Don’t underestimate the power of a strong LinkedIn profile. It’s arguably one of the most important tools you have to showcase your skills, expertise, network, and knowledge. While most people have the basics down, such as having a professional profile photo, background image, strong headline, and thorough summary, there are some ways to evaluate your profile to make sure it’s as strong and compelling as possible.
Your “About” section on LinkedIn is one of the most valuable parts of your profile. In an article on Forbes, they have a self-evaluation test you can use to determine the effectiveness of your “About” section stating, “Read your About slowly. Evaluate each question below on a 1-3 scale, where 1=barely, 2=somewhat, 3=absolutely. Tally your score at the end. To what degree does my LinkedIn About:
- Hook readers with a magnetic opening?
- Ring true to the real me?
- Stand out from peers and others who seek the same career aspirations as me?
- Speak to my dream audience – those I need to impress and influence so I can reach my goals?
- Captivate with fascinating facts (quantifiable details)?
- Include personal details like my passions, interests and causes I care about (20-30% worth)?
- Clearly explain how I deliver value to others?
- Express my personality through a distinctive style and tone?
- Contain beautiful formatting with enough white space between paragraphs?
- Include external validation (awards, accolades, testimonials)?
- Feature polished writing that’s grammatically correct with no typos?
- Use the most important keywords for which I want to be known—and use them multiple times?
- Motivate readers to take action (learn more, reach out, etc.)?
Now, total your score. 30-39 = Your About nails it. Bravo! 29 or under = Your About needs boost. To take your About to the next level, take a look at the items where you gave yourself a score a 1 or 2 and make changes to your profile.”
Ask For Feedback
If you are unsure whether or not your LinkedIn profile is strong and compelling, ask for feedback and suggestions from family and friends, ideally those in a profession similar to yours. They may have recommendations that you hadn’t thought about and small tweaks you can make to your profile. Another way to track the effectiveness of your profile is to look at your LinkedIn metrics including LinkedIn Profile Views, Followers, Connections, and Engagement Rate. If you are unsure where to find out these statistics, there is a free resource available on LinkedIn with further details. By looking at these metrics, you’ll be able to see if your profile has a good amount of traffic and if companies and recruiters are viewing your page.
Always Be Updating
Think of your LinkedIn profile as a living document and something that should continually be updated and refined. As you take on new job responsibilities, add those to your experience section on LinkedIn. If you excel at a project for a client or co-worker, ask them to leave you a recommendation on LinkedIn. Your resume can only tell so much, so use your LinkedIn profile as a way to showcase your personal brand and tell a story.