LinkedIn Profile Set Up and Optimisation Guide
1.0. Visibility Settings
- Before diving in, go to your LinkedIn profile settings and on the left-hand side (on desktop) click on Visibility of your LinkedIn activity.
- Select Turn off profile updates with your network. This ensures your network is not updated when you make any changes to your profile.
1.1. Profile photo
- It's best practice to upload a professional headshot with a clean background.
1.2. Video Intro
- On the LinkedIn mobile app, you have the option to add a 30-second video. If you choose to upload a video to introduce yourself, here’s a format you can follow:
Hi! Welcome to my profile, I’m [Your Name] and I help companies who are having a problem with [X], others are facing challenges with [Y], and a few are in a situation where they are trying to do [Z].
If those are the types of challenges you need help with, I encourage you to check out my skills, experience and recommendations below, and feel free to drop me a DM if you would like to learn more.
TIP: To help prepare your pitch, review 5 - 10 job descriptions for the type of role you’re targeting and focus on the common challenges being faced. Then just work those challenges into the above template.
1.3. Banner image
- Upload a professional background banner. If you need ideas, visit linkedinbackground.com.
- If you want to create a super professional custom banner with your contact information included:
- Sign up for a free trial on canva.com (Cancel your subscription before the expiration date).
- Canva has hundreds of pre-made LinkedIn banner templates that you can edit very easily and add to your LinkedIn profile. Give it a shot.
1.4. Update key information
- Click the pencil icon below your background banner.
- Use this template to complete your headline: Target Job Title 1, 2 & 3 | Job Industry | Job Specialities | [Target Industry] Professional Available for Opportunities
- Example: Recruitment Director | Head of Recruitment | Talent Manager | IT, Engineering and Manufacturing | Recruitment & HR Analytics | Recruitment Professional Available for Opportunities
- For job title 1, enter in your target role.
- For job title 2 and 3, enter in similar roles or variations of job title 1.
- For example, if job title 1 was Retail Assistant, job title 2 would be Store Assistant, and job title 3 would be Sales Assistant.
- Job titles carry the most weight in the LinkedIn search. Including your target job title throughout your profile, plus associated job titles, will help recruiters find you on the platform.
- Include the term Available for opportunities in your headline. The word available is a search term widely used by recruiters, so it will help your profile get more visibility.
- If you need ideas for job titles 2 & 3, go to a popular jobs board like Indeed.com or LinkedIn Jobs and search for your target role. Variations of your target role will appear in the search results.
- Enter the location of where you want to work.
1.7. Open to opportunities status
- Below where your location is listed, click Open to.
- Select Finding A New Job and follow the instructions.
- In the job titles section, enter 5 job titles that match the type of role you want.
- In the workplaces section, tick off your preferences. Select remote if you want to work from home.
- For job locations, select the counties/states/provinces you wish to work in.
- Start date - select actively applying.
- Job types - select all that are relevant.
- There is also an option to choose who sees you’re open. Select recruiters only if you don’t want anyone to know that you’re looking for a job apart from recruiters.
1.8. Featured section
- Think of the featured section on LinkedIn as your personal billboard.
- Within this section you have the option to:
- Add a post or article you wrote on LinkedIn.
- Include a link to a website.
- Upload a file or document.
- Choose something that will be of interest to hiring managers at your target companies.
- You can easily upload your CV, project work, case studies, or a link to your portfolio. Just click the plus icon beside the Featured section and choose an option.
1.9. About section
- If you already have an About section added to your profile, scroll down the page until you come across the About heading, and on the right-hand side click the pencil icon.
- If you don't have an About section added to you profile:
- Beside the Open to button, click Add section.
- Click About, then select Summary.
Format of the about section:
- Personal introduction.
- What problems you solve.
- Why you do what you do.
- How to get in touch with you.
- Key skills and achievements.
Hi my name is ___________.
[What problems you solve]
I help companies who are facing the following challenges:
Some are having a problem with [X], others are facing challenges with [Y], and a few are in a situation where they are trying to do [Z].
[TIP: To help with writing this section, review 5 - 10 job descriptions for the type of role you’re targeting and focus on the common challenges being faced. Then just work those challenges into the above template.]
[Why you do what you do]
That’s the type of stuff I help with and the reason I enjoy solving these types of problems is because ____________.
[TIP: To help find your ‘why’, ask yourself: When were you most productive in your career? Think of times when work was easy / when you got lost in your work. What type of difference do you want to make to other people’s lives?]
*Sample: That’s the type of stuff I help with and the reason I enjoy solving these types of problems is because working closely with small business owners and seeing them grow is when I feel most engaged and fulfilled in my job. When I think back to the moments when I’ve been lost in my work, it’s when I am grappling with the challenges faced by SMBs and finding solutions that help them prosper. That’s what I love to do.
[How to get in touch with you]
If those are the types of challenges you need help with, please check out my skills, experience and recommendations below, and either send me a DM or get in touch with me by email: [email protected].
*If you don't want your boss to see this information, then your call to action could be: For further information just drop me a message.
Core Competencies and Achievements
[Under this heading, work in as many relevant keywords as possible. Include a list of your key skills, technological skills, and your most notable achievements.]
- Well-versed in Mac and Windows operating systems.
- Proficient in Microsoft Office suite (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Teams).
- Adept at utilising Adobe design software (Photoshop, Illustrator, After Effects) and social media platforms (TikTok, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook).
- Problem Solving
Here are some career achievements I’m most proud of:
- Achieved a 95% customer satisfaction score based on feedback forms.
- Maintained records for management regarding dispatches completed and invoices generated with zero discrepancies over a 12-month period.
- Implemented chatbot technology on social media channels and website that reduced service query management by 33%.
