15 Jun Optimizing Your LinkedIn Profile: 10 Key Action Steps
There’s no need to overemphasize how important LinkedIn is. From the job opportunities to avenues for building your network and brand, there are many benefits to being on LinkedIn, and optimizing your LinkedIn profile is the first crucial step to getting discovered.
It takes about a second or even less to make first impressions online. First impressions are very critical online because you’re not there to explain yourself or sway your audience’s judgment to your advantage.
Now, optimizing your LinkedIn profile should not only include showcasing your experience, education, and skills. It should convey more information than that. It should also communicate your personality, thoughts about your profession or business/brand, and insights into your career path progression.
Optimizing your LinkedIn profile can be achieved by taking these ten (10) key steps: (This is preferably done from a PC or the desktop mode on your mobile browser):
Optimizing your LinkedIn profile (THE INTRODUCTION SECTION):
- The first thing to be seen when your profile is visited is your name. As much as you can, it pays to have your name consistent and uniform on all of your social media networks or online presence. The name on your official credentials should be your first and last name on LinkedIn.
- Now, there’s a voice feature to the name section of LinkedIn profiles. You can use this to show people how to properly pronounce your name. However, this feature is only available on the mobile app.
- The best LinkedIn profile images are corporate headshots. Make sure it’s not blurry and it should be of you and not your significant other, or dog/cat. Make sure you don’t leave it blank too.
- Afterward, choose and upload a background image or banner. The best ones have people showing in them, a clear call to action, and/or a logo.
Have you implemented these changes so far? Don’t just read and make that famous ‘mental note’
- For your headline, use not less than 6 relevant keywords that would position you appropriately. This could be more than just your “official” job title. You have 120 characters to play around with, so make it compelling and interesting!
- Add your official job title. If you’re still in school, use your educational major. Add the college/university that you currently attend or previously attended, as applicable. Select the most recent one to display at the top of your profile by checking the “Show education in my intro” box.
- For the region and area section, select your city or the most well-known city nearest to you, as applicable. Then, from the industry dropdown menu, locate and select the option that best suits the industry your product, service, or skill fits in.
- By default, LinkedIn profile addresses or URLs are made up of random characters. To get a custom profile URL, you need to change and customize it so it displays your first and last name. If that’s taken, your last name and first name, and other derivations can be tried out. Your custom URL can have 5-30 letters. Just don’t use numbers, symbols, and special characters in the custom URL. You can visit this link to customize your profile URL:
Completing the rest of the introductory section:
- Include at least one website address relevant to you and your business/company.
- Add your personal phone number where people can reach you (this will not be displayed publicly or to non-LinkedIn connections. Only to those you have connected to).
- Connect your primary email address so you’ll be able to sync your work colleagues or contacts/calendar. People will generally be able to find you easily.
- Connect and authenticate your Twitter account, if you have one, or if you can 👀 👀 👀
- Add your birthday so your connections can congratulate you on the anniversary of your birth, which will in turn increase your visibility during that day/week.
THE SUMMARY/ABOUT SECTION:
- Add at least 2 paragraphs in this section. Each paragraph should be made up of three or more sentences. The first paragraph can be about who you are, what you do, and what you have accomplished so far in your professional career. The second one can be about what you are currently doing and your hope/vision for the future. Then, list all your specializations.
- As you write or edit your professional summary section, don’t forget to double-check your grammar! Do your best to add relevant keywords that you want to be ranked for on Google/LinkedIn.
- Add at least 3 rich media types in this section. You can put the link to any of your content on the web, or upload external docs/pdf, photos, sites, videos, and/or slides. Remember to add a title and a description in the fields provided before you save/publish each one.
- Doing this will help viewers understand what the rich media type is about and it will help LinkedIn have a better sense of who you are.
- Type your job title in this field and select one of the options that the system recommends from the dropdown menu. By doing so, you’ll be more discoverable. Type the name of your company and if the company has a LinkedIn page, it will show up in the dropdown menu.
- You can then go ahead to type the name of the city/area and select it from the dropdown menu.
- Check the box that indicates if you currently work in this role and add your starting month and year. Leave the “Update my industry and headline” checkbox option BLANK.
- Add two paragraphs in the description section, made up of two to three sentences in each paragraph. The first paragraph can be about what you do, your job responsibilities, and/or your accomplishments.
- The second paragraph can be a short description of what your company does or products/services. Try to add two to three relevant keywords in these paragraphs that you want to be known or found for e.g. Account planning, Salesforce, AI, Data, etc…
- Finally, add at least 3 media types in this section. You can link or upload external docs/pdf, photos, sites, videos, and/or slides. Add a title and a description in the fields provided before you save/publish each one.
- Toggle to “ON” mode so LinkedIn can notify your network on the week of your work anniversary and when you update jobs/get a promotion/change roles.
NOTE: If you have multiple “current” jobs that you’ve added in your work experience section, you’ll be able to re-arrange the display order for these. Display the one that matters the most to you at the very top so viewers see it first as they scroll down on your profile.
Also, if you get a job on LinkedIn, you get a badge to display this on your profile. You can read this medium post for how to add the Linkedin Job Badge to your profile.
Optimizing your LinkedIn profile (The EDUCATION Section):
- Add at least one college/university that you attended/graduated from. Select the correct one from the dropdown box menu once you begin typing in the school field.
- Add the correct degree that you have achieved or leave this field empty if you haven’t got one yet.
- Add your field and include the start and end date. You can also add your final average GPA (this is optional).
- If you were a part of school clubs, organizations, or a sports/extra-curricular team, be sure to include them.
- Also add a brief description of your school experience, accomplishments, or anything similar. And add at least 3 media types such as links or external docs, photos, sites, videos, or presentations.
- Toggle ON share this setting so your network can get notified if you ever have job changes, education changes, and work anniversaries in this education section.
There are five (5) more steps to take but let’s get the first five done first, shall we?
The concluding part of this post will be published next week, so bookmark this page for easy reference.
For more details about LinkedIn profile optimization, you can search for tips on YouTube and check out the videos that provide beneficial and step-by-step information
If you have any questions or additions, feel free to leave a comment below.
Writer: Sanni Hussein
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