4 Quick Wins on Building Your Personal Brand
Building your own brand doesn't happen overnight, but there are specific actions that will aid in branding yourself effectively. Before we go through the 4 specific tips, let's talk about why your LinkedIn profile matters.
Your LinkedIn profile is often your first impression with your prospects and network. LinkedIn can be a powerful sales and recruiting tool when used correctly. A great starting point is making sure that your profile is professional and engaging to your audience. Think of your LinkedIn profile as a public resume and representation of your brand that anyone can access at any moment; it’s much easier to access a public URL than forward (and bury) a wordy resume or 1-pager PDF.
Your LinkedIn profile is a first impression; make it count
4 Quick Wins for Optimizing Your LinkedIn Profile
- Use a Professional Photo. Your photo should not be a cropped group photo or a selfie from a night out. Keep it professional. While using a professional photographer is preferred, you can take a professional-looking photo yourself as well. Just make sure to wear professional attire use a nice backdrop for your photo.
- Make a Strong Header. Your header is one of the first things people see on your profile. Don’t just list your job title, take advantage of the space by using calls-to-action and keywords to boost your profile’s SEO. Instead of “Account Executive @ XYZ Company” try something more engaging like, “Ecommerce Data Resource & Consultant | Retail Technology | Social Selling Expert.” Words like this can start a conversation and make you easier to find when people are searching for a service they need. Make sure to A/B test your header often. See which phrases encourage engagement and which phrases deter it.
- Summary. I'm often surprised at how little people take advantage of the summary section. In my opinion, this is the most important feature on your LinkedIn profile. Not only should you include a high level background into who you are, you should also highlight key projects and events that have happened in your career that have led you to where you are today. The summary should remain on top, and give a wholistic view of who you are, and reflect brand. Take advantage of this space - if people only spend 30 seconds on your profile, you want them to spend it on your summary, so make it count!
- Highlight Your Articles, Projects and Awards. List your projects and successes you’ve made throughout your career.. This is a great way to showcase your skills and establish credibility. Create content and post articles on LinkedIn; that has been one of the biggest wins for me as I continue to grow my personal brand. Use the content you generate to demonstrate expertise in your field and start conversations with both prospects and your current network. Ask for recommendations by current and past colleagues, and add any awards you’ve been given. This helps tremendously with rapport and credibility.