I often hear my clients struggle with creating content for LinkedIn. Your personal brand is on the line if your LinkedIn profile fails to impress potential employers and you can’t afford to sell your achievements short. If you are unsure about where or how to start, follow these four simple steps to get your profile moving in the right direction.
Write a clear, specific headline that makes a sustained impact
The headline you see posted next to your photo is the first thing someone visiting your profile sees, and this is your chance to impress the reader with some key achievement while also including something short about what you do. Don’t worry if you are in a career transition and your experiences listed in the rest of your profile don’t match exactly. The point is to catch the attention of a recruiter in the industry you are targeting so the more specific you are the better.
Upload a professional quality headshot
The centrality of the photo on the LinkedIn profile template makes it imperative that you include a flattering photo of yourself. If you do nothing else, for the sake of having a complete profile, do this. The confidence and enthusiasm that you can express visually can be equally — or even more — important than the written word when it comes to delivering a first impression.
Limit “bullet point achievements” to three or four top examples
When I revise LinkedIn profiles for the top executives, the most common problem I see are too many examples that no one will ever read. Favor quality over quantity; and stick to relevant cases to maximize your odds that your targeted role or employer will find you.
Endorse others strategically
Haphazardly endorsing random people in your network may not be the best tactic. Instead, pick individuals who are in a position to get you exposed to decision makers in the industry or companies you want to impress. There is no guarantee that anyone you endorse will reciprocate, but the possibility that they will makes it well worth the effort.
Debra Wheatman is a certified writer and career coach who has guided the professional development of thousands of clients globally. She is reachable at firstname.lastname@example.org.