- Became the lead “go-to” person for new reps and particularly challenging calls. Taught all new team members about customer service expectations and product return procedures over a 12-month period.
- Consulted management regarding a redesign of the hotel reservation system and website, which increased hotel bookings by 35% and reduced website bounce rate by 55% within the first 3 months.
- Managed an active client base of over 100 companies over a 2-year period, handling 40+ query calls and various follow-up emails daily.
1.10. Experience section
- When editing your work experience section, as you begin to type in your job title, LinkedIn will auto-suggest titles. Make sure you select one of the auto-suggested titles. This will help you get found by recruiters.
- IMPORTANT: The job title you enter within the professional experience section carries the most weight for being found in recruiter searches.
- If possible, tailor your job title(s) accordingly so they match or closely match with the title of your target role.
- Add a list of your main duties and responsibilities for each job within the Description box.
- Try to work the title of your target job into this section. This will help rank your profile higher in recruiter searches on LinkedIn.
- For example, if you were applying for a marketing manager position, you could include the following into your experience section:
Reported directly to the Marketing Manager. My duties included:
- *List 5 - 6 of your main duties and responsibilities in bullet points.
- When you have every section of your LinkedIn profile completed, LinkedIn marks your account with an ‘All-Star Status’ label. Profiles with this label appear higher in recruiter searches.
- In order to have All-Star Status on your LinkedIn profile, you must have an active role within your work experience section.
- If you are currently unemployed, follow these instructions to ensure you achieve All-Star Status on your account.
- Click the plus icon beside the Experience section and fill in the required information.
- Job title: [Target Job Title] currently seeking new opportunities.
- For example: Accounting Assistant currently seeking new opportunities.
- Employment type: Select the type of employment you’re seeking.
- Company Name: Include the industry you want to work in.
- For example: Manufacturing and Construction Organisations.
- Location: Enter the location you want to work in.
- Make sure the ‘I am currently working in this role’ box is ticked.
- Start date: The date you became unemployed.
- Industry: Enter the type of industry you want to work in.
- Description: Enter in the duties and responsibilities for your target role.
- To help with writing your duties/responsibilities:
- Go to a jobs board website (LinkedIn Jobs, Indeed.com).
- Search for your target role.
- Read through the relevant job listings and see which contains duties/responsibilities that closely match your experience.
- Copy each relevant duty/responsibility and paste it into the Description box.
- To help with writing your duties/responsibilities:
1.11. Education section
- When completing the Education section of your profile, ensure you select the auto-suggested school/college/university names and course titles.
- It’s not necessary to mention your grade, but if you received a notable result, be sure to include this information.
- You can upload any project work by selecting the Add media option at the bottom of the edit page.
1.12. Skills section
Add 50 skills to your profile
- At the very bottom of your profile, there is an option to add skills. Add 50 skills in total related to your target role.
- To find the most relevant skills to add, go to LinkedIn Jobs or Indeed.com.
- Copy the job descriptions of 5 - 10 jobs you’re interested in and paste them into https://wordcounter.net.
- On the right-hand side of the webpage on https://wordcounter.net/ you will see what skills appear most frequently for your target role. Add the appropriate skills that appear into the skills section of your LinkedIn profile.
- Take a skill quiz
- In the Skills section, you will see an option to ‘Take a skill quiz’.
- There are a number of different assessments you can take to earn a badge on your profile for particular skills.
- Profiles with badges earned from completing a quiz will appear higher in the recruiter search, so I recommend spending some time completing assessments in the areas where you feel most confident.
- Don’t worry - it’s up to you to give permission to LinkedIn to show the results, so there is no downside to taking a skills quiz.
1.13. Add additional sections
- If you have any licences, certifications, professional training, volunteer experience, awards, case studies/project work, scroll up on your profile page and an Add section option will appear at the top of the page (on desktop). Select both the recommended and additional headings, then add what’s relevant.
1.14. Update profile URL
- Go to the top right-hand corner of your profile and select Edit public profile and URL.
- Under Edit your custom URL, add your name into the text box and click save. You will now have a more professional LinkedIn URL. Once completed, be sure to update the LinkedIn URL on your CV and Cover Letter.
1.15. Connect with people
- Use the search bar at the top of the page and type in keywords related to your industry.
- Filter by the People tab, and then connect with 30 - 50 people each day. The aim is to reach over 500 new connections.
- When connecting with people, add a note with your connection request as it will result in a higher acceptance rate.
- Review the person's profile to see if you share anything in common (e.g. attended the same college, share mutual connections, work in the same industry, etc.) and mention the details in your connection request note.
1.16. Request recommendations
- In the same way you Google reviews before booking a hotel or restaurant, recruiters will look at your LinkedIn recommendations to verify your suitability for a job opportunity.
- A recommendation is a reference in a public forum. Having a handful of professionals singing your praises on LinkedIn will help you land more job interviews.
- Ask current/ex-colleagues, classmates, friends, suppliers, clients or teachers for recommendations on LinkedIn.
Here's an outreach message template you can use:
Hi [Name], how are things?
I’m trying to improve my LinkedIn profile and noticed that having endorsements and recommendations adds so much value in terms of future job prospects, social proof, and credibility.
I want to offer to give you a recommendation and if you could give me one, we could both benefit!
Let me know what you think and I can get started over the next couple of days.
- To leave a recommendation for someone or to request a recommendation:
- Visit the person's LinkedIn profile.
- Underneath their profile image, click the More button and you will see both options.
That's the lot. You're now a certified All-Star. Good luck my friend.
Paddy Jobsman 🍀
What else I can help you with:
- Receive actionable tips for advancing your career: A couple of times per month, I send out an exclusive email to 27,000+ professionals with strategies on job searching, interviewing, salary raises, changing careers and leadership. Sign up here.