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Update LinkedIn Headline

Why You Need to Change Your LinkedIn Headline… Right Now

Your headline is wrong.

If I could offer you one piece of advice when it comes to LinkedIn, one thing that you should fix up immediately, an action to take care of right now, it’s to change your LinkedIn headline.

There are over 475 million professionals on LinkedIn so it pays to stand out and get noticed. Your profile headline is your golden ticket to showing up higher in LinkedIn search results, attracting greater numbers of profile views, and showcasing your personal brand.

So why is your headline still so bad?

Part of the problem is LinkedIn. It automatically lists your current job title and employer as the default. And you continue to stick with this tried and tested, safe and sound option.

I’m yawning just thinking about it

As an interesting individual with an entirely unique story to tell, why do you still seem content to describe what you do, who you help, how you help them, your social proof, your worth, by referring to yourself by your job and the company you work for alone?

Why don’t you want to make full use of LinkedIn’s 120-character headline to give yourself a powerful headline statement about your true value to a business or employment prospect?

Maybe you don’t know how to. Or perhaps you just don’t realise how essential your headline actually is.

Change LinkedIn Headline

Your headline is the first thing someone sees when you pop up in their search results – no lengthy summary, no great detail about your recent experience, mainly just you and your headline.

In a world of distraction and increasing online noise, one search-optimised sentence is all it takes to grab people’s attention on LinkedIn and stand out from the crowd. If you truly want to generate leads, attract new customers, and grow sales, you need to change your LinkedIn headline… right now.

Here’s how to tread the path to headline greatness.

1. Brainstorm industry-specific keywords to change LinkedIn headline

Nobody really cares that you’re the ‘Marketing Director at John Smith Supplies’. What they do care about is how you’ll help them fix their problems or business issues.

You have 120 characters, including spaces, to grab their attention, show them what you provide, and how best you can serve them so sit down and brainstorm some of the most compelling keywords to reveal your expertise, focus, the target audience your serve, the benefit to your customers in using you.

Take me, for example. I’m a ‘Writer’. I work with ‘Finance’ clients. My offerings are generally ‘LinkedIn’-focused. And I have ‘International’ experience. As you can see, I’m starting to build my base keywords but I need to do much more.

A quick LinkedIn search reveals some example LinkedIn headlines that only include job title and company.

2. Add your specialty – use adjectives and get creative!

Keywords alone aren’t great without some focus and a bit of wordsmithing. Being a ‘Writer’ doesn’t give you a reason to hire me so I need to spice it up and look at my specialty. Instead of ‘Writer’, I could say that I’m a ‘Professional Business Writer Specialising in Personal Finance’. I might say that I have ‘Proven International Expertise’ or that I’m the ‘#1 Ranked LinkedIn Profile Writer in Australia’ (as long as I can prove that, which thankfully I can!).

Consider also adding adjectives to give more ‘wow’ to the headline – words like ‘Energetic’, ‘Gifted’, ‘Inspirational’ or ’Dynamic’ can really make a job title pop. Also try using creative suffixes to describe your work such as ‘Advisor’, ‘Champion’, ‘Specialist’, ‘Innovator’ or ‘Advocate’.

3. Give more detail about what you do

Rather than leave your headline with job and specialty, go a bit deeper and use short phrases to talk about what you’re responsible for or try to expand on how you help your target market. Consider phrases like ‘Driving Customer Excellence as Operations Manager’ or ‘Connecting Employers and Employees Through Effective Engagement Strategies’.

As a Writer, I might look at my own profile and include ‘Boosting Personal Brands Through Powerful Writing’ or ‘Creates Compelling Content to Drive Leads and Opportunities’. Obviously, you don’t have a lot of word count to play around with but you should be able to squeeze something in.

4. Incorporate your passions

Don’t try to outline your bucket list but you can talk to future desires or personal passions that would lead a potential employer to look deeper – some of my clients even opt for activities they pursue away from the workplace, such as sports or even non-profit roles, to give their headline greater personality.

