Your LinkedIn profile is the ideal place to demonstrate your expert authority. It’s also the first thing most people are likely to find if they go looking for you. Google your name and you LinkedIn profile will be up there at the top of the listings.
So it makes sense to ensure your profile is up to date and reflects the current focus of you and your business. I update my profile on a regular basis. I post updates linking to both my weekly blogs but I also do a deeper review every couple of months.
I look at the wording of my Headline, summary and current roles in my Experience sections to make sure they reflect what I am focussed on at the moment. I constantly ask colleagues, contacts and clients for feedback on my profile to make sure it delivers what they need from me.
And when I make a change, LinkedIn automatically sends a notification to my connections, reminding them about me, demonstrating I ‘walk the talk’ – i.e. I actually do what I recommend my clients do.
So to help you out here, I have prepared a 12-point checklist of the key things you could do to complete your LinkedIn profile refresh:
- Your latest photo – does your current photo really look like you or is it 10 years old? Is it a professional head and shoulders shot?
- Does your headline reflect your current focus? It’s the first thing people will see so really grab their attention.
- Special offer pages on your website – you can have up to three website links in your contact info. Make sure one is a link to you latest special offer, e-book or white paper.
- Are your contact details current – always worth a check
- Have you posted a status update or pulse article lately. I link all my blog posts to my profile so a status update goes out each week for both of my blogs. But if you don’t blog – after all, it’s not for everyone – the occasional post or update will be well received. I know many people who use Pulse as an alternative to setting up a blog. You even have your own unique posts page link you can use to direct contacts to.
- Do you have your latest e-books, slideshows, photos and papers attached to your profile? Perhaps you did a presentation at a seminar or trade show. Why not re-purpose it to demonstrate your knowledge and skills and add it to your profile.
- Do you have new skills to add? LinkedIn allows you to list up to 50 skills. It will then prompt your connections to endorse you for those skills. It’s a great way to stimulate interaction and engagement. If you endorse your connections for their skills they are likely to reciprocate.
- Should you re-arrange your skills to emphasise your current focus. How the skills are ordered is up to you with the top 10 shown as a list with little images of those that have endorsed you. Put a new skill at or near the top to get endorsed.
- Have you completed a project you could add? This is a great way of emphasising or highlighting your skills and areas of interest.
- Does you summary reflect your current focus? Your summary is second only to your Headline in importance. Does it reflect what you want potential clients to know about you right now?
- Have you added your recent recommendations to the right part of your profile? You should regularly ask for new recommendations’ and add them in to the relevant section of your profile.
- Could you change your summary or experience to maximise the value of that new recommendation. If you have a new recommendation does your summary or experience sections reflect the skills and benefits reflected in that recommendation?
- And to be consistent with my ethos of under-promise and over-deliver, Have you had a friend or colleague proof read your profile? When you are so close to something the obvious can easily get missed. The odd typo or grammatical error could devalue your profile in the eyes of some readers. Why leave it to chance.
Just as with my 12 engagement ideas, I have created a pdf of the profile refresh tips. Download a copy here, print it off and diarise a regular refresh of your profile. I recommend taking a look at least every two months. You don’t need to use each idea every time, but be sure to keep your profile fresh in the minds of your connections.