Unlike many other social platforms, LinkedIn is an excellent channel for personal branding and helping yourself stand out against other professionals. With a social network of over 500 million, it is important to recognize some best practices that will help promote your unique skills and qualities.

7 Tips to Strengthen Your LinkedIn Profile

Here are a few tips to give your LinkedIn a boost and help strengthen your LinkedIn profile:

1. Use Your Banner Space

Your banner space is the first piece of digital imagery one sees on your LinkedIn profile. This is the first opportunity you have to position your skills and value, helping your page to stand out. If you’re new to LinkedIn, view these instructions on how to change your banner image. New members are provided with the same, standard LinkedIn banner image. If you have a free account, you can easily upload your own personalized banner image. Keep in mind, LinkedIn limits the size of personal page banners to 1584 by 396 px and 1536px by 798px for business page banners. If needed, you can crop the area you want to be displayed. Pick something relevant to you and your unique skill set or career interests. Stay simple and professional with a stock image. Pexels is a great place to start looking for ideas.

2. Upload a Professional Picture

Your profile picture is an essential component of your LinkedIn presence. This small, circular avatar helps you make a good impression on recruiters. So, no selfies. Instead, upload a professional headshot. If you don’t have one yet, choose a quality image of yourself in professional or formal attire, with a plain background that is not distracting.

3. Add a Headline

Your headline is a small piece of information that sits right below your profile picture and name. It provides a small glimpse of yourself that should contain a benefit to other LinkedIn members. This is a small, but crucial component to drawing attention and getting recruiters interested in reading more. You want your headline to be audience-focused and value-added. You only have 120 characters, but if you use them wisely, you are bound to attract more viewers to yourself or your brand.

4. Write a Profile Summary

Too often, LinkedIn users overlook this prime piece of real estate. This is your chance to showcase your unique qualities and outshine the competition. Tell a story! How did you choose your career path? What are your interests or hobbies? What motivates you? Tell your network what you do! Add personal elements that ensure authenticity. For brands, include keyword-rich value offers.

5. Add Your Work Experience

Like many new members, I let LinkedIn set up my profile based on the information it retrieved from my resume. While this may be a good start, you may want to focus on adding information that is more impactful and gives recruiters a deeper understanding of who you are, as well as the value you bring to your employers. Write a story about your work experience. Always backup your story with relevant images, which provide visual imagery and contextual language. Don’t be afraid to link a video. Use this as an opportunity to draw attention to your skills and value.

6. Ask for Recommendations

Whether they are from friends, family, colleagues, or customers, recommendations are a great way to showcase some of your qualities and what it is like working with you. Go for things that make you or your brand sound unique and authentic. When you ask for a recommendation, be sure to ask that they mention traits and unique values that a potential customer or recruiter may be interested in.

7. Start Engaging

Unlike Facebook and Instagram, LinkedIn promotes content on a points-based system. Points are rewarded for engagement, whether it be likes, comments, or shares. Comment and share your friend’s posts! When you start to interact frequently, LinkedIn will rank you higher. As a consistent contributor, your content will be seen more frequently.

Whether you are building a personal or business page, each of these tips is important in developing a value-driven profile. In all these tips, it is always important to remember to never over-promote yourself or your business. You want to use this platform to help others and position yourself as someone who adds value. For more information on building a LinkedIn business page, download your free guide below.