Do you want your LinkedIn profile to be more engaging? More interesting? Found by more of the right people? I’m going to share with you some of the suggestions I make to my clients to help them spruce up their profiles, get found by their target audiences, and motivate people to engage with them. You can consider this your very own 2020 LinkedIn Profile Optimization Checklist.
1. Headline, Profile Photo, and Background Photo
People will see your headline, profile photo, and background photo than any other part of your profile. Make a good first impression by including a creative, keyword-filled headline, professional-quality headshot. And add a background that positively represents your personal brand.
Use the About section to sell yourself. Think of it as your cover letter or elevator speech. With the current profile format, the first 300 characters of your About section are going to be read often. So spruce it up and make it shine!
Good news—LinkedIn recently expanded the capacity for this section from 2,000 characters to 2,600. So there’s more space to share your most important information.
3. Experience and Education
Don’t skimp here. Provide details of each job you’ve held. Include your formal education, of course. Also include industry-specific courses, workshops, or seminars you’ve attended. Remember: LinkedIn allows up to 2,000 characters per job or education entry,
Want to come up in searches people typically use when trying to find someone like you? Include keywords Put them in your Headline, Job Experience titles, and the Skills & Endorsements section to receive the most benefit. But avoid “stuffing” your profile with keywords. Otherwise, your credibility may suffer.
5. Add Media
Adding media helps profile optimization, yes. It also makes your profile more visually interesting. It’s a great way to get people to visit your website. They can check out some of your best work examples. Visitors to your profile can also get copies of relevant documents, like your resume, your customer testimonials, etc. You can add media to the Summary, Job Experience, and Education entries of your profile.
Get at least two current, impactful recommendations. Your two most recent are nicely displayed. The rest get buried in the Show more drawer. Note, however, that you cannot reorder them. So consider grabbing the best quotes from your recommendations and place them in the job entry they are tied to.
7. Licenses and Certifications
These used to be subsections of the Accomplishments section. But they’re now stand-alone sections. Better yet, they’re higher in the profile layout. The designations you’ve earned could be the difference when a customer or employer is comparing you to your competitors. After all, recruiters may also include them in their search criteria when looking for just the right professional.
Don’t be afraid to toot your own horn. Use all of the subsections in the Accomplishments section to set yourself apart from your competitors. Subsections currently include Publications, Patents, Courses and Projects. Honors & Awards, Test Scores, Languages, and Organizations are also available.
9. Volunteer Experience
Everyone loves to work with people who genuinely care about others. Let the world know what efforts you support. This makes your LinkedIn profile that much stronger. And it is also great publicity for your favorite charitable group.
10. Calls to Action
You don’t want people to just look at your profile—you want them to do something. Invite readers to watch a video, go to your website, or request a quote. It’s easy to include calls to action in your Summary section, yes. But you can include them in other sections as well.
So don’t waste time. Get busy improving these ten things for LinkedIn profile optimization. And make 2020 your best year ever.
For this post, YouTern thanks our friends at Power Formula!
About the Author: Wayne Breitbarth is the CEO of Power Formula LLC. An experienced businessman, speaker, and author, Wayne shares his passion for social media with 40,000+ business professionals. Through private business consulting and presentations to audiences including Inc. Magazine and also 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 him on Twitter.