With more than 830 million members, LinkedIn is full of professional opportunities. Not sure how to use LinkedIn to your advantage? Try these steps to expand your sphere of influence: optimize your profile, make meaningful connections and thoughtfully engage the community. The result will be an influx of new and better-qualified leads.

Here’s how to use LinkedIn to your full advantage:

1. Optimize your profile.

Update your bio to include your current headshot, location, job title and contact information. List your job history, education and other relevant experience. This can include licenses, certifications and other accomplishments, as well as community involvement and volunteer work.

Remember, LinkedIn is searchable, so SEO best practices apply. Include keywords and phrases where appropriate and personalize your profile URL. The more searchable info you provide, the easier it will be for people to find you.

2. Make meaningful connections.

Take time each day to make new connections, but be strategic. Start with people you know: friends, family, other local agents and referral partners. Branch out to community influencers,  industry thought leaders and potential clients.

Personalize every invitation. Introduce yourself and give an honest explanation as to why you want to connect with that individual. An attempt at genuine conversation can be much more effective than an unsolicited sales pitch.

3. Thoughtfully engage with your community.

Share quality content from reputable sources — stick to relevant information that will be useful to your audience. Add a personal touch by asking a pertinent question or providing unique professional insight. To really position yourself as the expert, share your own content (like tutorials, FAQs and neighborhood guides).

Take time to engage with your connections. Comment on posts, make unsolicited skill endorsements and reach out to celebrate professional anniversaries and accomplishments.

For more ways to expand your network, reach out today.