Getting more out of LinkedIn

From a better profile picture to better connections, we find out how to make LinkedIn your professional networking friend...

By: Clare Howdle,   2 minutes


I have recently realised that my LinkedIn know how is distinctly below par. I am on it, I post sometimes. I nose around occasionally, but I can’t help thinking I am really not getting as much out of LinkedIn as I could be. So on an organising, life-sorting Feed, I googled, read up and put what I learnt into action. Here are the top tips I picked up from the articles I read:

1. Have a professional looking profile picture. I am on a typewriter. It’s kind of professional if I was a professional Wes Anderson filmography geek. Which I wish I was. Still, it does say something about me and what I do. Plus, according to tip 6 on this list, me on a typewriter is just the ticket. Grand.

2. Don’t use the job title to give your job title. It’s your opportunity to share with the world your own personal strapline (I think this tip was from an American), about who you are and what you do. Point taken. After considering putting Wes Anderson filmography geek, I plumped for Thinker, Writer, Creator (and Partner) Stranger Collective.

3. Start with a strong headline. Make sure your summary not only includes keywords people might use to search for your skills but also gives something of your personality and stands out. I think my headline, or summary, probably veered too much on personality and not enough on detail. So I tweaked it a little. Much better.

4. Customise your LinkedIn URL. Done that. Finally. Something I’ve already done.

5. LinkedIn is not Facebook. Don’t bombard your contacts with posts. Once or twice a week is enough and be sure to be interesting. Good blog posts you’ve read, updates on what you’re up to, events you’re going to (that people might be interested in, not your Nan’s 90th) that sort of thing. And be funny. If you can. But keep it clean (loved this advice. Thank goodness I was warned, I was all ready to go in smut-heavy).

6. If you’re a creative, look creative. Use your profile picture to demonstrate your creative personality. A professional headshot is one thing, but what does it really say about you? Note my glee in tip 1 about getting this bad boy on the money.

7. Use groups. Join at least 10. Give intelligent answers to raised discussions. I am a member of four groups. All about writing. And I never look at them. So I dug around. I joined 6 more. One for creative agencies and the people who run them. I read some of the posts. It was good stuff. There were some useful links and valuable tips on there. I found some great blogs to read. I commented on one of them. Already I felt like I was getting more out of LinkedIn.

My LinkedIn Feed has changed my life. OK, that’s going a bit far, but it has changed my days. I make time for LinkedIn every day now, even if it’s just 10 minutes. I read what people are up to, look out for interesting features posted in groups, join in discussions and share the interesting stuff I’ve found too.

Whether it’s debating the value of short sentences or finding out more about the latest workflow tool for creative agencies, turns out there’s a lot to be gained from digging deeper. Check out how I’m doing –

And here’s whose advice I worked through on my LinkedIn mission:

Best LinkedIn tips for creative professionals

10 ways to get more out of LinkedIn

LinkedIn groups for advertisers

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