Taking my headline as an example again, I might say that I am an ‘Online Content Enthusiast’ or, if I was working in Retail, I could say that I’m a ‘Champion of Retail Excellence’. It’s about giving more insight into you as a person and what you stand for and believe in – in other words, what your mission is at work and in life.

Change LinkedIn Headline

5. Describe your accomplishments

You only have 120 characters but you can still find space to talk to your achievements and accolades, if you feel comfortable doing so. As a sales professional, use keywords to convey some of your results. If you’re in the field of education, how many years have you been teaching and at what levels?

With my own headline, I might say something like ‘5-Year Huffington Post Blogger’ or ‘Regularly Featured in The Telegraph’. It’s not about being overly salesy but, instead, building social proof and showcasing your true value.

6. Icons give impact

You’ve no doubt seen the keyword-driven headline with the bright and bold icons – stars, ticks, diamonds, even crowns or coloured bullets. I’m a big fan of the icon because I feel that it really does make the headline stand out and catches the reader’s eye if done well and in moderation.

A simple Google search will reveal potential LinkedIn icons to use or look at LinkedIn profile headlines that you like, then copy and paste the icon from the individual’s headline onto your own (and also onto your Experience headlines lower down in the profile). For the more conservative user, consider simpler punctuation marks – the vertical line character or ‘|’ is a popular choice. And feel free to regularly change the headline to keep people engaged. Here’s how mine currently looks – it’s by no means perfect but it does ensure that I rank for the right keywords and search terms.

7. Avoid cheesy, overused keywords and statements

Are you really a superstar or guru? Can you honestly lay claim to being a marketing legend? Don’t oversell by incorporating cheesy keywords that cannot be backed by hard evidence. And try to avoid the overused cliches such as Strategic, Creative, Innovative and Entrepreneur. I hate the use of Entrepreneur. Everybody is a bloody Entrepreneur. Believe me, you’re probably not an Entrepreneur and, if you are, try to find another way of describing yourself and your abilities. Please.

So there you have it. Now it’s time to change your LinkedIn headline.

Think of your 120-character headline as a snapshot of your broader LinkedIn profile and give a great first impression that encourages the visitor to want to learn more.

Use descriptive keywords and catchy phrases to demonstrate your offerings and the target market you serve.

Show people that you understand their industry, you can help them, and that you’ve had success.

Create one powerful keyword-rich sentence to grab the reader’s attention and make it easy for them to understand who you are, what your work is, and the value you bring.

Over to you.

How does your headline stack up? Still got work to do or well on your way?

**IMPORTANT UPDATE** We’ve just released a series of training webinars to help you maximise your time on LinkedIn. Instead of wasting time trying to figure out how to use LinkedIn effectively, learn from the professionals with our one-hour LinkedIn training webinars and get the leads and opportunities that matter most.

Register here –> theinternationalwriter.com/training-webinars/

LinkedIn Training Webinars

About the Author

Russell Ward is the Founder and Lead Content Writer at The International Writer, a content writing and training agency creating powerful online content and providing customised LinkedIn training to boost a personal or business brand, build authority and drive influence.

Boost Your Online Brand

There’s Still Time to Boost Your Online Brand!

It’s hard to believe the end of the year is already fast approaching. Are you close to achieving your career goals? Are you hitting your numbers and enjoying better business results?

If not, there’s still time to market yourself on LinkedIn and enhance both personal and business brand with a professional LinkedIn makeover.

Wherever you are in the world – whether it’s time for a Spring clean or an Autumn clean-up – The International Writer is offering a 10% discount on our best-selling LinkedIn Profile PREMIUM Package until October 31*.

Just use the promo code – 10percentoff – when you order the LinkedIn Profile PREMIUM package here to take advantage of this offer and work with me, one-on-one, to stand out and drive opportunity.

*includes complete LinkedIn profile rewrite, brand questionnaire, phone interview, one-hour online Review & Strategy session, plus 30 days of email support.

