A Contractors Guide To Writing A Perfect LinkedIn Profile

Your LinkedIn profile is the main way you can market yourself on LinkedIn,  Your profile will help you to promote yourself to attract new clients.  Your LinkedIn profile is not the same as a CV.  Your profile is a tool to help market and sell yourself so you need to make sure it entices.  The first thing you need to do is identify your target audience, i.e. the people who will either find you work or give you work. A LinkedIn profile is made up of 16 different elements.  To have the best chance of success you need to make sure you fill everything out.

Name and Location

  • This one is a bit of a no-brainer.  Keep it simple, clear and concise.

Contact Info

  • Add your twitter etc...
  • If you have a website, select the 'other' label to add a more user friendly title.

Picture

  • Use any professional photos you have.  
  • Black and white photos work well.  
  • Remember this is for business, work, networking. THIS IS DIFFERENT than your Facebook picture.  
  • If you are unsure what a good picture is, upload a few pictures to www.hotornot.com and use the best rated picture.
  • You’re seven times more likely to be viewed if you have a photo on your LinkedIn profile.

Professional Headline

  • This field is key for helping people find your profile, so make sure you spend some time thinking about it.
  • Highlight what you do and what you are looking for
  • It needs to contain the keywords that you want your clients to be able to find you with
  • Include a special character to stand out
  • Use symbols for points that you want to stand out such as │ ▌► ◄ ♦ • ★☆ 
  • TIP: If you download my 'How To Market Yourself As A Contractor' guide, read the section on elevator pitches

Summary

  • In this section, you should focus on establishing your credibility.
  • Use all 2,000 characters you have available in your summary, so 500 characters per section.
  • You should split your summary into three main sections, the pitch, a summary and a call to action and a specialities section.
  • The pitch
    • Like any pitch, this is your chance to sell yourself and capture your reader's attention
    • Key things to cover:
      • What can you offer?
      • What problem can you solve?
      • What value can you provide?
      • Why should someone use or hire you?
  • The summary
    • This should cover the basics about what you do
    • Key things to cover:
      • What do you do?
      • What is your focus?
      • What is your role?
      • What does your business do?
      • What are your skills?
  • Call to Action
    • What do you want someone to do now they are on your profile
    •  Key things to cover:
      • How to get in contact
      • Where should the reader go now? a website, your CV, email you
  • Specialities
    • A list of keywords that you want to be searchable for within LinkedIn.

Experience

  • This section can be mainly copied from your CV
  • Use keywords in your headings to increase your search rankings within LinkedIn
  • For each job, make sure you have a list of keywords of technologies, roles, responsibilities you used for SEO
  • Explain the value you added in your time there.

Skills

  • A list of keywords that you want to be searchable for within LinkedIn.
  • Ask friends, family, colleges to endorse your skills to add credibility

Education and Certifications

  • Another obvious one that doesn't need any guidance.  The main purpose of this is to help people connect with people you used to know

Interests

  • Another obvious one that doesn't need any guidance  ☆ Remember this is another chance to add in keywords ☆

Advice for Contacting 

  • Tell your reader how they can get in contact with you.  I like to send people to my 'contact me' form on my portfolio.
  • Add 'You Reply To All Messages' to increase a connection

 

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Jon D Jones

Software Architect, Programmer and Technologist Jon Jones is founder and CEO of London-based tech firm Digital Prompt. He has been working in the field for nearly a decade, specializing in new technologies and technical solution research in the web business. A passionate blogger by heart , speaker & consultant from England.. always on the hunt for the next challenge

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