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Using SEO Keyword Phrases in Your LinkedIn Profile

Your LinkedIn profile is a powerful tool for brand development, but to generate leads, potential customers must find you first.

Your LinkedIn Keyword Strategy

generate leads

Keyword phrases are terms potential prospects would type in a search box to find you.  So, keep your target market and their needs in mind when you select specific words from their perspective.  Utilize long-tail keyword phrases, which are more descriptive than general terms.  Potential customers who use these long-tail terms usually have a better idea of what they are looking for and are further down the sales funnel.  While the volume of visitors that find you using longer-tail phrases will not be high, they are arguably better quality and worth using.

As you analyze keyword phrases, you will notice that there is more than one phrase you could use to make your point, and the one selected could be pivotal to your success.

For example, people search for the general keyword “SEO” about 27,000 times a month, but to be ranked on it is a challenge. On a difficulty scale between 0 and 100, the keyword phrase “SEO” is 99.  However, if your expertise was in “local SEO”, and used this phrase instead, it would attract 4,400 monthly visits and be a 62 on the difficulty scale.

Your choice between using “local SEO” instead of just “SEO” would increase your success rate and be the difference between potentially ranking and not being seen at all.

Here are a few tools you could use to find the most effective keyword phrases for your LinkedIn profile:

Google Keyword Planner

  • Google’s new keyword tool within the Adwords platform.

Hit Tail

  • Long-tail keyword tool.

Tip: Learn how to optimize for the right keywords in our blog post here.

Once you select your target keywords, you can increase leads for your LinkedIn profile page by strategically placing them in these key areas.

  • Job Titles – include a few keywords. Instead of “Blog Manager,” use “Inbound Marketing Strategy Blog Manager.”
  • Summary – You have the most freedom for content creation in the summary section, so make it count. Use at least 4 – 5 keywords your potential customer could relate to, and work them in naturally through your content.
  • Description – Instead of writing out whole paragraphs, use a wide variety of relevant keywords in bullet-pointed lists. Formatting your reports this way will also increase your profile’s scanability.

Promote Your LinkedIn Profile

  • Once your LinkedIn profile is complete with keywords in place, extend your brand development efforts by sharing it through Facebook or industry-related websites.

As you populate your profile, keep a clear vision of your potential customer in mind to help you make “empathetic” decisions that will resonate with visitors. Remember, effectively selected and placed keywords only work when they are coupled with engaging and well-written content.

Don’t “Stuff” Your Profile With Keywords

Because keyword phrases are an important element in LinkedIn’s search equation, some make the mistake of thinking “more is better”.  Repeating the same keywords (or keyword phrases) throughout your profile may help get you found, but the negative impression you make won’t help your cause.

SEO is a means to the end goal of generating leads. So instead of using the same keywords repeatedly, use a related family of keyword phrases to help attract visitors to your LinkedIn profile.  To increase keyword SEO potential, optimize around secondary keywords that are relevant, descriptive, and flow.  For example, “Chicago SEO” is a primary keyword suggestion. It has a low difficulty rating to rank and a reliable search volume. “Chicago seo partner”, is a secondary keyword. Although it has less search volume, it speaks more directly to the needs of your target market.

Identifying and placing the right keyword phrases in your LinkedIn profile is a critical aspect of an effective SEO strategy. If you need a little direction as to how to cross the chasm, increase leads and make LinkedIn a profitable tool for your overall brand strategy, find a partner experienced in this space or invest the time and effort to become an authority yourself. The ROI can be dramatic when you leverage LinkedIn to its full capacity.