1. Create an interesting headline
The profile headline is the first thing people see, so make sure it’s completed with all the relevant information. This little box will determine whether or not people will continue to read your profile.
2. Have a picture (and an appropriate one!)
Remember that LinkedIn isn’t Facebook, so make sure your photo is a presentable one. Try and avoid the late night party photos. A good test- ask yourself if you would attach that photo to your CV if requested to?
3. Summarise your career
Make your summary statement concise and confident. Include your goals, experience and qualifications. Remember to also include your specialty areas. This will give the reader a better understanding as to your skills.
4. Experience is key
List your previous positions and experience like you would on your CV. The good thing about LinkedIn is that you can also supply an electronic version of your previous work (ie- a link to a website you created). This gives others a greater insight as to your capabilities and skills.
5. Show off your education
Include information about your education, including awards and honours you have won. Include as much information as possible to show you are an authority figure in your profession. Don’t be shy- this is the time to show off your achievements!
6. Update your status
This allows you to stay on people’s radars. Tell people about an event you’re attending, a great article you’ve read or any major projects you’re working on. Any news you would tell someone at a networking function would be appropriate to post on your status.
7. Collect recommendations
These are like informal references on your CV and are a great way to build your credibility (as people like to hear what others think). Colleagues, employers, professional mentors and anyone else you’ve worked with are great contacts for recommendations. Also, if you recommend someone, it is likely they will repay the gesture and give you a recommendation back.
So what are you waiting for? Jump on to www.linkedin.com and sign up or build on your profile!