A well-executed elevator speech is a great business tool. And your LinkedIn Summary section? That is your online elevator speech.
Your LinkedIn summary typically shows up near the top of your profile. So it’s one of the first things a person sees. It has also gained more importance since LinkedIn revised their app last fall. Why? Because the first 78 characters (including spaces) of your summary are now displayed near the top of your profile.
Which means your summary is the perfect place to market and brand yourself. To do that well, it should:
- Act like a cover letter for the rest of your profile
- Include your most strategic keywords
- Most important, it should move your readers to action
Your LinkedIn Summary section can include up to 2,000 characters, and I suggest you use every one of them.
While you’re writing (or re-writing) your summary, here are seven simple ways to improve your online elevator speech:
1. Describe Your Previous Jobs and Major Accomplishments
Describe briefly the types of jobs you have had and any major accomplishments. But don’t waste this space with all the details. That’s what the Experience section is for. Here, you want to highlight your best work and biggest achievements.
2. Describe Your Perfect Work Environment
Describe your perfect job and company culture. Then take a moment to talk about the vendor and partner relationships you value most. And then tell the reader about the team dynamics that inspire you to do great work.
3. Show Social Proof of Your Capabilities
Include a direct quote from an employer, colleague or customer testimonial or letter of recommendation. If you want to share the entire testimonial or recommendation, include the quote in your Summary and then direct the reader to the complete document in the Add Media section below your Summary.
4. Share What Makes You Different
Describe what makes you unique. What value do you provide? Then tell the reader what makes your work habits different? Most important, what makes you qualified to do the work in a passionate, professional manner?
5. Tell the Reader How You Work
Describe how you help people/companies accomplish their goals. Then explain how your skills, experiences, and proven results can be used to improve a prospective employer’s business. And tell a story that captures the essence of your work habits and your focus on accomplishments.
6. Talk About Results
Describe briefly your business relationships or experiences that resulted in superior outcomes. Within your stories, include quantified statements that demonstrate your performance. For instance: “Led a team of six that exceeded quota by 132 percent in 2015.”
7. Provide a Sneak Peek into Your Potential
Finally, share forward-thinking ideas and thoughts. For example, outline new markets or new job opportunities you are considering and the type of relationships that could assist you in that effort. In other words, talk about what’s coming next versus what happened in the past.
Bonus: Provide a Call to Action
At the very end of your summary, provide a specific call-to-action. Specifically, how does the reader reach you? Where can they learn more about your work? If you feel comfortable doing so, make it easy to reach you by including business-related contact information.
Improving your LinkedIn summary section will help you market your brand, get attention, and expand your LinkedIn Network. So get to work today… and get the job interview tomorrow!
For this post, YouTern thanks our friends at Power Formula.
About the Author: Wayne Breitbarth is the CEO of Power Formula LLC. He is an experienced businessman, speaker, and author who has shared his passion for social media with 40,000+ business professionals. Through private business consulting and presentations to audiences including Inc. Magazine and the American Marketing Association, Wayne makes LinkedIn simple. Wayne is the author of the best-selling book The Power Formula for LinkedIn Success. Connect with Wayne on Twitter.