a post to increase your visibility and improve your professional brand.”
Follow the advice of LinkedIn. Click on the “Create Post” link and start writing. Write a blog post that will give your brand a boost.
Keep in mind that LinkedIn is an excellent place to repurpose content. If you’ve got a great post on your blog that’s fallen back to page 17 but still offers valuable insight, include a synopsis of that post on LinkedIn and link back to it. Also, consider doing the reverse: post some great content on LinkedIn and link to it from your blog. LinkedIn has very high domain authority, so you can get a post ranking quicker and faster than your site (unless you have a really authoritative site).
Remember, though: avoid duplicating content between LinkedIn and your own blog. Google doesn’t like duplicate content. Don’t publish the exact same thing in both places.
4. Finish Your Profile
Give people as many reasons as possible to find you on LinkedIn. You can do that by completing your LinkedIn profile. Make sure that your work history is complete and that you’ve filled out all relevant sections, listed your certifications and education, and secured endorsements and recommendations. Really take the time to ensure it is complete.
5. Participate in Groups
LinkedIn is a social media network. Use it to be social and network with others.
One of the best ways to do that is to join groups of people who are like-minded and spend time rubbing virtual shoulders with them. You’ll boost your personal brand while participating in discussions you enjoy. That’s a win-win.
6. Expand Your Network As Much As Possible
LinkedIn has its own search engine. One of the “ranking signals” it uses is the number of connections a person has.
According to Rick Stomphorst, LinkedIn search results “elevate results for connections within a network (i.e. 1st, 2nd, 3rd level connections, groups).” That’s why, according to him, you need to “be connected to as many people as possible.”
7. Name Your Picture and Images
Google searches images just as it searches content. That’s why the images you upload to LinkedIn should include a name that will get you discovered online.
Instead of giving your profile photo your own name, label it with your job description. For example, instead of naming it “John Smith,” name it “Award-Winning Content Marketing”.
People who view your profile won’t see the title, but it will show up in searches. That will give you more exposure.
Now before you go running off and doing this take a moment to consider your personal brand too. For example, in my case there are a few different people named John Lincoln who have a prominence online. I wish them all the best, but when you Google “John Lincoln” I would prefer most the results return information about me.
Because of this, I have optimized a few things for my name, my LinkedIn page being one of them. So in the case of the picture, and the profile I general, I just care about showing up for John Lincoln. So I name the file name accordingly.
- Get as many endorsements as you can
- Get as many recommendations as possible
- Keep in mind you are search able by company, so if you list a company people will find you. For example, I list that I write for Inc. magazine and people reach out to me on this all the time.
- Add keywords into your profile if you want to rank for a term (but only where it makes sense
- Add honors and awards and publications
- Get endorses for skills (the more you endorse others, the more they will endorse you)
Get Going Now
LinkedIn is one of the best ways to connect with potential clients online. It gives you the opportunity to network without taking too much time out of your schedule. If you haven’t already done so, apply some time-honored SEO principles to your LinkedIn profile so that you’re more likely to get noticed. Figure out what you want to be ranked for and use this guide to make it happen.