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There are over 500 million users on LinkedIn and growing. With so many users, how can you be sure your profile will be successful and gain attention from others? The answer is that you must increase your visibility, have a creative, cohesive, compelling profile that promotes your brand and how you differ from your peers. Listed below are steps to take to create a successful LinkedIn profile:
Decide on your Brand
You must decide on your brand and the best way to do that is to be authentic. Think about what matters to you - this could include your vision, purpose, values and passions. Consider what you have in common with your peers, but also consider what makes you different. Deciding on your brand can take time, but once you do, you will be able to see how you connect with others, what makes you compelling, what your values are and how you are unique.
The headline is your “so what” statement, and can often times be one of the first items seen on your profile. Your headline needs to me more than solely a job description. Consider creating a statement that showcases your mission or how you could benefit your viewer.
The summary is where you can go into detail about yourself. Consider writing about what you’ve learned throughout your professional career or your values, passions and strengths. Include any goals or accomplishments that showcase your skills. Your personality can show, but remember to stay professional. Showing your personality will help viewers understand you without speaking in person.
Your experience section can be thought of as a bigger and better version of your resume. This is where you can share what you have done and how well your jobs have been executed. Remember to highlight responsibilities that support your brand as projected on your profile. Just as with your resume, try to limit the experience section to jobs that you’ve held within the past fifteen years. Within job descriptions, you can also add media, such as blog posts, PowerPoints and other media.
Endorsements & Recommendations
The best way to gain endorsements and recommendations is to give them! Only accept endorsements that are relevant to your brand and delete any that are not. For recommendations, you can always ask people directly to post on your profile if needed. Keep in mind that endorsements can be rearranged in any order you choose.
To complete your profile, consider customizing your LinkedIn URL, for example, your name or name with your area of expertise. You can also join specific groups within your industry or area of interest. If you are not satisfied with how your profile is arranged, you can reorder the sections. Note, that the summary will always be on top, but you can reorder any other section.