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How to create an effective LinkedIn Profile: tips for visibility and credibility

LinkedIn is the social network dedicated to business, relationships and work career. With over 900 million members worldwide it is the right place to create a valid online presence.

One of the cornerstones for developing your professional online presence is your LinkedIn Profile web page . You are an entrepreneur or the manager of a company. A freelancer or a job seeker? Whatever your job “position”, LinkedIn is the social network you should pay more attention to.

In this article we will help you build and develop your professional identity on this platform, answering a fundamental question: How to create and manage an effective LinkedIn Profile?

Why do you need an effective LinkedIn Profile?

Before understanding how to create an effective LinkedIn Profile, it is good to ask yourself another preliminary question: what is the  purpose of a LinkedIn Profile … possibly effective?

First of all, LinkedIn is not a social network like any other. The expression social network often refers to a type of online presence more devoted to entertainment than personal branding. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter are virtual places where the user prefers to “use” their time to socialize, have fun, share, stay in touch. Creating a profile on LinkedIn instead means “investing” your time in business relationships, personal branding and the search for job and business opportunities.

In summary, there are at least 5 reasons why it is important to have a well-optimized LinkedIn Profile:

  • increase your online visibility (not just for job recruiters);
  • build a professional reputation and credibility ;
  • build a professional network ;
  • stay updated on the main sector trends;
  • start business conversations .

The LinkedIn Profile is much more than a business card. This is especially true for business leaders, CEOs . There are thousands of CEOs and Top Executives on LinkedIn who are aware of how important it is for their role to be present and active online, not only for their image but also for the health of the brand they represent . For further information: How and why to do CEO Branding on LinkedIn

How to create a good profile on LinkedIn?

So let’s get to the crux of the matter. Before you start developing your network and posting valuable content on LinkedIn you need to start optimizing your Profile. It is the first pillar on which to build your business on LinkedIn. Through an effective LinkedIn Profile you can position yourself in a unique, original and differentiating way . Landing on your LinkedIn Profile a new visitor will immediately have to understand:

  • Who are you, what is your role
  • Who do you turn to, who can you help
  • How you can help them achieve their goals or solve their problems

It seems simple, but in reality the issue is much more complex. To fully satisfy these requirements, there are 3 goals you must consider achieving when creating and managing your Profile. That is: level of visibility, credibility and business opportunities you are generating thanks to LinkedIn.

1. LinkedIn Profile Visibility

One of the first goals to achieve on LinkedIn is to reach the so-called ” maximum profile effectiveness ” or ” All Star Profile ” if you have set the language of your account on LinkedIn to English. To find out if you have reached the maximum effectiveness of your Profile, log in to LinkedIn and go to your Profile page; scroll the page until you find the private dashboard:

LinkedIn profile effectiveness

If you have not yet reached this first goal, your Profile will be penalized, you will appear less often in the search results, and your visibility will therefore be compromised.

Make sure you have completed the following fields of your Profile :

  • your industry and location
  • your current job position, with description
  • two previous job positions
  • at least one element related to your education
  • at least 3 skills
  • Profile photo
  • have reached at least 50 connections

Other parameters with which you can monitor how your visibility changes over time include the number of visits you have received in the last 90 days . How to find out the trend of visits? To this end, LinkedIn provides updated statistics on the dedicated visit monitoring page . If you have a Premium Account , you will be able to find out exactly who has visited your Profile, otherwise you will only see the last 5 visitors.

visits to your linkedin profile

Depending on your role and your objectives, you will be more interested in attracting people to your Profile who correspond, for example, to your ideal client, employer or candidate . Based on your role and your search history and your current network, LinkedIn will alert you to interesting people ( interesting views ).

There are several metrics with which you can measure the effectiveness of your LinkedIn Profile in terms of visibility :

  • profile visits;
  • appeared in the search;
  • quotes;
  • posts published;
  • articles published with specific hashtags.

