5 Ways to Enhance Your LinkedIn Profile

LinkedIn Profle OptimizationA positive online presence is an important part of any professional’s life, whether you’re a job seeker or secure in your current position. Professional networking sites like LinkedIn offer something that may not be fully available on other platforms: the ability to show off your work history and accomplishments. Sure, you can always list the jobs you’ve had or where you went to school on other networks, but LinkedIn provides an avenue for all professionals that just doesn’t compare to other sites—and with 120 million members in over 200 countries, it’s the social network to be on if you want to be visible with this particular audience.

Make the most of your LinkedIn profile with these five ways to enhance it:

Complete it. As with other platforms, it’s important to complete your LinkedIn profile in full. Why? Say an employer is looking at your profile. It will look better if you have a completed biography, work experience, industry listing, and join several groups. This paints a fuller picture of you as a candidate. What’s the point of having a platform if you don’t use it to its full potential, particularly one that could lead to opportunities? Completing your LinkedIn profile helps you get the most out of your experience.

Add keywords. When you search for something or someone, you usually type in certain keywords that you know will lead to the best fit. Adding certain keywords to your LinkedIn profile will optimize your profile. For example, if you are in the advertising industry with a focus in consumer brands, be sure to indicate this on your headline, your biography, and even in your work experience. That way, if someone is searching for someone with your expertise, your profile has a better chance of being found.

Powerful recommendations. Having recommendations is always a game-changer, but having ones that are powerful enough to sway the minds of potential employers or clients is what you should be aiming for. Think about getting testimonials from those that are either admired in your industry or who can attest to your accomplishments. Ask them to indicate what you’ve done, as opposed to just saying you’re amazing. After all, real examples can do wonders for your image.

Looking for a job? Say so! Many people use LinkedIn to look for jobs or to showcase their skills when they are searching for new opportunities. So, if you’re looking for either one of these, indicate it on your LinkedIn profile, particularly in your headline and your biography. This crucial step is important from the vantage point of the searcher since they can easily identify you as a job candidate. Further, think about adding the industry and the location you want to be in. That way, you’ll be able to give someone like a recruiter more information that may not have available otherwise.

Give people a reason to read on. As noted earlier, there are 120 million people on LinkedIn alone. How do you stand out? Well, after completing the above tactics, think about giving people a reason to learn more about you. How do you do this? Adding work accomplishments, awards you’ve won, and links to your blog or additional online resources, to add worth to your profile. It makes you look more attractive, which is especially important if you are looking for a job. Bottom line: the more value you put into your LinkedIn profile, the more likely you’ll get noticed, which is the whole point, right?

What have you added to your LinkedIn profile to enhance it?

Guest Expert:

James Alexander is Vizibility’s founder and CEO. He’s the guy with two first names. If you ‘Googled’ his name in 2009, you would never have found him. Now, he ranks within the first few results of a Google search. Find James in Google at vizibility.com/james.

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  1. One thing that really needs to be pointed out for Linkedin is the need of a) placing a profile picture and b) to select one that is suitable for the purpose of Linkedin. I have seen so many bad pictures (or better mugshots) – it’s not even pretty. If I would be a recruiter a bad profile picture would totally turn me away from that candidate.

  2. Excellent article! I speak to college students all the time about this. LinkedIn is THE professional social network. Period. There is so much potential for a job seeker. Even if you’re not seeking a job at the moment, it’s a fantastic networking tool.

    I wrote a post about LinkedIn a while back (If You’re Not Linked In, You MIGHT Be Left Out: http://bit.ly/gaW734). I’d love to know your thoughts on the article.

    Keep up the great work. There are a LOT of people out there that don’t know how to get started on LinkedIn. This article helps tremendously!

    Kirk Baumann

  3. Good points. If you are looking for employment, best to stick to job titles and skill names that are recognized in your profession and by LinkedIn. How do you know LinkedIn will recognize either – try an advanced search on exactly the keywords you are planning to use. Also see what respected people in your field have done in their profiles.
    Also remember: if a complete mismatch exists between your skillset, and all of your listed work experience & education – you are less likely to get an interview.

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