At ProResource, we strongly believe in the power of the LinkedIn profile. In fact, a huge part of our business is dedicated to helping our clients enhance their profiles to promote their personal and professional brand.
Still, we understand how the prospect of overhauling your LinkedIn profile, even with assistance, can be daunting. Between busy schedules and the effort it takes to craft the perfect summary and dig up details from past work experiences, it’s hard to find the time.
Our advice, though: You won’t regret making your LinkedIn profile a priority.
Over the years, throughout your career, you have built a strong personal brand and LinkedIn is the place where that brand lives online. Google yourself, and your LinkedIn profile will likely fall at the top of those search results. Use Outlook 365? The LinkedIn profile of people who email you is just a click away. Both Google and Microsoft are driving people to your LinkedIn profile.
The good news: While updating your profile in its entirety has its place, you don’t have to spend hours to make a big difference in your online visibility. Just a few small tweaks can completely change your LinkedIn presence — and make your profile stand out from the competition.
The changes below can be completed in just 10 minutes — and I guarantee they will make a big difference, both in the way your profile looks and in the way it works for you.
1. Add a Header Graphic
Did you know that people process images 60,000x faster than words and recall them six times better? Adding a strong header graphic (the image behind your headshot) is one of the easiest and most impactful changes you can make to your LinkedIn profile.
To make the most of this prime real estate, choose a colorful image that promotes your company and makes a statement about your personal brand. (Just make sure you own the image or have permission to use it.) Some suggestions:
- For corporate branding, use your logo or pick up an image from the home page of your website.
- To promote company culture, use a photo of your team or a collage of employee photos.
- To demonstrate authority, use a photo of a speaking engagement, your book or a TV appearance.
- To highlight your location, use a cityscape or photo of a well-known landmark.
2. Optimize Your Headline
Your headline is the line that appears immediately below your name at the top of your profile. By default, LinkedIn populates the headline with your current job title and company. But instead of the default, make your headline more compelling.
Use it to tell people what you do, who you help, and how you can help them. Incorporate keywords that describe your solution, target market, and the kind of problem you solve.
You have 120 characters to work with – use them all! But put the most important information at the beginning, since in some places the headline will be truncated. (For more information on crafting a powerful headline, click here.)
3. Add Keyword-Rich Skills
You become more findable when you make your profile keyword-rich. The most important places to add keywords are your headline, your summary, your experience – and the Skills & Endorsements section of your profile. According to LinkedIn, people with at least five skills listed on their profiles get as much as 17 times more profile views (and up to 31 times more messages from recruiters).
You can include 50 skills. Choose from the more than 14,000 skills included in LinkedIn’s database. To get ideas, simply start typing and LinkedIn will auto-complete, suggesting up to 10 options.
For a well-rounded portfolio of skills, include these types:
- Services your company offers
- Industries you serve
- Skills related to your current role
- Business buzzwords such as HIPAA, SOX, HER, EMR, PCI
- Technical skills such as certifications, platforms, languages, software, tools
- Management skills such as leadership, project management, business strategy
4. Upload a Video
Upload a video or podcast to instantly pump up your current profile. All forms of media help to tell your story more effectively, letting you explain yourself and your accomplishments in a way that can be much more effective than words.
Add a link to an explainer video or one of the other videos on your website – maybe a demo of a new product or a video of your team talked about why they love working for your company.
Link to an interview with you, a clip of you speaking at an event, or a recent podcast.
You can incorporate media into the summary and work experience sections of your profile. You don’t need to upload a lot of videos – just choose one or two you want people to watch.
5. Check Your Tone
Is your LinkedIn profile written to impress recruiters? Or does it talk to customers, partners and prospective employees?
Read over your summary and think about who is googling you and visiting your profile now. Make sure you have included the information you want those people to have about you.
Congratulations! That’s it — a more powerful, more impressive profile in just 10 minutes.
If you’re curious about what might be possible with a greater time investment, consider reading our new ebook, LinkedIn Personal Branding for Tech CEOs & Leaders. It goes into every section of the LinkedIn profile and includes tips for how to write your profile for specific business goals.