Are you getting the engagement from your professional LinkedIn profile you hoped?
LinkedIn is the most widely used social media channel for business professionals, whether they’re searching for a job, looking for talented job seekers or hunting for networking opportunities. If your profile doesn’t seem to be reaching the people you want to connect with, it’s time to do something about it.
Use these three tips to turn a dull and ineffective profile into a powerful magnetic professional LinkedIn profile that attracts all the right people.
- Your picture is you. You may never meet the actual people behind connections you make on LinkedIn, but that doesn’t mean you won’t get to know them or they won’t get to know you. In fact, people who view your LinkedIn profile have to believe there is a real person behind the profile page before they feel comfortable connecting with you.
Having the right profile picture is particularly important for those whose profession involves personal one-on-one service. Your profile picture should be of your face from the top of your shoulders up. Go for an approachable, friendly expression, as you can see in Lori Janeson’s profile. Do not include your pets or kids. And look behind you before posing for that picture — you don’t want anything in your photo’s background to distract viewers.
- Your headline is key. A lot of people use the headline for their official job title. But, you can use that short headline space to add pizzazz as well as essential keywords and phrases instead. LinkedIn is a search engine, after all. If you use your headline to place compelling keyword phrases that explain what you do rather than a simple job title, it makes you more marketable as well as more likely to attract the attention of those searching for your specific talents and skills.
Add a value prop and let people know what you can do for them. For example, if you’re a software developer, try something like “Software Engineer: Helping companies provide automated support 24/7.” Focus on what you do best. Avoid using words like “expert,” “winning” or “hardworking” in your headline, however. They sound too much like bragging.
- Power up your summary. The summary is where you can really show off your stuff. Although it’s tempting to use the same type of information in your summary as you use on your resume, don’t.
Of course make your resume available on your profile. But make your summary something else. Yes, highlight your accomplishments. Yes, list your key skills. But also think of the summary as a way to expand beyond the facts of on your resume and let your personality shine through. Use industry-related keywords and phrases that match your job talents, expertise and skills. Avoid overused terms such as “team player,” “hard worker” and “attentive to details.” Instead use power phrases and words, such as the following:
- Written and Oral Communicator
- Problem Solver
Provide real examples of how you collaborated, lead a team, effectively communicated and solved a difficult problem. Include dollars and percentages to show the impact of your work.
Additional tips: Concentrate on the three areas above, but make use of all available sections in your LinkedIn profile. Use relevant graphics to add interest. Update often. Take the time to turn your LinkedIn profile into a powerful message about who you are and aggressively add to your network. LinkedIn can be your professional best friend if you turn your profile from drab to engaging. It only takes a few minutes.