It probably comes as no surprise that social media is an important part of everyday life and is increasingly becoming the most common way friends, family and business contacts keep in touch. Current numbers for 2018 show 75 percent of the U.S. population has at least one social media profile. And, while Facebook is the clear leader in overall users, the largest network of working professionals and the most important social media platform for ATM and payment professionals is LinkedIn – with over 562 million users globally and 146 million users in the United States.
LinkedIn started as a basic networking and job search tool, however, the network has become so popular that business-minded professionals use it regularly to build important connections, communicate, prospect and hire. Many even utilize it to generate surveys, perform research and share content. In short, it has become an indispensable tool for business.
But if your LinkedIn profile is not up-to-date, it could be holding you back. Here are five tips on how to get the most from LinkedIn:
1. What’s with that Profile Picture? Is your profile missing a photo, have a really old photo or a picture of you with your family at the zoo with everyone else cropped out? If your profile lacks a photo your connections may think you don’t understand how to properly use the system. Worse, some may think you’re out of touch with technology. LinkedIn also considers profiles without photos “incomplete,” damaging the chances of being displayed in search results as well as lowering your chances of being viewed.
However, a bad photo can also be troublesome. Your LinkedIn photo is not only viewable on your profile - it is also displayed when you make comments and post. Since this is the image you are putting forth within your professional career network, you may want to second guess that photo taken at the zoo.
2. Your Company Logo is Not Displayed. Either your business does not have a LinkedIn page, or you typed in the company name without selecting the business from suggested drop downs. Not having the company logo on your profile can confuse viewers or, at the very least, make them question whether they are networking with the correct person.
If your business does not have a LinkedIn page, you might want to mention the issue to a person authorized to create one. Then update your profile to pull the logo from the new page. Otherwise, swing on back to your profile to edit your employment history and select that drop down.
3. Your Profile Copy is Out of Date. You don’t work for that company anymore. You have more experience in operations now instead of sales. Management experience? Sorry, that’s not listed. Who are you again?
In addition to making sure visitors are not confused, active and updated profiles are featured more actively in search results. Take a moment to review your profile copy regularly to ensure it’s not only accurate but warm and conversational.
4. You Have Zero Recommendations. People who are good at what they do can usually get people to talk about it. Don’t be afraid to ask for recommendations from clients, superiors and colleagues. Worst case scenario they say no. But, just like reviews, a good recommendation could be the extra bit you need to make the leap to the next level in your career or connect with your next big sale.
5. Your Keywords are All Over the Map. You are in sales, but your title says marketing. You have operations experience but your summary talks mainly about computer skills. If that is the case, LinkedIn is probably indexing you wrong. Review your profile to make sure you are using the right words to describe your experience and career goals. Then revise accordingly.
An updated LinkedIn profile is important for business professionals to facilitate better networking, prospecting and collaboration. Follow these steps, not just today but regularly, to make sure your profile stands out in all the ways you need.