How-to Series: Developing Your Personal Brand on LinkedIn
How to make yourself distinct in the eyes of recruiters or industry players among vast numbers of people when it comes to your recognition in the professional or career world? The answer is your personal brand which could be easily created through a good, reliable LinkedIn profile.
LinkedIn is constantly updating its features for you to expand your branding and network whilst providing you with the medium to showcase your mastery and know-how.
It may be a hassle or seems trivial for some to go through the routine of maintaining a good LinkedIn profile. That is why developing your personal brand comes with its value, and you can reap the benefits from it. A good opportunity may exist; however, you missed it because you didn’t stand out from the crowd.
Ever heard that first impression matters? So does the first impression of glancing through a LinkedIn profile. When a connection views your LinkedIn profile, the first impression could decide whether the viewer will stay on your profile or move on. So what are the top 5 sections in your profile that you should fully utilise to attain that worthwhile first impression?
1. Profile picture
Most LinkedIn users have their profile picture uploaded, but does it speak professionalism? Research has shown that adding a professional photo of yourself will make your profile 14 times more noticeable than those who don’t. To create one is simple. Use a professional image (headshot) with a neutral background and leave those vivid pictures on your social media.
What is the name that is placed on your identity card or passport? That is the name that you should insert as your LinkedIn name. Refrain yourself from putting nicknames and begin using your full name would make it easy for people to search for your profile.
It is an essential aspect of your profile. Make it more than your job title. For example, how would you summarise your proficiency in 120 characters or less? The tip is to be concise and ingenious while mentioning the keywords that will attract people to look more closely at your profile.
Paint a picture of your working experience and your expertise in your field. Let them know of your achievements and what makes you, you. What possible benefits could you give your potential employer or those who want to reach out for your service? You may also want to obtain some points of view from your peers and revise your summary. More often than not, with a good overview, many connections may spend more time on your profile and may even reach out to you.
5. Work and Education Experience
Don’t leave this section empty. Instead, give your profile viewers a glimpse of what you do as a living that aligns with what you aspire to be on your next career journey. Highlights your achievements. You may also add media samples such as portfolios, websites, and blog posts.
Bonus tip: URL
Did you know that you can customise your LinkedIn profile URL? This could make it easier for the recruiters to search for you. You could also share this link as part of your CV’s information. Just click on the “Edit public profile & URL” on your profile, and you are set to go.
Get those skills acknowledged and spread those endorsements & recommendations
Add on the skills you are proficient in, and get some of those skills endorsed. This could help to build up the credibility of your skill sets. Some of those skills listed are also available for LinkedIn’s Skills Assessment. If you pass the minimum requirement mark in this online test, you will get a Verified Badge by LinkedIn. In return, it could fortify your strength in that particular competency.
Spread those endorsements as well. Look through your connections and start to endorse those whom you know are capable of what they are doing. This little act of service may be reciprocated back to you and put you in a favourable position. But keep in mind that relevancy matters. Only list out the skills you think are pertinent to your experience or the career path you aim for. For example, a long list of primarily irrelevant skills might divert your viewer from your actual competency.
A list of skills will give your viewer a flick through of your proficiency. However, a personal avouchment of your competency and work ethics from one of your connections or former colleagues could take your profile up a notch. Take the time to reach out to those who could testify to your credibility by using the recommendation section of your LinkedIn profile.
Grow and strengthen those connections while fortifying your credibility
Aim to connect with at least 300 connections in your network. They can be your coworkers, recruiters, peers or industry players, or people you look up to and aspire to be. Additionally, you could fully utilise to grow your network by joining groups of your interests and connecting with them. Else, you could also sync your profile with the contacts of your email address. This would allow LinkedIn to suggest connections that you are familiar with.
Once you have gained traction with your connection, start to react to those connections by being active with their posting. This is by commenting, sharing, or even liking the post that coincides with your ideals. The deed of commenting will give you a platform for opinion sharing and may lead to healthy discussions.
The more you share and comment, the more substantial your profile would be on LinkedIn. Once you have started establishing yourself as a pundit on specific subjects, you may want to start your thought-provoking posts. Keep an eye on your industry experts and relevant influencers for you to gauge an idea that would be worth sharing. You will be able to learn a thing or two from these experts. Take it up to the next level by producing your Publication from LinkedIn. This feature could lead to potential high profile connections to your account.
Take it one step at a time, and you will be there. Developing an excellent personal brand through your LinkedIn profile will create value proportionate to the effort and time you have invested into it. You may not see it now, but it will be rewarding in the long run.
Writer – Diyana Hamzah