What you get out of LinkedIn is very much dictated by what you put into it – and this starts with your own personal profile.
As a platform built around social connections and networking, it’s crucial that your profile gives the right impression so that you can build and nurture the right relationships.
You carefully consider factors like what you’re going to wear and how you’re going to speak when you present yourself in the physical world – think of your LinkedIn profile as the digital equivalent.
In this article, we share a host of quick and simple – but highly effective – ways to improve your LinkedIn profile, including:
• Ensuring your profile image and personal details are up-to-date
• Capitalising on profile banner space
• Including Recommendations from your colleagues and peers
• Creating a customised URL
• Being strategic when it comes to creating your headline copy
• Ensuring the information on your profile is succinct
Keep your profile image and personal details up-to-date
Always set a profile photo because nobody is going to want to network with a faceless avatar – and make the image clear in resolution. You want to choose a photograph that is friendly and authentic but still professional because you want people to feel like they can approach you but also trust you.
Similarly, make sure your name, location and contact details (those you choose to share) are all up to date so people know that you’re a real person – not a bot or spam profile. Plus, if your contact details aren’t current, you’re making it pretty tricky for people to start up a conversation with you outside of the platform.
Take advantage of your banner space
The profile banner is an often under-utilised space that you could certainly be capitalising on. It sits behind your profile photo, right at the top of your page, i.e. the perfect place to share more about yourself or your business, front and centre. It’s also a great place to share promo for an upcoming event or product launch.
However, just like with your profile image, ensure that any assets you create to set as your banner visual are high-quality and carefully considered.
Request Recommendations from colleagues and peers
LinkedIn offers a feature where you can display ‘Recommendations’ from people on your profile. You simply ask somebody via Direct Message to write a testimonial for you and this will be published alongside their name, job and professional relationship to you.
Former employers, peers and clients are all great people to seek out a Recommendation from. People you’ve just connected with will be able to read these and start building a positive first impression of you, in the same way they might with a job reference.
Create a customised URL
When you set up your LinkedIn profile, you will automatically be assigned a personal URL. However, you are able to simply tap into the platform’s settings and create your own customised URL instead.
The benefits of doing this are to make sharing your LinkedIn address more streamlined, to project more professionalism and to make it easier for people to find you amongst others with the same name.
Be strategic with your headline
This is the line of text that appears below your name on both your profile and in the main feed. It’s only a small amount of copy but still somewhere you can make an impact.
The standard procedure is to include your current role or title, which is a great idea but we also recommend including another attribute that would appeal to potential clients and connections. An eCommerce accountant, for example, might consider including something like ‘eCommerce specialist’ alongside their job title.
Streamline the information you share on your profile
Our final pearl of wisdom would be to make sure that the information on your profile, particularly in the sections where you share your professional experience, is concise and succinct. Nobody is going to want to trawl through paragraphs of text to find out what they need to know, no matter how articulately you write it.
It’s all about doing what you can to attract the right connections and cultivate a more meaningful network.
Whilst we’ve got you, don’t forget to follow on LinkedIn for all the latest industry news and product updates.