LinkedIn remains one of the top networks for job hunters, and for good reason! It’s a one-stop platform where you can easily stay informed about what’s going on in your industry, build your professional reputation, connect with your network and even get hired.
Despite all this, my observation of working with talented women in our RISE Programs is that many women underestimate LinkedIn’s potential. What’s more, they don’t understand or utilise what’s available to them – this is a massive, missed opportunity when it comes to their career.
I hope these 6 easy tips will inspire you to make some quick wins on your own LinkedIn profile and dial up your LinkedIn presence – the benefits could pay off big time in the long run!
Think of LinkedIn as your online business card. People may not have had the opportunity to meet you in person, so this is where their first impression will be formed.
When adding an image to your profile, a quality, professional headshot is the way to go. You might be surprised to learn that LinkedIn research reports that a professional headshot will enable 14 times more visits and 36 times more chances to receive a message.
Here are a few tips to power up your LinkedIn headshot:
It’s important to note that LinkedIn is SEO-optimised. Therefore, keywords are findable. To really stand out in a crowded marketplace, you need to differentiate yourself, and the best way to do it is by using relevant keywords in your headline.
Rather than simply adding your job title, think about including a descriptor of what it is you do. For me, for example, I could simply include managing director. But, if I also included executive coach, keynote speaker, women’s career advancement expert, I immediately become more searchable.
People want to understand what you do, how you help and what you deliver.
When someone opens your LinkedIn profile, the first thing they’ll see is the ‘About’ section. According to Lucy Bingle, CEO of Australia’s Leading LinkedIn Agency, this is prime real estate. It is the one place you can clearly demonstrate what you do, the services you provide or the unique skills you possess. It is your opportunity to sell yourself at whatever stage you are in your career.
Don’t forget to include a call to action. If you are wanting people to contact you, be clear and upfront on how they can do this.
In LinkedIn’s ‘Featured’ section, you can add rich media files, marketing collateral, provide a summary of interviews you’ve done with people, or include press releases you may have written, for example.
This section allows you to further demonstrate your expertise and provide supporting evidence for the skills and experience you outlined in the ‘About’ section.
Seeking recommendations takes time and effort, but Lucy Bingle says it’s worth it.
If you’re putting yourself forward as the best person for the job, then seeking recommendations from long-term clients or peers who have seen your work in action, is the ideal way to demonstrate this.
Lucy suggests reaching out to three to five quality connections to ask for a recommendation. Assuming they are time-poor, provide a draft to them which hones in on the skills you are trying to demonstrate.
Having done most of the hard work on their behalf will also increase the likelihood of them providing you with the recommendation.
Finally, it’s important to remember that LinkedIn is not a set-and-forget platform.
We are all changing and evolving and therefore the reasons we are on LinkedIn in the first place also change over time. Your LinkedIn profile is a live document that needs to evolve with you.
Your profile should not only reflect where you are in your career now, but it also needs to position you for where you are going.
At a minimum, you should be reviewing and updating your profile every six months.
These are just a few useful tips to get you on the path of making the most of LinkedIn to dial up your presence and make a great first impression.