When Wayne Breitbarth talks about LinkedIn you can almost see the light bulbs going on over the heads of those in the room listening.
As the author of the best selling book on Amazon about LinkedIn, it's clear that Breitbarth is both knowledgeable and passionate about teaching folks how they can use LinkedIn to grow their business. What gets the light bulbs going on is his ability to distill the nuances of LinkedIn success into a series of really simple suggestions that people can't wait to try out.
His presentation Wednesday in Appleton was no exception. Almost as soon as he finished speaking to the special lunchtime edition of the New North Social Media Breakfast, one of the most common refrains from those departing was "I can't wait to try that out."
Breitbarth covered a lot of ground during his presentation Unlocking LinkedIn's Corporate Marketing Potential, from new advertising tools to leveraging employee LinkedIn networks to maximizing the tools of a LinkedIn company page. But it was one of the simple lessons that really stuck - a simple lesson on the social media optimization of your personal LinkedIn profile to improve its rank in a LinkedIn search.
Improving the performance of your profile in search - perhaps to the number one position - is largely dependent on four things:
- Keywords - this is how people will find you. Use your industry and company keywords in your profile. "It's still a stupid search engine," as Breitbarth said
- Story - this is what makes you interesting. Use your keywords to tell it, but make sure it is your story and tell it well
- Headlines - this is the attention grabber at the top of your profile. If you don't write it yourself, then LinkedIn just grabs your current job title. Make sure you use your most important keywords here
- Titles - these are the various jobs you have held. Again, industry keywords are important
Addressing these four elements of your profile can have tremendous results. While they are interdependent, it is the keywords that drive success, much like they do for you website.
So how do you know what keywords to use? Breitbarth has you covered there to. You can find them by answering 8 simple questions:
- What titles do you hold or have you held?
- What types of products or services do you sell?
- What are the brand names of the products?
- What are the brand names of the services?
- What job responsibilities have you had?
- What specialty certifications or degrees have you received?
- What software do you know how to use?
- Regions of the world you specialize in serving?
Your answers to these questions are your profile keywords. Use them throughout your profile and when people search LinkedIn for a product, service or specialty in your industry, your profile is the one they are going to find.
Breitbarth tested the effects of adding these four steps when his primary business was office furniture. In the space of a few hours, adding a few keywords at a time, he was able to move his profile to the number one position when "office furniture Milwaukee" was searched.
What would your profile ranking number one mean for your business?
To learn more about using keywords to boost your profile, check out Breitbarth's LinkedIn Keyword Worksheet at powerformula.net.
For more about using LinkedIn as part of a broader social media strategy, download our free guide.