Even if we’re not thinking of changing jobs, our appearance on LinkedIn is worth spending time on. Existing and future customers and employees are among those who might look at our profile page. And one of the first things they see? The ‘profile headline’.
This is the short description after our name. It’s up to 220 characters, but it can give people a real impression of our character, should we want that to be the case. If we’re on a mission, 220 characters is quite enough to tell people what that is. Likewise, if we want to let people know that we’re a laid-back kind of person, or someone who takes their position very seriously, it’s all possible in those few words.
One approach to coming up with the right message is for us to think about who might be looking at the page (or at least those who are important to us) and asking why they’re likely to have looked us up. For example, if we were in technical sales, it might well be a prospective customer we’ve met, or were about to meet. So the message our ‘profile headline’ should get over would be that we’re someone they can trust to offer the right products or services for their needs. If we’re in senior management, it could be – for example – someone from a collaborating company, or perhaps a prospective employee. What message do we want to tell them about our business?
It’s worth spending a bit of time looking at ‘quotable examples’ of profile headlines. It might inspire us to improve on what we’ve got, especially if all we have is just our job title, which is a wasted opportunity.