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5 Steps to Improve Your LinkedIn Profile

by Career Management, LinkedIn Profile

In this article we explore 5 steps to improve your LinkedIn Profile so you can be found by potential clients, recruiters and hiring managers.

Your online reputation matters because when people are thinking about doing business with you or employing you, they will look you up on LinkedIn. Taking the time to optimise your LinkedIn profile and ensure it is telling the most up to date and relevant parts of your story is what I refer to as ‘tending to your LinkedIn garden’.  A well written LinkedIn Profile helps you get found online, helps control the information people can find out about you and gives you the confidence that you are maximising Australia’s favourite professional networking platform.

 

5 Steps to Improve Your LinkedIn Profile

With LinkedIn’s mobile app, you can make the changes I’ve suggested below on the go. However, LinkedIn provides the greatest functionality via the website, and this is where I recommend you refresh your profile.  Theses tips are the some of the first things people notice or look for in your LinkedIn profile.

1. Upload a Suitable Professional Photo

LinkedIn calls your photo your ‘virtual handshake’. When deciding which photo to upload, choose one that aligns with your role as a professional, but that makes you approachable. LinkedIn reports that members who include a profile photo receive 14-21 more profile views and up to 36x more messages. You can upload directly from your phone, but make sure it’s good quality and includes you only, not your pet or significant other. If you’d like some tips for improving your profile photo, please read the LinkedIn profile tips in this article from Melbourne headshot photographer, Bree Dunbar.

2. Summarise your Experience and Goals

The About Section of your LinkedIn profile is probably the hardest part of your profile to write. It’s best to write this once you’ve updated all the other areas of your profile. This section is sometimes overlooked on LinkedIn, because it’s hard to write about yourself or you’re not sure how to approach this section. Read more about my tips in How to Write a Good LinkedIn Profile About section.

Taking the time to improve this part of your LinkedIn profile is your opportunity to tell the relevant story of who you are, your experience, the type of things you are interested in, and goals you would like to achieve. LinkedIn reports that a summary of 40 words or more makes it more likely to show up in search. You may also like to consider calling out your specialities for keyword search.  Inject your personality into what you write and give people a sense of the unique you.

3. Update Your Experience Section

Make sure your current position is up to date and includes your title, company name, employment type (e.g. full time, part time), tenure, description, relevant skills and media (e.g. links to projects). LinkedIn reports that members with positions that are kept up to date are discovered up to 18x more in searches by members and recruiters.

Also check if the current organisation you work for (and the past organisations you worked for) have a company page on LinkedIn. This enables you to feature their logo on your profile in the experience section and saves you explaining what the organisation does (as the logo is clickable and takes the reader to the company page).

4. Manage your Skills

LinkedIn gives you the option to list up to 50 skills on your LinkedIn Profile and to feature the top 5 in your summary section and relevant skills for each role. Take control of these features and make sure the skills listed include your key strengths and reflect the terminology your potential clients or hiring managers would use and are looking for. Maintaining a relevant list of skills on your profile will help others understand your strengths and match you with the right opportunities. Depending on what stage you are in your career you should try to add at least 10 skills.

LinkedIn reports that members with 5 or more skills listed are contacted (messaged) up to 33x more by recruiters and other LinkedIn members, and receive up to 17x more profile views. One tip, check your skills are listed in order of the strengths you want to be known for, and LinkedIn will do the rest by targeting endorsers for those top skills you’ve prioritised. Importantly, the more endorsements you have for your skills the higher you rank in search results.

5. Add Your Location

LinkedIn reports that more than 30% of recruiters will use advanced search based on location, so the more details you have the more likely you will be found and connected to your next opportunity. Potential clients may be looking for your skills and experience based on location and former colleagues may want to reconnect if they have recently relocated or are travelling for work. Here’s how to update the location on your LinkedIn profile via LinkedIn Help

Karen Hollenbach, LinkedIn Expert Consultant, Educator & Mentor

Karen Hollenbach, LinkedIn Expert Consultant, Educator & Mentor

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