A Step-by-Step Guide to Optimizing Your LinkedIn Profile
LinkedIn is the fastest growing professional social media network that connects over 7 million people worldwide. Even though it was in the past a place where recruiters used to meet job seekers, it eventually evolved in the thought leadership platform where professionals from diverse industries are exchanging valuable knowledge.
How are you represented in front of professionals around the world? What can you do to improve your presence? How can you present yourself as a valuable advisor and thought leader?
First 3 things people see when they type your name on LinkedIn (even without viewing your profile) are your:
- Profile picture,
- Name and
- Value-driven headline.
This is equal to the first impression you leave when you meet someone in person and there is no second chance for a first impression.
Make sure that:
- your picture is up to date (1-2 years old)
- you don’t crop half of your head, one ear or neck
- it shows your face and shoulders only
- you don’t use any filters (this is not a beauty contest)
- it represents who you are – your true personality
You should use your real name on LinkedIn. Phrases, nicknames, first letters of your name are simply not acceptable. Remember, this is your digital business card and your extended CV – please treat it seriously.
A headline is the first mistake most people make when creating a profile on LinkedIn. They usually just copy their current job titles instead of treating them completely differently. In the world where every morning we have a new title established, many of them are quite confusing. That’s why you should stay away from it and make sure your LinkedIn headline shortly explains what you are capable of doing and how can others benefit from connecting with you. Tell people how your knowledge and experience can help them improve their business. This will be more valuable and you will be more appreciated.
Summary is your extended headline, your short biography. It should further explain who you are and suggestion is to have 4 paragraphs: past (describing what you have previously achieved in your career and education), present (what is your current position and how are you helping others), passion – both professional and personal (what are the causes you care about, what are the particular topics you are interested in, your hobby, etc.), CTA – call to action (what do you expect others to do after they read your summary). This can be a call to connect and build new professional relationships.
Turn your profile into a branding opportunity by enhancing it visually. Add multimedia content (images, videos, articles, etc.) that is relevant to the reputation you want to grow to your summary, experience and education sections.
6. Experience and education
Make sure to list all previous working experience you have. Inside of each section fill all required info and write a short description of each role you hold. Focus on your achievements and pull some numbers to support it. For example, be specific and emphasize that, while you were a sales manager, sales targets were achieved 120%.
It is important to emphasize your highest strengths, and this is a section for that. Stay away from generic skills that everyone should have today (teamwork, Word, etc.) and focus on those that are highly relevant for your current position. These are some of the most popular skills on LinkedIn these days.
Don’t forget that your LinkedIn profile is a “living animal” and that you should keep updating it regularly. Whenever you achieved a new goal at your current job or you learn something new, come back to your LinkedIn profile and update it.
If you don’t have enough time or need any help with managing your LinkedIn profile, feel free to contact us.