Checklist: How to Use LinkedIn Effectively in 2020

By Nigel Cliffe

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Are you succeeding on LinkedIn?

Are you achieving your goals?

Most business professionals have a LinkedIn Profile, but many don’t know how to maximise its potential or how to use LinkedIn effectively. Are you one of them?

There are many things you can do to turn LinkedIn into a lead generation platform for your business, but along that journey, there are a number of essential things you must do.

Here are 50 questions you can use to check-in with your personal strategy. In this list of just 50 questions, I provide a checklist to help you along that journey of learning how to use LinkedIn effectively.

I hope this check-list serves as a great start to using LinkedIn effectively in 2020!

Profile Related Questions:

1) Is the name section of your Profile made up of your name only?

2) Is the name you use on LinkedIn, the same name you use day-to-day?

3) Is your Profile Picture approachable, friendly, looking at the camera lens, filling the frame and only featuring you?

4) Do you have a customised background photo connecting you to your industry, business or skillset? Does it tell your story?

5) Is your Headline truly your unique value proposition (UVP)? Does it include your important keywords?

6) Is your Location accurate? Is it where you wish to be found by a prospective customer? (Not where you live).

7) Have you added your full contact details into your ‘Contact info’ section?

8) Do you have customised links to three websites you can use to increase your marketability (Select the “Other” option)?

9) Is your LinkedIn URL customised to be LinkedIn/in/yourname?

10) Have you identified “key” words you want to be found for and added them throughout your LinkedIn story?

11) Does your ‘About’ section start with an enticing opener in the opening lines? Does it include your important keywords and describe how you can help the viewer of your Profile?

12) Is your ‘About’ section written in the 1st person?

13) Is your ‘About’ section more of a conversation piece rather than a dry recollection of your experience and skills?

14) Do you offer readers a glimpse into your future goals, ideas, and objectives?

15) Are all “4-key” LinkedIn search areas fully developed: Headline, Summary/About, Experience and Skill sections?

16) Is your story authentically talking to your viewers (and not a copy/paste of your CV)?

17) Are you making sure to avoid using the “buzz words” that are commonly used by everyone? (passionate, committed, enthusiastic, etc).

18) Do you have quantifiable achievements in your ‘About’ section?

19) Do you include a Call-to-Action (CTA) to tell people to follow you, reach out, or whatever you want them to do in your ‘About’ section?

20) Do you make it easy for people to reach you by adding your email address and telephone numbers(s) to the ‘About’ section?

21) Have you added images, documents, presentations or a video to your LinkedIn story to make it more robust and attractive?

22) Do you have at least 3 recommendations (testimonials) on your Profile?

23) Are the skills on your Profile relevant skills and ones you actually have?

24) Have you recently cleaned up your Skills section and got rid of any skills that you no longer want to showcase or now feel are irrelevant to you?

25) Are you TOP 3 skills positioned at the top so they can be seen?

26) Have you filled in the optional sections that LinkedIn provides to help you make your Profile more robust? (languages, courses, volunteer, experiences, etc.)

27) Do you start each experience section with a summary to show what you achieved and not just who you are?

Privacy Related Questions:

28) Is your Profile accessible, current and visible (check privacy settings)?

29) Have you thoroughly familiarised yourself with the privacy options in the ‘Settings and Privacy’ section? For example, have you locked-down the visibility of your Connections to ‘Only-you’?

Technical Related Questions:

30) Do you use your laptop as well as your mobile device when spending time on LinkedIn?

Strategy Related Questions:

31) Have you deleted any additional LinkedIn Profiles you may have?

32) Are you putting in the time to make your LinkedIn Profile awesome by taking LinkedIn’s suggestions and offers on how to make it stronger?

33) Do you have at least 250 Connections?

34) Do you customise EVERY Connection request even when using your mobile? (hit ‘More’ instead of ‘Connect’ so you can personalise every request).

35) Do you end a welcome message to all new Connections?

36) Do you thoroughly check all incoming requests to Connect to ensure they are not fake Profiles?

37) Have you established goals for your activity on LinkedIn?

38) Do you put relationship-building first and avoid starting things off with an annoying sales pitch?

39) Do you proactively network and build your community on LinkedIn to show that you are open to social connectivity?

40) Are you exercising patience on LinkedIn; keeping in mind that patience and persistence will help you achieve LinkedIn success?

BONUS: Here’s my quick tip on how to use LinkedIn effectively and turn being active on the platform into a habit so you can achieve the steps on this checklist. Try it and see if it works for you…

41) Have you created a LinkedIn Company page and linked it with your current employment status?

Content Related Questions:

42) Do you introduce everything you share?

43) Do you format your LinkedIn posts and create ones that are pleasing to the eye; shorter sentences, visuals, spacing, asking questions, inviting conversations?

44) Do you use #hashtags? (3 is the optimum number).

45) Do you comment and engage with other people’s posts or simply passively use “like” most of the time?

46) Do you mention (@) others in your posts when the time is right (giving credit, relevance, reciprocity)?

47) Do you write longer Articles via LinkedIn Pulse to increase your professional credibility and demonstrate thought leadership?

Job Seeker Related Questions:

48) If you are a job seeker, is your Profile optimised for the job you want and not the job you have?

49) If you are a job seeker, do you list your major skillsets in your Summary/’About’ section as a bulleted list?

50) Do you reference job descriptions (especially on LinkedIn) for any desired positions you are seeking to find keywords and craft your Profile in a way that would be attractive to potential employers?

Now ask yourself: Do you know how to use LinkedIn effectively? I hope the answer’s yes! Let me now over on LinkedIn how you did on scoring against all these items!

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