The job hunt has changed. It’s not just about your resume. Today it’s about your online profile. 94% of recruiters look at social media during the hiring process. While managing your reputation on all social networks is important, LinkedIn is THE business social networking site.
In many cases, job application pages expect you to submit your application with your LinkedIn profile. Make sure you have a winning one. Every second, two people join LinkedIn and now there are more than one billion searches on the platform every day. What this means is you’re at the biggest networking gathering of your life and you need to stand out.
Don’t panic. We’ve got the Top 10 Tips to Create a Stellar Linkedin Profile for you.
- Have a Photo: Profiles with pictures get 14 times more views. Your profile should reflect who you are and what you want to do. If you want to work on Wall Street, don’t put a vacation picture of you taken on the beach. Your photo should be clear, current, professional and authentic. And please smile!
- Header Picture: Just like Facebook and Twitter, LinkedIn gives you the chance to upload a large background photo. Use this space to let a photo tell a story about you. Make sure it’s sized right (1400x425).
- Headline: This should catch someone’s attention and describe what you do. Avoid sales speak. Think like an SEO guru and use keywords since LinkedIn is, in essence, a search engine. If you’re in communications, for example, you might use “Content Marketing Expert” or “PR, Marketing, Communications Professional.”
- Summary: This is one of the most frequently viewed sections of your profile, so make this real estate count. Try and make this more personable and conversational than what you would write in an executive summary on a traditional resume. Don’t be afraid to get creative and weave in your top skills with some fun facts about yourself that people wouldn’t see on a traditional resume. End the section with a call-to-action. An example would be “please message me to talk about opportunities in X,Y,Z.”
- Experience: Here’s the place to toot your own horn. Showcase your skills and expertise, as well as the results you have achieved. You can adapt this from your traditional resume.
- Recommendations: This is an often under-utilized section of your profile, but it’s the perfect area to build credibility. In the same way that having the media write about your product builds more credibility than simply taking out an ad, having other professionals sing your praises does the same thing. To beef up this section, you have to be proactive and ask people to endorse you. Because you want certain people to highlight certain skills remind them of some of your successes in that particular arena. Always thank them and offer to recommend them.
- Join Groups: Remember, this is still a SOCIAL network. The more you interact, the more you get back. Your profile is five times more likely to be viewed if you join and participate in groups.
- Have a complete Profile: Profiles that include education get 10 times more views, add skills and you’ll get 13 times more views, and identify your industry and you’ll see 15 times more views. Whatever you do, don’t discount volunteer experience. More than 40% of hiring managers polled by LinkedIn said they weigh it as much as formal work experience.
- Use Keywords: Think of your profile as a website and optimize it with keywords related to your industry. These are the main areas you need to focus on SEO:
- Title, Current & Previous Experiences
- Website URL
- Work Experiences
- Skills & Endorsements
10. Blog: A relatively new feature allows you to become a publisher on LinkedIn. This blog enables you to reach your targets and make new connections. Utilize this space to help establish yourself as a thought leader on a topic.