Your LinkedIn Profile: 7 Improvements to Make Today
By Leah Garrison
Getting bored with Zoom? Tired of walking the dog? While the nation shelters in place, this is a great time to update your LinkedIn profile – especially if you need to find work or want to change jobs when the coronavirus crisis ends. Your LinkedIn profile gives employers their first glimpse of you and your skills. That first impression matters a lot. So take an hour out of your quarantine day to give your profile some extra oomph. It’s worth it. Here are 7 tips to get you started.
- Make the right impression with the right pictures.
They say a picture is worth 1,000 words, so make sure your photos show you at your best. Use a recent photo that actually looks like you, and wear the type of clothes you normally wear to work. Use a close-up shot — your face should fill about 60% of the frame – and smile warmly. Then add a background photo to grab extra attention. Choose a photo that has meaning to you. It could be your cityscape, a piece of art you like, or a surfer riding a wave. A good background photo piques interest and gives people a little insight into you.
- Tell a story in your headline and summary.
In 6 or 7 words, write a headline under your name that goes beyond your job title. A medical writer becomes Medical Storyteller & Healthcare Maven. A sales person becomes Sales Leader & Strategic Business Partner. In your summary in the About box, tell your story in 50 words or less. How are you different than everyone else with your experience?
- Highlight your top skills and services.
Be strategic about which skills you list under your story in the About box. List only the skills most important to the job you want. No one will read a long list. Three or four is better than 10 or 12.
- Reach out for recommendations.
Most people you’ve worked with are happy to give you a shout out on LinkedIn. Make it easy for them. Ask if they would write a recommendation focusing on a specific skill, and tell them which one. Remind them of a project or accomplishment that they can mention if they want. It’s better to have 5 recommendations that each show a different side of you than 15 all saying the same thing.
- Share your work.
Your LinkedIn profile is not just your online resume, it’s also your brief portfolio. Post some of your work if you can. You might even make a short slideshow featuring content you’ve written or images with captions about key past projects. Sharing your work tells employers two things: You’re proud of what you’ve done, and you’re skilled enough to really do the job. That’s key to getting an interview.
- Follow important influencers in your field.
Relevant influencers put interesting content in your LinkedIn feed, which you can then share with your network. It’s a good way to show that you’re committed to your industry and staying on top of advances in your field.
- Add contact information.
Make it easy for people to reach you directly. Under Contact Info, you can add your personal email and phone if you wish, as well as links to websites that may feature your work. Your LinkedIn profile is all about showing people who you are, what you can do, and where to find you.
Want even more help with your job search?
The Nelson team provides FREE resume reviews, can help with interview tips, and is happy to discuss our available positions. We’d love to talk with you! Contact your local Nelson office today.