Grow your Professional Brand with LinkedIn
In our last LinkedIn blog, we talked about some basic, yet vital steps to follow when starting your LinkedIn journey. Now we are going to dive in a bit further and provide some advice on how you can really engage with your network and grow your online presence and professional brand further.
Your LinkedIn profile is a professional landing page for you to manage your own online personal brand. A LinkedIn profile is a fantastic way for you to let people know who you are, your skills and experience, what you stand for, and what you’re interested in. Your profile is your online personal storyboard where people can find you and stay updated on your activity. So ensure your profile is complete and descriptive of you and your professional brand.
Below are some useful and easy-to-follow tips to help build up your professional brand on LinkedIn.
1. Use Your LinkedIn to Tell a Story and Build Your Personal Brand
When you’re building your LinkedIn profile, you need to think about your personal brand. What do you want to be known for? What’s your USP that sets you apart from your peers in your industry? Once you know your personal brand, you can express it throughout in your LinkedIn profile.
Your LinkedIn profile is your opportunity to give the broader storyline around your strengths, experience, knowledge, and work style. Compared to your CV, LinkedIn provides you with more room to showcase a wide range of experiences and skills. This means there’s a greater chance that there will be something in your profile that a viewer will connect with. This connection is key in a job search.
2. Know Your Audience — and What Keywords Will Get Their Attention
When putting together your LinkedIn profile, think about who will be reading it. This will probably be recruiters, hiring managers, and other professionals. Think about what these people will want to see in a potential candidate. This could be particular digital or technical skills or certain experiences or qualities.
To help with this, a good way to start is to follow a similar process to the one you would when tailoring your CV when applying for jobs. Find a few good job descriptions for the type of job you have or would like to have, and have a look at the content they use, common themes and look for what seems to matter to these employers. Think about which sections apply to you and your experience, and what keywords and phrases are used to describe them.
These keywords are valuable for your LinkedIn. They are keywords that are likely being used by recruiters when searching for candidates like you. So it’s important to utilise these keywords throughout your LinkedIn profile – weave them into your headline, summary, experience, skills, and anywhere else they make sense on your profile. But don’t overdo it. Make sure that your keywords flow with the rest of your writing, and aren’t just jammed in everywhere.
3. Complete Your Profile
A complete LinkedIn profile will increase your discoverability and profile search appearances – thus, you’re far more likely to show up in search results with a complete profile.
LinkedIn assigns different strengths to profiles based on their completeness, with the highest strength being “All-Star” – this is what you need to aim for. Recruiters and hiring managers are going to look at your LinkedIn profile whether you apply for their jobs on LinkedIn or somewhere else. And if they find an incomplete profile that lacks information about your background, skills, and experience, this won’t make a great impression. They won’t know enough about you to see if you are a good fit for what they are looking for. So ensure your LinkedIn is up to date and complete.
4. Custom Your URL
When you create a profile, LinkedIn automatically assigns you a string of numbers as a URL for your profile. But you should set a custom URL instead. Customising your public profile URL makes you easier to find and promotes your profile to show up better in search engine results. Ensure your URL is easy for you to remember and share. You can use your name and initials in some format, though you might need to get creative or add numbers if you have a more common name.
5. Add Links and Media To Your Work Experience
Adding links, videos, images, samples of your portfolio, and files to your LinkedIn profile allows you to visually showcase your abilities and skills to people who may be visiting your profile. Adding media makes your profile much more detailed, enticing, and multidimensional. Use this to your advantage. You can link to your company websites, projects you’ve worked on, articles or reports you’ve published, or anything else that can let recruiters see the work you’re writing about with their own eyes.
You can add this media to your “Experience” section, as well as your “Featured” section. The “Featured” section allows for your media to sit at the very top of your profile as well, so it is one of the first things that people see when they land on your profile. Adding links and media shows your credibility as a professional in your field and will support building on your online brand personality.
6. Seek Out Good Recommendations (and Give Them in Return!)
Receiving LinkedIn recommendations can enhance the credibility of who you are as a professional. Seek out and ask people you’ve worked closely with for recommendations. Make sure you let your recommender know what your goals are for your next career steps as well as what skills and experiences you’d like them to highlight.
And the best way to get a recommendation is to give one. So if you write a recommendation for a colleague, they’re likely to return the favour.
If you need any additional career advice or if you’re looking for your next career move, please feel free to contact us – we’re always here and happy to help!
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