Creating a Well-Rounded Linkedin Profile

By Mattie Orloff

With only a few months left in my final semester of college, the job hunt is on. The employment service Linkedin is an important professional networking resource as an unemployed student. It can be difficult to build your profile in a way that sets you apart from your peers. Through searching countless job offers and business profiles, I have become well versed in Linkedin profiles and offer some tips for creating yours:

Profile Image

Your profile image on your Linkedin profile acts as your first impression. It is important to have a current headshot that represents your professional personality . When taking a headshot here are a few tips:

  • Look approachable and friendly.
  • Look directly at the camera.
  • No selfies. No filters.
  • Dress business professional or what you would normally wear to the office. 
  • File types: PNG, JPG and GIF.

Background Image

Photo by Marc Mueller

The background image on your profile should be used to elevate your profile. There are many options for what to use as your background image. If you are a student, take an image somewhere on campus. If you are a professional, use an image that represents your company or industry, for example, a picture of yourself and your coworkers or the tools of your trade. Another option is to use a picture of an award or accomplishment. Linkedin’s standard file size for background images is 1,584 x 396 pixels. 

Headline

A headline is one of the first things someone will read when they view your profile. Don’t just use keywords, but add your own personal spin to set you apart from other profiles. Here are some tips for your headline:

  • Keep it under 115 characters.
  • If you are a student, include your major or graduation year.
  • Include the most recent and relevant position you’ve held. 
  • Rather than stating you’re unemployed, try expressing what you are looking for. 
    • Ex: Public Relations Student | Account Executive at Tehama Group Communications | Seeking paid internship opportunities

Summary

When crafting your summary, remember this is an overview of both your professional and personal life. Linkedin limits summaries to 2,000 characters. Here are some of the main components to include in your summary:

  • An eye-catching introduction
  • What drives you
  • Something personal that humanizes you
  • Give context to your career
  • Keywords
  • Lessons you’ve learned
  • Your accomplishments

Network

Networking is one of your most important assets while using Linkedin. 

  • Start by connecting with your peers and include a personalized note. You can find more connections in the “People you may know” section. Connect with people from your university, similar job positions, and friends of friends.
  • Filter your searches with your specific city and industry. 
  • Engage with your connections. Reconnect with people by linking your contacts with your Linkedin account. Build relationships by asking for help from your network and joining linkedin groups.

Skills

This section is a place for you to feature your strengths. It is important to post the more in-demand skills for your industry. If you have at least five skills listed on your LinkedIn profile you will may receive up to 17x more profile views!