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Using Linkedin well to generate new business

LinkedIn is in many ways similar to Facebook, but it has a more business-oriented audience with around 175 million members. No one can do marketing on Linkedin better than a company representative.

One of the most important features on Linkedin is your user profile. You can think of it as an enhanced business card where people can learn about you and even contact you. Linkedin has rolled out various features and sections where you can insert information about yourself.

The more information you feature on your profile, the more complete and professional it will look. Everybody loves to know with whom they are talking, and the best way to achieve this is by uploading your photo on your Linkedin profile. The better the quality of the image, the more professional you will look and the more trust you will earn.

You can earn more trust as well by asking for recommendations which will show on your profile related to education or work experience. Start getting recommendations from your friends, colleagues or even clients.

A great way to learn how to use Linkedin is by spending some time using the website itself. One useful section you can explore is the Linkedin Questions and Answers. Here you can answer (or even ask) any questions asked by other Linkedin members. It would be apt to stick to your related industry and showcase your expertise there. The objective is to participate and help others resolve their questions. At the same time, you are increasing your authority and networking with members on Linkedin.

Linkedin groups are another useful resource on Linkedin where people interact in a community. Groups are normally related to a specific industry or subject and they are a good opportunity to network and find leads. Before joining a group you may find it useful to go to the group statistics tab and check out the group activity graph. If there are recent discussions and comments, it shows that it is an active group.

As with any other social network, interaction and growing your network is fundamental. Interacting using groups and answering questions is useful.

Still you must share useful updates and resources that will show up to your connections.

These updates should be interesting to your connections which could vary from professionals in your industry to prospective clients. Some of the updates you post should also be links to your resources, such as that of a new blog post.

Besides having a user profile, you may also consider creating a company page where Linkedin members can follow new updates. Linkedin allows users to customise functionality by listing products or services and multiple banners.

Customising your profile will help your search engine optimisation. Remember to create a customised URL for your profile so that the URL contains your full name in it: in doing so it will rank higher for searches using your name. This can be done from the public profile settings page.

Linkedin also has a section to insert links which will help your website’s search engine optimisation. Inserting custom anchor text instead of using the default ‘My Company’ anchor text will add even more benefit. It is important to note that these links must be visible in your Linkedin public profile when not logged in, or else search engines will not be able to find these links. You can change visibility settings on the different sections on your public profile settings page.

www.alertemarketing.com

Mr Bugeja is an SEO and PPC consultant in the internet marketing division of Alert eBusiness.

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