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LinkedIn is a vital resource for professional networking, so it’s important to have your best foot forward, always. Your profile is the determining factor for whether or not someone’s going to accept your connection request, so it deserves extra attention. You must be 100%, completely sure that your profile is complete, ready to go, and shows you at your best? If there’s even a tiny bit of doubt, read on ahead. If you’re confident, why not take a peek and see if you’ve hit everything on our checklist?

 

If you’re not quite sure how you stack up against others, here’s a helpful resource that can help. This service analyzes and scores your LinkedIn profile for free, so it’s a great starting point.

 

Once you’re ready to update your profile, here are some helpful tips:

 

Your profile headline is important

You know that little space between your name and profile picture where you get to add a line about yourself? Don’t ignore that. That line gives people a little more information about you and why they should connect with you. Use it as a way to grab attention, and entice someone onto clicking on to your profile. Give users a quick glimpse into why you’re a useful connection and what you offer right from the start. Avoid bundling a bunch of buzzwords to paint a picture of who you are, use the LinkedIn features to paint the picture of you and your company. 

 

Give your profile summary some thought

Once someone’s landed on your profile, the summary is what keeps them hooked. This is where you sell yourself, so use the opportunity wisely. Describe your background, experience, and what motivates you in this section. It’s a way to humanize yourself and give people better insight into why you’re unique and the value they’ll gain by connecting with you.

 

Have a company profile

It may sound silly, but most investors, partners, and anyone on LinkedIn for that matter, check your profile. If the company you’re trying to get investors to invest in or a potential CMO to help run the company looks at your LinkedIn Page only to find there’s no company profile or logo, they’ll cut line and move on. Speaking about online presence, is your website up to date? 

 

Opt for a profile picture, ideally a professional headshot

Blank profiles tend to detract people from connecting, so it’s important to add a photo of yourself. If it’s a professional headshot, that’s great. Even if not, go for a nice (appropriately professional) candid shot for your profile picture. No matter what, don’t leave it blank! It comes off almost distrustful, so it’s better to have some kind of photo on there. Profile pictures help users put a face to the name, so it helps humanize you and build connections.

 

Add a cover photo

Not many do this, but it’s pretty important! Your cover photo is an insight into your personality and shows people what you’re passionate about and what you do. There are a lot of different options for the cover photo, so this is a chance to be a bit creative. You can go for an action shot or something that’s really important to you that you might have in common with someone else. 

 

Check your privacy settings

A lot of times, people tend to ignore connections where they can’t see full names and/or details of the person they’re adding. To avoid getting lost in the sea of LinkedIn invites, check your privacy settings. Users should be able to see your name and headline at the very least and try to make your profile as accessible as possible so you can continue to build connections.

 

Connect to your company’s page 

Another important thing to consider is what your company page and logo show up as. To establish legitimacy and give people another window into getting to know you. Having a connected company page and professional logo definitely helps establish a good impression right off the bat. Plus, it gives your company more exposure since it’s another avenue for people to check out before they accept your connection.

 

Your LinkedIn profile evolves over time, but these are key features that will always be a staple of your profile. If you’re not quite sure where to start, take a look at what others in your field and/or competitors are doing! That’s always a good starting point, and you can build off what you see to optimize your LinkedIn profile for maximum success.

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