With over 450 million users worldwide and an average growth rate of 2 new users/second, LinkedIn is quickly becoming the most relevant form of social media for interacting with employers–94% of employers use LinkedIn to search candidates. Because the platform has over 6.5 million job postings and has slightly higher stakes than Facebook, we thought we’d give you a breakdown of our tips and tricks for sprucing up your LinkedIn profile section by section.
A recruiter’s interaction with your page starts with your profile picture, and having this profile picture makes them 14 times more likely to find you. You want a high-quality, professional-looking headshot. If you’re still using a picture that you cropped from a photo from a night out, it’s probably time to switch. You don’t have to suit up, and feel free to show off your personality—especially with a smile!
A profile pic makes you 14 times more likely to be found
LinkedIn automatically populates your headline with your current position, but you can change it – and you absolutely should! When people are searching or browsing (especially on mobile), they always see your headline, and if your headline is interesting, they will click through to your profile. Your headline should be short and sweet, but most people include their skills, field, or interests. If you’re struggling with your headline, browse through Linkedin, see which headlines make you want to read more, and try to emulate those.
The summary section is an opportunity to show off your personality and personal goals. Simply listing your accomplishments and experience here would be redundant, so delve a little into why these particular activities mean something to you and where they have become relevant in your current work. This is a great time to talk about things that aren’t on your resume. Also, if you’re looking for a job, definitely write out what opportunities you’re looking for in this section!
This part is relatively straightforward in that its format is similar to that of a resume. If you work for a start-up or a smaller, lesser-known company, consider writing a couple of sentences describing what your company does. Then add your responsibilities in a clear, easy-to-follow resume style format. Think of LinkedIn as an opportunity to expand upon and flesh out your “1 page limit” CV. Don’t get too wordy, but do take the time to add a bit more backstory and meat to your bullet points.
Additionally, LinkedIn offers more opportunities to stand out than a piece of paper does. For example, if your experience involves writing any sort of article or blog post, designing graphics, filming videos, or making an impressive slide deck to present to management, include it under examples of your work! You can add these files under each experience and showcase your talents and more of your work!
It’s great to have a long list of skills, but what’ll really impress recruiters is when those areas of expertise have been endorsed by former co-workers, employers, and business partners. Feel free to add a few skills you believe you possess to the list as well—someone may just come along and endorse you! LinkedIn members with skills listed under their profile had 13x more profile views than those who didn’t.
Listing skills on LinkedIn gets you 13 times more profile views
Under this section, you should include not only your university (easy way for alumni to connect), but also any honors and awards you received or activities and organizations you were involved in. The world is much smaller than you think, and you never know: an employer or future co-worker could have also been captain of their IM soccer team or received a scholarship from a certain benefactor. The more opportunities for someone to connect with your profile, the better. Just like with experience you can also add extra files and you can even add projects to give people a better understanding of what you were involved in.
This section is similar to the interests section on a resume. If employers see that you are following entrepreneurship news, fashion companies, or a certain tech forum, that tells them a little more about you and what you’re tuned in to.
Last Minute Tips
Make sure you don’t have any typos. Look at your LinkedIn as you would your resume. It may be the first or second time an employer interacts with you and your experiences, and you want to make your best impression.
Quantify as much as possible. Being specific wherever you can will always help recruiters better grasp your personal impact on a company.
Don’t be afraid to brag on yourself a little bit. We often tend to lean on the humble side of the scale, but this may be your first opportunity to convince a recruiter to select you over another candidate, so work the humble brag wherever possible.
Test it out
Now if you’re someone who likes to see results, we’ve got just the way for you to figure out if these changes worked. Linkedin’s algorithm will boost profiles that have better content. One way is to check how your profile ranks among your network for profile views. Another way to see how you “rank” is to go into a private browsing session and search your name or a term where your name will come up. The higher you rank in this search the better your profile quality.
We hope these tips helped! Comment below with any remaining questions.