Maintaining a personal LinkedIn profile is equally as important as maintaining your company page. Personal LinkedIn profiles are not solely used to attract recruiters or search for new jobs. Having active, up-to-date personal and company profiles will allow both to work in tandem with each other, strengthening your brand’s overall online presence.
The benefits of cultivating a personal LinkedIn profile in conjunction with your company page are infinite and include the potential for additional reach, increased customer confidence, and the opportunity to establish employee advocacy programs.
But first, you need to make sure your personal profile is optimized for success.
8 Steps to Setup Your Personal LinkedIn Profile
To help you get started, WPHub has compiled a list of eight steps to set yourself– and your profile– up for success.
1. Professional Profile Picture
Your personal profile picture will act as viewer’s first impression of you, so make sure that you put your best face forward. According to a recent LinkedIn survey, a personal profile is 21 times more likely to be clicked on if you have a profile picture. If funding allows, hire a professional photographer to take your headshot. Choose a recent, true-to-life photo, where your face takes up about 60% of the frame. Follow LinkedIn guidelines and upload a picture that is 400 x 400 pixels.
2. Strategic Headline
LinkedIn headlines are prime real estate on your personal profile, so utilize the space accordingly. Create a headline that is more than merely your job title. Be specific about your role and incorporate relevant keywords. Keep your LinkedIn headline creative, but concise; the space allows for only 120 characters.
3. Engaging Summary
Be sure to fill in the summary field—this is the most personal piece of your LinkedIn profile. Utilize this space to highlight your present and future career ambitions and keep the tone positive. The summary portion of your profile can contain additional points of contact, including your mobile phone number, email address and other social media handles (so long as those social media profiles mimic the same professional representation of yourself).
4. List Relevant Skills
Use the list provided by LinkedIn and identify all of the skills that are relevant to you. Adding skills to your personal profile helps to support the claims made in your headline and summary. Plus, incorporating skills makes it easier for others to validate and endorse your professional abilities. Personal profiles of LinkedIn users who display five or more applicable skills are viewed 17 times more than those who do not.
5. Manage Endorsements
LinkedIn endorsements reinforce the skills that you’ve claimed to have. Get more endorsements by giving more endorsements to professional contacts that genuinely deserve them. This will often trigger the endorsee to return to the favor. Once your endorsements begin coming in, be sure to manage them properly. Use the edit feature in the Skills section to rearrange endorsements, so your strongest skills are at the top. Through the edit feature, you can also hide or block endorsements that don’t pertain to your job experience.
6. Request Recommendations
Recommendations take endorsements a step further to support your purported skill set. LinkedIn recommendations are written testimonials from professionals who have previously worked with you. LinkedIn allows you to request recommendations from your contacts. But before you do so, personalize your appeal and only reach out to those whose recommendations would be of value to you. Frivolous recommendations from feigned sources are apparent and will end up hurting more than helping.
7. Follow Industry Influencers
Research industry experts and follow them on LinkedIn. Following relevant influencers will populate your LinkedIn feed with interesting content that you can then share when you think it adds value. Following a robust list of industry experts adds context to your profile, and demonstrates a passion for the type of work you do.
8. Share Relevant Content
Take up an active role in the LinkedIn professional community that you’ve built by sharing relevant content on your personal profile. When you share articles and industry updates, those actions appear on your connection’s LinkedIn feeds, which gives your personal profile, and in turn, your company page, more exposure.
Hopefully, the above information will set you up for success on LinkedIn.