• The Mag asks Jeff Wong, Head of North Asia - Talent, Learning & Employees Engagement Solutions at LinkedIn, to share five tips on how to build a strong LinkedIn presence.
• Make your profile stand out with a decent headshot, a succinct profile summary, and up-to-date information with quantifiable results and work samples.
• Engage with your network by sharing articles and using features such as polls and live-streaming.
When did you last update your LinkedIn profile? Even if you aren’t looking for a job, a strong presence on a networking platform has many benefits for your career: it helps build your network, keeps you up to date on industry trends, and might even land you the dream job. But how do you know if your LinkedIn game is up to par? We ask Jeff Wong, LinkedIn’s Head of North Asia - Talent, Learning & Employees Engagement Solutions, to give us a few pointers.
1. A picture is worth a thousand words
The first and most important step to a strong LinkedIn profile is your headshot. According to Wong, simply having a photo of yourself gets you nine times more connection requests and 20 times more profile views. So what makes a good profile picture? “It really depends on what type of industry you’re in,” he says. “If you work in a more corporate environment, take a picture dressed in business attire and standing against a plain background. Ultimately, your profile photo is about how you want to be perceived by your network.”
2. Entice employers with your headline and story
Most would simply put their job title as the headline of their profile, which is fine – but not enticing enough. “Try to add a little description – an example would be, ‘job title: helping X do Y’,” says Wong. Likewise, your profile summary is a place where you can tell your entire career story in a short, succinct paragraph – your elevator pitch. Wong recommends writing in the first-person voice to sound more personable, and the rule of thumb is to keep it short and sweet at around 40 to 50 words, so that it’s easy to read.
3. Show your achievements
Unlike a traditional, printed resume, there are several digital features that allow you to show off your experience and qualifications: upload relevant certificates, and add links to samples of your work as well as the results you achieved under each position you’ve held. “Maybe you exceeded a sales goal by X percent, or you increased your company’s social media followers by a certain number. Quantifiable accomplishments often tell a better story,” says Wong.
Need more ways to “up” your work game?
Read The Mag’s CAREER stories.
4. Share conversation starters
Come across articles or posts that resonate with you? Wong encourages everyone to share them with their network. “By doing so, you’re amplifying your voice, and telling people what you’re passionate about,” he says. “It’s a great opportunity to invite your peers to share their own thoughts about a common interest, and you can start meaningful conversations with like-minded individuals that way.”
5. Engage with your network
Aside from inbox messages and comments on posts, there are many fun, casual ways you can interact with your LinkedIn network. “Polls are great for crowdsourcing ideas, and as a way to getting a quick response on a certain topic,” Wong says. Another new feature, LinkedIn Live – a video live-streaming function – allows companies and individuals to reach out directly to others within their network to discuss topics and trends in real time. Keep exploring both new and old features to engage with your connections, even when you aren’t job searching – after all, the best time to build a network is before you need one!
Knowing how to conduct yourself when networking offline is also important – read these Expert Tips for Networking Success before you head to your next event.