If you’re new to freelance work or looking to get repeat clients, you need a solid platform for them to land. You can stand out by optimizing your LinkedIn profile.
Follow these steps to stand out from the crowd and show how you can help your potential customers. Let’s dive into it.
1. Create and download a new header
When a recruiter first comes to your profile, the first thing they see is your header. You must therefore make sure that it acts as an introductory element for you and specifies the necessary information.
A generic cover photo, like the one you might have on Facebook, can be a bad choice here. Instead, create a professional header using an image editor. This is because personal branding can help freelancers go miles.
Here is the step-by-step process for creating a header using Canva.
Step 1: The obvious: open the site.
2nd step: Click on the Create a design and start typing “LinkedIn” in the search bar. It will automatically show you the dimensions of the LinkedIn banners to use.
It is wise to choose from the dimensions given. This is mainly because if you select the dimensions yourself and they turn out to be wrong after creating your design, you will have to pay a small fee to fix it.
After clicking on it, you will see a screen like this:
Step 3: Select one of the free or paid templates or upload your own background image.
After selecting the template, it will appear in the empty field like this:
Step 4: Add your photo to the banner by clicking on the Download media button located on the left side of the screen. The image will appear in your Canva gallery once uploaded.
Click and drag the image to the preview displayed on the model, then release the button. The image will automatically appear in the round section of the banner. Once it’s there, rearrange it so that your face is in the correct position in the frame.
If you are creating a header from scratch, you can choose your frames from the Element section. Then upload the image as shown in the previous step.
Step 5: Edit your title by clicking on the text button to the left of the banner.
If you are creating an image from scratch, you can also add the title by clicking on the text on the left side of the screen.
Step 6: Click on the expand button at the bottom of the page to review your banner once. You can adjust the positions of the text and image as needed.
For example, we may need to pull the banner title up a bit or the displayed image may cover it on LinkedIn.
Step 7: Save the image by clicking on the To download button in the upper right corner of the screen. You can also select the format in which you want to upload your image. I prefer PNG because it doesn’t compress your image when uploading.
Step 8: Once everything is done, simply upload the banner to your LinkedIn profile.
2. Edit your slogan
Your next step is to change your tagline (or title). It should be more than just text like “open to work”. So write something that makes it clear what type of freelance writer you are, for example: pet writer, web designer, SEO consultant and specialist, UX designer, etc.
If you offer several services, you can add them all in your title by separating them with a vertical bar (|). Consider writing that you are “open to work” or “available to hire” at the end, just to make sure your potential clients understand the idea.
3. Rewrite your summary
Summarizing your LinkedIn profile is not only about the degrees you have or the experience you have, but also how you can actually help your potential customers with the problem they are facing.
So brush up on your writing skills before writing this section. The following tips may help you:
Define your prospects by making sure they are the ones you serve.
Describe their pain points, defining that you get them.
Add your experience and credibility, explaining why you are the best person to get help.
4. Edit the rest of your information
The next step is to optimize the rest of your profile.
Step 1: Start by personalizing your URL.
When you create a new LinkedIn profile, it gives you a generic, ugly URL. But do not worry. You can change it. Simply navigate to your profile and click on “Edit your profile and URL” in the right corner of the screen.
Then customize your URL from here.
2nd step: Upload your already published work in the featured section. This will help your potential clients take a look at your work if necessary.
You can also upload media in this section to bring up your profile. For example, if you’ve been speaking at a conference or made a great personal branding video, this is the place to add it. If you have trouble downloading it, fix it like this.
Step 3: Add all the companies you have worked for in the past. If you are fresher, your volunteering experience will work just fine.
Step 4: Add your training information in the following fields.
Step 5: If you have certificates and licenses add them here.
5. Lesser Known Ways to Find Work on LinkedIn
When it comes to finding work on LinkedIn, most people just click on job searches and start applying. Although it’s one of the best ways to find work, but that’s not all. You can take advantage of LinkedIn for more.
If you like the cold pitch, consider exporting your LinkedIn connections to a spreadsheet. Yes, LinkedIn allows it. To export your connections.
Step 1: Click My networks.
Step 2: click Connections.
Step 3: go to Manage and synchronize contacts.
Step 4: Click on the Export contacts button on the right side of the screen.
Step 5: Click Archiving request.
LinkedIn will send you an email when your downloads are ready.
Apart from that, use the advanced search option in various ways to find the best matches.
Here are a few ways to do it.
Look for companies in the niches and location that you are ready to serve.
Find people in your 1st, 2nd and 3rd connections.
Find people currently working in the company you are looking for.
Find former company employees by selecting old companies in all filters. [Tip: Network with them. You may find a way to get in or find out about the person involved in the decision-making process.]
Locate people based on the language they speak, the categories they have listed on their profiles, and using various keywords.
LinkedIn at its best
Most people check their LinkedIn profile once or twice a week without realizing how much they’re missing.
Don’t be those people. Optimize your LinkedIn account to get the most out of it. Who knows, your prospect is looking for exactly what you have to offer, but it’s not yet clearly visible to them.
LinkedIn Learning offers a suite of online courses that deliver high-quality content while combining the LinkedIn network. Here’s all you need to know.
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