Microsoft to Buy LinkedIn

Microsoft Buys LinkedIn (and What This Means for You)

Earlier this week, Microsoft Corp. announced that it will buy LinkedIn Corp. in a $26.2 billion deal, which led to a 47 percent jump in LinkedIn’s shares and will see Jeff Weiner stay on as LinkedIn CEO.

Read the LinkedIn CEO’s thoughts on the announcement here >> LinkedIn + Microsoft: Changing the Way the World Works Microsoft to buy LinkedIn.

For LinkedIn, this represents a huge opportunity to take the business, which already has some 433 million members, to the next level. According to Microsoft, they will be able to “accelerate the growth of LinkedIn” centred on fully connecting the world’s professionals.

LinkedIn will keep its brand and independence but build on its current offerings by closely integrating with key Microsoft products and services.

A letter from Satya Nadella, Microsoft CEO, confirmed that the organisation wants to reinvent ways to make professionals more productive while at the same time reinventing selling, marketing and talent management processes. Nadella added that:

“If you’re not on LinkedIn, join up now and start using and learning more.”

So what does this mean for you?

There has never been a better time to build your profile on LinkedIn and get ready for the major changes and improvements heading this way.

To take advantage of LinkedIn and boost your online presence, make sure your profile is correctly set-up and fully optimised for search and new business and networking opportunities.

Nurture your network of connections, get active and get noticed.

Put your best foot forward.

Reap the rewards, both now and when the merger begins to deliver results.

At The International Writer, we can create a powerful new LinkedIn profile for you or overhaul an existing one. If your profile already shines, we can help with enhanced company pages and thought leadership blogging, while we’re about to release a comprehensive suite of online, self-paced LinkedIn training courses.

Discover more about our work here >> LinkedIn Packages.

The one LinkedIn setting you probably forgot

That LinkedIn Setting You Probably Forgot To Change

The point of being on LinkedIn is to get noticed and make connections, build your network and then choose how you want to work that network – seek a job, do business or build influence, among other things.

Getting noticed requires you to have a powerful, persuasive profile – one that tells a story about who you are, what you do and how you can help me.

Getting noticed also relies on active engagement and, for many of us, this means searching other people’s profiles and company pages for potential business connections or job opportunities.

When you do this, you’ll start to see the number of views to your own profile grow as people return the favour. Before you know it, the connection requests increase and the inbox messages grow – and all because you looked at a bunch of profiles.

I market my own business by exploring contacts I think could become customers. I view their profiles before reaching out to make the connection, either via a request or InMail. That’s the thing about human behaviour – when someone sees that you’ve stopped by, they look back out of curiosity and investigate who you are. It’s a “you looked at my profile, now I’ll look at yours” thing.

And, BOOM, you’ve got them.

Because your profile is of course fully optimised with a killer headline and compelling summary revealing your experience and the ways you can help them – your products and services.

Before you know it, a message or email follows because they like what they’ve seen and they want to know more.

There’s nothing weird about revealing your profile to a person you’ve visited on LinkedIn. It’s how the platform works, otherwise why else would we have public profiles?

Imagine contacting a company about a possible job and you see their CEO looking at your profile only days later? Or sending an email to a potential client then you find one of their staff checking you out? You get a better sense that they’re interested in you and it might drive you to follow up.

But it’s all a waste of time if no-one can see what you’re doing in the first place. If your profile viewing actions go unnoticed. If you’re getting little or no response.

Ever wonder why your profile views stutter? Your profile ranking fails to climb? Ever wonder what you did wrong?

Here’s the thing. You probably made the one LinkedIn setting mistake they never told you about – you forgot to turn on your visibility in the account settings.

You might as well not even exist. You left your profile settings on ‘anonymous’ and nobody knew it was you looking at their profile.

The default on LinkedIn is that your profile information isn’t shared with other people when you look at their profiles unless you want it to be. However most of us are interested in growing our personal brands and actually WANT this information to show when we visit other profiles.

You need to change your visibility settings fast and reveal your photo, name and headline so others can see that you’ve viewed their profile.

It’s easy enough to do.

