Social networking site LinkedIn is an absolute gold mine for professionals and recruiters, however, only in case when both can seamlessly find each other. Not many of us are aware of the importance of the platform’s own search engine for HR and recruiters, and hence, do not use its features to their potential. In this article, we included visual examples and relevant suggestions to make your LinkedIn profile as efficient and search engine-friendly as possible, meanwhile, showing the best professional side of you.
1. Header: Picture, location and job title
Visuals: Not only is the first e-impression created by the profile header but a well-chosen imagery also helps you to receive 21 times more views and nine times more connection requests. For this reason, we recommend having a photo. It does not necessarily have to be a standard portrait – for example: if you are a designer, it could be a shot of you working on your designs. However, remember to keep it professional – imagine your image being seen by people who do not know you personally and potentially want you to work for them.
Another creative suggestion is to use the background photo to reflect your Fashion job and personality. If you work in the visual field, details such as matching your profile photo with the background will not go unnoticed.
Location: If you add your current location, you are much more likely contacted by recruiters because this is another major keyword for them to find relevant professionals with.
Job title: Being inventive helps you to differentiate yourself from others but our experience has shown that it is best to direct the creative juices towards the summary and job experience part. In order to have the most effective profile on LinkedIn, it is better to think of search engine-friendly keywords for your job title instead – research the job opportunities you want to be considered for and see if yours matches.
Pro tip: A new smart feature by LinkedIn allows you to show recruiters that you are open for new opportunities without your employer finding out – it will be only visible for the recruiters’ eyes.
When you are offered a blank space, limited only to characters, it is important not to miss out on the chance to tell your story. Tell us what you are good at and what are your career expectations. Moreover, adding a link to your personal portfolio is always welcomed – in the design industry, we like it visual even though LinkedIn has not concentrated on this (just yet).
3. Your activity
Actively writing, sharing and liking posts that are relevant to your career objectives are a good sign that you have truly immersed yourself in the industry. It also gives an honest glimpse of your interests and level of motivation. We recommend keeping an eye on Fashion news, employer branding activities of your favourite brands and participate in appropriate LinkedIn groups.
It is important to outline that describing your job experience is not exactly the same as listing your job description. A job description is a general overview of what you are expected to do, however, the job experience part requires you to briefly reflect on your job within the environment of your company and demonstrate which results you have brought during your stay. We recommend choosing the most important factors and avoiding lengthy text – you can always explain more during your next job interview. When describing your work involvement, try to avoid stereotypical ’empty’ phrases and see if you are communicating as effectively as possible (use examples and concrete facts).
Pro tip: Selecting your employee from the drop down list (if possible) is a smart move, making it easier for people to find you (think of being search-engine friendly again).
Not only can you connect to other alumni but oftentimes some of the candidates are discovered precisely through their school of choice. To be found easily, mention the type of degree, years of study and then find your university from the drop-down list. Unless you are a current student or a recent graduate, there is no particular need for a detailed description since the work experience will be more focused upon by the recruiters.
6. Volunteer Experience
While this area of your profile is not the first thing to catch the reader’s attention, it might just be a perfect opportunity to display what you are passionate about. Once the people potentially hiring you find your experience and style relevant, then as the next step, it is time to understand if your values and personality could fit in with the company culture.
7. Skills & Endorsements
This section of your profile can be a potential source of credibility for people who do not know you. Having your colleagues endorse you gets you visibility in the LinkedIn search engine – if you have 5 or more endorsements, you may receive up to 17 times more views and up to 27 times more appearances in the search results. What’s best, you can actually reorder the skills and display the ones that are most important to you in this particular point in your career.
There is a vast choice of nine categories to show off your accomplishments but we recommend pinpointing your most important and relevant ones. You are definitely not expected to fill in all categories, but instead, they are there to express your talents, which you might have forgot to mention previously on the profile. Our recruiters suggest outlining the key figures you have brought with your participation or initiative (% increases etc) and certainly feature the languages and your level speaking them. Imagine the situation in which the recruiters look for a Spanish speaker and even though you are not a native, you speak the language fluently. Without mentioning your level on LinkedIn, the recruiters might not contact you and the opportunity may just fly out of the window.
The news feed on LinkedIn becomes instantly much more interesting when you start to like and follow the news outlets, professional groups, Fashion brands that you are fond of. As with all the public information, the pages and groups you choose to keep track of may give a good indication about your views and objectives and help others getting closer to putting together a picture of you. This is particularly helpful for the recruiters to get an indication of your taste and preferences in terms of companies and style.
We, the G&M Fashion Career Team, hope you found these tips useful, perhaps they even made you re-think the approach to LinkedIn. Following these steps above should already be one be one important step closer to being well-prepared for career advancement – “Luck is what happens when preparations meets opportunity”. We encourage you to check out more Career Tips, Fashion News and Career stories from Fashion Industry Insiders from our weekly blog as well!