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Posted on 12.11.2012

Give your LinkedIn Profile a Professional Makeover

Nowadays it's extremely important to update your social media accounts, especially if you're on the job hunt. As of September 30, 2012, LinkedIn was noted as the world's largest professional network on the Internet with 187 million members in more than 200 countries and territories. According to the Cnet article, 93 percent of job recruiters tap into LinkedIn to find qualified candidates. Overall 92 percent of employers and recruiters already use or plan to use social media to find job candidates this year.

If you are looking for a job and you play your cards right, you've got a very good chance of finding a job or making a connection leading to a job on LinkedIn. In fact, I know that it can be done as I found a previous internship through a LinkedIn group.

Now, how do you make yourself stand out from the other 187 million users? There are five important things to remember when updating your profile:

1. Spice up your headline- The headline is the most overlooked LinkedIn profile section. If you look at your headline right now, I guarantee 99 percent of you still have the default headline: current company name and title. What you may not know is that you have 120 characters to make your headline your own. Keys to a great headline: showcase your specialty or your "so what," speak directly to the audience you want to attract, be specific but creative and use key words!

2. Create a "Here's what I can do for you" summary- After you draw in recruiters or potential employers, clients or customers with your headline, you have to have something to make it worth their while. This is where the summary section comes into play. You have 2,000 characters to tell who you are and what you can do. Think of this section as your ‶elevator pitch,※ as it needs to be memorable but descriptive. Make sure you write this section in first person, highlight your success, tell a story and always include your contact info.

3.Spaell Chekk: Were you able to decipher that to read- Spell Check? There's nothing more important than correct grammar and spelling. Most recruiters will immediately "next" your page if you have a simple spelling or grammar error. Bad grammar or spelling makes your page hard to read and detracts attention from your ability to sell your skills and experience.

4. Picture perfect- My suggestion is to use a professional headshot. If you don't have one, get one made. It shows professionalism, and first impressions are always important. Remember, a picture is worth a thousand words.

5. Call to action- Whether you're selling yourself or your company, always include a call to action. Give guidance on what site to visit to view more about your company or product, indicate the best way to contact you and remind them why they should want to contact you or your company.

Whether you're on the job hunt or happy at your current employer, an updated and sophisticated LinkedIn profile will get you far in the professional world. Have you had success in the past after updating your LinkedIn profile? If so, how'd you make your profile standout?    

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