  1. Go to your Account Settings in the top right corner of your profile.
  2. Select Privacy & Settings: Manage.
  3. Click on ‘Select what others see when you’ve viewed their profile’.
  4. Select ‘Your name and headline (recommended)’.
  5. Save changes and you’re done.

You need to ensure your LinkedIn settings fit with your business and personal goals. One way to achieve this is to become more visible on LinkedIn to make you more effective and better positioned for future success.

So change those settings today and don’t make the one LinkedIn mistake that could cost you in the long run.

As part of our LinkedIn Influencer Profile Writing Packages, we check to make sure your settings fit your purpose for being on LinkedIn. We help you show up as an expert or authority in your field – and get noticed fast. Get in touch at [email protected] to learn more.

Standing Out From The Crowd

8 Simple Tricks for Getting Noticed on LinkedIn

With over 300 million members, LinkedIn is a gold mine of job, networking AND business opportunities.

With this number of people online, you need to help others easily find you and attract the right kind of interest in your LinkedIn profile.

Your profile is your digital business card. It is a unique way of promoting yourself to 1st, 2nd and 3rd connections – an almost endless sphere of INFLUENCE. You cannot afford to sit back and hope that others find you and reach out to you. You need to get active and get noticed.

The more you do on LinkedIn, the more people will notice this activity. They might be curious to learn about what you do, they might see commonality in your working worlds, or they might be looking for someone specifically like you. As you make updates and get involved, the views to your profile will increase.

So where do you begin and what should you do? Here are 8 SIMPLE TRICKS for getting noticed on LinkedIn.

1. Update your profile

Get your profile into shape to drive people to you. Update headlines, summaries, experience and more. Add in multimedia and don’t leave any section blank. Regularly update headlines to target new employers or drive new business.

2. Post professional status updates

Post regular updates related to the kind of impression you want to make. See yourself as an industry expert? Share news articles and latest thinking. Want to impress a potential employer? Share completed projects and recent achievements. Inform and engage. Add value and INSPIRE.

3. Publish a blog post

Use LinkedIn’s publisher platform to write posts related to your expertise (as I have done here). Have it seen and shared, liked and commented upon. People often get better results from posting on LinkedIn than they would on a company blog or business website. Draft it in a Word doc, copy and paste, then voila. You have the ability to spread your message far and wide, especially when compared to a regular status update.

4. Join and network in groups

Join relevant LinkedIn groups and actively contribute to the community. Share posts, comment on other discussions, start a conversation and engage with people when they respond. It’s another way to demonstrate your expertise, helpfulness and experience, and will often encourage people to want to learn more about who you REALLY are.

5. Give and request recommendations

Seek recommendations of your work and recommend other people. Their connections (and yours) will see the kind things that have been said and may be curious to find out more about the person who said them.

6. View other profiles

Human behaviour is a wonderful thing – when you look at someone’s profile, there’s a good chance they will look back at yours. Then you connect and then you reach out. Search on the type of people you want to have a working relationship with and check out their profiles. Even better, run a search tool like AutoPilot and let it do the searching for you on a daily basis (up to 1,000 searches). Better still, let someone like me do it all for you and watch the notifications and connection requests FLOOD in.

7. Endorse your connections

If you visit a connection’s profile and the skill endorsement request pops up, go ahead and endorse them. It might seem twee but it’s a great way of showing respect and support for a colleague or contact, it leaves your name on the Skills section of their profile, and it shows them you care – invaluable when it comes to leaving a good impression.

8. Make and accept connection requests

Most people wrongly assume that you’re connected to all 300 million people on LinkedIn, but you’re not. You can ONLY reach out to the people in your first degree network and to those 2nd and 3rd degree connections. It follows that the more people you have in your first degree network, the more people you have access to overall. Therefore make sure you accept all relevant connections requests and don’t be shy in making a few of your own. You’ll find that once your connections grow, so will your profile views.

Overwhelmed? Unsure where to begin?

Check out my LinkedIn Profile Makeover Packages or my LinkedIn Article Marketing Package and bring me onboard to overhaul your profile and drive people to you. You can also reach me at [email protected].

