LinkedIn Is A Secret Search Engine

I’m from Switzerland and I’ve been living in Boulder, Colorado for the last 20 years. I like to think of it as Australia meets Switzerland because everyone is always up for rock climbing, hiking, or a bike ride.

Part of the work culture here is what got me into entrepreneurship.

I was tired of working for the man and wanted to work on my own terms.

LinkedIn has been a powerful force in building my business and I haven’t had to make a sales call since I started.

Right away I was an early adopter to LinkedIn, I’ve watched the platform grow in functionality and add the capacity to job hunt and generate leads.

I would spend several hours a day on the site and I realized it’s actually a great search engine. And where there’s a search engine, there’s a need for Search Engine Optimization, aka SEO.

A search engine is simply a database that hosts content. There are supply and demand on either side, if somebody searches for a term relevant to me, in my case – SEO Agency Boulder – I want to come up first.

Anyone can find you when they search your name, but the idea is to be found under terms that really hit on who your business serves.

I chose SEO Agency Boulder because when I was getting started all my clients came from my local area.

The first thing I do when I take on a client is keyword research. I like to ask them what their top 3 keywords are. There are several tools I use. I usually start with Google Keyword Planner.  
I start with our top terms and they’ll give me back thousands more related ones to try out from their search data.

I will make lists of the top thousands or so and narrow it down from there to 30 to 50 keywords.

I figure if we can also optimize the page in other ways like the showcase page or the company page on LinkedIn we’ll be able to take over that first page of Google search results.

When I was choosing my own keywords I looked at the keyword planner and tried to reverse engineer what my prospects would be searching for.  
I wanted to be the go-to company in the area for SEO and that’s what I optimized around.  
For businesses trying to figure out their top three words, they are often going about it the wrong way. They tend to go for the big keywords that are too competitive to rank highly in.

I suggest dividing their list into 3rds. 33% are the home runs, big keywords that are gambles to get a good ranking in but would pay off massively if you did.

The next 3rd are the fairly competitive keywords but you still have a good shot, and the last 3rd are the ones that are low hanging fruit.

These are the ones in the long tail where there are fewer searches but the customers know exactly what they are looking for.

Don’t go for just the big ones, or just the long tails, make it a nice mixed bag.


Action Steps

  1. Think about your business and what your top 3 keywords would be. Consider what your ideal customer is searching for.
  2. Use the Google Keyword Researcher to generate a massive list of keywords based on your top 3.
  3. Pare your list down to 30 or 50 keywords.
  4. Pick a mix of keywords to go after, 1/3 should be the most competitive, 1/3 the moderately competitive, and 1/3 keywords long tail search results.


Result You Will Achieve

Your LinkedIn profile and pages ranking high for your top keywords so you can generate more leads.

Mentor: Chris Raulf

Founder of Boulder SEO Marketing. Chris is a digital marketing expert and trainer focused on LinkedIn for search engine optimization, lead generation and branding.

This article is based on an EHQ interview with the mentor.