LinkedIn is the social network to be on for business purposes. Looking for a job? LinkedIn. Looking to network with professionals in your industry and area? LinkedIn. Looking to hire? LinkedIn. You get the picture.
Just like your resume, though, it’s easy for your LinkedIn profile to start to look like everyone else’s. If you want to stand out from the crowd, consider these tips to enhance your profile:
#1: Spice up Your Headline
Most people allow LinkedIn to create a default headline for them. What does that mean? If you’re currently a cashier at ABC Grocery, your headline will be “Cashier at ABC Grocery.” While that’s not a terrible thing, it also doesn’t help you in any way. Your headline is your slogan and your opportunity to tell LinkedIn folks who you are and what you’re hoping to achieve with your presence on the platform. Treat it like a title – capitalize the first word, the last word, and all other important words.
Are you a recent college grad looking for a job? Recruiters are looking for you on LinkedIn! Use appropriate keywords to grab their attention: “Honor Student Seeking Marketing Career.” Are you an experienced executive in your industry? Try “Seasoned Financial Executive with a Proven Track Record.” Keep it concise, but make it memorable.
#2: Use a Photo
No, you don’t have to go out and have a professional photo shoot done, but you DO NEED a photo! It should be just you, clear, high-res, and head and shoulders only. Can it be a selfie? Sure, if it fits the criteria.
#3: Post Updates
Like any social platform, your presence is only as good as it is active. Simply having a profile will only get you so far. You need to post stuff once in a while. I recommend at least once a week, but you can certainly post up to twice a day. Share that article you just read about news in your industry. Share that job posting your company just announced. Share the news about your company’s expansion. Heck, share a motivational quote! Just share something.
This one should be a no-brainer, but you’d be surprised how often it’s not. Take the time to read what you wrote. Proofread for grammar and spelling. Then proofread again for content. Sidebar – not sure what content is? Check out my post, Content is King. Not good at that stuff? Ask someone else to do it for you.
#5: Write an Interesting Summary
If your headline is your slogan, your summary is your elevator pitch. Take this space to tell people a little bit more about yourself. Don’t dwell on what you do; talk about who you are. Again, what are you looking for on LinkedIn? What sets you apart? What makes you awesome? What do you like to do in your spare time? Brag a little; it’s ok.
The whole idea of any social platform of course is to connect with others. These folks you’re connecting with are colleagues; peers; and potential employers, clients, and customers. Once you’ve made the connections, endorse them for their skills, and ask them to do the same.
If you’re not on LinkedIn, you should be. Get started now!