21st December 2022

How to Showcase your Personal Brand on LinkedIn

If you’ve got your sights set on a dream job and want to know how to stand out from other candidates. LinkedIn may just hold the answer.

It’s the perfect platform to show potential employers why they should hire you. In other words, it’ll help you build your personal brand and get noticed. If you get it right, you’ll start getting people asking you to apply for their roles, rather than the other way around.

Read on for 6 things you can do to up your LinkedIn game and get the job you’ve always wanted.

Why does having a good LinkedIn profile matter?

In today’s market, LinkedIn is way more than a CV. It’s critical to reflect the value you bring to a company, and an effective way to do that is to build your personal brand using the platform. Particularly if you’re job hunting, as hiring managers will use LinkedIn to see what you’re about.

Consider everything you put on your LinkedIn profile through the lens of how it relates to your personal brand and what you’d like to achieve in future. For example, putting your GCSE grades doesn’t help show that you’re really good at finance automation.

So, what makes a good LinkedIn profile? Here are my top tips to up your LinkedIn game and showcase yourself in the best possible way.

Plan a direction for your ‘personal brand’

The best personal brands offer consistency, value and interest. To achieve that, you need something to build on in the first place.

Start by questioning where the future of your industry is going, everyone loves a thought leader. Then reflect on what you’re good at, what you care about, and what your USP (unique selling point) is. Spoiler alert, your biggest USP is you. Your skills, your opinions on things, and your unique experiences.

If you find this exercise hard (and most people do!), note down things you think people say about you when you’re not in the room.

For example, you could be really good at data and analytics, and have used these skills to really drive impact on previous projects. Or you could be awesome at finance transformation by pointing out improvements that’ll save time, effort and money.

Note all of this down and you have a list of things to build your personal brand around. Now it’s time to get it onto your CV and LinkedIn.

Pick a theme for your LinkedIn profile

Building on the previous point, your LinkedIn profile should have a nice flow through it, and everything should map neatly against your brand.

If someone skims your profile, they should be able to say:

  • “This person is great at finance transformation”
  • “Business partners love working with this person”
  • “If I need data analytics, this person looks perfect”
  • “What a great manager this person is”

If you have something on there that doesn’t match your brand, think about removing it.

For example, say you’re a manager and you want to focus on your great people management skills. If at the bottom of your profile it says, ‘I can speak basic French’. Does that get the message across? No, so that can come off.

You want to keep this type of information on your CV and not on your LinkedIn profile. Think about your LinkedIn as a high-level document or advert for you, that encourages people to get in touch to find out more.

Now let’s work through your profile and look at some specifics…

Update your photo

What does your picture say about you? Do you look open, authentic and approachable? Your picture might be seen by someone you’ve applied for a job with, or who’s come across your profile on their search for someone to fill a position. People like to talk to friendly, authentic, open people – so try to have your picture reflect that.

If you know your current picture isn’t up to date, add it to your to do list! Get a friend (or put your phone on self-timer) and stand against a neutral background to get your picture. Make sure your photo has your head and shoulders in.

Remember to update it if you have a major appearance change like a totally new haircut, or anything that means people wouldn’t immediately recognise you.

Make your job title mean something

The job title underneath your name should be a reflection of what you actually do to add value to those you work with. Again, ensure it reflects your personal brand too. For example, ‘A Senior Finance Leader focused on making finance better in every way’, sounds a lot more compelling than ‘Senior Finance Manager’.

Demonstrate value in your about section

Your ‘About’ section needs to clearly showcase your value. It can be the same thing that’s written at the top of your CV, but in general, think about how it explains the positive difference you make at work. For example, ‘As a Senior Finance Leader, I support Finance teams to unlock their productivity and potential, while looking towards new finance transformation strategies.’

Only list relevant ‘Experience’, ‘Education’ and ‘Skills’

Create an upside-down pyramid shape of your experience and roles – more depth at the top. A good personal brand highlights what you’ve done and how you’ve grown along the way. You want people looking at your profile to see the journey you’ve been on. They should be able to see you’ve grown and expanded into your chosen career path as you gain more experience.

Unless you have a 1st, take off any university and school grades and jobs you had before your career started. Remove all school and university dates and leave out phrases such as ‘I graduated in 2020…’ to negate age bias.

Once you’ve updated these sections, ask yourself these three things:

  • Does this add to my brand?
  • Is this neutral to my brand?
  • Does this take away from my brand?

If the answer is ‘yes’ to being neutral or taking away from your personal brand, then you know what to do.

Interests you follow

This section is one that’s often forgotten but still holds weight. When you follow certain pages or influencers, it shows up on your profile. Revisit who and which pages you’re following, and unfollow any that you aren’t comfortable with anymore, or that don’t align with your current thoughts and feelings.

Need help boosting your personal brand?

Get in touch to book a 30-minute discovery call where together we can lay out an action plan and get you on your way to securing your dream job.


Oliver Deacon

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