Table of Contents
- 1. Start strong with catchy statements about you and what you do
- 2. Emphasize your successes
- 3. State your mission, vision, or career goals
- 4. Integrate industry-specific keywords
- 5. List your key skills and industry
- 6. Tell your story using a conversational tone of voice
- 7. Include a clear call to action
Your LinkedIn summary section can make or break your job search. This is because this section is considered the gateway to valuable professional networks and a key to building an online first impression. As a matter of fact, a study showed that you only have an average of seven seconds before someone makes a judgment about you. Hence, having a good LinkedIn summary is imperative to ensure you make your first impression a positive one.
Crafting a LinkedIn summary that makes a great first impression and outshines nearly 740 million LinkedIn users is not an easy feat. This is one of the reasons why many people tend to ignore this section. While choosing not to write a summary may save you a momentary headache, it will likely make your LinkedIn profile less attractive to potential employers. Consequently, you may lose your chances of landing your dream role. In this article, we will share best practices on how to write a good LinkedIn summary that draws recruiters to your profile and helps you stand out from the crowd.
1. Start strong with catchy statements about you and what you do
When other LinkedIn users visit your profile, they can only see the first three lines of your summary by default. They need to click ‘see more’ to read the entirety of your LinkedIn summary. Hence, it is crucial to write an engaging opening statement that gives your audience a great reason to continue reading.
To entice your readers, start with catchy and straightforward facts that clearly define who you are and what you do. Summarize what you are about in one to two informative sentences to build a strong impression beyond the array of the jobs you held. This will imminently communicate the value you can bring to potential employers, making them want to learn more about you.
Example of punchy opening lines:
I am a growth-focused Business Executive with invaluable experience in commercializing products, directing market development initiatives, and building international strategic alliances. My expertise also revolves around establishing high-performing teams and innovative products that drive revenue growth and market expansion on a global scale.
2. Emphasize your successes
Achievements give concrete evidence of how you can go above and beyond to deliver results. According to SHRM’s findings, more than 90% of recruiters rely on LinkedIn to screen potential candidates. For this reason, it is imperative to showcase your accomplishments and successes to help you demonstrate your skills, key strengths, and drive towards achieving your goals. Subsequently, this will enable recruiters to immediately determine why you are the right fit for the role.
It is highly recommended to cite the biggest takeaway from your experience. Look across your current and past roles, collect your most notable achievements, and combine them if you can. Contrary to the experience section, accomplishments in the LinkedIn summary are typically combined and generalized. For example, if you are a sales manager who increased the revenue of three different companies, you can do this by saying:
Throughout my career as a Sales Manager, I have been instrumental in increasing sales revenues of three different global companies by an average of 80%.
3. State your mission, vision, or career goals
A career mission or vision is essentially a goal for how you want to help companies achieve their desired outcomes by putting your skills to use. With this approach, you can talk more about your industry expertise, passion or interest, and value proposition to convince potential employers why you’re a unique candidate. This will also enable them to envision how you can add significant value to their organization. As a result, this increases your probability of being considered an ideal candidate among other LinkedIn users.
My vision is to leverage my in-depth project management expertise to deliver value-added projects that will empower organizations to globalize their business and customer offerings. I believe this is the cornerstone of establishing the foundation for achieving sustainable revenue growth.
4. Integrate industry-specific keywords
Recruiters not only use job titles to search for candidates, but they also use specific skills and keywords to find the most qualified one. To land in a recruiter’s job search results, integrating the right set of keywords into your LinkedIn summary is a must. By doing so, you can rank more highly among other job seekers looking for jobs similar to your interest.
Identifying the specific keywords to help with your search engine optimization can be daunting at first. However, there are many resources and tools available to assist you in finding them. In fact, LinkedIn even shows you some of the search queries used to discover your profile.
You can find the information by clicking the ‘search appearances’ on your dashboard located just below your LinkedIn summary. At the bottom of the page, you will see the ‘keywords your searchers used’. Study this data and use it wisely to better optimize the content of your LinkedIn summary. This will help increase your chances of getting found by potential employers.
5. List your key skills and industry
Recruiters spend just an average of six seconds reviewing a LinkedIn profile before they decide whether a candidate is worth calling in for an interview or not. During this short period, they search for specific skills and experience required by the position they are looking for. For this reason, you should make every single millisecond of this time count in your favor.
One of the best ways to entice recruiters is by adding your top key skills as well as the industry you have experience in at the end of your LinkedIn summary. Arrange them in a list to make it more noticeable. This will enable recruiters to know your expertise and what you are qualified to do at a glance. Consequently, you’ll get higher chances of being shortlisted for the role.
This is how you can do this at a high level:
Business Solutions & Operations
Quota & Performance Management
Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
Stakeholders Engagement & Collaboration
Team Building & Leadership
Marketing Cloud Information Technology Retail
6. Tell your story using a conversational tone of voice
The LinkedIn summary is all about storytelling. To effectively showcase who you are and what you can do for potential employers, you need to tell your story of success in a credible and compelling manner. While writing formally may seem more applicable, using a conversational tone of voice is proven to be more effective in enticing readers. This is because it makes people feel like they are being addressed personally. Therefore, if you want to attract your target audience’s attention, turn your facts and figures into an engaging narrative.
Writing in the first person is one way to communicate conversationally. This approach adds a bit of your personality and makes your summary’s content more relatable. Furthermore, this immediately establishes a personal connection between you and your audience. Thus, increasing the readership of your LinkedIn summary.
7. Include a clear call to action
A call to action is a statement added at the very bottom of a LinkedIn summary to encourage readers to take a specific step. It should be concise, straightforward, and clear about what you want your readers to do after reading your summary. Do you want them to send you a LinkedIn message or check out your website?
An invitation to connect is also a great way to end your summary. However, it still depends on your goal. Whatever your goal may be, ending your LinkedIn summary with a call to action is imperative to boost your professional network or secure your next job.
This is an example of a straightforward call to action:
I am currently seeking a new job opportunity in the project management field. If you have something that might fit, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A good and well-written LinkedIn summary strengthens your first impression in a way no other section of your profile can. While creating one takes a bit of work, it’s still doable. Apply the best practices above to construct your own unique, powerful, and engaging LinkedIn summary that encourages readers to get in touch with you. By doing this, you will be one step closer to the career goals you set for yourself.