Back to basics: Three steps to using LinkedIn more effectively

LinkedIn is often that network (like Google+) that you just can’t seem to remember to use - or maybe you just don’t like it. You’re on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and other “fun” networks regularly - even religiously. But LinkedIn? It’s one that’s easy to let go by the wayside. 

That could be a mistake. Many business owners I know personally have found LinkedIn to be invaluable to their business growth. I know freelancers who’ve gained opportunities they didn’t seek out or anticipate by having an active presence on LinkedIn. Let’s explore your profile and look at ways you can make positive changes so LinkedIn becomes a boost rather than a bust. We’re going to start with the basics:

Update your Profile

Even if LinkedIn tells you your profile is complete, how long has it been since you really read through it? I once went two years without looking at it. You know what happens when you go that long? 

Nothing, but here’s how you can turn it around:

1) Add a current profile picture.

Yesterday, my profile picture was over a year old. Today, it’s brand new. The previous picture looked like me, but it was still a little out of date. Even a cartoon avatar is better than no profile picture! And, though it’s done quite often on twitter and Facebook pages, it isn’t recommended to use your logo on LinkedIn, unless it’s for your company page. 

If you do nothing else with your profile, update that picture as soon as possible. 

Now for the text…

2) Start with your headline. 

What does it say?

  • Marketing Coordinator
  • Realtor
  • Owner
  • Partner (mine used to say this!) 
  • Sales Agent
  • Digitial Marketer

How many people on LinkedIn do you think have these titles? Too many to count. The challenge is that not only is your headline going to come up in LinkedIn searches, it is indexed by search engines as well. You’ve got about 255 characters - use them!

Instead of “Partner”, my headline tells visitors who I am, what I do and how I do it:

I am a Social Media Strategist & Coach and I help small businesses optimize their digital marketing to increase sales.

You could go further and add location if your business is localized to a certain area. You can pad the description with even more keywords. For me, I could include that I offer training and am available for public speaking.

Make that headline count!

3) Summarize your awesomeness

Here’s where you get to toot your own horn in plenty of detail. What do you do? How do you do it? Why do you do it? Why should someone call you? How does someone contact you?

Don’t get so bored by LinkedIn that you throw in a generic summary that doesn’t do you justice. LinkedIn isn’t boring. (It truly isn’t.) Don’t let a false impression of the tool (LinkedIn) suck you into giving a false impression of yourself (boring).

My summary used to be short, virtually keyword free and had zero details or personality. Now I’ve given visitors an overview of what I am currently doing and how I can help them:

Social Media Strategist

I help small businesses use social/content marketing to optimize their web presence efficiently and effectively. This creates greater brand awareness and builds relationships which ultimately leads to increased sales. I like to help my clients meet their goals.


Every business owner struggles with prioritizing marketing. There is so much work to be done simply to keep the business running, providing service to clients and customers, and developing new products. I help clients stay on track with their digital marketing plans. 

Writing | Content Marketing

I have worked in communications and marketing for over ten years and have extensive experience writing for the web. When business owners don’t have time or resources to create their own content, I can help!

Do you want help with your digital marketing plan? Find out more on the Wellman Wilson website ( or email me at to book a free consultation.

Specialties: digital marketing, social media marketing, content marketing, coaching, workshops, training, mentoring, writing, software knowledge/training, branding and identity, project management, organizing data, process improvement

Don’t forget a call to action!

Yep, right there in your summary. Invite visitors to your profile to contact you right away. You’ve shared who you are, what you’re about and goals with them - now give them the chance to connect and learn more.

Until next time…

These three areas of your LinkedIn profile should be reviewed regularly and updated as required. When we come back to LinkedIn again, we’re going to finish going through the steps you should take to finish updating your profile. Until then, let me know how you’re doing and be sure to connect with me on LinkedIn!

Social SEO and You Part 4 – Video Origination

Please welcome Brandon back for the last installment of his Social SEO and you series (post 1 and post 2  and post 3) - it’s been super information and I’ve learned a lot.  Please leave any questions you might have in the comments, I know he’d love to answer them, and follow him on Twitter - he’s a great guy!

Brandon is a consultant, business marketing grad, strategist, house music junkie, avid reader, speaker, and coffee fiend. He likes to make and break stuff, currently working in the Light Apps division at Corel and the CEO of his own start-up Incentify.

You can find him @BrandonWaselnuk

Video tagging is a very complicated space right now. With the advent of Apple’s iPhone 4S and Siri there’s been a lot of conversation around schema tags. (Yea they just like to come up with fun new words) I’m going to do my best to hit the high level topics you’ll actually care about and be able to implement right now. For more details (like the Technical Considerations section) you can download the slide deck or ask me any questions in the comments/email/call/carrier pigeon?

How do videos get more SEO?

Here are some quick and easy ways to make discovering your video a bit more likely:

  • Make tags relevant and use a lot. When it comes to tags it’s always bad news if you use fake tags, in fact it usually makes search engines index you with a ‘nofollow’ meaning; no search. So don’t go saying it’s a Justin Bieber video unless it is k?

