Create and Optimize a LinkedIn Profile in 2023
Just like we learnt on our previous article, LinkedIn is more than just a social media platform for professionals. It is also a powerful tool to showcase your personal brand, network with other experts, and find new opportunities in your field. But, how do you make the most of LinkedIn, you need to create and optimize your profile so that it stands out from the crowd and attracts the right people to your profile.
In this article, I will share some tips and best practices on how to create and optimize a LinkedIn profile in 2023. Whether you are a student, a job seeker, a freelancer, or an entrepreneur, am sure that these tips will help you improve your online presence and reputation on LinkedIn.
Practical Tips To help You Create and Optimize a LinkedIn Profile in 2023
Choose a Professional Profile Photo
Your profile photo is the first thing that people see when they visit your profile. It is also one of the most important factors that influence your profile views and connections. According to LinkedIn itself, having a profile photo can increase your profile views by up to 21 times.
Therefore, you should choose a professional profile photo that is clear, recent, and looks like you. Your face should take up around 60% of the total space. Avoid using selfies, group photos, or photos with filters or effects. Instead, use a photo that shows your face clearly and confidently, with a neutral or smiling expression.
Set a Background Photo that Reflects Your Personality
Your background photo is another visual element that can enhance your profile. A background is the large image that appears behind your profile photo and headline. You can use it to showcase your personality, industry, or interests.
For example, you can use an image of your work environment, a project you are proud of, or something that inspires you. You can also use an image that relates to your headline or summary. For instance, if you are a content marketer, you can use an image of a laptop with some text or graphics on it at least to show your professionalism in the field.
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Your background photo should be high-quality and relevant to your profile. Avoid using images that are too busy, distracting, or inappropriate. You can also add some text or logos to your background photo if you want to highlight your brand or message.
You can preferably use a white background if you are just starting out.
Create a Headline that Captures Your Unique Value Proposition/what you are offering
A headline is the short text that appears below your name and photo on your profile. It is also one of the first things that people see when they search for you on LinkedIn or Google. Therefore, it is crucial to create a headline that captures your unique value proposition and what you do or aspire to do.
The headline should be concise, catchy, and relevant to your target audience. You can use words, phrases, that describe your skills, passions, or goals. For example, “Content marketer | Storyteller | Podcast host | Marketer and so on”.
You can also customize your headline for different purposes or audiences. For example, if you are looking for a job, you can mention the position or industry you are interested in. If you are a freelancer or an entrepreneur, you can mention the value or benefit you provide to your clients or customers.
In fact, your headline is all about yourself and what you have to offer.
Cut the Buzzwords and Clichés from Your Profile
One of the common mistakes I noticed people make on their LinkedIn profiles is using buzzwords and clichés that are overused and vague. These words do not help you stand out from the crowd or showcase your unique strengths. Instead, they make your profile sound generic and boring.
Some of the most common buzzwords and clichés on LinkedIn
- Team player
Avoid these words, instead, you should use specific examples and metrics to demonstrate your achievements and strengths. For example, instead of saying “I am a creative content marketer”, you can say “I created and executed a content marketing strategy that increased company sales by 300% in six months”.
You should also use action verbs and power words that show your impact and value. For example:
Tell Your Story in the About Section
The About section is where you can express your mission, motivation, and skills in a personal and engaging way. It is also where you can showcase your personality and voice. This section can help you connect with your audience and make them want to learn more about you.
Your About section should be concise but informative. You can use bullet points or paragraphs, but limit the text to one or two paragraphs. You should also use the first-person point of view and write in a conversational tone.
The About section must answer these questions:
- Who are you and what do you do?
- What are your skills and expertise?
- What are your passions and goals?
- What value or benefit do you provide to your audience or clients?
- What makes you unique or different from others in your field? This should be taken as the ‘how’ you will help achieve a given task.
You can also add media files, such as videos, slides, or articles, to showcase your work. This can help you demonstrate your skills and achievements in a visual and interactive way.
Sync Your Profile with Other Online Platforms
One of the ways to optimize your LinkedIn profile is to sync it with other online platforms that you use, such as your website, blog, portfolio, or social media accounts. This can help you increase your visibility and credibility online. It can also help you drive more traffic and leads to your other platforms.
You can add links to these platforms in the Contact info section of your profile. You can also add them to your headline, summary, or experience sections if they are relevant to your profile. For example, if you have a website or a blog that showcases your work or expertise, you can add a link to it in your summary section.
You should also make sure that your profile is consistent with your other platforms. For example, you should use the same name, photo, and bio across all platforms. You should also update your profile regularly to reflect any changes or achievements on your other platforms.
Highlight Your Skills and Endorsements
The Skills & Endorsements section of your profile is where you can list the skills that are relevant to your industry and role. You can add up to 50 skills that reflect your abilities and knowledge. You can also reorder the list so that your most important skills are on top.
The Skills & Endorsements section can help you showcase your expertise and rank higher in search results. It can also help you get endorsements from your connections, which are like testimonials that validate your skills. According to LinkedIn, users who have five or more skills listed are contacted up to 33 times more by recruiters and other LinkedIn members.
To optimize this section, you should:
- Choose skills that are specific and relevant to your profile. Avoid using generic or vague skills that do not differentiate you from others.
- Add new skills as you learn them or update existing ones as you improve them. You can also remove skills that are no longer relevant or accurate.
- Ask for endorsements from people who know you well and can vouch for your skills. You can also endorse others for their skills and they may reciprocate.
- Group similar skills together to make them easier to find and manage. For example, you can group skills related to content marketing, such as writing, editing, SEO, etc.
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Share Relevant Content with Your Network and Followers
One of the best ways to optimize your LinkedIn profile is to share relevant content with your network and followers on LinkedIn. This can help you showcase your expertise, insights, or opinions on topics related to your field. It can also help you build your reputation and authority on LinkedIn.
You can share different types of content on LinkedIn, such as articles, videos, podcasts, or infographics. You can create your own content using LinkedIn’s publishing platform or share content from other sources that you find valuable or interesting. You should also add a caption or a comment to explain why you are sharing the content and what value it provides to your audience.
You should also engage with other people’s content by liking, commenting, or sharing it. This can help you build relationships with other professionals and influencers in your field. It can also help you increase your visibility and reach on LinkedIn.
You should share content regularly but not too frequently. According to LinkedIn, posting once a week can help you reach 60% of your audience. You should also post at optimal times when your audience is most active and likely to see your content.
Stay Connected with Your Existing Contacts and Reach Out to New Ones
The last but not the least tip on how to create and optimize a LinkedIn profile is to stay connected with your existing contacts and reach out to new ones on LinkedIn. You can use LinkedIn’s messaging feature to send messages, invitations, or recommendations to people you know or want to know. You can also use LinkedIn’s InMail feature to send messages to people who are not in your network but are relevant to your goals.
You should also join groups, follow hashtags, or attend events that are related to your interests or goals. These are great ways to expand your network and discover new opportunities on LinkedIn. You can also participate in discussions, ask questions, or share insights in these groups or events.
When connecting with new people on LinkedIn, you should:
- Be polite and respectful
- Be clear and concise
- Be specific and relevant
- Be personal and authentic
- Be proactive and follow up
By using these tips, am sure that you will be able to create and optimize your linkedIn profile appropriately. Be sure to dig around our website, am sure you’ll find more gold here if you are a job seeker.