As a full-time freelancer, I started out the year knowing I needed to continue to grow my client base, so one of the first things I did was refresh my LinkedIn profile. One of the biggest changes? I stopped calling myself a blogger.
Last year I began moving from on from the very crowded social media consulting field and started doing more professional writing instead. But I noticed that while my LinkedIn profile came up in searches for social media, it never came up for writing. With the help of some smart friends, I realized that calling myself a blogger was holding me back. After all, anyone with an internet connection can blog but that tells you nothing about writing skill.
So I changed my profile to “content creator” and removed every mention of my personal blog. BOOM: my profile not only came up when people searched for writing and content, it also was searched 300% more frequently. Huge difference. I’m taking more phone calls and emails as a result.
But that’s not the only change I made. Here are some other great tips from a variety of sources.
Create a keyword-heavy profile title: Use keywords that support the type of work you do or want to be doing — and stay on target. Trying to be creative or incredibly unique will prevent your name from coming up in search results. For example, “writer” is better than “wordsmith”.
From Social Media Examiner:
When visitors first land on your LinkedIn profile, a box displaying your profile highlights fills the screen. Given the importance of first impressions, the information in your “profile box” should be complete, current and optimized.
Avoid using these words! From Entreprenuer:
In the U.S., LinkedIn determined that the most overused buzzwords and phrases on the site were:
5. extensive experience
6. track record
10. problem solving
From Career Realism:
When you specify the details of your current job, LinkedIn will ever-so-subtly include a checkbox that is already set to Update My Headline to (your job title). If you leave this information as is, site users will see “Bob Jones, Vice President Finance at ABC Company” throughout all your activity.
However, if you uncheck the box and then edit the Headline available when changing your Name field, you’ll have the chance to advertise your career level and competencies with “Bob Jones | VP Finance, Controller, CFO | Growth, Capital, Funding, & Technology Strategies.”
Lastly, remember this: LinkedIn isn’t just a place you post your resume online; it’s a vibrant social network as well. Try to post status updates, join like-minded groups, and interact with people on the site it makes a difference.