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Having a strong LinkedIn profile is not just for a job search process. It is, essentially, the online version of swapping and storing business cards, and foundational to building and positioning your professional brand. In addition to recruiting and job seeking, LinkedIn is a way to discover and be discovered for potential strategic partnerships, content, and services, and to establish yourself as a thought leader in your space.
Here are a few tips on building a strong, searchable LinkedIn Profile:
1. Spend time, pay attention to detail. Take time to thoroughly fill out each relevant prompt and section in your profile. Spend time on each section, from detailing your professional experience as you would in a resume, to your education and community involvement.
2. Keep your profile updated, which also means consistently post updates. Did you just get that promotion you’ve been working so hard towards? Did you just publish an article in a journal? Flaunt it. Just ensure that the updates you post are based on sharing content related to your profession, career goals and passions, and to your management/leadership style.
3. Stay on top of the technology. Research and take advantage of offerings like creating a short, custom, name-based URL (instead of a long string of numbers); managing your privacy settings so your auto-updates are temporarily switched off, so that you can make multiple changes without sending public notifications for each change you make.
4. Choose the right photo. On one end, it should not be too casual. For instance, please do not use selfies, photos taken on social occasions, or group photos that have been cropped. On the other end, smile! We want you to look professional (attire should be business formal), but happy and approachable.
5. Language matters, much like your resume. Utilize job descriptions and Wordle to make your profile more searchable (SEO-friendly) for the specific types of roles you are looking for. Write in active voice, be specific, and provide some context to communicate impact.
6. Highlight leadership experience. If you are job seeking, recruiters are consistently scouring profiles to see the type of impact you have had at an organization. Share information on honors and awards, to numbers that you have driven in terms of increased growth and efficiency.
7. Make sure your headlining content is impactful. Have a headline where you highlight your expertise in terms of role and industry. Fill in the employment box even if you are unemployed. You can highlight your expertise in the title, and say you are seeking an opportunity, for instance, under company name. Write a short impactful description in the summary in terms of what it is you are passionate about professionally, and what you are working towards.
8. Multimedia is your friend. By sharing videos or your portfolio, it helps add color to your overall profile and gives viewers a sneak peek into how you think and engage.
9. Showcase who you are in and beyond office hours. Do you speak Mandarin? Do you know how to Ruby on Rails? Do you care about children’s rights? Did you set up a local animal shelter? Share details about your skill and language prowess, as well as your volunteer experience and causes that matter to you.
10. Network strategically. Think carefully about who you are adding or accepting as a connection. It should be, ideally, someone you have met at least once to establish a baseline reason for the connection. Make sure to personalize your request, referring to previous interactions if relevant. Join and participate in professional groups to learn more and share your informed opinions about the operating context of industry.
Your LinkedIn profile should position you not only as an expert in your industry and role, but should also give the viewer a sneak peak into who you are and what you are most passionate about.
Need help crafting a stellar LinkedIn profile? ReachIvy can help!
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