How To Create A Killer LinkedIn Public Profile That Will Get You Noticed

Building Your Personal Brand
How to create a killer LinkedIn public profile that will get you noticed
It does not matter whether you are networking, gathering leads or looking for a job, having a LinkedIn profile, which is professional and attractive is an excellent way of ensuring you are found by the right people, at the right time, every time.

There are, however, a few best practice steps that you should consider focusing on to ensure you create a better profile for 2020.

When creating a LinkedIn public profile which gets you noticed, remember you are not writing to yourself, but to your audience.  Your profile should not focus on boosting your ego, but on showcasing your expertise in a way that gets your audience to say, ‘I would like to know more about what you do and who you are’ or words to that effect.  Your profile is about your personal branding.
Your LinkedIn personal profile is the basis on which all of your interaction and communication on the platform is built and is the foundation for your personal brand.  It should give you some quick wins and the opportunity to build some long-term, business relationships.

FREE Checklist for designing a killer LinkedIn Public Profile

Click this link to get our unique LinkedIn Profile Checklist to help you create a profile which gets you noticed.
So here are 13 Steps to creating a killer LinkedIn Profile in 2018.
  • Background Profile Photo

LinkedIn gives you the ability to add a background or banner picture to the top card section of your profile, which adds to the professional look and feel of your personal profile and makes it stand out from the crowd.  Use this opportunity to personalise your profile to represent you and your business.  You could add in your company branding or a motivational quote, for example, but don’t leave it as the generic background.  I would also suggest that you update the background picture regularly to prevent it becoming stale.
Remember, a picture speaks a 1000 words and your background picture can and will talk for you.  You have control over what it says.
The dimensions for this background are 1536 x 768 pixels and you should be aware that certain areas will be obscured by your own profile picture, so take that into account when setting up the picture.  In our resources section, I have created a number of free to use background pictures which can assist you in creating a background, if you don’t have a company-specific background already.
  • Get Serious About Your Professional Profile Photo

Many people spend endless hours creating a great LinkedIn profile, listing every award they have won, search every online thesaurus for the right verbs to describe their experience and do hours of keyword research to ensure they hit page 1 in the search engines, but fall flat with their profile picture.  They destroy their personal branding by either not having a picture or having a picture which does not reflect well on them.
Research shows most people take less than a tenth of a second to formulate an opinion and draw a conclusion about you, which means when they visit your LinkedIn profile, and they do, your profile picture tells them a story instantly about you.  The question is: ‘What message are you trying to convey?’
If you are trying to convey a professional message, then have a professional picture.  Head & shoulders or head to waist in the photo frame, dressed appropriately to your message and role.  Make eye contact and smile.  These types of photos attract attention.
Keep your party dress picture, the picture of you blending into the grassy background, the picture of you drinking in the pub or showing off your spouse for other platforms.
Avoid sunglasses, even if they are on your head, dark colours, high colour saturation, full body shots and high contrast backgrounds.  LinkedIn may also remove profile photos which are company logos, landscapes, animals or words and phrases.
Look the part and people viewing your profile will believe you are the part.
Although LinkedIn allows you to use a photo which is 400 x 400 pixels to 20k x 20k pixels, they do suggest you use a photo which is already cropped.  Having worked with hundreds of people, I have found the optimal size is 744 x 744 pixels and to make small final adjustments on the platform.
  • Optimised First & Last Name

LinkedIn is a highly searchable platform, including the name / last name section.  When adding your name, ask the question, ‘What would prospective clients, employers, employees and others write in any search function?’  If, for example, you are a business consultant and a prospective client is searching for someone who is a business consultant in the London area, would your name appear and what impression would it give, if they did a Google search?
It is your profile and you can use any form of address you wish, excluding the obviously illegal or abusive terms, but remember, people buy from people they know, like and trust.  So think about what you do here.  I have found that people who use the name they want to be known by, works the best.
Leave off your qualifications or degrees.  Leave off the emojis and favicons.  Just go with what is searchable and represents you in the best possible light.  It is simple!
  • Optimised, Branded Headline

You have 120 characters to convey a message about what you do and which problems potential clients have, that you can solve.  This is the beginning of telling your story and should tie up with the story you tell in your summary.
LinkedIn will default to the title of your current role, which is often fairly bland and says very little about you.  Remember, as you have already seen, LinkedIn is searchable, so use this opportunity to not only tell your story but to include keywords which are relevant to you and your business.  Don’t be boring.  Create interest and demand a reaction from your words.

Free Checklist for designing a killer LinkedIn Public Profile

Click this link to get our unique LinkedIn Profile Checklist to help you create a profile which gets you noticed.
You may also be tempted to show off your qualifications, but again it says very little about what you can do to solve real issues your prospective clients may have.
  • SEO Focused, Professional Summary

Your LinkedIn summary is one of, if not, the most important area on the platform as it is your opportunity to create a great first impression and to get people to want to know more about you and how you can help them.  It is the first section they see when they move past your photo and the place in which you showcase your expertise and it should be as good as you possibly could make it.
As 3 lines of your summary or about section are the first to be seen before the need to click ‘see more’, you need to accentuate the initial few lines and words, giving a clear idea of what you do, your skills and what value you can add to your network.  Use keywords as effectively as possible without your sentence not making sense.  You may want to look at the words used by the movers and shakers in your industry as using similar words could give you an extra edge.
It is also a fact that most people know you have written your summary or had a copy writer do it for you, so write in the first person.  Writing in the third person does not enhance your story and gives the impression of you being distant and unapproachable.  By writing in the third person you will be missing an opportunity to allow your readers to get to know you, may be like and eventually trust you as they will not be hearing your unique voice.  It is your story, so be authentic and real.
I recommend adding hashtags at the end of your summary and include your contact details.  If you do add your contact details, make it in the form of a call to action, which could lead to your readers contacting you.
This is your real estate, make the absolute most you can of it.
  • Completed & Relevant Experience Details

