LinkedIn is the largest social network for working professionals. Not only is it a great platform for career growth but it’s also a powerful tool when it comes to recruiters/business managers looking for the right candidates to hire. If you want to be successful, you need to have a profile that represents the best possible version of you, that stands out, sparks interest and calls for action.
1. UPLOAD THE RIGHT PHOTO
LinkedIn has reported that profiles with a photo get significantly more views, messages, and results than those without. A profile photo is one of the first things the recruiters and hiring managers see when they look you up on LinkedIn. You need to make sure you upload a high-quality professional photo: make sure it’s a close-up shot, that you’re looking at the camera, with a smile and a neutral background. It goes without saying that you need to be wearing appropriate office wear with little to no accessories. Forget all family or wedding photos, selfies, pictures with pets, group photos etc. Your photo needs to portray your seriousness and professionalism.
2. USE APPROPRIATE HEADLINES
By default, LinkedIn will generate your headline with your current job title and employer, and most LinkedIn users leave it like that. Big mistake. Why? Because that 120 character-section right under your name is a real marketing treasure trove. A well-customised headline will make you stand out and lure people into your profile, eager to learn more about you.
There’s no specific formula to follow, but there are tips to implement: drop in the right keywords, representative of your job, showcase your added-value, and let your personality shine through. It’s always good to scroll through profiles on LinkedIn that match your area of expertise for inspiration.
3. ADD YOUR PROFILE SUMMARY
This part is a little intro for all those who have landed on your profile. It’s your chance to put your best self out there, to highlight your successes and accomplishments, share numbers and data and all relevant media such as your website, blog, YouTube channel etc. Use powerful words to capture your readers' interest and keep them on your profile. Make sure you adapt your content to your target reader: what would you want him to know and remember about you?
4. MAKE YOUR JOB EXPERIENCES SHORT AND SWEET
Your work experience section shouldn’t be a copy and paste of your CV. Don’t lay out aaaalll of your duties and aaaalll of the details. It’s all about keeping it short — and sweet — easy to read and triggering the reader’s interest. Share your major points only, using action words such as “led, grew, saved” etc instead of general and quite frankly boring “was responsible for…” Bullet points are a good idea to keep a smooth flow whilst reading. And use keywords. Keywords, keywords, keywords. That’s your golden ticket to increase the number of views on your profile, as you’ll be upping your SEO ranking.
5. SHOW OFF YOUR RECOMMENDATIONS
Your goal here will be to secure powerful recommendations from people you’ve worked for — make sure it’s from people with a higher position than yours (your manager, your boss etc.) rather than colleagues for more influence.
Don’t be afraid to ask for one — you can even offer some guidance or suggestions for a recommendation that really highlights what you’re after.
6. CUSTOMISE YOUR URL LINK
By default, your URL will be a mix of your name and numbers. But you’re just a few clicks away from a real credibility boost: go to “me” icon, then “edit public profile and URL” and pop in your first and last name. If it’s already been taken, be creative but always avoid numbers as that’ll just make it look messy. Think whether you’d be happy seeing that URL on your business card or other communication materials: resumé, email signature etc.
Not only having a custom URL will improve your ranking in search engines, but it’ll also show how professional and detail-oriented you are.
7. BE AN ACTIVE MEMBER
The more you engage with your community, the better.
- Don’t be shy to share interesting content, like a recent blog post you’ve written for example or re-post articles you’ve enjoyed.
- Join groups: ideal to grow your network, build valuable connections and create more leads for your business. That’ll also enable you to send direct messages to other members.
- Invite coworkers — current and past, classmates and friends to connect.
- Engage with your connections in “Recent Activity”. You’ll have access to what they are liking, sharing, commenting on. Jump on the wagon too, and like/give a nice comment.
Implementing all these tips should greatly improve your efficiency and effectiveness on LinkedIn and open many doors!