The past few lessons we’ve been word nerds, focusing on filling out the written parts of your profile. Now it’s time to mix it up a bit with some other media.
Depending on the type of work you do, you probably have some examples you can share. Photographs you’ve taken, mock-ups you’ve designed, videos of you speaking, or presentations you’ve put together.
The “Featured” section of your profile allows you to curate a selection of posts, articles, links, and media. This is a newer addition to LinkedIn, so not everyone is taking advantage of it yet. Add to yours and your profile will really stand out!
Here’s a quick overview of what you can do here. Posts links to content you’ve published on the LinkedIn platform, articles show articles you’ve published on the LinkedIn blogging platform, links go to external links like blog posts or websites, and media allows you to upload files like photos, documents, and presentations.
This is a great way to showcase your work and make your profile more dynamic and visually compelling.
Since the “Featured” section appears near the top of your profile (just below your summary), it’s one of the first parts of your profile people will see. Be sure to make the most of it!
You’ll probably want to experiment a bit to find the materials you’d like to share. For example, when you include links to external blog posts or websites, LinkedIn will automatically pull the image to include. You might want to try out a few options until you find one that looks good.
Here’s how you update yours: go to the LinkedIn website, find your photo on the top right corner and the word “Me.” Click on the drop-down menu. Then click on the “View profile” link. Just below the “About” section of your profile, you’ll see a section called “Featured.” Click on the plus sign to add a new file. You can then choose the file type from the drop-down menu. If you want to change something you’ve already added, click on the pencil icon.
Be sure to come back and update this section from time to time. You want to make sure it reflects your recent work or noteworthy projects you’d like to highlight.
This is just a quick interlude to say congratulations! You’ve now completed the “Intro” section of your LinkedIn profile. Virtual high fives all around!
It’s now going to be so much easier for people to find you and learn the essentials about what you have to offer. This is an amazing first step.
Take a moment to review everything you’ve done so far. Are you happy with it? Make any changes you’d like to really help your “Intro” section shine.
Your “Background” section includes a few sub-sections: “Experience”, “Education”, “Licenses & Certifications”, and “Volunteer Experience.”
A quick note – the “Background” section is more important when you’re looking for a full-time role.
It’s not as significant when you’re looking for freelance work, so we won’t go into as much depth on this as we will for other sections.
But it’s generally a good idea to fill out as much of your profile as possible, so I’ll give you a few quick pointers.
“Education”, “Licenses & Certification”, and “Volunteer Work” are pretty self-explanatory. Fill out the relevant information for these sections, or skip them if they’re not relevant to you.
Side note: If you’re looking to build out your portfolio or get experience in the field you’d like to freelance in, volunteering can be a great way to accomplish this. Find a non-profit, educational institution, or other organization whose mission appeals to you. Reach out to them and let them know you’re available to help, whether it’s redesigning their website, writing up newsletters, or running social media for them.
The “Experience” section gives you the opportunity to talk about your past roles and companies, when you worked there, and what some of your main responsibilities and accomplishments were.
A general best practice is to talk about what you achieved or what tangible results you had.
For example, maybe you boosted blog traffic by 20% over a 3-month period or reduced the number of customer complaints.
Whenever you can, give specific examples and share the impact your work had.
This helps show clients that you’re results oriented and want to make a difference with your work.
If this approach is new to you, ask a former manager or mentor for help. Create a draft of the points you’d like to mention and ask them if they have any recommendations for how to reword it.
How to update your “Background” section: on your profile page, click the blue box that says “Add Profile” section. You’ll get a drop-down menu where the second option is “Background.” Click on that, then select which part of your background you want to fill out by clicking on the plus sign next to it. Make whichever additions or edits you’d like, then click “Save.”