How to Craft a Successful LinkedIn Profile
Whether you are hunting for networks in your industry, job searching or just trying to gather leads, creating an eye-catching LinkedIn profile is vital as it goes a long way in finding the right people at the right time. Since its inception, LinkedIn remains the ultimate social network that business professionals use to make connections, stay in the loop of their field and achieves great success in their professions.
With approximately more than 500 million users, it isn’t a surprise that 87 percent use this site to recruit potential job candidates. However, why should crafting a powerful LinkedIn profile matter to you? Well, this is perhaps the best way to get your name and face in front of thousands of professionals in your niche. If you are looking for a job, this is overly essential.
As mentioned, success on this platform begins with crafting a marketable and professional LinkedIn profile. The guide below outlines some of the essential tips to create a stellar LinkedIn profile, find the right connections, and how to use the platform effectively.
Start with LinkedIn Profile Basics
You certainly don’t need a guide on how to open a LinkedIn account. However, it is important that we mention the specifics when filling in your details. For starters, make sure that you an email address that you regularly check to ensure immediate receipts of connection request and messages.
You should also include straightforward demographic information such as location, phone number to ease connection and allowing LinkedIn to access your email contact list. If you are on the platform for a job, fill in “currently looking for employment opportunities” in the current employment status icon.
Choosing Account Type
Here, you should make a choice between Basic LinkedIn experience that is free and a premium option that provides several advanced features at a fee. Some of the additional features the premium option has include the ability to choose from either a job seeker, professional or more.
When making this decision, think of what you intend to use your LinkedIn account for. Each profile has varying prices and offers various benefits. Each of the options offers a one-month free trial for the account, and you can cancel if you find that it wasn’t a good choice for your usage.
Include a Photo
Unlike other social networks, LinkedIn demands professional photos. Upload a professional headshot that looks formal and professional. Sometimes photos taken by smartphones can be applicable. However, stats show that photos taken by a professional photographer gets more than ten times compared to other pics.
Use a 200×200 pixels photo as anything smaller than this will appear small, distorted and blurry. LinkedIn users who include a high-quality photo in their profile get 21 more times profile views and 36 times more messages than those using a boilerplate pic.
Remember that this photo could be the first impression of your potential employer.
Have an Eye-Catching Headline
Your LinkedIn headline is the first text that is displayed right below your username on your profile. By default settings, this spot will be filled with your current position, which is good for starters. However, you can add what you want. You are allowed up to 120 characters to play with, so it’s wise to add something.
The best way to create something eye-catching is to think of it as a minute advertisement billboard. Instead of just posting your job title, mention something about your specialty, how a company will benefit from your services among other stuff. If you are employed, mention your title, what you do specifically and how your clients have benefited from you.
Create an Interesting Summary
A LinkedIn summary is quite longer than the headline, allowing up to 2000 characters. With such allowed content length, you can dive quite deeper on your personality. Don’t restrict your content to past experiences but also mention something about what you are good are or what you can bring to a potential employer for job seekers.
Remember that keywords are very important in this section. Therefore, use word phrases that are strongly connected to your field. Besides, nobody would like or has time to read your entire 2000-character description. Therefore, keep your text to half if possible.
Mention Your Experience
The best way to highlight your experience is by cutting and pasting your resume to your LinkedIn profile. Their two-page rule doesn’t apply, but your connects don’t have much time to read everything either. Include any jobs relevant to your profile and use at most four interesting and impressive bullets to describe each job. Use intriguing action words to describe what you did or accomplished in every position.
Make More Connections
To many, this might seem obvious, but it can be easily forgotten. You should continue growing your connections as you meet more people in the system. Be it first, second or third-degree connections, having more of them makes you more visible to others. Connect with people you know, those you’ve worked with, met in a professional capacity and those you don’t know as well. Some people opt to automate LinkedIn messages so they don’t miss out on a valuable connection.
Ask for Recommendations
While curating your profile, think of people in your connection whom you have developed a good working relationship previously. As you edit your profile, there is an icon saying “ask for recommendations.” Click and choose from LinkedIn connects list who you would like to recommend you. Send it out and hope for some feedback. You can try writing recommendations for some of your connections in return.
For job seekers and industrialists, LinkedIn is more than a networking social media, but an online resume. To get the best of it, curate your profile effectively, keep it active, check what your connections are posting, engage with them and do as much as possible. Joining groups is the other great way of meeting new people and getting new ideas.
While doing all this, it is prudent that you keep checking the strength of your LinkedIn profile. Do this through the “Profile Strength” measurement icon on the right side of your profile. This indicates to you how you have filled your profile. Add more items and use the website’s tips to get the “All-star” rating.