Updated: Mar 6, 2020
Charles Weiler-Ulin is the CEO at Holland Park Media, based in the Hague. He has further helped The Hague Tech, where our workshops our held, as a Business Development Consultant and Growth Hacker. During this event, Charles talked us through his main points on how to optimise your LinkedIn profile for maximum effect. His punchline, make sure it looks like you have put in the effort! Here are some of his tips to help you maximise your own profile:
1) LinkedIn Banner
Each profile has a profile picture, and a banner. Many people choose to leave the banner as it is, however this gives the impression that you have not put in the effort to change it. Most people will use the banner of the company they work for as it helps to connect your face to their brand. Although, most of us young professionals are not yet part of a business, we should be focusing on choosing a picture that either; a) shows off what we want to do, b) shows off what we are doing, or c) sparks a conversation. For example, if you are studying in a field along the lines of sustainability, try picking a picture that is in line with this such as a field of wind turbines.
This is your first point of contact to get across to the person viewing your profile. It should be short and sweet, focusing on what you want, whether that is looking for an internship or a career in a certain profession or something completely different. Make sure that you continually update this to what you want to do. Also, don’t include the full name of your university, save that for the education section further down your profile page!
3) The About Section
This is your area to show what you are passionate about, show something interesting about your background, and most importantly what is exciting about you as a person. Don’t highlight all of your experiences here, focus on what exactly you want to pursue. A simple sentence stating what you are looking for and asking people to reach out to you if they have any information for you is a great way to expand your opportunities.
In your experience section make bullet points of what you did for that position. Show what you did, what your interests were, and if you had something published whilst you were in that position then link it below so that people can see what you did and have some point of reference to prove it. This section is all about selling yourself! If you still have old waitress/babysitting/something else that is irrelevant for what you are trying to pursue now, then move it down to the volunteering section. You want this to be a timeline of your progress and showing off why you should be doing what you want to do.
These are a great way of showing that there are people out there who are willing to take some of their own time to compliment you. Try to ask friends, colleagues, and people you have worked for to write a recommendation for you on LinkedIn as this will boost your credibility and provide some evidence of what kind of person you truly are.
6) Articles, Activities, and Interests
Each LinkedIn has an interests section which shows what pages you have liked. This list is a great opportunity for you to curate this section to your needs and wants. By liking pages that are relevant to you, e.g. someone pursuing a bachelor in international law would most likely benefit from liking international legal institutions such as the ICC and the ICJ, you show people your passions and what you are pursuing. This also means that you can limit it to what you want others to see. This links to your activities section which shows what you are doing on LinkedIn. By making sure you are staying active on LinkedIn through sharing articles, commenting, liking, positing, etc. you boost your activity and once again can focus this towards your passions and goals. It is about steadily building up your personal brand which all interlinks and creates the image you want to portray.
By simply putting in the effort to develop and tweak your profile, you can rebrand yourself in a way that employers look more favourably upon. Try looking through your profile through the eyes of the person you want to hire you and think of what they will see going through it. If it is not something you want them to see, then change it, and keep updating it as you progress.