Building a stellar LinkedIn profile page can be a difficult proposition for many of us, especially for those who don’t spend every waking minute on a social network posting updates and tweeting to their friends and anyone else who will listen. But, as anyone can tell you, writing LinkedIn profile pages that are effective and attractive to potential employers is crucial if you are in the market for a new job or simply want to update your credentials.
A Headshot is Worth a Thousand Words
In the virtual world of the internet it is comforting to see a photograph of a person that you may want to consider hiring. A good headshot of you and only you (no group photos please) is absolutely essential to getting your foot in the virtual door.
Choose Your Headline Wisely
You may not know this when writing LinkedIn profile pages, but LinkedIn chooses your most recent job title as the headline for you page. This is fine in most cases but if you’re looking to change career direction or simply don’t feel that the job title adequately describes you then be sure to change it. In short, when choosing your headshot be sure that the photo is the how you would want to present yourself to your boss as that s precisely what you are looking for: a new employer.
Spend Some Time on Your Summary
A good summary or biographical blurb s really what distinguishes professional LinkedIn profile writing from amateur writing. Even more importantly, your summary is the one element (after your headshot of course) that can make or break your profile. It used to be that you could get away with cutting and pasting from your CV or resume but the network has changed and people want a little more. You may want t consider writing in the first person to ensure your personality comes through, perhaps even using a little humor to create a connection between yourself and the reader.
Don’t Forget Your Keywords
The original masters of search, employers and headhunters know exactly what they’re looking for in a summary so when it is LinkedIn profile writing be sure to pepper them with the right key words. But how do you know which are the “right” keywords for your industry? Usually, these words are used to describe the specific skills required for the position such as knowledge of software, shop terms and industry speak. If you’re not using the right keywords then you’re not going to be noticed by recruiters or potential employers so do some quick research by browsing the profiles of others in your industry.
Update Your Profile
Once you have written your LinkedIn page don’t just let it sit there and collect dust. You will want to update your status from time to time to ping your network and let people know you’re still alive and active in the industry. What to post? News about your company, industry related news items, books and articles with relevant topics; anything that reinforces the perception of your commitment and professionalism.