“Be careful what you post on social media!”
You’ve heard this before. In today’s society, you need to be aware that the things posted on Twitter or Facebook can be seen by anyone. You especially want to put your best face forward when looking for a new job, or representing your current employer. That’s where LinkedIn comes in.
There are a lot of people that might view your profile. If you’re looking for a job, possible employers definitely are. People applying to your company might look, as well. Not to mention prospective clients and business partners.
Take a look a good, honest look at your LinkedIn profile. Is it as professional as it could be? As it should be? There are five things you should be doing on LinkedIn that will make you stand out as not only a competent person, but a professional.
1. Join Groups
It may seem annoying to be a member of a ton of groups, but it’ll help you get noticed. Some sites recommend maxing out your group spots, but others don’t. In fact, we don’t suggest it either.
This is a personal preference, but you should be in at least a few groups. Start out with your university’s alumni group. You have something big in common with all its members. Other groups should involve your industry. These groups are where you should try to contribute most, and shows others you’re up to snuff.
2. Add Keywords and Links
There’s a portfolio feature in your experience section that allows people to explore your work further. The content that you link needs to be original and relevant, such as blog posts or YouTube videos. This all depends on your industry, but it should showcase your skills and talents.
JobHunt.org also suggests adding descriptive keywords to your profile so you appear more in search queries for that topic. This means that when people search for “IT support,” your profile may pop up in the results. More people looking at your work could mean more endorsements, connections, or business.
3. Be Picky with Recommendations
Who you endorse and who endorses you can speak volumes. Forbes writer William Arruda says to keep the endorsements limited to your top five skills to help them stand out. Also, only endorse people’s skills when you’ve personally seen them. This ensures that you’re not attached to people you’d rather not be, and looks selective.
Your recommendations are also just as important. Because only the top two appear on your page, you want to make sure that you only accept the best recommendations. Along the same line as endorsements, only give recommendations to a select bunch. This gives them more weight and makes them appear genuine.
4. Make Your Page Personal
According to Arruda, your LinkedIn page isn’t a resume, and should be treated with a more casual tone. This means that you can use first person, and share your point of view where appropriate. This helps others connect with you as a person.
Keep your target audience in mind and speak directly to them. Don’t be afraid to include keywords in your summary, as well. They’ll help you show up in search results. If you haven’t added a summary yet to your page, it looks like this:
Clicking the “View More” button lets you to add a bunch of other sections to your page.
Here, you can also add honors and awards that make you a cut above the rest. These show that others have seen how great you are, and recognized you for your work. It’s okay to brag about yourself here. Employers like to know that other people see great things in you too!
Another small change is to make sure your headshot is professional, and facing forward or towards your page. This helps draw the viewer’s eye to your content.
Link Humans suggest personalizing your URL for an added touch when including your profile on a resume or business card.
The new link ending should make sense and include your name. Something like “sdawgsupersysko” isn’t gonna fly with employers, or honestly, anyone. It should be short, sweet, and easy to remember.
When viewing your public profile, look to the left hand side for a box that says “Your Public Profile URL”. Once edited looks like this:
While this isn’t a deal breaker, shorter links look nicer and are easier to include on other profiles or documents.
5. Keep That Puppy Up to Date
Your LinkedIn profile is a representation of what you do and where you’ve been. If you only do one thing on this list, it should be this. Keeping your profile up-to-date is a no brainer.
LinkedIn also gives you a lot of space to showcase your skills. This is great because you can take full advantage of your experiences without trying to limit yourself like on a resume. Education, experience, and volunteer work are must-haves for your profile, so make sure to keep them updated.
Job hunting and networking are hard. But making sure your profile is the best it can be is half the battle. Even if you’re not looking for a new gig, LinkedIn is a great resource for potential customers. The main thing to keep in mind is that it’s important to be professional yet personable. People want to feel connected to you, and you want them to respect you. The balance can be tough, but these tips make it a whole lot easier to manage.
This article was syndicated from Business 2 Community: 5 Easy Tips for a More Professional LinkedIn Profile
More Digital & Social articles from Business 2 Community: