Your LinkedIn Profile is certainly your first, and can be your last chance to make a positive impression online.
It’s a combination of a sales pitch, a personal presentation, a business card, a brochure, a personal statement, a list of recommendations, a mini web-site, and a wave from across the room. It has a lot of work to do, and it only has a few seconds to either succeed or fail in doing that work. So – how do you make it a success?
This is the first of Ten Top Tips published weekly with my compliments, to help you make your LinkedIn Profile more effective. Enjoy!
Ten Tips for a Better Linkedin Profile: 1/10
Tip 1: Forget your CV
If you are looking for a job, you write a CV. If you are looking to engage people and interest them in people in you online, you need to write something else. Telling everyone that you are the founder and director of Baggytrooser Bag Busters, founded it with your great aunt in 1917, and which has almost 11.5 employees in Skateraw, Rejyavik and Badalona will not cut it. Frankly, I don’t care. Instead, tell me something interesting about you. In an online profile, I want to know about you first, your business later (if at all). I want to know what inspires and interests you, what makes you tick. The fact that you are the best Bag Buster Broker in Europe is something I’ll learn about later perhaps, and then I might want to do business, but NOT BEFORE I KNOW YOU.
Still a place for the ‘classic’ CV ingredients
You can add your CV of course – and LinkedIn allows you to structure that easily, but you should structure your past experience with relevant lengths of, and type of detail. The current and most recent work should be the main focus. Older experience should be summarised with your achievements and areas of growth and expertise.
Use your summary to sum up the essentials
The pivotal part of your profile is the summary. It needs to tell the concise story of you. Who, what, why, when, and how much? What is your core area of expertise? How many books have you contributed to? What’s your big passion outside of work? When did you make a major change in your career? Why do you specialise in that particular niche are of the market?
So in a nutshell:
Your profile should tell the story of you, how you got to here, where you are going, and who you are going with. Use the summary section to do this. Make it easy to read with short sentences, a concise paragraph length and bullet points. It’s called a summary for a reason!