No one said searching for a job was simple, but social networks like LinkedIn make it a lot easier. So, you set up your LinkedIn profile, but you’re not landing the interviews and opportunities you were hoping for — don’t worry, you are not alone.
Similar to a resume, your LinkedIn profile is an opportunity to showcase yourself and all of the incredible skills you have to offer. That being said, simply setting up a profile is not enough. Self-marketing can sometimes feel egotistical. However, by neglecting personal branding, you may be passing up opportunities to grow. Building a perfect LinkedIn profile is the first step to ensure no opportunity is missed.
To build up your LinkedIn profile, follow these simple steps:
Add Your Headshot
Choosing the right photo builds credibility. A high-quality headshot is recommended, with your face taking up about 60 per cent of the photo. Dress as if you were attending an interview, and, of course, be sure to smile! iPhones and Androids take high-resolution pictures, so no need to spend a small fortune on professional headshots.
Following your photo, your headline is the first thing profile visitors will notice. The default settings will automatically fill this field with your current title, which is okay for newcomers, but with 120 characters available to you, why not use the space for advertising yourself? Consider mentioning your specialty to show how you can benefit a company or client.
Craft a Summary
Think of a summary as a longer version of your headline. Here you have 2,000 characters; however, attention spans are shorter these days, so try and keep it to around half that number. Focus less on past experiences and more on how you can benefit a prospective employer. Keywords are crucial here, so use words relevant to your field.
Highlight Your Experience
Unlike a resume, your experience displayed on LinkedIn is not confined to the one-page rule. However, keeping in mind those short attention spans, determine which jobs and experiences are most relevant to your targeted field. Use two to four interesting bullet points to outline what you accomplished in each position — don’t be afraid to brag a little!
Start Making Connections
This one may seem obvious, but it is easy to forget. LinkedIn is meant to help you continually grow your network through its system of first-, second-, and third-degree connections. Try and keep it to people you know. However, if you want to connect with someone you have never met personally, send a note along with the request stating why you’d like to connect.
LinkedIn is the number one online social networking platform — take advantage of it! Check out what others in your field post and engage their interest with reflective comments to show your interest. When it is time to share your work, engaging with others will increase the likelihood for reciprocation from your connections.
Check Your LinkedIn Profile Strength
If you feel as though you missed a step, look at your current profile. You will see a gauge on the right-hand side titled “Profile Strength.” This tool will show how much progress you have made and what else you must complete in order to boost your profile.
Brooke Parker | Contributing Writer