5 Ways to Bring Your Personal Brand to Life Using LinkedIn

September 3, 2014 Corey Bainerman, MASc

With 300 million members, LinkedIn is easily the largest professional social media platform. It’s terrific for networking, sourcing jobs, and lots more.  LinkedIn played an integral role in helping me land my current role. I used LinkedIn to search by keyword skill and industry to connect with like-minded professionals. I humbly asked them to meet me for a coffee (which I gladly paid for). One of those meetings led to a referral, and then to an interview, and the rest is history.

So, are you getting in on the LinkedIn action or are you standing on the sidelines? Supercharge your LinkedIn profile to increase your visibility, garner additional attention from recruiters, and have more success in your job search. Here are 5 steps to improve your profile:

1. Develop your headline

Your LinkedIn profile is about YOU (not the company you work for). Stand out from the crowd by NOT leaving your headline as your (current or former) title. Instead, use the 120 characters to trumpet your value – your key competencies – what you offer a company. This is a key aspect of your online brand. The headline is the only content that is seen when you show up in a search result, so it is critical that the headline demonstrates immediate value.

Out with the Old:  “Registered Nurse at XYZ Hospital”

In with the New: “Tireless, compassionate Registered Nurse who helps cancer patients and their families feel at ease throughout treatment and recovery”

2. Upload a great photo

Profiles with a photo are 7 times more likely to be viewed than those without one. A photo provides a sense of comfort for a person meeting you for networking for the first time. A photo also makes you memorable. Criteria for a great LinkedIn photo:

  1. Dress in clothing that you would wear to work
  2. Be the only one in the picture
  3. Take many pictures and choose the most professional one

3. Maximize your visibility using keyword repetition

There’s more going on behind the scenes with LinkedIn than meets the eye.  Sophisticated algorithms impact your visibility to others, and your chances of being short-listed for jobs you apply for via LinkedIn.

Two questions to consider:

  1. Which keywords are repeatedly showing up in the job postings that you apply for?
  2. Which words, when searched by recruiters on LinkedIn, do you want to lead to your profile showing up in their search results? 

Recruiters do searches for keyword skills (e.g., blueprint design, coaching) to source candidates. Commit to the keywords you want to be associated with – this is part of your personal brand – and sprinkle them in throughout your profile in a way that still reads well.

4. Add multimedia demonstrations of your work

Upload samples of your work to your profile - files, documents, presentations, videos, links to websites, blogs, etc.  Bring your profile to life by making it more dynamic with multimedia.  Show off what you can do!  This adds to your personal brand.

5. Break up long, dense paragraphs

Don’t overwhelm the reader. Use short, digestible sentences. Give the reader a break by introducing white space. This makes your profile more “scan-able”, allowing the reader to quickly take in the critical information. 

These simple changes will drastically improve the amount of profile views you get. Use these tips to illuminate your brand on LinkedIn, and you’ll put yourself on the path to achieving your goals. Share your LinkedIn goals and tips in the comments section below!  Need help more help? Visit: https://help.linkedin.com/app/home/ 

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