LinkedIn is probably your most powerful marketing tool if you’re looking for either a higher quality client or employer, and your profile on the network shouldn’t be neglected. Here are some tips for making a successful LinkedIn profile that will bring you new professional opportunities.
Your profile should be complete and clean
So, should you fill it with anything that comes to your mind? No. Take your time to craft and filter the information in an appealing and convincing way. Nobody likes to read extremely long sentences or self-hailing novels. Busy people especially prefer “scannable” content.
That being said, take time to fill all relevant information inputs. So, you love puppies – doesn’t every normal person love them? Can that be of any importance to a potential employer or client? Think about how does that info make you stand out, what these say about your personality, and if they can be useful in a professional way. If so, you can post it in your Interests profile, and keep it at the bottom of your profile page (we’ll discuss layout further down).
Upload a professional looking photo
Unless your profession requires it, it doesn’t need to be a tux, but you shouldn’t really put photos of you making crazy faces, or with half-naked people on the beach, etc. Also, if you have a baby-face, you might consider placing a photo that doesn’t make you look like you entered from dad’s computer to play online. If you can’t find a decent photo, maybe you can use the one from your id or another document.
A text with lots of bugs is much harder to focus on, and it makes you look like you don’t care. While that attitude might give you pluses on Twitter and Facebook, on LinkedIn you have to show you care.
Images almost always make a page full of text easier to scan, and attract the eyes of the viewer. Quality images will help you bring more attention and stand out from the crowd, while showcasing your best work. If you don’t work with images, you might want to consider hiring a designer to help you visualize your work.
If you’ve worked with some of your connections and you believe they could recommend you, ask them for a recommendation. Nothing beats the recommendations.
Rearrange the info boxes layout for best fit
You might be more proud of your extracurricular activities than the place you work at or the schools you went to. If that’s the case, you can rearrange the boxes to first showcase what you think is more appealing to your target audience.
Constantly Tweak and Update
This goes for every product you put out there, and your social media profiles aren’t the exception. If you’re ie. a designer and just finished a project that’s way better than one at your profile, substitute it. Do so whenever you finish a great project, complete a course, earn new skills or have any job updates.
Bring attention to yourself without being excentric and annoying
There are several ways to bring attention to your LinkedIn profile without annoying the audience:
1. Cross-link it with your other online properties (eg. your home page, blog, Facebook, About.me or Google+ pages)
2. Join groups that suit your interests (or start one), and participate in group discussions offering your point of view, expertise or fresh ideas. Once again, don’t be a spammer. This can only be contra productive and you might even get banned.
3. Post relevant updates to your timeline or the groups and get the power of social media for professional promotion.
4. Start a LinkedIn ads campaign. LinkedIn offers highly targeted ad campaigns as well as sponsored updates. Explore and take advantage of the possibilities.
5. Endorse your peers for skills you know they have. Whenever you do, you’ll appear in their mail and on their profiles.
Also read: 25 Things That Make You Look Dumb On LinkedIn at Business 2 Community
All of these are tips I used, and my LinkedIn profile has been pretty effective to date. It has brought me several interesting opportunities and helped seize the deal for some, so whenever my friends ask me how to build an effective profile, I share these with them. Hope they will bring some cool opportunities to you too!