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Personal branding is an important marketing asset for any professional, including a dermatologist. Your potential patients will be keen to know the essentials about your academic background, training and experience, special skills and specializations, certifications, awards and achievements, as well as your community involvement. These various pieces of information can be woven together seamlessly to tell your story and enhance your personal brand.

The more you work on developing and growing your personal brand, the easier it gets to be convincing in your other marketing efforts to the same group of audiences. One of the most important online places today where you can tell your personal story and cultivate a brand image is the social network LinkedIn. The network already commands over 260 million members, which primarily includes professionals from various streams and at different levels.


LinkedIn is a common platform for professionals to share content and identify new business opportunities. A unique social network such as LinkedIn can help popularize you as a dermatologist in your local area through online search. Search engines are highly inclined to show LinkedIn pages in their top search results. To earn high search rankings through this route, you will need to build an effective presence on LinkedIn as a pre-requisite. The effort can be highly rewarding because in addition to new local patients searching online for a good dermatologist in your area, even your existing patients and those who have received your reference from someone may be searching for you by name.

The average individual today is highly Internet savvy and likes to be empowered with adequate information before making a decision. A new patient that may have visited you may still go back and look for more information about you on the Internet. Knowing more about you improves the patient's sense of familiarity and provides an assurance to the patient that they are in safe hands. This is also true of such potential patients who may have heard about you from an acquaintance and may be looking for you on the Internet to find some direct information before they actually decide to visit you for a consultation.


The best way to approach a LinkedIn profile building exercise is to treat it as your own additional website that is exclusively about you as a personal brand. Your goal should be to make this website as comprehensive as possible, while remaining relevant and focused on the areas that are likely to interest your patients and empower them with useful information. Use LinkedIn to showcase your track record of success in the field of dermatology, your areas of strength, and your endorsements from past patients and peers. Make effective use of both text and visuals in your profile.

Just as you need to build a strong foundation for your website before ranking high in search results, your LinkedIn presence must also be built on a strong foundation of your profile. With a complete, comprehensive, and accurate profile, your visibility will be higher in the LinkedIn search results. If the readers find your profile clear, forthright, and transparent, they are likely to perceive a positive image about you and your practice in their mind.


A LinkedIn search does not attach a “single rank” to any member. It means that the rankings are individualized for each search query. However, members with more comprehensive LinkedIn profiles will obviously show up higher in search results for the largest number of queries. For instance, a query may return identical results for all searchers, but the ranking of those results will be determined on the basis of parameters such as completeness of the profile, the activity record, the connections and endorsements of the person being searched.

Keyword optimization also matters in a LinkedIn search, just as it does in a Google search. Therefore, localized keywords should be included in your profile and other text material on LinkedIn. If your profile needs to be strengthened with more information, the network will show you a notification about your profile strength on the right side. It will also list some recommendations on you can enhance your profile. Make sure you have included a photograph along with your profile and added your professional experience in detail.

You should list at least five skills that define you as a professional, and preferably provide a summary of your overall profile. Provide your detailed academic background and cite your industry and specialization. Finally, build a minimum of 50 connections on LinkedIn in order to have a strong profile. These efforts will help you achieve higher search rankings on LinkedIn and improve your online exposure and personal branding. In the profile settings, make your public profile visible to everyone for best exposure.


Join relevant groups on LinkedIn, and share your original content such as articles and blog posts whenever possible. LinkedIn has a content curation service called Pulse. Make an effort to utilize this service and try to ensure that your content becomes visible via Pulse. LinkedIn provides you a series of tips and ideas on how to create compelling content in order to maximize your ROI from the content you publish on the network.

If you can successfully position yourself as influencer in your area of specialization on LinkedIn, your exposure may increase dramatically. The average content postings from influencers on LinkedIn receive about 30,000 views. But remember that LinkedIn is a social network, and your success on this network will partly depend on how actively you engage with others, share and trade content and ideas, and become a vital part of the conversations.

Naren Arulrajah is President and CEO of Ekwa Marketing, a complete Internet marketing company which focuses on SEO, social media, marketing education and the online reputations of dermatologists. With a team of 130+ full time marketers, helps one doctor in an area dominate their market and grow their business significantly year after year. If you have questions about marketing your practice online, call Naren direct at 877-249-9666.

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