For some people this means your whole working career, while for others, the last 10 years may be the only relevant period.  Whatever it means for you, use it to your advantage.
It is an opportunity to bring clarity to the experience you have written about and shown in your summary.  Each job or business you show in your experience section can be valuable for enhancing who you are and what you do.  It is also a great place to focus on keywords which are relevant to you and what you are currently doing.
If you are looking for a job, setting out these details well is vital as this is literally your CV.
Again you can add a call to action by including your contact details, but I would suggest you only do this for your current role.
  • Relevant Education

This is the opportunity to showcase your qualifications & voluntary engagements.  Keep it real and relevant, however, it is an opportunity to connect with people who attended the same university or college as you or to connect with people who have the same qualifications.
LinkedIn is about networking and by connecting with people who have similar backgrounds, education or attended the same schools as you, it will enable you to grow your network.  Each of these people have a network of their own and it is almost certain you will not know everyone in that network, but there may be your future business in that network.  The ‘See alumni’ button on the university or college page will give you opportunity to dig into their network as well.
Use every opportunity LinkedIn provides you and make the most of them.
  • Skills & Endorsements

Many people have asked whether this section really has any real value and the answer is YES!  Why?  Firstly it shows the skills you have, secondly, it allows people who you have done business with or who know you to endorse those skills and thirdly, KEYWORDS!
Now if you are like me, you would have had people who you don’t know endorse you for skills you don’t have, which can be frustrating and is often quoted as the reason some people believe it is an unimportant section.  The fact is, it is extremely important for the reasons mentioned above.  It is also an area on the profile page which LinkedIn revisited in the 2017 Facelift and their statistics show that people with 5 or more skills, received 17x more profile views.
However, LinkedIn does give you the option to turn this feature off or to turn parts of the feature off.
If, however, you find value in this section, like I do, then you may want to ask your connections to endorse you for certain skills which they would know you have.  A simple message on the messaging function works well although you could send an email.  Aim for 99+ in all the skills you want to be endorsed for.  And when someone endorses you for a skill you don’t have, just remove it!
  • Recommendations

While your summary and experience sections are an opportunity for you to tell your story, recommendations are an opportunity for those people who you have worked with to add to your story from their perspective.  Recommendations give amazing credibility to you and the work you do.  Get as many as you can as each one adds another layer to who you are and what you do.
However, if a colleague, client or friend whom you have asked for a recommendation, wants you to write it on their behalf, DON’T!  You want their opinion, in their words. That is where the weight of recommendations lay.  Rather don’t ask them again and move on to the next person.
  • Relevant Connections

Growing your network is ultimately the reason you would be using LinkedIn and everything you do on the platform should be focused at developing that network.
In order to build a successful network, you need to develop the right and most appropriate types of connections.  This means having a clear understanding of your overall LinkedIn strategy and your target market.  By understanding these factors, you will be well positioned to find the relevant people with whom you can begin to build a relationship.
Your initial target should be 500, but the larger your relevant connection list is, the more chance you have of developing a network from which you will gain significant levels of business and influence.
  • Publications

Publications were previously called ‘Pulse’ and is an excellent platform to write long-form articles which add value to your network and showcase your understanding of your products or services as well as how you can solve the problems they may have.
It is also a platform to develop influence in your market place and become a thought-leader in your area of expertise.  Demonstrate your passion and knowledge through article which are in depth and detailed as LinkedIn Statistics show a word count of between 1900 and 2000 words works best.
Add in links, photos, Slideshare, questions, video, etc to make your article interesting and readable.
  • Posts

Posts, also known as updates, are essentially short form articles but may be as long as 1300 characters or as short as one line.  You can add links to your LinkedIn articles, your blog, an external news article or include photos & video.  This is a great way to create interaction, through sharing ideas, asking questions or commenting on something you may have read which you believe is relevant to your network.
Posts are shared directly into your news feed and I suggest you use this space regularly and with intent.
  • Comments, shares, likes.

Likes, comments and shares are an integral part of the interaction you need to be having on LinkedIn if the platform is to work for you.  Be real and give great comments as it will let people know you have read their article or post and are interested in what they have to say.  They may or may not reciprocate  but that is outside of your control.
If you think an article or post has a wider appeal, then share it either within LinkedIn or to other social media platforms.  This gives your connections more exposure and is all a part of building a relationship of trust.

So, here are the 13 steps of how to create a killer LinkedIn Profile that will get you noticed in 2018. I have included a link to our unique LinkedIn Profile checklist.

However, success on LinkedIn is more than just these 13 steps.  If you are in business, LinkedIn Company Pages are an area in which you can develop influence and showcase your business.  If you are looking for a job, LinkedIn gives you the opportunity to turn your profile into a CV.

Get our unique LinkedIn Profile Checklist to help you create a profile which gets you noticed.
If you would like to know more about our LinkedIn For Business Growth courses which are delivered regularly in the UK and other countries or would like to find out how you can use LinkedIn in your business, please call +44 1392 980258 or email me directly