What’s so Social PR awesome about a LinkedIn profile? It’s your professional gateway to success.
Why LinkedIn? Top tier journalists hangout here. All of the Fortune 500 CEOs call this network home. You can easily find a job here 365 days a year. Some of the best industry news can be found in this newsfeed. You are bound to run into Richard Branson, Guy Kawasaki, or Peg Fitzpatrick.
Your LinkedIn profile is the perfect place for you to showcase your skill set and achievements, build your brand, and connect with business partners, colleagues and even prospects besides sharing content with professionals in the industry.
With over 414 global million users on LinkedIn, this is in fact the best platform to reach out to prospects and build long-lasting business relationships with them. Moreover, the geographical reach of LinkedIn is spread out in over 200 countries and territories.
These findings indicate that if you are not on LinkedIn you are committing a grave mistake to yourself and your business.
A hunting ground for HR managers, headhunters and new businesses looking for opportunities and partners, LinkedIn is the best place to be either to hire or get hired. Unlike on other social sites where profiles can be made up for personal networking instead of a professional one, this is a site that encourages users to have a highly professional profile and resume.
So what makes a LinkedIn profile stand out easily? How can you get more recommendations and what are the obscured features that can help you boost your profile?
Here are 7 simple things you can do to improve your LinkedIn profile.
1. Upload a Professional Photo
Viveka von Rosen, who authored the book-LinkedIn Marketing: An Hour a Day, states that it’s your image, name and headline which are seen most of the times by users.
Use a professional-looking image that enables people to immediately recognize you if they see you at a tradeshow or conference. Even though you may have a loving family, it’s best to leave them out of your LinkedIn profile picture and save that for Facebook.
No matter what, never skip your image.
The absence of a profile picture instills loss of engagement or trust. A LinkedIn profile without a proper image gives the feeling to people that you are hiding something, adds von Rosen.
Ensure that your face consumes a minimum of 60% of the frame. Crop the image from the top of your shoulder to slightly above your head so that the frame is filled with your face.
The next thing to remember is to choose the right expression. As a recruiter or a freelancer, you would love to appear friendly and warm.
However, don’t put on a goofy grin if that makes you uncomfortable. Exude approachability so that your prospects can imagine working with a pleasant person like you.
Social PR Secret: According to LinkedIn, a profile with a real human face is 11 times more likely to be viewed compared to those without a photo.
2. Brevity. Make Your Headline Count
Maximize the 120 character limit of your headline by elucidating on what exactly you do and whom you offer your services to. Abstain from naming just the title of your job.
Lisa Buyer, author of Social PR Secrets mentions clearly that she is an educator, writer, publicist, journalist, and author.
Here’s another example from Kim Vij’s LinkedIn profile.
It’s perfect even if you don’t use the title of your company. Instead, you can choose to create a headline that best describes you the way others want to know you.
3. Use the Right Keywords in the Summary
The 2000-character space is the place where the algorithm of LinkedIn searches for keywords, which is why you need to fill it with information you think your prospects are looking for.
You can make it more lively and interesting with awards, achievements or anything else that make you stand out.
Your potential customers will put in those keywords that match the candidate they are looking for, and job seekers might want to use those terms that match the jobs they are interested in.
By putting the right keywords, was able to increase her company’s revenue by 80% or almost 10 times. We also recommend you to use Youtube videos, Slideshare presentations, jpegs, blogs and mp3 in this section.
Note: Whatever you add gives credibility to your claims.
If LinkedIn happens to be an important part of your strategy to job hunting, finding new customers, or any other reason, you can open a premium account.
This way while filling out the summary section, the site will suggest keywords that will get your profile viewed quite often in search results.
Peg Fitzpatrick has wasted no ink in getting her message across with only a couple of words. Driven, smart, engaging and endearing-her personality leaps off the page, ending with an effective CTA.
4. Experience and Visuals
The main objective of the experience section is to inform visitors about your past and present positions.
Try to go beyond your resume and include media like relevant videos, presentations, articles or images quoting you.
Here’s the thing: Until a few years back, LinkedIn was more or less based just on text. However, you can now spruce up your profile with the help of visuals.
So go ahead and take advantage.
If you fine tune your profile by adding at least two pieces of media, you can make it look more enticing. Your potential client, customer, partner or vendor will stay a bit longer viewing your profile, which can only result in more leads.
Social PR Secrets: Make your LinkedIn profile pop with a ‘background image.’ The image size is 1400px x 425px. Create the background easily with visual PR tools such as Canva. Check out Peg Fitzpatrick’s background image above in #3.
5. Recommendations and Storytelling
It’s a must to have a few recommendations on your profile. Some of your prospects won’t even contact you if they fail to see recommendations on your profile page.
People will contact you only if your experiences match to what they are looking for; however, they will still hope to be introduced to some of your references.
Getting a recommendation permits you to drill down into the why and how of your experience with a past client.
The golden rule of recommendations on LinkedIn is to show but refrain from telling. Won’t it be more interesting to read how “Cathy Hackl is very knowledgeable influencer in PR and social” from a customer or instead of merely reading that “Cathy Hackl is a PR expert consultant”?
The most stellar recommendations tell a brief story instead of providing empty statements.
The recommendation above shows that Cathy Hackl is “very knowledgeable and personable influencer” besides being “respected”. It tells on what type of person Cathy is and what prospects could expect from her.
6. Contact Information
The level of easiness with which you want your connections to get in touch with you is up to your discretion.
If you wish to make this an easy process but a bit reluctant on giving them your personal number, try to use non-primary contact info like Google Voice Number.
This can easily create text from voice messages. This way you will not be missing out on your business or career opportunities.
However, if you feel that entering your email address or phone number would do good to your business, you are free to do so.
Here’s the bottom line:
Have at least one contact information on your LinkedIn profile or else you’ll be closing the floodgates to some golden opportunities.
7. LinkedIn Company Page
After optimizing your LinkedIn profile page, it’s time to create your LinkedIn company page. Such pages work best for companies with multiple employees. They give a great respect to your company and highlight the profile of all your employees.
For instance, HubPage has created a huge fan following of 16,500 followers with their LinkedIn company page. The page has also resulted in the creation of a group with over 82,000 members. Their conversion rate as a result stands at 2.7%, which is 3 times higher than the figures for Facebook and Twitter.
However, having a company page does not only boost your conversions, but help recruiters to save a ton of money.
Let’s take a look at this example below:
Schawk, a leading global brand production and deployment firm has saved over $200k in recruiting costs, and has saved considerable time in the process.
Your company page is a meeting avenue for people interested in your business and serves larger business better than solopreneurs.
To assist you create the perfect LinkedIn profile, check out this infographic by TruConversion.
There’s no single rule to create a perfect LinkedIn profile. Just take a note of the basics and derive maximum benefit from the features and you’re one step ahead of the game.
Image Source: yobro10 / 123RF Stock Photo