Spend some time this year to create a winning LinkedIn profile that can help build on your personal and professional relationships and enhance your personal brand. See these easy-to-follow tips to get started.
People in business typically spend plenty of time and resources in building a company brand and reputation, whether it be for their own business or as part of their role for an employer. But here’s the clincher; how many of these people dedicate equivalent effort to building their own personal brand and supporting that of their employees too?
In a landscape where we put a very high value on reputation, especially in business dealings, brand is just as important for the company as it is for individuals. Why? Because a company or business is only as good as the people who represent it and work within. People are the backbone of every organisation.
Online profiles, such as those displayed on LinkedIn, are an immediate showcase of the people who work within an organisation. It is their brand, their values and their work ethics on show for everyone to see. And for individuals, a personal brand can help showcase your talents, help to build relationships, and help to nail down the job of your future. If you want to be noticed in business; an effective online profile is a step in the right direction.
So, where do you get started? How exactly do you create a winning LinkedIn profile?
As a professional recruitment consultant, I have seen profiles of all demographics, and those which stand out the most generally follow some basic content principles.
Following are my top tips for creating a winning LinkedIn profile.
#1 Be picture perfect
Yes, it is true. You should never judge a book by its cover. But when it comes to branding, we all know that a picture tells a thousand words. Your profile image is usually the first thing anyone sees and therefore governs a first impression on those viewing your profile, whether that be positive or negative.
- use a recent photo and remember to update your photo regularly, especially if you have a major change to your appearance (a hair makeover, etc)
- post a good quality headshot where your face takes up around 60% of the image, and ensure you are looking straight ahead at the camera
- wear what you would wear to work, on a good day!
- remember to smile with your eyes
#2 Create a good headline
LinkedIn provides the opportunity to add a 120-character headline at the top of your profile page. As LinkedIn is a search engine, this is the perfect place to highlight your field of talent using keywords that make you and your business marketable. Think about how you want to brand yourself, and that does not necessarily have to be your current job title.
Here are a couple of examples of a LinkedIn profile headline:
- “Communications, PR and Brand Marketing Manager”
- “Professional Recruitment Consultant & Talent Acquisition Manager”
- “Construction & Commercial Development Operations Specialist”
#3 Present a powerful personal summary
The summary section on your LinkedIn profile is the place to get creative and embellish your skills, attributes, and work ethics. You can include images and other multimedia in this space – a presentation you made, an infographic, or photos of your work, etc. Concentrate effort on making this information captivating and unique so that your viewers will want to read more about you and/or your business.
You can use examples of your top skills or showcase some of the best results you have achieved for yourself, clients or past employers. You can also use your summary to include a call to action at the conclusion.
#4 Detail your experience
Use the experience section of your LinkedIn profile to provide information about your employment or educational background. Be sure to include any important transferrable skills that you have throughout this section as well and throw in role-related keywords for search engine optimisation. This is especially important if you are open to new opportunities as these words can pop up when recruiters search LinkedIn for talent. For help, take a look at the careers page on potential employers’ websites to identify common role-specific keywords which they use.
The experience section is a basic reflection of what you would include on your CV – include your current role and at least two of your most recent roles and responsibilities aside this. You can also include volunteer experience if you feel that helps to showcase your skills and attributes.
#5 Seek genuine recommendations
Word of mouth can be one of the best marketing attributes for any brand, including personal. This is why recommendations can be a very valuable asset on a LinkedIn profile. If you have dealt with or worked with someone who has benefitted from your skills or services, ask them to write you a detailed recommendation. How did you service them? What was their experience like? What was the end result?
If possible, seek out recommendations from various people who can focus on different aspects of your skills. For example, you may have helped one of your clients sell a home and they would offer a recommendation about your sales skills or customer service. Someone else might focus on your attention to detail or proactiveness in going above and beyond a task for them.
#6 Finish the job
LinkedIn defines a profile as being ‘complete’ when you include:
- your location and industry
- current position with a description
- at least two previous positions
- your educational details
- your skills (ideally, a minimum of 3)
- a good quality profile picture
- a minimum of 50 connections
A ‘completed profile’ will appear more in search results than one which is left unfinished. If you want to get noticed and look professional, ensure this information has all the detail required.
Personal brand is an essential part of business and an important attribute for companies to embrace. Take a moment to focus on building yourself a winning LinkedIn profile and manage the image you want to portray for yourself and for your business.
With years of knowledge under our belt, the team at Optimum Consulting can help you create the ultimate online personal brand. Just speak with one of our experts for more information. Get started here.