  • Try to use consistent tagging across all videos, this helps aggregators. Also; using adjectives in those tags is a good idea

  • Match your titles and descriptions to tags

  • Don’t use natural language in tags (don’t waste space on words like ‘such, and, or, to’)


SEO on YouTube

A huge number of people stick to YouTube, ain’t nothing wrong with that! So here are some tips and tricks when you’re dealing with this huge player in the video space:

  • Use this Keyword Research tool as the first step in finding relevant tags for your video. (Yes, Justin Bieber was searched 13,516,800 times this month)

  • As discussed above, Tags are the only way for search engines (other than special ones like Blinkx) to find your video. Also; consider dropping the URL to your homepage in the description so you can get some backlinks

  • Use the ability to set the thumbnail image of your video, make it something compelling so users want to click your video. A picture is worth… screw it sex sells, just look at Ray William Johnson; his stills are always some celebrity looking scandalous or something

  • Allow comments, haters gonna hate so just let it go

  • Embed your video on your website to help transfer traffic and views

  • Share over social media channels! (Obvious right? Sorry…:) )


Places to host your Video

Amateur Sites to use:

  • YouTube

  • Google Video

  • MySpace Video

  • Yahoo! Video

  • AOL Video

  • DailyMotion

  • MetaCafe

  • Revver

  • Giant cheat sheet here (Please note, though extensive this page was written in 2007 some services may no longer exist, I’ve just never found a better list with links and criteria)

Submission to Video Searching sites:

  • AOL Video

  • Or you can use a Media RSS (MRSS) feed to submit content hosted elsewhere (This Media RSS feed would exist on your webpage, so it would drive traffic back to your website)

  • Blinkx – Use this form to ask for submission to the database

  • Yahoo! – Use this form for submission


It’s been a Pleasure

This brings to a close my guest blog series for the wonderful Lara Wellman. I hope you got some great information and took something useful away rather than just wasted like 3 minutes of your life. I know I had fun writing these articles, I always have more fun carrying on conversations so come see me on twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn or in the comments.

Seo table

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Social SEO and You

I met Brandon this summer at Social Capital. He’s a wealth of information and I’m thrilled that he’s agreed to do a guest series on the blog about social SEO. Enjoy!

Brandon is a consultant, business marketing grad, strategist, house music junkie, avid reader, speaker, and coffee fiend. He likes to make and break stuff, currently working in the Light Apps division at Corel and the CEO of his own start-up Incentify.

You can find him @BrandonWaselnuk



Many people have heard of Search Engine Optimization (SEO) especially when starting a new business/blog/website (or all of the above) but not many know how easy it can be to get started with SEO.
The focus of this post is to look at Social Media and how it can affect your SEO positively with easy techniques anyone can use to get a little extra out of their content and efforts.
There are four main sections that we’ll take a look at:

  • Basic SEO principles

  • Facebook Posts

  • Twitter

  • Video

In order to give you a portable asset I’ve built a power point presentation you can download at the bottom of the post with all of the content.

Basic SEO Principles

Starting with the absolute basics is always the best way to get your head in the SEO game. What most of you probably intuitively know is: in social media people share content that is awesome. So the more awesome you can put into your content, the more likely it’ll get shard, leading to increased SEO for the source you linked back to.
What some of you might not know is this quick list on some easy SEO tips.

Linking in posts

When you reference a book in your post, link to that book, the more outbound links you have the better your SEO according to Google. Remember though, you don’t want to send your potential clients/readers away from your site too often, so use sparingly and always make the link open in a new window.

Using tags effectively

When you finish a post you can always add tags to it that help others know what it’s about. This is also catalogued by Google and used when people search something with those keywords you used as tags. Remember that ‘stuffing’ (adding fake keywords you know are being searched) actually reduces your SEO, so don’t tag Justin Bieber randomly! Unless, you know, you’re actually writing about him.

Use a Site Tree for ‘crawling’

When you develop a website you have the ability of keeping an accessible site tree for users to navigate around with rather than just letting them browse via buttons. It’s really good idea to have it for more than just your readers though, Google spiders crawl site trees far more easily than without which actually ups your SEO.

Use Keyword (Google trends will help you!)

Identifying the keywords that your target audience is using is a pretty big endeavour (and a whole series of blog posts on its own) but if you have some then try to make sure you use them throughout your web pages. Just be really careful not to overload on them, if you pass a certain threshold (sources say that’s anywhere from 6%-15% of this word existing compared to other words) your SEO decreases as Google thinks you’re cheating.

Use keywords in Page Titles and URL links

If you have one keyword that’s the most searched, its best if that’s included directly in the Page title and URL link. Imagine you’re writing a post on a new iPhone App, you would want iPhone and App in your URL as it’s an incredibly highly searched term compared to ‘pumpkin’ or ‘cell phone’ for example.

Use phrases and words people will search for

Something that’s difficult to think of at first is: “How will a potential reader find my site?” I could bet they aren’t typing in your name (unless you’re doing marketing around that) but more than likely searching on your area of expertise, that’s where you want your keywords to be so that they can find you. Example: I’m a business strategist and really love helping clients make strategic plans from social media to product launches. It’s rare that someone will Google Brandon Waselnuk as I’m young and just starting my career. I know though that they are probably searching “Benchmarks for Product Roadmaps” so I should author a post around that and fill it with other great keywords!

That’s all for now

It’s a heavy set of information I’ve just brain dumped on you and you’re probably itching to try out some of the tips and tricks. So at this point I’ll recommend you download the slide deck and at your leisure read through the rest of the content.

You can also check back about a week from now and I’ll have written on the next major topic, Facebook Posts and SEO.

Before you go though, let me know if you like  this format in the comments, and as always if you have any questions I’d be happy to answer them.

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