Here's How to Make the Most of Your LinkedIn Profile
How exactly can you reel those employers in?
It’s hard to view LinkedIn as anything more than a post-college rite of passage. Several years back, sure, the website was nothing more than a place you’d visit because your parents told you to. It was a dumpsite for you and your fellow graduates’ CVs. Upload the resume, make the profile, call it a day. However, things have changed. LinkedIn has become more than just another link to add to your email signature. In fact, if you play your cards right and make it a point for employers to find and be impressed by you, getting a job offer or booking an interview via the website is a very valid possibility.
The question is, how do you stand out from thousands of other hopefuls on the same website?
Start with the URL
There’s nothing appealing about having a long string of numbers in your supposedly easy to find LinkedIn profile. Before anything else, ensure that your profile link is set to something short and easy to remember.
Having trouble changing your URL? Simply hit the “Edit public profile and URL” button in the upper-right corner of your profile to make the switch!
When it comes to the headline, keep it snappy
In an ideal world, employers and hiring managers would pore over every section of our painstakingly written profiles, get to know all the ins and outs of our skills and work history. The operative word here is ideal, because honestly, no one has the time to give every person that attention. Not when they haven’t proven themselves worthy of it, at least.
There is certainly merit in playing up the contents of your LinkedIn profile (we’ll get into that a little later), but first thing’s first: how do you get people to read that far?
The answer: the headline. It’s one of the first things any visitor sees on your profile, and likewise, a key factor that determines whether or not they’ll choose to stay for the rest. Keep it informative, short and sweet. What do you do, and who do you do it for? What sets you apart? Stay honest, don’t oversell.
Steer clear of the buzzword
Pause for a second and ask yourself, how many times have you seen the word “creative” in the past month? How about “innovative”? Click through others’ profiles and see how many times you come across words like “driven” or “passionate” or “strategic.”
These are among the most commonly used words across CV’s and cover letters. If you’re looking to impress, keep your distance from the overused descriptions.
Get crafty with your summary
One of the advantages of having an online resumé over the run-of-the-mill printed sort is the fact that you can work multimedia into your profile via embeds and link-outs. If you make videos, throw in a reel. If you write, input an excerpt or include a link to your favorite piece. If you’ve developed a campaign, include bits and pieces of it (or perhaps even a snazzy screen-record if it’s online!). LinkedIn’s multimedia capacity gives us the chance to think and execute out of the digital box.
Maximize those sections
When you hit the “About” button on your Facebook profile, you’re led to a page built up of fun little sections that tell the world about you. The same goes for Friendster and even Multiply (if you were already around in its heyday). These sections offer a peek into your interests, your location, and essentially what makes you, you.
LinkedIn functions similarly, only with a more professional edge. Instead of liked pages and events you’ve attended, the sections on your profile fall closer to the realm of languages spoken, seminars attended and awards received. This is where you can pile up your accomplishments, skills and achievements. If you’ve hooked and reeled in your profile’s visitors with your headline and summary, chances are they’ll stay to read the rest!
Now, who’s ready to get employed? Start bridging your way to opportunities by making edits on your LinkedIn profile!