Thanks to all of you who have already participated in my midyear LinkedIn User Survey. For those of you who haven't yet taken a few moments to complete the survey, I would love to have your opinion counted. As an added bonus, I will be randomly selecting three participants to receive a free copy of my LinkedIn Training DVD Video Bundle (two 90-minute videos, Beginner and Intermediate, a $109 value). As a participant, you can also let me know if you want a full copy of the final survey results.


You can participate in the survey by clicking this link:


 2011 Mid-Year LinkedIn Survey Participation Link


I appreciate your help. Now let's move on to this week's tip by screaming out --

"Keywords are the key!"


By now you are probably tired of my concentration on this point. Sorry about that. But the more our marketing plans include Internet-based tools and techniques, the more we have to rely on keywords -- not just which ones but where we put them and sometimes how often we include them. keywordsThis week's tip will concentrate on what keywords you might want to consider including in the important part of your LinkedIn profile that I refer to as your pantry full of keywords -- your Specialties section.


Your Specialties section is technically a subsection of the Summary section and has a limit of 500 characters. It can be written as a series of words separated by commas or a list with dashes or dots. The format is up to you, based on the way you want your profile to read and look. I don't really have a strong preference either way. More importantly, I just want to be sure you do not skip it. Spend some strategic thought time on just what words you are going to fill your pantry with.


A reminder -- no one knows the specifics of the "secret algorithm" LinkedIn uses, but my research shows that putting keywords in your Specialties section can help you get to the top of the search list. That being said, I am frequently asked to suggest what types of words should be included here. So I thought a handy-dandy list would be in order. 


I have come up with this list by looking at the profiles of experts in the LinkedIn world and also by doing some test searching on keywords for several people in various industries. 


             What to Put in Your Pantry Full of Keywords 

           (Your LinkedIn Specialties Section)


1.    Brand names of your primary products and services


2.    Your secondary brands (which may be your competitors' primary brands). Then when customers find you, you can tell them why your primary brand is superior.


3.    Specialty certifications you hold


4.    Names of specific software you are proficient at


5.    Regions of the world you are serving


6.    Industries you specialize in


7.    Industries your customers are concentrated in


8.    Important words that are commonly misspelled (yes -- misspell them!)


9.    Variations of keywords (e.g., lawyer, attorney, legal counsel; speak, speaking, speaker)


10.  Titles you have held


11.  The words your company uses for search engine optimization


12.  The words your company uses in its marketing materials


13.  Descriptive words from your personality profile (DISC, Strengths Finder, etc.)


14.  Words that describe your personal interests or traits


15.  Words your competitors use in their profiles that are also pertinent to you/your business


I am trying out a new screen-sharing technology called Jing and have prepared a short tutorial for you on the Specialties section. Check it out by clicking this link, and let me know what you think.


LinkedIn Profile Tutorial -- Specialties