Table of Contents
- 1. Update your profile photo with your current image
- 2. Add a LinkedIn banner
- 3. Remember the 3S when writing your headline
- 4. Use visual media to represent what you do
- 5. Curate your network
- 6. Take advantage of skills assessments
- 7. Stay active and connected
- 8. Manage your endorsements and recommendations
If you are looking for a job in today’s market, you probably already know that having a LinkedIn profile is important. If you already have one, that’s great. At a minimum, you must ensure that it has a quality photo, about section, work experience, and education. But, let’s face it. It may not be enough to demonstrate your true personal brand and get noticed by potential recruiters, employers, and connections. As more than 95% of recruiters use LinkedIn to search for candidates, making the most out of your profile is imperative. So, if you are planning to give it a makeover, here are some effective tips and tricks to help you build a better LinkedIn profile, boost your presence, and consistently get the attention you deserve.
1. Update your profile photo with your current image
Your LinkedIn profile photo is a key element of your personal brand. Thus, updating it once in a while is extremely important. This will help you ensure that your photo looks exactly like you in person and you are easy to recognize whenever you are meeting a potential employer or connection. Remember, you never get a second chance to make a first positive impression. So, make sure to make it count.
A good rule of thumb on how often you should update your profile photo is to do it just a couple of times a year. In fact, three times is more than enough. You can do this whenever you have a significant change in your appearance, have a change in your career goals, or have simply overgrown your image. Whatever your reason, make sure your profile photo represents who you truly are and the image you want to portray to the world.
The LinkedIn banner is as important as your profile photo because it is the second visual element your audience will see on your profile. Adding one to your profile can help you stand out, strengthen your personal brand, and show your intention. Nonetheless, it can also either make a strong or weak first impression. So, putting as much thought into selecting a LinkedIn banner as you do on other sections of your profile is imperative. What impression do you think a well-thought-out LinkedIn banner makes compared to a profile that settles for the default one? It’s definitely worth the extra effort.
You can choose a free banner photo that represents you and your interests from copyright-free websites, such as Pexels or Unsplash. If you want a more personal touch, you can use photo editing tools like Canva or Mojomox, which are also free. Be intentional in creating your banner. Add images that demonstrate who you are, what you are about, and why they should contact or connect with you. You can even add your contact information to your banner, making it serve as your digital business card.
3. Remember the 3S when writing your headline
Your LinkedIn headline is your first opportunity to communicate what you bring to the table. It is one of the most vital parts of your profile. If done right, it can encourage your audience to read further and connect with you. So, make your headline more than just your job title. Remember the 3S when writing it, which stands for ‘Succinct, Search, and Separator”.
Your LinkedIn headline should tell your audience almost everything they need to know about you briefly and concisely – this is the first S. For the second S, you can include words and phrases that can boost your searchability. This can be your target job title or relevant skills from your current and target industry that can serve as keywords recruiters are more likely to use when searching for candidates. For the last S, make sure to add something that allows you to distinguish yourself from the competition. For instance, you can state how you can help your target audience through your expertise.
4. Use visual media to represent what you do
Social media profiles are most effective when visuals are used. Of course, this also applies to your LinkedIn profile. The platform allows you to add audio, videos, photos, documents, slideshow presentations, and even links to your portfolio or personal website. And guess what? You can include them in any part of your LinkedIn profile you deem fit, including work experience, education, and the featured section.
Media elements not only make your profile visually appealing and help keep your audience engaged, but they can also serve as solid evidence of your abilities and past accomplishments. While not every LinkedIn user will take the time to add visual media to their profiles, make sure to put in the extra effort and use this to your advantage. However, keep in mind to add only those that are most recent, most relevant to your career direction, support your personal brand, and will leave a lasting impression on your audience.
5. Curate your network
Having an extensive network is great. In fact, as a job seeker, it is highly recommended to continuously expand your network to make yourself known to employers as well as to people who can introduce you to opportunities. However, the “more people you are connected to, the more opportunities you can attract” approach may not always be applicable. Networks that are too big can take the focus away from the primary purpose of your LinkedIn profile, which is to connect with like-minded professionals who can benefit your career in the long term.
To ensure your profile remains aligned with your goals, spend some time curating your network. In addition, do not send or accept connection requests with just anyone. Make sure to do a little research first before doing so. Be intentional about why you’re networking with someone. This will allow you to build a highly curated and targeted group of connections that can be valuable to your job search and career growth. In networking, quality matters more than quantity.
6. Take advantage of skills assessments
A survey revealed that 69% of professionals agree that verified skills are more important than a degree during job searching. In today’s job market, proving your proficiency in a specific skill is important to make a good impression and boost your competitive advantage. LinkedIn heard you. That is why a Skills Assessments feature was recently launched, containing 14 different skills tests.
Taking skills assessments is free and easy. All you have to do is scroll down to your profile’s Skills section, select the skill test you want to take on, and then you can start right away. While, for now, all of them are technical-related skills, taking advantage of this to prove to your target audience that you know your way around them can put you a step above the rest. Once you’ve passed, you’ll receive a badge that you can display on your profile as proof of your proficiency. If you fail, you don’t have to worry at all. You can retake the tests as often as you like without hurting your profile.
7. Stay active and connected
Creating a LinkedIn profile and considering yourself done is not how things work. It is not enough to simply exist on the platform, especially if you are an active job seeker. To get the most out of your LinkedIn profile, you need to be constantly active. Your contacts and target audience need to feel and see you, so stay connected with them. You can do this by writing posts, creating or curating relevant articles, and making insightful comments.
Make logging in on your profile a part of your routine. Make sure to stop by once in a while to check what you’ve missed, get the latest updates, and of course, share updates of your own. This will not only allow you to create visibility for yourself but also gives you an ultimate chance to showcase your expertise in your chosen field.
8. Manage your endorsements and recommendations
While endorsements and recommendations allow you to gather social proof about who you are and what you do, they work differently. The LinkedIn endorsement gives your connections the chance to vouch for you for certain skills listed in the skills section of your profile. To ensure your skill endorsements reflect your expertise and what you’re currently capable of, be proactive in managing them. Use the section’s edit feature to choose which to show and which to hide. Review your endorsements lists and display only those connections who have endorsed you for the right skills.
On the other hand, the recommendation feature allows your connection to give you a written statement about their experience working with you. If you receive a recommendation that doesn’t reflect who you are nor is aligned with your current career goal, you can also opt not to display it on your profile. This will help you ensure that your profile reflects how you want your target audience to see you.
As a job seeker, LinkedIn is a site you simply can’t afford to overlook. Though in order to really get the most out of it, you need to invest a little more time and energy into building a better profile. Nonetheless, it will definitely be all worth it. Keeping your profile more impressive and effective could allow new great opportunities to come right to you.