LinkedIn is a powerful platform when it comes to business professionals. Everything is looked at with a bit more seriousness than, say, Facebook, or Twitter. What does your LinkedIn profile say about you? Do you have a profile pic of you and half of your friend’s face cropped out? Are you standing with a beer in hand at the beach? What about your summary, is it full of typos? Lots of questions and lots of answers to go along with them.
These are the 10 best tips for a better LinkedIn profile, originally posted by Inc Magazine.
Even though you’re busy, LinkedIn is one place you can’t forget. The more you put in, the more you’ll get out of it.
1. Keep it basic
I use the word basic, like Steve Jobs would use the word. Keep it simple. Don’t over use certain words like “expert, motivated, passionate, hard-worker”, everyone claims to be all of those and more. Keeping everything basic, yet up to date, is very important with having a solid profile. Steve Jobs is a minimalist, using the least amount of words to express the most amount of information. Yet, he kept everything updated. Think about how often you download a new iOS firmware…
Many people forget to keep their LinkedIn profiles updated. Whether you’re a total newbie, just starting a new job, or starting to explore new opportunities, there’s no excuse to have outdated information on LinkedIn. It will reflect badly on you.
2. Only Use Professional Photos
LinkedIn profiles that have a picture are 11 times more likely to be viewed. So if you’re still showing a silhouette, it’s time to make a change and reveal yourself.
However, some friendly advice:
Your LinkedIn photo shouldn’t be from 20 years ago. It shouldn’t look like it belongs on a dating site, stock photo site, or social network (e.g., Facebook or Instagram). And don’t feature your pet or significant other. Just. No.
LinkedIn is for professionals. Be one.
3. Write a Ridiculously Good Summary
This is where you really sell yourself to potential connections. Your summary should expand on what appears in your headline, highlighting your specialties, career experience, noteworthy accolades, and thought leadership.
There has been much discussion about whether it’s best to write in first-person versus third-person narrative here. Ultimately, it doesn’t really matter either way–just stay consistent with whichever you choose. Don’t go back and forth between first person and third person as it’s confusing and signals a lack of attention to detail.
In summary of LinkedIn summaries: keep your ego in check, focus on the most relevant details about your career, avoid meaningless jargon, and ensure it’s easy to read.
4. Terminate Those Typos
Poor grammar, typos, and misspellings are a no-no.
Avoid typos at all costs.
5. Connect With People You Don’t Yet Know
One of the biggest mistakes people make on LinkedIn is failing to reach out to connect with people you want to know but don’t yet. That’s the whole point of networking–getting to know new people, not just established connections.
Building out your LinkedIn network has many benefits. You get in front of influences. You get more endorsements. More people see your best content, share that content, and visit your website. And it’s great for personal branding.
6. Find and Join Groups
One way to start connecting with people you want to know is to join LinkedIn groups. Whether it’s a group run by a major publication, a group for people with certain job titles, or a group dedicated to a niche topic, there are millions of groups to choose from, so start searching to find groups that are right for you and join them.
7. Use (but Don’t Abuse) Status Updates
LinkedIn status updates are your chance to highlight some of your recent work, share an article or book you’ve read, promote your presence at a conference or event, or offer inspiration through a quote or saying.
Because LinkedIn is a business network, it’s best to use it during business hours. Keep active, but don’t go overboard.
Try to post an update at least once a day at minimum; aim for a maximum of three or four updates per day, as long as you’re sharing useful, relevant content. Every update is another opportunity to strengthen or forge a connection.
8. Own Your Media
Visual content is only growing in importance.
Help your LinkedIn profile pop by adding documents, photos, videos, and presentations.
9. Ask for Recommendations
So you haven’t received as many LinkedIn recommendations as you’d like? After all, it takes a bit of time and thought for someone to write a recommendation.
What can you do? Ask for them! LinkedIn makes is super easy, providing an “Ask to be recommended” link, where you can specify what you want to be recommended for, who you want to recommend you, and write a personal message.
Pick specific people. Don’t just randomly ask all your contacts if they can recommend you. Be selective.
10. Be Positive
What you say reflects on you. Never post negative comments about someone’s post or a past employer.
Instead, pause and think if there’s a way you can rethink and rewrite in a constructive way–if you can’t, just hit the delete button and go do something else to shift focus.
I do not claim this information to be my own thoughts, they are originally published by Inc Magazine
Now you know everything you need to do to refresh your LinkedIn profile. Make yourself look amazing, wow future connections, and grow your influence. It all starts with a killer profile.