October 1, 2014

It All Begins With Your LinkedIn Profile

your linkedin profile

LinkedIn is the best place for business professionals to post information about themselves, regardless of your discipline. As a business professional, regardless of what your function is, you need to be findable to those in your field.

And to be findable among 300 million other professionals will take some hard work –  but it is doable.

A good to great profile can make the difference between you getting your next client, consulting agreement or that elusive speaking gig. This is the place where you need to define and discuss the value you bring to your profession without hyperbole.

To become more findable by those who need your expertise, you need to address the top elements of your LinkedIn profile, in order of importance.

Top 5 Elements of Your LinkedIn Profile

Photo

This is the first thing people gravitate to as we are all visual beings. A professional looking photo of you smiling is usually best.

Nobody needs to see your boat, your dog or your family – just you.

Headline

This is the tag line under your name and it is valuable real estate. The default mode is your current title.

A good tag line gets people to read your LinkedIn profile, just like a good email subject line gets people to read your email.

Name

This is your name. We have all seen people with email addresses, professional designations and more in the name field.

Use your name – just your name. Anything else is clutter.

Summary/Specialties

View this as your first conversation with your LinkedIn profile visitor. Make it an interesting conversation and talk about what you bring to the market.

The specialties (2nd part of the summary) is where you enumerate each of your skills. Use the jargon of your particular industry, that’s what people search on. There were 5.7 billion searches done on LinkedIn in 2012.

Experience

This is where you highlight your talent and expertise. Tell people what you do, what you’ve done, and what your small business does – make it interesting.

There are several other facets to your LinkedIn profile, but these are the biggies. Do these right and you will start attracting attention from the people you want attention from.

Your LinkedIn profile is always a work in progress. Check out OPP (other people’s profiles) and get some ideas on how to improve yours.

Remember, a good to great profile can make the difference between you and your next client, consulting agreement or that elusive speaking gig.

A bad profile is the difference between your next piece of work – and staying at home, watching daytime TV.

LinkedIn Photo via Shutterstock

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Mark Amtower


Mark Amtower Mark Amtower is an award-winning Government Contracting consultant; LinkedIn and social media coach; keynote speaker & Amazon best-seller. You can reach him through LinkedIn or at Federal Direct.

9 Reactions

  1. A great profile is a prerequisite to success. Once you have it put together start “activating your network” by letting connections know you’re available and looking. That gets you more ears and eyes to find those great opportunities, often before they hit the open market.

  2. Aside from these, you should let your real life connections know about the presence of your profile. Build a network upon your existing network. You’ll be surprised on what you’ll find.

  3. I definitely agree with this post, Linkedin is becoming an increasing factor in the hiring process. Networking is becoming a part of everyday life and Linkedin is just another way to do it.

  4. All- thnx for the comments & feedback.LI is #1 for recruiting and HR when vetting new employees or prospects. Headhunters are telling me they don’t “adopt” candidates if they don’t have a good-to-great profile.

    I have gotten both speaking and consulting gigs just from my profile.

  5. Yes! There is no doubt that LinkedIn is very important to use. I’m still learn the ways of marketing with LinkedIn but I’m getting there.

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