So, You’ve Created a LinkedIn Profile. Now What?

Because LinkedIn is NOT your CV, here are my tips and tricks on how to make the most of your LinkedIn profile quickly and easily to showcase your personal brand.

I’ll guess that, when it comes to LinkedIn, you fall into 1 of 2 camps:

  1. LinkedIn is an online duplicate of your CV, let’s leave it at that
  2. You know LinkedIn is the place to be, but it’s just so complicated to keep up.

Here we go: LinkedIn is NOT your CV. The platform makes it so easy to apply for jobs that it’s easy to think that it is. But it isn’t.

From a recruitment perspective, your contribution to LinkedIn – whether it’s filling out your profile to superstar levels, sharing posts and articles, and commenting on others – fills in the blanks on your resume and covering letter for potential employers.

From a business networking perspective, LinkedIn is your partner in crime. A place to showcase your experience, expertise and opinion in a much more direct and approachable way than an email newsletter or blog post.

The anatomy of a LinkedIn post

LinkedIn profile tips

I love helping others improve their LinkedIn profiles, whether it’s reviewing the content on the profile itself or coming up with posting strategies for personal profiles and company pages.

To help you, I’m sharing some easy tips and tricks to make your profile stand out based on questions I’ve been asked – so it’s recruitment ready or employee advocacy friendly!

How can I improve my LinkedIn profile quickly?

Assuming you’ve already set up your profile, here are some often overlooked elements to your LinkedIn profile that you can update quickly and have maximum impact.

Update your LinkedIn headline

You have 120 characters to make some noise – use them wisely! A rule of thumb for a quick-but-effective LinkedIn headline is to use the space to answer the question: “Who do you help, and what with?” For example: “I help small businesses sell with the right words”

Customise your LinkedIn URL

Make your LinkedIn profile extra pretty with a nice, clean URL. After all, you don’t want to be /john-smith-343840298120938. Go to View Profile, then at the top right, you should see a link to Edit public profile and URL.

How to customise your LinkedIn URL

Perfect your headshot – and don’t forget the banner!

When it comes to your profile image, always use a professional headshot, not your company logo or personal image.

Pro tip: The banner image is often overlooked – you can use your company banner here to reinforce your position as a brand ambassador. If you’re creative, design something that reflects your personality, or use it to highlight an achievement. The LinkedIn personal cover image size is 1584px x 396px.

Supercharge your summary

Aside from your headline, your summary is an important piece of real estate on your LinkedIn profile, so make it worthy of reading – and don’t just take it from your “bio” or “about” section of your CV!

Make the first line very focused, as this will be displayed before the rest of the summary is truncated. Again, consider simply saying what you do here, before expanding on your experience.

You can use the space after your first line to explain things like what you or your business does, why you started it, how much experience you have, and more.

Sharing your summary as a story works well, including anecdotes to inject your personality into your bio.

Just remember to make it scannable, so it’s easy to read on mobile and desktop and keep it to a maximum of 250 words (about 2-3 paragraphs).

Pro tip: End your summary with a call-to-action, telling the reader what to do next. Should they visit your website, connect with you, email you? Let them know here.

Want some examples to follow? Check out LinkedIn’s article on how to boost your profile.

Bonus points

Don’t forget to ask peers to recommend you, as these impressive quotes get displayed on your profile! Plus, you can also add multimedia to your profile – in the form of slides, PDFs, images and videos – if you have a portfolio of work you can share.

What posts should I create for LinkedIn?

To be successful, your LinkedIn content should be 3 things, according to Dennis Shiao at the Content Marketing Institute:

  1. Conversational
  2. Helpful
  3. Relatable

Guess what? LinkedIn is full of humans, just like you. So, when you start thinking about the types of posts – and articles – you should be creating on the platform, think about the types of posts you’d like to read.

Here are 5 ways of improving your LinkedIn posts:

  1. Have a personal angle – “how I achieved” or even “how I failed” at something. We can all relate to that!
  2. Offer a tip or trick – without having to sign up to something
  3. Share success – I appreciate seeing testimonials and reviews for others, it adds to their credibility (just don’t overdo it!)
  4. Share recent work – if you’ve worked on a project you’re proud of, and have permission to do so, share it on LinkedIn – there really is no better place
  5. Be opinionated – no social channel has more engagement when it comes to an opinion. There’s been a lot of noise recently about the future of workplaces and WFH setups, for example
Using LinkedIn to improve your personal brand
Image courtesy of LinkedIn Sales Navigator via Unsplash

Key takeaway

The key is not to think of LinkedIn as your CV, but as your personal branding platform. At a glance, these might seem like the same thing, but BRAND YOU is much bigger and much more exciting than a resume!

Want to know more about improving your LinkedIn profile? Get in touch and see how I can help you make the most of your presence on the world’s leading professional network.