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2. Credibility of the LinkedIn Profile

Once you have optimized your Profile to attract your ideal audience, the second step is to make sure you immediately make a good impression and show your credibility and authority . You have less than 7 seconds to immediately establish an empathetic connection with a new visitor and create a “good first impression”.

You will be more credible if you have paid attention to some visual details on your Profile such as the background image (to be customized) and your photo (professional) and if you have received a certain number of skill confirmations for your three primary skills that appear in the bottom of your Profile.

Another important element that increases your consent because it comes from others are the Recommendations (References if you have set the Italian language) that people can read on your Profile.

It is important to take care of both the volume of reports received but above all what emerges about your skills and personality from reading them. No less important is who wrote you this report . Is he an authoritative, prominent, respected person?

Unlike a static CV, an effective LinkedIn Profile is like a living organism that changes and evolves every day. Precisely for this reason, regularly publish posts on LinkedIn, comment, recommend and interact with other people’s posts . These activities will be visible on your Profile in the Activities section, together with the number of your Followers.

The Activity section on your Profile tells a lot about your interests and personality. People who come to your Profile will be able to read your posts, appreciate your content and understand who the other people are that you follow and appreciate with your likes and comments.

In summary, the main metrics with which you can measure the effectiveness of your LinkedIn Profile are:

  • reports;
  • followers;
  • skills confirmations;
  • average post engagement.

3. Opportunities from your LinkedIn Profile

It’s time to understand and measure the real impact , both personally and professionally, of your activity on LinkedIn.

For example, if you are a salesperson and your goal is to start conversations with potential customers, to then gain consideration and trust , fundamental ingredients for obtaining an appointment, you will record:

  • Number of invitations from potential customers
  • number of qualified contacts
  • number of telephone, virtual, in-person appointments
  • number of business opportunities (e.g. quote requests)

How to activate a Premium Account on LinkedIn

In addition to achieving these goals, it is a good idea to consider activating a Premium account on LinkedIn . When is it worth switching from a free to a paid account?

LinkedIn imposes several commercial limits on free accounts, including the maximum number of searches per month. If you use LinkedIn very heavily , then you will soon reach this limit and consider switching to the paid version.

The so-called Premium Accounts in fact offer additional functions , in order to make it more effective and easier to achieve the career and business objectives typical of activity on LinkedIn. More precisely, LinkedIn has created a Premium version for each of the main figures present on this social network (Job Seeker, Manager, Sales and Recruiter):

  • Premium Career (for job seekers)
  • Premium Business (For Managers, Entrepreneurs, Executives)
  • Sales Navigator (for salespeople and sales teams)
  • Recruiter (for selectors and recruiters)

Among the additional features available we highlight:

  • Ability to browse and search among LinkedIn profiles, without limits
  • Ability to view all those who have visited your Profile
  • Ability to send a certain number of Private Messages (InMail) to all LinkedIn users; with the Free account you can send private messages only to your direct connections
  • Possibility of having important information on companies such as hiring trends
  • Ability to access LinkedIn Learning , an eLearning platform with more than 50,000 video courses that will allow you to increase your skills and add them directly to your Profile.

Personal profile and company profile, the differences

Before closing this long guide to the perfect LinkedIn profile, it is good to make a distinction between personal profiles and company profiles. LinkedIn, in fact, has now become a key professional tool for companies too . It allows you to reach potential customers, carry out recruitment activities or advertise. Even in this case, it is not enough to “be there” but it is necessary to build a solid, reliable and resilient presence.

The visibility and credibility rules of a company LinkedIn page are very similar to those seen for personal LinkedIn profiles. However, what changes are the objectives and, consequently, the strategies to be implemented to achieve them. If in a personal profile, as seen, your main purpose is to increase professional identity and credibility, a company will exploit the features of this platform for more complex business objectives , such as Lead Generation, Social Selling or Talent Acquisition .

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