Let me answer your questions and work with you to get ACTIVE and NOTICED on LinkedIn.

Image credit: Standing Out | Shutterstock

Large-Crowd

How to Drive People to Your LinkedIn Profile

The main focus of my content writing business is moving towards LinkedIn profile writing. And the reason why?

More and more people are realising the power of LinkedIn to boost their online profile, be seen as an industry expert, increase leads, drive traffic to websites AND improve search engine ranking.

Where once LinkedIn was a place to host your CV and make a few interesting connections, it has fast become an essential personal branding tool and a place to network, job seek and discover exciting new business opportunities.

It has therefore never been more important to build and maintain a POWERFUL LinkedIn profile.

Most of my business leads now come through my LinkedIn profile so isn’t it about time you gave your profile a much-needed makeover and kicked up a storm about the new YOU?

Here are FOUR STEPS you need to take.

Upload a new photo

Keep it simple, engaging and professional. Nobody wants to see you out drinking with your buddies or dressed up for a night out with your other half.

If possible, have a professional photo taken. Ensure you smile, have your face fill the image dimensions, wear business attire or smart casual, and opt for a plain background so the focus is on you, not the building behind you. A rookie error is not using a profile picture at all, which gives the perception that you’re hiding from something OR someone.

Optimise your headline

Gone are the days of simply posting your job title and the company you work for. LinkedIn has moved on and your headline should too. A BOLD HEADLINE is vital to attracting attention to your profile and it’s the first thing people will see when they find you. It’s a shortened, 120-character version of your overall profile and it needs to rank well in searches on LinkedIn and beyond.

Fill your headline with KEYWORDS. Optimise your profile with the main words that describe your work and what you want to be known for – a headline like this will ensure people find you and connect. Consider using adjectives to describe your position, add bullets or lines to separate the words, include additional activities, accomplishments and experience. Look at my own profile at au.linkedin.com/in/russellvjward for an example of a keyword-packed headline.

Another option is the statement headline where you talk about your value proposition, target audience and unique selling point. For example, Brands and Businesses Turn To This Experienced Creative Producer to Manage Events That Deliver.

Write a powerful summary

Alongside your headline, the summary is one of the MOST IMPORTANT elements of your LinkedIn profile and gives your viewers an outline of who you are. You can either use it as a chance to engage and sell to your target audience or provide summary information about what you do.

The trick to writing a killer summary is to make it visually appealing by breaking the content up into easily scannable chunks, using bullets and capitalised text to draw attention to certain points, and including links and a CALL TO ACTION (contact me, email me, visit my website) at the end.

One way to write your summary is to tell a story so start with a brief background (who you are and what you do) and your mission or purpose in work, then talk about your target audience and their potential pain points. Once the problem is out there, reveal how you will fix this (what you can do for them) and give a quick example to demonstrate credibility (key achievements; high-profile successes). Finally, make sure you give your business website address, email and even a phone number – and watch those leads come rolling in.

Build in some multimedia

LinkedIn now gives you the ability to add photos, presentations, videos, PDFs, links and more immediately beneath your summary and in your experience sections. It’s your chance to BOOST your online presence by including a visual element, rather than rely on plain text.

Simple and effective, consider uploading anything that showcases the work you’ve done, the business you operate and the successes you’ve had to create a visual profile that shows off the creative side to you.

So there you have it!

There are other ways to optimise your LinkedIn profile and increase notifications, connections and messages – I’ll share more on these later.

For now, follow these basic steps and you’ll be well on your way to creating a STUNNING LinkedIn profile that gets you NOTICED, drives more people to you, and even gets you that dream job or lucrative business opportunity.

Have any questions or want to learn more about how we can create a brand new LinkedIn profile for you? Visit our website at http://theinternationalwriter.com/linkedin-profile-makeover-packages/ or get in touch at [email protected]

I would love the opportunity to answer your questions and work with you to drive people to your own POWERFUL LinkedIn profile.

Image credit: Large crowd | Shutterstock